Size of refrigerator for full timing.


What size refrigerator is really necessary for full timing? I am getting ready to purchase a Bighorn 3585. I have an option to get the smaller refrigerator with a pull out pantry beside it, or I can get the double door refrigerator without the pantry. I am trying to figure out which would be most beneficial for full timing---the pull out pantry (the skinny one with the wire baskets) or the larger refrigerator. Does anyone have any ideas or preferences?

Ray LeTourneau

Senior Member - Past Moderator
We currently have the NDR1062 2 door 10 cubic foot fridge and the pantry. We would prefer the pantry over the 4 door reefer. We were full time for 4 years. While not as long as some, it has been long enough for us to learn our needs. The pantry is needed for adequate staple food storage and adds a lor of versatility to food storage options.
Not that they are all bad but a number of the 4 door Dometic reefers have been problematic.


Texas-South Chapter Leader-Retired
We have a Landmark Key Largo and fortunately I have a LARGE pantry area (which was one of my requirements) and the 4 door fridge (also another requirement). I still have a tough time getting all of our food in the freezer portion of it. We could probably do with the smaller refrigerator but not the smaller freezer.


Well-known member
We have the small fridge (9 cu ft?) and the pull-out pantry, and it has worked well for us for 5 years now. Some of your opinion would probably depend on your cooking and shopping habits, but we would make the same decision again, I think.

Since we usually grocery shop about once a week, we do have to consider how much frozen food and fresh produce we can get at one time. The pantry is convenient for boxed, bagged, and canned goods that are frequently used. The lower cupboards are difficult to organize due to drain pipes that run through and odd angles, and you generally have to get down in the floor to see/reach stuff stored in there. The pantry minimizes my flopping around in the floor while cooking dinner.


Well-known member
If we had to do it over again we would do the smaller fridge and the grocery storage instead of the 4 door fridge.


Well-known member
Can I just say that although I am not full-timing, I am living in my Big Horn for 6 weeks....1 week down. Already we said we would get the bigger fridge and pantry should we ever go FT (dream on dieselengineer) because the smaller ones are just too small. My freezer is so full of stuff I had to move from my house, and I've decided when I shop I can only buy for a few days at a time...I just don't have the room to put lots of items and think they would safely stay the temp they need to be. When you pack too tight some of your items may not get cold enough and you run the risk of getting sick....

So for my 2 cents, I vote go bigger.


Well-known member
For the past 5 years, the smaller fridge has done us well. We also purchased a Coleman 12/120V cooler which we mainly use for beer, soda, etc.

Ray LeTourneau

Senior Member - Past Moderator
I guess I should add that we have a small 3 cu.ft. freezer to help with capacity. It only weighs 50# empty. We used to keep it in the closet in the W/D area but now it's back in the LR corner. Doubles as a printer stand.


We have a 2 door RM2862 Refrigerator by Dometic which is 8Cu Ft. We wanted to have more freezer space so we got rid of the table and chairs. Bought a 5cu Ft Sears Upright freezer. Put a cabinet around the freezer which gave us more drawers and a slide out drawer for our portable ice maker.




Past Heartland Ambassador
We have fulltimed for more than 6 years now and have always had the smaller two-door refrigerator. We also have the RM2862 in the Bighorn...I think it's either 9 or 10 cubic feet. We've never had an issue with space...I've learned how to repackage meats, etc., to maximize the space in the freezer, and we do NOT have any auxilliary fridge or freezer. I do like having the full-walled pantry instead of the bigger well for us!


Founding Utah Chapter Leaders-Retired
The same size does not fit everyone's needs.
It depends alot on what your RV lifestyle is going to be.
Many "fulltimers" stay in at least moderately sized towns where supplies are fairly close at hand. They can go to a store easily to restock. Others stay in one spot period.
We do not. We prefer rural, very quiet areas. We also move fairly often, during the summer. Consequently, there are very few sources for supplies.
Our two favorite spots, when we are "in port", (winter spot/summer spot), are around 75 miles from any big box stores, such as Walmart, Costco,Sam's, or even a real chain store market. There are only small mom and pop grocery stores.
Therefore we have the large 4 door refer and we really like it. A lot of cold storage.
We also got the BH 3670 because it has the most storage in the kitchen within the BH line, IMHO.
Last edited:


Founders of SoCal Chapter
fridge 008 (Medium).jpgfridge 005 (Medium) (Medium).jpg

If you think you would like the pantry then you can get one of these and put it in the closet/W/D area. They work froze all the soda in the fridge the first time out. So check the temp settings.


Well-known member
Like others have said, it depends on your shopping/eating habits. We eat a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, more than canned or boxed stuff. We have the biggest frig (4-door) and love it. Gives us room for lots of salad fixings, plastic basket full of apples, many yogurts, etc. I love the large freezer with ice maker (never need to buy ice). I packed the freezer for our 5-week trip last summer, with vacuum sealed bags of filet mignons and chicken from Costco, a couple of dinner sized lasagnas, and several freezer bags of quick stir-fry meals, and we didn't have to shop once for our main dish, just incidentals. Loved it. For us, a bigger refrigerator is more important than a pantry. Also our BH3670 has tons of other storage space. The last thing we want to do is go find a grocery store.
Last edited:


Well-known member
We have a camp kitchen, so all of our beverages are kept in the refrig out there. Love the camp kitchen since we do most (99.9%) of our cooking outside. There is more storage/pantry out there too.


Well-known member
In the past 3 RVs, we had the smaller refer. Since we knew we'd be full-time for the better part of the year this year, we opted for the larger 4-door refer. We really like it. We also have plenty of pantry space in this rig, so losing the side pantry was not a big thing for us but on a smaller floor plan, I can see how losing that pantry would be losing a lot.