So, can you use a regular oven in an RV kitchen?
You can install a regular oven in an RV if it runs off propane. But most gas ovens use natural gas. Most electric ovens are not compatible with RVs because their voltage is a lot higher. This means that they will not be able to heat up. You will need to use an inverter from the battery’s 12V to 240V.
This guide covers the different varieties of ovens and whether you can install them in an RV.
We look at both gas and electric options and also consider the size of your RV kitchen.
Lastly, we go through the process of installing an oven in an RV.
Does the Oven Run on Gas?
Gas ovens are one type of ‘regular’ oven that you can find in a home kitchen. Gas ovens work with either propane or natural gas.
Propane vs. Natural Gas
Propane gas is used to heat rooms, water, and cooking. Propane is in a liquid form and is commonly stored in gas cylinders like those used with a BBQ grill.
In an RV, it is used to power the fridge, stove, and other appliances, as well as in some household ovens.
However, it is not usually used in urban areas because they commonly have natural gas.
Most natural gas is made of methane, but it also contains trace amounts of hydrocarbon gas liquids, carbon dioxide, and water vapor.
Natural gas is commonly used in household kitchens and accessed from a direct pipe.
How Do Gas Ovens Work?
Gas ovens work by igniting the gas. They contain a small ignitor called a pilot light, which sets the gas alight and sends it through burner tubes. These burners maintain the heat that is used for cooking food inside the oven.
Which Gas Does the Oven Use?
Many RVs come equipped with cooking appliances, whether that be a full oven or stovetop.
Many include a combination of oven and stovetop, which runs off propane gas.
These units are common in Class A and Class C motorhomes as well as fifth-wheel trailer RVs.
Smaller RVs only have the stovetop, which also runs off propane gas. This is more suitable for an RV than an electric convection oven because you can cook without hooking up your rig to a power source.
Therefore, if you want to install a gas oven in your RV, you will need to choose a model that can run off propane gas.
Many of these models are usually used for outdoor cooking like camping or in outdoor kitchens, so they are not technically regular ovens.
We recommend the GASPRO Multi-Tasking Propane Infrared Outdoor Cooking Master, which includes multiple gas connection options.
- Boasts the infrared cooking system reaches an incredible 1500°F, serves up steakhouse-quality steaks about 2 min per side. Matched a cast-iron griddle to achieve multi-tasking cooking
- 6-notches in the grill rack determined the grate's proximity to the infrared heat source, offer different heat zones for meat, seafood, and veggies.
- Gives you multiple connection options, built-in a standard 3/8” male flare fitting in the valve and regulator. It allows you to connect any 3/8” female flare hose to a big propane tank.
- Opening the front panel that can temporarily place freshly cooked food during the cooking process. Covering the front panel to keep the internal of the grill clean when you are not using it.
- Pass CSA certified, safety use for outdoor backyard grilling, RV traveling, camping. Constructed of premium 304 stainless steel, sturdy and rustproof, easily clean after usage.
Does the Oven Run on Electricity?
Electric convection ovens are the other common oven type that you might consider a regular oven.
Electric ovens run off a power source and are very common in household kitchens. However, they are less common in RVs.
How Do Electric Ovens Work?
Electric ovens come in several varieties:
- Fan and electric thermostat combination
- Digital electronic
The most common is the classic convection oven. It has a thermostat that controls the temperature and has a bake element at the bottom, and a broil element at the oven’s top.
When the elements heat up, they work in conjunction to disperse the heat evenly through the oven.
A fan-powered oven is also very popular. It has the same layout as a convection oven, but with a fan at the back of the oven that helps to move around the heat and cook the food evenly.
What Is the Voltage?
To find out if you can install a regular electric oven in an RV, you need to find the voltage.
Electric ovens that are found in homes run on a voltage of 240 volts. In general, houses can handle a voltage of 208V, 220V, or 240V.
The issue is that RVs only have up to a 120V power source. This power comes either from the campground or a generator and powers the larger appliances in the vehicle. Smaller appliances are powered by a 12V battery.
