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Vitrifrigo Fridge How Good are they?

#1 User is offline   John & Lynelle 

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Posted 27 April 2008 - 09:50 AM

Hi All,

We presently have a Dometic 3 Way Fridge fitted to our XC Van. We have had so much trouble with it when encountering hot weather, that we are looking at changing to a Vitrifrigo 150Litre fridge. I am after feedback from anybody who has the Vitrifrigo fitted. How good are they? Have you had any problems in hot weather? How many batteries & Solar panels have you got fitted to the van. We presently have one 80W panel, & a 130ah deep cycle battery (a replacement bought in Darwin last year).

Another option is a Waeco 12v fridge, but I would have to go a bit larger to get a 2 door model, which means modifying the area it will be fitted (more cost).

I will be contacting Kedron eventually, but would like some feedback first.

Thanks, & Happy travelling.

Regards,

John & Lynelle :confused1: :helpsmilie:
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#2 User is offline   Chris 

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Posted 27 April 2008 - 03:35 PM

We think the Vitrifrigo is absolutely wonderful! It has done a lot of travelling in the heat of the NT and Queensland (for several days once at Mount Isa the temperature was around 47 degrees during the daylight hours) and it has always coped.

it had no trouble with the Gibb River Road, or back roads in Kakadu. Once, in Clare SA one of the door hinges broke, and Val took it off, found someone with a welder which he borrowed and fixed it. And we have had to replace the door "handle" once. But the fridge keeps everything icy cold and that's its purpose of course. :thumbsup:
Chris
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#3 User is offline   dismart 

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Posted 27 April 2008 - 05:29 PM

Hi John and Lynelle
We have a 230l Vitrifrigo in our van, now 4 years old and I have nothing but praise for the way it has coped. We live in Darwin and have travelled in some very hot, 45C+, and very humid and the fridge and freezer (2 door) has coped with everything dished up. Would highly recommend it. Only problems we have had is the cental hinge holding the two doors together came apart, it is only spot welded and I have had a proper weld put on it now, and a door lock breaking, but this was after 3 and a half years so I can't complain too much.
My caravan has 4 solar panels and 3 batteries and it copes reasonably well, we have never had the fridge cut out due to lack of power, but the 230l would use more power than a 150l. However, I do think you would need to upgrade your system if you are doing independent camping.
regards
Val
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#4 User is offline   JETnomads 

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Posted 27 April 2008 - 07:32 PM

Hi

We also have the 230l. Van is 5 years old in June this year, has been on the road permanently now for 4 years.

They only problem we have had, is loosing the little screw which holds the bottom of the door. A reminder to all to check they are tight occasionally Never broken anything else.

We have 3 batteries and 3 panels.

Cheers
Jody
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#5 User is offline   John & Lynelle 

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Posted 30 April 2008 - 10:01 AM

Thanks to all who gave me some feedback. I'm convinced that this is the way to go, plus more solar panel & battery to cope. Kedron factory doesn't do any changes to their caravans now, due to the pressure of building new ones. I'll most likely get the work done at Solar Express at Caboolture.

Regards & Happy Travelling,

John & Lynelle

:thumbsup: :biggrin:
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#6 User is offline   dazmit 

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Posted 30 April 2008 - 01:13 PM

As a suggestion I would gain a 2nd quote from Springers at Brendale for the mods.

cheers

Darryl
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#7 User is offline   John & Lynelle 

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Posted 03 May 2008 - 12:54 PM

Thks Darryl, sounds like a good idea. At least I don't have to travel too far for either company.

John
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#8 User is offline   Laurie & Helen 

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Posted 04 May 2008 - 09:28 PM

We have a 150 lt in our XC, keeps the ice cream frozen and drinks cold keeps the food good too. We have 3 x 120 solar and 3 deep cycles. We haven't had any problems and don't seem to have to worry about what we use at night time to conserve power. :thumbsup:

Laurie & Helen
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#9 User is offline   John & Lynelle 

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 03:12 PM

G'Day All,

I've finally settled on, & fitted myself a Vitrofrigo 150lt fridge. A bit of mucking around as it is 75mm narrower than the Dometic. I turned it on at 12.15pm, & by 1.30pm it was 4deg in the fridge, & -13deg in the freezer. Very impressed, & it used only 37amps up to 10.00am next day. I still have to buy & fit another Solar panel (130W). I bought a CTEK XS25000 25amp battery charger on Ebay for $370 posted. That's a saving of $115 on one from a 12Volt shop.

