How Long Will A 12 Volt Battery Run A Refrigerator (Everything You Need To Know)

In search of some backup power and wondering how long a 12 voltage battery will be able to keep your refrigerator running?

You’re in the right place! In this article, we’re going to be talking you through everything you need to know about running your refrigerator on a 12 voltage battery. So, whenever you’re ready, just read on.

How Long Will A 12 Volt Battery Run A Refrigerator: Breakdown

If you’re currently in a hurry and don’t have enough time to read through the entirety of this article, then this section is for you.

How Long Will A 12 Volt Battery Run A Refrigerator

Read on for a quick overview of how long you can expect your refrigerator to run when it is being powered by a 12-volt battery:

Fast Facts

  • On average, a 12-volt battery will typically be able to run a standard refrigerator for a time frame of between 24 to 55 hours - although do keep in mind that this timeframe can vary depending on a variety of factors. 
  • While running a 12-volt refrigerator, you can expect a 12-volt battery to run for around 2 days.
  • Keep in mind, if you are planning to use a 12-volt battery that is lead acid in design, you will need to remember to only use around 50% of its maximum power capacity in order to prevent causing any damage. So, with that being said, a lead acid battery will only be able to offer you around half of the average amount of time a 12-volt battery can run a refrigerator. 

How Long Will A 12 Volt Battery Run A Refrigerator: Factors To Keep In Mind

So, even though a 12-volt battery should, in theory, be able to offer you up to just over two days of consistent power, it’s also important to remember that there are a variety of other factors that can come into play and impact this timeframe.

To help you gain a better understanding of them, let’s break each one down below:

Battery Chemistry

One of the most important factors that will contribute to the overall amount of time that a 12-volt battery will be able to power your refrigerator is its chemistry.

For the most part, if you’re the owner of a 12 volt battery that is lithium iron phosphate or lithium ion via a solar powered generator, then you can likely expect your battery to be able to power your refrigerator for a total time of up to 2 days (and sometimes even longer than that). 

However, if you own a 12 volt battery that is lead acid, then as we have already touched upon above, you will need to make sure that you’re only ever using it on a 50% capacity to prevent damage - which means that the amount of time that it will be able to power your refrigerator will be significantly less.

Fridge Size

To follow, besides taking into account the chemistry of your 12-volt battery, it’s also a good idea to take into account how large your fridge is, because that can also impact how long the battery will be able to last.

If your fridge is on the larger size and has more operating Amps than a smaller fridge, you’re more than likely going to discover that the 12-volt battery you’re using is unable to provide enough power to keep your fridge running for as long as you might like. 

External Factors

Besides your battery’s chemical composition and the size of your fridge, another factor to take into account is the environment in which you are planning to use your fridge.

If you’re, for example, planning to keep your fridge in an outdoor environment (such as an awning) while traveling on your RV, then it’s important to keep in mind that colder/very hot temperatures can affect the performance of your 12-volt battery. 

How Long The Fridge Door Is Kept Open

While this one might seem like common sense, it’s important to make a note of it so that you don’t accidentally make the mistake of running down your battery’s power unintentionally!  

While you are running your refrigerator with a 12-volt battery, it’s very important to make sure that you aren’t leaving your refrigerator’s door open for long periods of time, or for longer than necessary. 

This is because, when you open your refrigerator door, room temperature air is able to get into the refrigerator, and this then brings the overall temperature up.

When this happens, it will then cause your 12-volt battery to work double as hard in order to help bring the temperature back to its optimally cool range, and this can cause your battery to use up its power more quickly.

Fridge Operating Amps

Last but certainly not least, another big factor that can impact the overall performance of a 12-volt battery while running a refrigerator is how many operating amps the fridge requires.

As an example, if you happen to own a larger fridge that requires a much bigger operating amperage as opposed to a smaller one, then you’re likely going to find that your 12-volt battery is unable to keep your refrigerator running for longer than a day.

In this instance, a larger battery such as a 100v battery will be better suited to you. 

Wrapping Up

So, there we have it! You’ve made it to the end of the article.

After reading this, we’re hoping that you’re now well aware of how long you can expect your 12-volt battery to sustain your refrigerator, as well as a better understanding of how to prolong its performance.

While you’re here, why don’t you give this page a bookmark?

That way, if you ever forget some of the helpful tips we have shared above to help get the most out of your 12-volt battery, you’ll know exactly where to find us. Thanks for reading!

I'm an environment and energy blogger who teaches outdoor and energy enthusiasts how to be better informed when it comes to purchasing or maintaining a generator, solar panel system, or anything else related to your energy needs.