Sunday, March 26, 2023


Can I safely retract the RV’s slide with a full fridge in it?

Dear Dave, 
I couldn’t find an answer to this question on any forum. I hate to bother you further, but I’m wondering if it’s okay to leave my 12-volt, 10-cubic-foot fridge and freezer full when retracting the slide to move to the next campground? I’m worried about the weight. —Sharon, 2021 Forest River Wildwood 22RBS

Dear Sharon,
From the Forest River website, I see your rig came standard with an 11 cubic foot (cf) Everchill 12-volt refrigerator. Your slide room is on the driver side with a couch next to it and seems to be a rack and pinion mechanism underneath. It has two bars with gears and the room slides in and out on rollers mounted to the floor of the opening.

I would not be concerned about the weight sliding in and out as the bars are typically designed to hold the weight of the refrigerator and couch fully extended. There are no additional compartments, drawers, or cabinets in the slide to put more weight in. Once the slide room is in, the weight of the refrigerator and contents are supported by the slide floor resting on the rollers and the sidewall. So you should be OK to retract the slide with the refrigerator full.

Be careful of vehicle weight

Having said that, what I would be careful of is the overall gross vehicle weight and what weight you are putting on that side of the axle? According to the information on the website, your rig has a dry weight of 5928 lbs. and your cargo capacity is 1837 lbs. Since it has dual axles, it helps to disperse the weight. Keep in mind the dry weight is with no cargo, water, LP, and batteries, as the unit is shipped without them. I would recommend getting the rig weighed at a CAT Scale to make sure you are not over GVWR.

According to the Everchill website, the refrigerator weighs 118.9 lbs., but it’s hard to determine how much weight you will put inside it. What I would also try to find out is how much weight is on the driver side wheels. That can typically only be found by weighing the rig by individual wheel position. It’s not uncommon for RVs to be heavier on one side vs. the other, as RV manufacturers do not design floorplans for weight distribution. The RV Safety & Education Foundation (RVSEF) does have weighing teams that will weigh by individual wheel position. You can find out where their teams are by going to their website.

You can also use an infrared thermometer to measure the temperature of the axle, brake drum, and wheels once a day while traveling. If the driver side is consistently running hotter than the passenger side, it is typically heavier and you might need to shift some cargo around. Keep in mind that water weighs 8.6 lbs. per gallon. So if the water tank or holding tanks are on the driver side, this will add to the uneven weight.

 You might also enjoy this from Dave 

My slide room is tearing up the floor! How can I fix it?

Dear Dave,
The front slide drags in the kitchen area and rips up the flooring. The half in the living room is fine. I’ve tried to adjust it but nothing seems to work. How can I fix it? —Kenneth, 2002 Winnebago Journey

Read Dave’s answer.

Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and the author of the “RV Handbook.”

Read more from Dave here


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24 days ago

Option 2: Simply have your spouse stand outside (rain or shine) and push up and in on the slide from the outside while you hold the button down. That should provide enough torque assist and prevent it from getting stuck midstream.
Option 3: The other thing you can try is lower the opposite side of your coach by raising only the leveling Jacks on the opposite side the fridge. This will create a bit of a downhill assist from gravity to help get the slide in when the fridge is full.

Hope that helps.

Last edited 24 days ago by Cancelproof
Thomas D
24 days ago

He’s kidding right? Does he think they have to unload the refrigerator each time to move it back and forth.I
Should have said yes,you have to empty it. And as long as it’s empty, wash it down.

24 days ago

Dave, your water must have a lot of iron in it! 😉 I believe the standard weight used for water is 8.33 lbs/gal.

24 days ago
Reply to  Spike

Just for fun: “hotter water weighs less, and colder water weighs more. As the temperature of water approaches freezing, it becomes less dense again (and therefore gets lighter).” It was also stated that the weight of water is different on the moon and the bottom of the ocean, so I guess water may weigh differently in Denver rather than Miami? It seems we may have an air in hot or cold tires debate here. I’m going to weigh myself before I drink water but I don’t know how to get rid of my hot air. Again, just for fun. I couldn’t resist.

24 days ago
Reply to  KellyR

Just for fun: This is why commercial bakers have recipes based on weight, not on volume. Reading some recipes, the by volume or by weight dichotomy comes into play because in fact, hot water weighs the same as frozen water. The volume is what changes, not the weight. So 1lb frozen water is different by volume than the of 1 lb of hot water.

Freeze 1 lb of water and it still weighs 1 lb. It may burst the vessel it is in but the weight is the same.

STP: Standard temperature and pressure.

Thanks KellyR. That was fun. Chicken or egg?

Last edited 24 days ago by Cancelproof
Diane McGovern
24 days ago
Reply to  KellyR

Hi, Kelly. I wondered once upon a time if you’re feeling bloated, i.e., have gas, would you weigh less when you step on the scale? (Sometimes my brain comes up with some weird stuff. 😆 ) Have a great day. 😀 –Diane at

24 days ago
Reply to  Diane McGovern

Oh, HAVE I wondered the same thing…. Technically we should weigh less, but it sure does not feel like it. I think the weight of the food one ate to create such an event counter balances. There is no science behind my answer but I need no science to tell me how I feel. Darned scales! .

Diane McGovern
24 days ago
Reply to  KellyR

Yep. I gripe at my scale nearly every morning, like my weight gain is its fault. 😆 Take care, Kelly. –Diane

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