Can't wait to get on the road to do a proper test.

:thumbsup:

Regards,

John & Lynelle
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#10 User is offline   Fieldsie 

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  Posted 08 August 2008 - 04:33 PM

We too have a 150 litre Vitrifrigio in our 151/2 ft XC and whilst we are generally happy with its performance we have had some problems with it. After a not so bumpy trip to Birdsville and the Birdsville Track we found that the cooling pipes in the condenser had developed a hole allowing all the refrigerant to escape, thus no fridge. When we removed it for repair we found that all the self-tapping screws on one side of the fridge had stripped allow the fridge to move in the frame causing the damage. Luckily it was still under warranty so we had it repaired FOC. Has anyone else had this problem? What woujd be useful is a more user friendly manuel. Ours was mostly in Italian and just about useless.
John and Sandra
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#11 User is offline   sid fish 

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 09:40 PM

Our 240L Vitrifrigo packed up a few weeks ago. The evaporator (ie the freezer compartment) developed a crack, eventually fracturing a pipe, and lost the gas. Took 3 weeks to organise a new evaporator (ex Camec in Brisbane) to be freighted to Darwin, where it was installed by a local fridge guy.

Crack no doubt due to too much stuff in the freezer on rough roads. In future, before going on corrugations, we'll transfer the bulk of the freezer stuff into the Waeco chest freezer.
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#12 User is offline   dazmit 

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Posted 22 August 2008 - 06:34 AM

The Vitros also seem to frost up quickly and therefore reducing the cooling performance dramatically.

They are certainly a premium PRICED product !!!

We chose a 190l Waeco Coolmatic for our 2004 XC mainly as it was a lot cheaper than a 150l Vitro and also larger than that sized Vitro.

We have had no problems with it and it doesn't frost up or require freezer to be half emptied on rough roads - it's done the Tanami, Plenty & Mereenie.
I did fit a small 12V in the fridge compartment to circulate the air around the fridge which also had the added benefit of being able to change the thermostat from 4 to 2.5 to maintain 0 - 4 C which means less on time for the compressor.

Some people don't like the white finish but I prefer function over form.

Cheers

Darryl
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#13 User is offline   pjbf 

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 06:19 PM

Darryl,
Does the 12V fan run continuously or only when the compressor cuts in? Did you draw power from the fridge connections or else where?
Regards,
Pat
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#14 User is offline   dazmit 

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 07:26 PM

Hi Pat

I ran the power from the 12V supply behind the fridge and brought it in through the door rubber. The fan runs the whole time but I did fit a on/off switch inside the fridge so i can actually turn it off.

cheers

Darryl
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#15 Guest_John & Cheryl_*

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 06:24 PM

Hi all

I will now go against the flow.

When I specified my new Kedron XC at the end of 2006, I had a choice of Electrolux 3 way fridge with one battery and no solar, the Electrolux with one battery and one 130watt Kyocera solar panel or the Vitrigo with THREE batteries and THREE solar panels. I chose the middle option because I have had a good run with Electrolux fridges for 30 years and I didn't want to pay THOUSANDS more for a compressor fridge along with ongoing high battery replacement costs.

After a round Australia trip, admittedly in Winter, I now know that I made the right decision. I do have a TROPICAL Electrolux fridge though and the Gall boys fitted it correctly with adequate ventilation. When camped at Ningaloo for a month, it was great not to have to worry about battery capacity!

When on the road, the absorption fridges do consume a lot of current and hence voltage drop is inevitable. Keeping the caravan battery fully topped up was not possible when the sky was overcast. Upon arriving home, I found that the culprit was the Toyota Prado D4D alternator settings as dictated by Toyota. This was rectified by a very clever new device called a RanOx battery booster.

Now, all is spot on for daily tripping or long term bush camping. The moral of the story is that Electrolux 3 way fridges aren't as bad as some make out when correctly installed.

I can talk more at Milmerran about this topic and the RanOx if anybody will listen to me :)

Cheers - John
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