Not Your Typical Fridge Question ...

Submitted: Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 14:44
ThreadID: 55628 Views:2832 Replies:6 FollowUps:16
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Have a curiosity question about fridges. Was out camping with the BIL this weekend when he asked me about the temp range that my fridge cycled at. Mine is an Engel 40L and fluctuates between 1 and 2 deg C.

His (no brand mentioned here) goes between 5 and 6 degrees.

As all I have to compare to are Engels I told him that I'd ask the group as to what is "normal" with the other brands out there.

PS: As a little more info ..........
Ambient around 28-29
Both fridges about 3/4's full
Both fridges set to 3 C
Neither fridge opened for 4 hours during the "test"

Thanks in advance .... Geoff
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Reply By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 14:53

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 14:53
MY 90 litre Liemack fridge cuts out at the set temp and cuts in 6 degrees warmer. Thats normal with this brand of fridge.. Michael
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Follow Up By: Geoff M (QLD) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:04

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:04
Thanks Michael.
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Reply By: Member -Signman - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 15:41

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 15:41
How did you 'set' your Engel to 3 degs ???
AnswerID: 293125

Follow Up By: Geoff M (QLD) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 09:44

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 09:44
I used an Engel outside thermometer to get the reading (just a liittle past 1).

It was a little trial and error, but the last time I set the dial was about 6 months ago and that was only because I was coming back from Bathurst Heads with a bunch of Jack and Barra fillets and I put the dial to "freeze" (5) and it held between -17 and -15.
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Reply By: Mainey (wa) - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 17:58

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 17:58
Geoff, you say:-> ""he asked me about the temp range that my fridge cycled at...... an Engel 40L and fluctuates between 1 and 2 deg C ...... fridge set @ 3° ""

Do you mean your fridge stays between +1° and +5°

Example: Fridge set at +3° add 2° = +5 ° Maximum temp.
Also 3° less 2° = +1° Minium fridge temperature.

Shows fridge NOT even getting below zero° in 29° ambient temp.

Glad I don't have one then, I enjoy icecream and the ability to keep frozen Barra fillets.
Mainey . .
AnswerID: 293152

Follow Up By: Geoff M (QLD) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:03

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:03
"Do you mean your fridge stays between +1° and +5°"

No, the fridge is at 3C and fluctuates between approx. 2C and 4C.

"Shows fridge NOT even getting below zero° in 29° ambient temp."

See reply to Signman above. If I want to go to "freeze" I just turn it down, but 3C is just right to keep my meat and other perishables. In 38C ambient it will hold between -17 and -15, no problems.

Please read my question. It had nothing to do with the fridge's ability to freeze. My question was about other fridges' ability to maintain a set temp and the reason I made my post was that my only reference point was my own Engel which I owned for a little over 5 years now.

So what did you contribute to the thread other than sarcasm?
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Follow Up By: Mainey (wa) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 14:11

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 14:11
Geoff,
as a non-Engel owner I just thought they would have a separate freezer compartment, so if you want it to freeze you then have no normal fridge compartment, using as just freezer it stays at -15 to -17° without problems, that's good - if you want to carry two fridges.

However,
returning to your original post question, I think you will find the Temperature "number" will vary tremendously between fridges... or I should clarify this and say because the way the temperature sender is placed with-in each fridge cabinet.

I remember a fridge test done a few years (12?) ago now that was used for advertising purposes and it had the weirdest results because the contents of the fridge was zilch and the temp senders measured air in some and cabinet walls in others.


Geoff if you re-test your own fridge with the temp sender sitting in 'mid air' well away from any "product" it will measure the AIR temp only and that will change much faster than the "product" that is being cooled with-in the fridge cabinet, reason being it's less dense. (yes, the air)

That way the OE temp sender which is protected and set well away from the "product" will then turn the compressor on/off at a vastly different number to the portable temp sender placed in mid air, or even laying beside the "product" which is being cooled will give different numbers again.

The resultant "test" numbers will be very close because the sender is not placed in a position to measure the changing internal temperature, but the cooled "product" temperature.

