I use a Sunfrost RF16 Refrigerator & Freezer that runs straight off the battery bank on DC power. It’s really been a workhorse running continuously for the last seven years without missing a beat. The Sun Frost refrigerator employs an array of design innovations to achieve its exceptionally low energy consumption. The cooling system on the Sun Frost is top mounted. This configuration reduces energy consumption several ways. The heat generated by the compressor and condenser (black coils on the back of many refrigerators) does not re-enter the refrigerator and also with a cooler running condenser, the efficiency of the cooling system is increased.
Fewer Solar Panels
The Sun Frost refrigerator typically reduces refrigerator energy consumption by a factor of five compared to the typical household refrigerator currently in use. The accompanying cost of the solar power system is similarly reduced. The Sun Frost RF16 12 volt DC model consumes 15 KWH per month, or an average of 42 amp hours per day. Producing the 110 KWH needed to run the typical refrigerator on a solar power system would require an investment of around $12,000 in hardware, batteries, and inverter. A Sun Frost RF16 will reduce this cost by a factor of at least six because of its increased efficiency and the elimination of inverter losses. Inverters convert DC battery power to 120V AC at an energy loss of about 10%.
The cooling system of the Sun Frost refrigerator contains a minimal number of moving parts. Both the DC and AC compressors incorporate highly reliable, hermetically sealed, brushless motors. The efficient thermal design of Sun Frost refrigerators also contributes to their reliability. The top-mounted cooling system runs at a lower temperature than most, which prolongs the life of the system’s lubricants and reduces mechanical strain on the compressor. The cooling system should provide well over 15 years of trouble-free operation. Worth the price, but each one being custom built, they are not inexpensive. The RF16 DC model I own currently lists at $3,215.