Why Fit a Top Loading 12 Volt Fridge
Uberbus specialise in the design and production of bespoke campervan interiors for VW Transporters. When designing the layout for their latest VW T5 conversion they decided to opt for a top loading 12 Volt fridge. For Clough Jones of Uberbus there were two key advantages in using a top opening fridge over a conventional front opening one:
“First, we saw big advantages to our design by accessing the fridge through the top of the work surface. Space is real a premium in a T5 conversion, so moving the fridge from the more traditional under sink position frees up valuable space for food and other storage and the top opening fridge has the added benefit that you can always get to the fridge easily, even when the bed is down.
Second, a top loading fridge is a really secure way to store your chilled food. Unlike a front opening 12 Volt fridge there is no risk of driving off with the door open, or catch undone and distributing the contents of the fridge liberally around the inside of the campervan!
We chose the Vitrifrigo C40L because we believe it will be more efficient than other makes of 12 volt fridge due to its aluminium finned cooling unit. Plus, dimensionally, it fits neatly within the width of work top and to cap it all there even a small ice box in the top to make ice cubes – a real bonus in a top loading fridge.”
More About the 12 Volt Fridge Installation
What Penguin Refrigeration like about this installation, apart from the neat styling and appearance, is the detail of the lid hinging. Using sprung loaded hinges, the Uberbus design neatly holds the fridge lid open and then allows it shut completely flush to the work top when closed. Once the hinges were sourced the installation of the fridge was relatively straight forward, mounted to a flange just under the work top with the Danfoss BD35 12 volt compressor sited immediately below. Ventilation to the compressor and cooling unit was provided by vents in base of the cabinet with the warm air then encouraged to dissipate out behind the work top and through the wardrobe beside. The 12 Volt power is through an 110 amp hour battery charged using a Raw component intelligent charging system, which provides enough power to run the fridge (at a temperature of +4°C), and run all the interior LED lighting, for at least 4 days.
Vitrifrigo 12 volt fridges and freezers are manufactured exclusively by Vitrifrigo in Italy and distributed in the UK by Penguin Refrigeration Ltd. For more details on the Uberbus Conversion visit http://uberbus.co.uk/