If you try to connect a regular electric oven with 240V, this can be dangerous. Because the oven voltage is double the power supply, it will only receive half the power that it needs to function.
This means that it will not get to heat and may even burn out completely.
For this reason, RVs have miniature convection ovens that are roughly the size of a toaster. They can provide convection heat with a much smaller output.
However, if you set it on using the electric oven, you could install an inverter.
A model like the AIMS 5000 Watt 12Volt DC Power Inverter can convert the 12V of your RV battery into 240V that you can plug into your oven.
- 5000W max continuous power
- Red LED indicates over heat and over load
- Volt and amp meter
- Single cooling fan operation
- AC output short circuit protection
However, this consumes a lot of electricity and can quickly drain your battery.
Is There Enough Space in the RV Kitchen?
You need to consider if a regular oven can fit inside your RV kitchen.
It might be possible in a Class A or C motorhome, but a Class B motorhome or travel trailer can be a lot tighter in space.
The most common size of a regular oven is 30 inches (76.2 cm). It is possible to find small ovens of just 20 inches (50.8 cm) in size. These are considered to be very narrow.
RV ovens are often even smaller than this, like the Furrion 17” 2-in-1 Gas Range Oven.
- 2-IN-ONE: Cook, bake, fry, and grill in your RV kitchen, while on the road, with this combined cooktop range and oven. Works with propane power or gas power. It provides up to 8000 BTU power output from the cooktop and 7,100 BTU from the oven burner.
- BUILT FOR SAFETY: The safety cutoff valve prevents fire hazards while peizo ignition makes it safe & easy to light burners and oven. The brushed, stainless steel construction resists vibration and extreme temperatures.
- LARGE CAPACITY & SLEEK DESIGN: Boasting the largest capacity in the industry, with an inner volume of 1.24cu.Ft / 35L, home cooking on the road has never been easier. Design features include a brushed stainless steel finish, layered glass door, glass cover, cavity lighting, and LED knobs.
- EASY TO CLEAN: Wired grate and enamel tray fit over the top of the burners and lift off for easy cleaning. The range oven features a broiler pan with an insert to catch dripping fat while the hinged glass cover protects the cooktop and acts as a backsplash.
- DURABLE & MADE FOR THE ROAD: Durable 2-layer glass on the oven door prevents any damage from the heat, and the grate fits into rubber holes in the tray to prevent rattling while in motion. ANSI Z21.57a Recreational Vehicle Cooking certified, and CAN1-1.16-M79 Propane Fired Cooking Appliances for Recreational Vehicles certified.
Use a tape measure to measure the space in your RVs kitchen.
If you want to install a full-sized oven in your RV, you may need to renovate the kitchen and create extra room.
How to Install an Oven in an RV
The following instructions are suitable for an RV gas oven, which is the kind you are most likely to install in your vehicle.
- Remove the cooktop of the old oven and place it to one side.
- Use a screwdriver to remove the oven’s screws.
- Switch off the gas and unscrew the gas fixings.
- Slide out the old oven from the RV.
- Slide the new one in its place, while simultaneously feeding the gas line.
- Use a screwdriver to fix the oven in place with its mounting screws.
- Lift the cooktop and reattach the gas line.
- Check the gas fittings for any leaks and tighten as needed.
For a good look at the process, check out this video:
In conclusion, there are some cases where you can use a regular oven in an RV:
- If it runs off propane gas
- If you use an electric oven with a voltage converter
- If the oven is small enough to fit in the RV kitchen
However, each of these scenarios has its challenges. Most regular gas ovens run off natural gas, whereas RV kitchens are set up for propane gas. Voltage converters can be used to run electric ovens, but this will quickly drain your RV’s battery and can get expensive. It’s also likely that the oven will be too large for the RV kitchen space.
Luckily, there are many RV ovens on the market that are small enough and suitable for RV kitchens. These units may not have the same capabilities as a regular kitchen oven, but they are more than adequate for day-to-day cooking.