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Old 07-25-2008, 11:29 AM   #1
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garage refrigerator - need help


Last night my older (1980ish) finally bit the dust. I need to replace it asap as it is a necessity in my home. I talked to a friend who works in heating and cooling who said that I need to get somthing older than 1995 because otherwise the freezer won't run in the winter (I'm in Wisconsin). I don't care if the older ones cost more in electricity to run. Is this true and why would that happen? If anyone has any advice, I'd appreciate it.

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Last edited by tadpolegal; 07-25-2008 at 11:30 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old 07-25-2008, 04:37 PM   #2
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garage refrigerator - need help


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Originally Posted by tadpolegal View Post
Last night my older (1980ish) finally bit the dust. I need to replace it asap as it is a necessity in my home. I talked to a friend who works in heating and cooling who said that I need to get somthing older than 1995 because otherwise the freezer won't run in the winter (I'm in Wisconsin). I don't care if the older ones cost more in electricity to run. Is this true and why would that happen? If anyone has any advice, I'd appreciate it.
Why not ask your buddie why it wont run in the winter...

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Old 07-25-2008, 04:47 PM   #3
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garage refrigerator - need help


Tadpolegal:

If you want to buy an older fridge, all you have to do is go to ANY appliance repair shop. They all have used appliances for sale.

However, I have purchased approximately 20 fridges since 1995 for my apartment block, and all of them run in the winter.

THE ONLY POSSIBLE reason I could imagine that your friend says that you need to buy an older fridge is because you keep your fridge in the garage, and the older fridges had larger motors for bigger compressors. He may be thinking that with cold Wisconsin winters, the oil in your garage fridge would get cold and too viscous for a smaller motor. I believe that if that were to happen, then your fridge would blow fuses trying to start the compressor. Also, you could simply wrap your compressor in a battery blanket for a car battery and plug that in to keep the compressor warmer.
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Old 08-26-2008, 08:07 PM   #4
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garage refrigerator - need help


He's right.

When it hits a certain degree (like -10 aprox.) the freezer will become warm and the fridge part will freeze.

Happened to mine last year (MN)
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Old 08-26-2008, 11:27 PM   #5
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garage refrigerator - need help


Fitter:

Are you saying that if you put a fridge that was manufactured after 1995 in a cold garage, that at some temperature around -10 deg. F. the freezer section will become much warmer than the fresh food section?

If so, I simply can't understand how in the world that could possibly happen.

Unless this is a very expensive commercial refrigerator, it will only have a single evaporator coil and a single fan drawing air over that evaporator coil and blowing it PRIMARILY into the freezer section, with some of the air being blown into the fresh food section. The only reason why the freezer in a frost free fridge is colder than the fresh food section is cuz it has MORE cold air blowing into it (and cuz it's smaller too).

How could more cold air blow into the fresh food section if the size of the openings through which the air flows is fixed?

Could you please explain how that could happen entirely due to an ambient temperature drop in the garage?

Except for the possibility of the compressor oil becoming thicker in cold weather, a fridge should work more efficiently in cold weather than in warm weather. That's because the heat taken out of the interior of the fridge is removed in the condenser coil in the back of the fridge, and the greater the difference in temperature between the condenser coil and the ambient air, the more quickly that heat will be removed.

Last edited by Nestor_Kelebay; 08-26-2008 at 11:32 PM.
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Old 03-28-2009, 09:52 PM   #6
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garage refrigerator - need help


I bet Red Green could help with this one, lol. Jokes aside, I understand the theory. I have a garage fridge that runs all year round here in IA. I've never had any problems, but the garage is well insulated, but not heated.
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Old 03-28-2009, 10:09 PM   #7
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garage refrigerator - need help


Quick search, some seemed to indicate that the freezer would warm up. Maybe new ones direct air flow/cooling as needed

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if the garage is unheated, the fridge thermostat is detecting that its already at temperature so it doesnt need to turn on the motor
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A while back, several fridge manufactures stated that low ambient temperatures DO prevent proper function of some models of refrigerators/freezers
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Old 03-28-2009, 11:41 PM   #8
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garage refrigerator - need help


If the ambient temperature is below the temperature setting in the fresh food section the cold control will be satisfied and cut the compressor off and the compressor will not come back on until the ambient temperature climes above the temperature setting in the fresh food section. This will cause the freezer and the fresh food sections to become the same temperature. Meaning that the freezer could be too warm and the fresh food section will be too cold. But the age of the refrigerator has nothing to do with this all refrigerators will do this. The fact of the mater is that refrigerators are made to operate above 50 degrees. This is the best I can explain it so I hope this helps.

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