There are a plethora of aftermarket modifications you can make to your 4×4. From lifts and lockers to winches and wheels. Perhaps one of the most underrated and misunderstood bits of kit though is the humble camp fridge. A technological marvel that’s hands down one of the most important modifications for remote touring.

1. Cans not bottles

Cans vs Bottles is a constant debate but we’re here to settle it once and for all. If you’re going camping, take cans. They take up less physical volume for their capacity, cool faster, cause fewer issues if they break, and are easier to stack in your fridge.

2. Pre-freezing food

If you’re heading off for a week it’s a safe bet you’ll have food in your fridge that won’t be looked at for days still. Throw those chicken breasts in your freezer at home before heading off. There’s less chance of them becoming suspect while you’re away, and they’ll act like giant ice blocks helping your fridge do its job.

3. Bring an AC charger

Extended trips almost always see you parking up for a night or two in a caravan park while you explore the local towns. An AC charger tucked deep in your drawers is a handy little tool to have to ensure everything stays running no matter how long you’re parked in a powered site and will ensure your fridge is still icy cold days later.

4. Keep the door closed

Camp fridges are pretty simple devices in the purest form. They cool the air, the cool air cools your food. So what happens when you leave the door open? All that cool air is replaced by warmer air and the whole process starts again. You don’t need to mission impossible to get your food, but don’t hang around in there with the door open umming and ahhing.

5. Plan your meals

If you’re the spontaneous type this tip may not be for you but for everyone else, it’s a game-changer. Plan your meals so you’re not digging through your fridge. Keep the stuff you won’t need for a while in the depths and the stuff up on top of the things that’ll go in the frypan within a day or two.

6. Keep it cool

Look at the tech specs of most fridges and you’ll find they’re rated based on ambient temperature. Pulling your fridge slide out and leaving your fridge sitting in the blinding sun is a sure-fire way to get it working twice as hard. It’ll chew through your battery and potentially stop your food from getting as cold as it otherwise would. Keep it in the canopy and put an insulation cover over it.

7. Give yourself a head start

If you’re planning on doing your shopping at the last town before camp don’t leave your fridge off till you get there. It’ll only have a short amount of time to cool not only itself but all your food too. Tapping it on when you first leave home will ensure your drinks are at the perfect temperature when you reach for one at camp.

8. Keep it full

Thermal Mass sounds like a complicated concept but in practice, it’s pretty simple. Cold stuff stays cold a while. Lots of cold stuff stays cold longer. Keeping your fridge chocked full of food and drinks means the contents act like a giant ice block helping maintain a constant temperature. When you open the fridge, if 50% of the space is empty air that’s 50% of the space that can rapidly warm-up, and need to be cooled down again.

9. Use airtight containers

As convenient as the packaging from the supermarket or butcher is, it’s often not the most ideal for remote touring. Where possible pack your food in airtight containers. Tupperware containers are great if you’re doing meal preparation at home, but even sealable plastic bags can stop your chicken juice from mixing with your tomato’s and ruining everyone’s day.

10. Use the power

Do you know when trucks might possibly maybe go a little over the limit downhill to help them get uphill? You can do the same with your fridge. If you’ve only got a couple of hours driving then a long time parked up at camp dial the temp way down. By arriving at camp with your food near freezing it’ll stay cold longer, helping the fridge draw less power from your dual battery setup.

This article was originally published on Mr.4×4.com.au.


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