Fridges and Fans

Submitted: Friday, Feb 03, 2006 at 23:43
ThreadID: 30395 Views:2139 Replies:6 FollowUps:2
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Hi All, I've read in a number of posts that providing additional airflow via an ex-PC fan over the back (coil?) of a 3 way (absorbtion?) type fridge can improve it's efficiency.
Is there any gain in doing the same for a compressor type fridge???
Cheers, Charlie
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Reply By: 4145derek - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 00:19

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 00:19
Waste of time. I have done the fan thing.

Pushing air, pulling air. I even tried a fan inside the fridge.

The guys that build these units kow what they are doing. I don't think a Dick Smith computer fan will improve a $1500.00 fridge.

Regards Derek. ABR
AnswerID: 152854

Follow Up By: Flash - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 00:38

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 00:38
Not neccessarily true....... depending on the installation.
If there's good airflow around the back allowing heat from the condenser to get away, then all is well.
HOWEVER if your frig is not all that well vented then it is definitely worth an additional fan to feed cool air to the condenser area. Significant power savings ARE possible. (I have proven this on a number of compressor friges) Think of it like this- any "heat pump" system is going to work better if it's in a cool enviroment- basic Physics.
And an internal fan probably won't save power but will definitely give more even internal temps.
FollowupID: 406654

Reply By: gtc - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 08:14

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 08:14
Thanks for your responses. I'd love to be able to afford a $1500 fridge!

This is my situation:
Got a 30 year old golf windup camper trailer, it's been "renovated" - new interior, new canvas, new external cladding, etc..

The upright fridge in it looks just as old, but works pretty well (well for a 30 year old fridge?). It keeps stuff nice and cold, and will maintain frozen stuff in it's miniscule freezer compartment.

It's run by 240v or by a battery on the drawbar, but at 4.5A in the on cycle, doesn't last too long. I guess I was wondering whether fitting external fans *could* improve it's efficiency -> increase the length of stay.

It's just got the open grill in the wall behind it, but if wiring up some PC fans could help, I'll give it a go. I never thought about one inside, but if that'll help maybe I'll do that too.

Again, thanks to those knowledgable folk who contribute to this forum, it's great reading!

AnswerID: 152870

Reply By: Jarse - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 09:12

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 09:12
Gidday Charlie,
You'll find an excellent article here at Collyn Rivers Caravan and Motorhome Books

I've got a new Coromal Silhouette, and while the 3-way fridge works well, it struggles a bit on [i]really[/i] hot days. I'll be having a crack at the fan thing in the not to distant future.
AnswerID: 152882

Follow Up By: Jarse - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 09:18

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 09:18
Woops! There's another article here at Fridge and Solar, which briefly discusses using a fan.

FollowupID: 406683

Reply By: Crackles - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 14:06

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 14:06
Gaday Charlie.........Almost any fridge in an enclosed cabinet or packed tightly in the back of a car will benifit from increased air circulation particualy in temparatures over 32 degrees.
We have one fitted to our 3 way caravan fridge with an on/off switch although you could get technical & fit a thermostat so the fan only runs when necessary. I doubt a 3 way fridge would save any power by fitting a fan as they need to run flat out on 12 volts just to keep up but there may theoretically be a slight saving on gas?
In hot weather it can make the difference between the icecream melting or not ;-)
Our Autofridge (compressor type) comes standard with a fan & not doubt contributes to it's excellent efficiency. When fitted into our boxing system you can feel the hot air being expelled away from the unit.
Cheers Craig..........
AnswerID: 152931

Reply By: Mulga Bill - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 16:21

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 16:21
In simplistic terms, any part of the fridge that is designed to dissipate heat (the gear on the back) should be enhanced somewhat by forcefully moving the air past it - otherwise the heated air needs to convect itself up and out, dragging new air in.... a small fan should be of some benefit.
AnswerID: 152961

Reply By: Pajman Pete (SA) - Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 18:17

Saturday, Feb 04, 2006 at 18:17
We have a little solar powered fan in the back of the fridge on our Jayco Dive. I don't know if we save any power, but it certainly helps it wok better on really hot days

AnswerID: 152982

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