Waeco CF-80 Query

Submitted: Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 09:00
ThreadID: 131114 Views:2071 Replies:5 FollowUps:8
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Greetings all, wondering if anyone can give me a bit of guidance in relation to my Waeco CF-80 fridge freezer I've got located in my camper trailer powered by bank of batteries.

I works fine when the batteries are connected to 240V AC and fine for a couple of days just running just off the batteries but the compressor stops and only the fan runs when the batteries voltage drops to 12.5V even though I've got the battery monitor on the fridge set to low which means it shouldn't cut out until around 10.4V.

I've determined that the voltage under load at the fridge is 0.75V less than at the battery bank but this should mean that the fridge is receiving 11.75V, still well above the cut off amount when the monitor is set on low.

I'll contact Waeco to see what they reckon but would appreciate knowing if anyone else has had this issue and how it may be resolved.

Many thanks, Gary M.
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Reply By: Bonz (Vic) - Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 10:01

Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 10:01
My CF80 will drain the batteries with the fan and compressor down to 10 volts till the beeping of the battery monitor starts to really annoy me. I would talk to Waeco.
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Follow Up By: Member - Gary R M (VIC) - Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 15:07

Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 15:07
Thanks Bonz, that's good to know. I'll be on the phone to them tomorrow.
Cheers, Gary M.
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Reply By: Gronk - Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 10:32

Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 10:32
Sometimes the low batt cutout isn't all that accurate....plus the starting current will knock the batt voltage down a lot further than the run voltage.

I have 3 x 120 a/h batts and my Waeco 110ltr upright will drop the batt voltage down approx 0.4V while running, but that figure is almost the same at the fridge AND at the batteries.

Your figure of 0.75V difference between fridge and batteries while running is a little high and size of cabling could also be a problem.

You need to check the voltage at the fridge at time of startup to see if the voltage drop is actually dipping down a lot further than you may think.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 13:00

Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 13:00
Gary, I agree with Gronk.
The CF80 is rated at 7.5 Amps running current. It probably briefly draws double that at startup. So if you are measuring a running voltage droop of 0.75v then the startup droop could well be 1.5v or more which may be going below the monitor trip point.
Maybe beef-up your cable size. Although it could also be that your batteries are getting a bit low in performance?
If using a digital voltmeter, it may not respond fast enough to get a sensible reading at startup.
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Follow Up By: Member - Gary R M (VIC) - Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 15:12

Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 15:12
Thanks Gronk & Allan, yeah I was wondering about cable size and will check the voltage drop at start-up and see how I go.

Thanks again, Gary M.
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Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 18:50

Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 18:50
I reckon the cable size needs to be upgraded too, fridges love bigger cables
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Reply By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 18:40

Sunday, Dec 13, 2015 at 18:40
Hi Gary. Voltage at the fridge should be the same as at the batteries , if its not you have voltage drop either caused by a connection or the wiring is to small, and it is on the waeco plugs that come with the fridges. Fully charged at 13.8 or so would drop to around 13.2 on startup and run at about 13.4. Voltage of 12.5 is very low so possibly one of your batteries is crook. Even after running two fridges all night my full river pair usually read 12.8 or above the next morning.
cheers Graeme.
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Follow Up By: Member - Gary R M (VIC) - Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 08:46

Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 08:46
Thanks Graeme, I was wondering about the Waeco plug wiring, it does seem a bit light on.
Had the batteries checked by an auto electrician a couple of months back and they were ok then but may have gone downhill since.
Regards, Gary M.
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Follow Up By: terryt - Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 10:38

Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 10:38
What setup do you have Graeme? I understood a fully charged battery (not being charged) would have a voltage of 12.8v. Unless yours are being charged somehow overnight I would have expected running two fridges would take them down from 100% by morning.
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Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Tuesday, Dec 15, 2015 at 22:55

Tuesday, Dec 15, 2015 at 22:55
Hi Gary. 280watts of solar panels charging two full river agms , one 80amp under the bonnet and one 100 amp under the tray. Fridges are one 75 and one 60 litre trailblazer that have very good insulation and are wired with 8b&s cable which is a minimum if you dont want any voltage drop. Nothing chargers the batteries at night and voltage rarely falls below 12.6 with one fridge running as a freezer. Voltage drop is the main cause of fridge problems and the first thing i would do is get rid of the waeco plug , shorten the cable and use anderson plugs on all connections. If you buy new batteries (agms) take a volt meter along and buy the one with the highest voltage , recently i bought a couple of 8amp hour agms for running leds around camp and the voltage on them sitting on shelves all the same age varied from 12.4 to 13.3. I bought two that read 13.3 and 13.2. The salesman wasnt going to let me test them till i said i would go somewhere else and buy them. Good agms lose very little voltage sitting on a shelf for a couple of months. My fridges run about one third of the time with a bit of thought going into restocking etc like restocking beer in the morning with the sun up etc. Next setup will probably have three batteries
cheers Graeme.
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Reply By: Malcom M - Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 08:05

Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 08:05
Sounds like you have a problem.
I have mine set to around 10v figuring that the food is likely more important to me than the batteries.
Haven't had a problem with it cutting out at higher voltages.
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Reply By: CSeaJay - Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 10:43

Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 10:43
Hi Gary
I also have the CF-80, my model is one of the first, but have (as yours should still have) a small selector switch close to the bottom of the control side of the fridge. It is a three way switch marked Hi Med Lo. This adjusts the cut-out voltage. You can select a lower cut-out here, which should solve your problem.
Also I upgraded my cable to reduce voltage drop. This helped. Note to add to other replies above, voltage from can only be measured if the line is under load.
Gary even after doing the above we only get two days (three max) of use from two 120AH batteries. Fact is these fridges suck power, specially when set on cold or used as freezer. As mentioned the power gulp at startup is a culprit, and unfortunately they cycle on-and-off quite frequently. We save quite a bit of power by switching the fridge off at night before bed, and restarting in the morning. The inside temp only drops three degres, but we saved probably 20+ startup power-sucks.
Hope this helps
CJ
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Follow Up By: Member - Gary R M (VIC) - Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 15:46

Monday, Dec 14, 2015 at 15:46
Thanks CJ, yeah got the battery monitor set on low. The fridge is currently at Opposite Lock in Wodonga who are one of our local Waeco Service agents, they had a look at the battery setup on my camper today and couldn't find any problems so they're checking out the fridge but I may just have to accept, as you suggest that these mothers do suck a heap of power.
Switching off the night is a good suggestion.
Cheers, Gary M.
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