Should you keep your RV freezer full?


By Chris Dougherty
Chris Dougherty is a certified RV technician. Here is a letter he received from a reader while he was serving as’s technical editor.

Dear Chris,
Your article about keeping the fridge full was a boon to those of us who really are dumb about such things. I get it now about keeping it full but leaving space around items. Thanks!

sylvar on

But what about the freezer? Does the same apply — keep it full but the food spaced? I know in the home fridge it’s good to keep the freezer fully packed. —Nancy

Hi, Nancy,
The freezer is different, and it doesn’t matter whether it is packed or not. Here’s why: The cooling unit section that serves the freezer attaches to an aluminum plate that sits on the back and floor of the freezer box. So, there is direct thermal transfer to the freezer contents.

The fresh food box only contacts the cooling unit via the fins. Because of its size, there needs to be air circulation so the air in the compartment can be “cooled” by the fins. Some newer refrigerators have been redesigned to allow better circulation around the fins without the food contents being pushed up against it.

Hope this helps!


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If you have room in the freezer, always add one liter or two liter plastic soda bottles filled with drinking water, to top off the capacity of the freezer… If you are without power, the solid ice containers will keep your frozen perishables frozen for a long time…