My fridge has a (variable) hysterics presently set @ 5° and it is set to turn the fridge 'on' @ 6° and back 'off' @ 1° HOWEVER, when a portable temp gauge is placed in mid air with-in the fridge cabinet and it only measures the air the temp, it goes down into the negative numbers, as will it go above 6° for a few minutes before the air temp drops suddenly to the minus numbers because the air will continue to cool even though the compressor has turned off at 1°

When the portable temp gauge is laid on "product" it does not change much at all, because the "product" does not change much in temperature.
In "my profile" there is a picture showing a maxium +6.4° and with a minium of -8.9° but these are not typical numbers and I don't expect them to be taken as correct, just as a guide.
Then there is this pic taken of the same Engel branded temp gauge with much different numbers showing, as a guide only.
Image Could Not Be Found

So you ask, what did I contribute to the thread other than sarcasm.. I did not intend it to be that way, I only asked questions, I'm sorry if those questions offended you :-((

Mainey . . .
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FollowupID: 558978

Follow Up By: Geoff M (QLD) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:08

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:08
Mainey, I'm not trying to be a PITA here, but your second reply sounds as if your trying to justify your first ...... it doesn't!

All I wanted was a number that owners of other brands experienced, not a dissertation on the nuclear physics desalination theory.

...... and if "Glad I don't have one then, I enjoy icecream and the ability to keep frozen Barra fillets. Mainey . . " ...... isn't sarcastic, then I don't know what is.

PS: .... and I wasn't offended, as I thought it was fairly typical of some of your replies when you failed to understand/comprehend the original question.

Cheers .... Geoff
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Follow Up By: Mainey (wa) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:17

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:17
Geoff, I thought the post above explained the variations and differences in temperature numbers reasonably well, even with a picture and a link to another picture too.

It clearly states the hysterics are variable in some fridges and what mine are presently set at.
I knew you were not offended, you would have mentioned it when you PM'ed me !

Mainey . . .
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FollowupID: 559086

Follow Up By: Geoff M (QLD) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:28

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:28
............. "you would have mentioned it when you PM'ed me !"

What in the hell are you talking about? I have not PM'd you EVER!

Geoff
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Follow Up By: Mainey (wa) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:31

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:31
My appology it waz Jeff H (QLD) wrong initial


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FollowupID: 559090

Reply By: mowing - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 18:40

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 18:40
I think Geoff means that the fridges were set to 3 on the dial not 3 degrees. If the other fridge is running at between 5 and 6 degrees it is a bit warm and the range sounds to close to me. It must be cutting in and out all the time. IMHO

Mark
AnswerID: 293166

Reply By: Derek from Affordable Batteries & Radiators - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 18:56

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 18:56
Hi Geoff

1 to 2 deg is a bit close. It may cycle too often and use more power then it should, I have found that short cycles and high start up current cause many fridges to show an 'ERROR' (Low battery warning) too soon. The ACC compressors in our own fridge have addressed this problem and allow around 4 deg between switch on and switch off.

Did you do a wet bulb test or was it air temperature in the fridge also did you use the same make and type of thermometer.

Regards

Derek.
AnswerID: 293170

Follow Up By: 318 cruiser - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 09:21

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 09:21
G'day Derek
The bloke had said that he has a 40ltr Engel now unless his is different to mine (and every other 40ltr) they don't have a high start up current unlike a rotary compressor the swing motor can built up to speed by the piston moving a little the first time then a little more etc so it dosen't have the initial head pressure and momentum to over come. Also being that it can do this they don't need the battery monitor built in as at low voltage they can start up without the voltage required by other compressors. But I'm sure you already know this as a self proclaimed fridge expert.
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FollowupID: 563518

Follow Up By: Derek from Affordable Batteries & Radiators - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 09:32

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 09:32
I am assuming the other fridge in question is not an Engel and yes I am an expert.
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FollowupID: 563520

Follow Up By: 318 cruiser - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 14:08

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 14:08
In that case if your talking about the other unnamed fridge he said it was cycling off every 5-6 which is more that 4 that you fridge does will that make it more efficent? and if you were refering to the other fridge why did you quote the 1-2?
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Follow Up By: Derek from Affordable Batteries & Radiators - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 15:08

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 15:08
?

I don't understand a word you are saying.

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FollowupID: 563600

Follow Up By: 318 cruiser - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 15:47

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 15:47
"1 to 2 deg is a bit close. It may cycle too often and use more power then it should"
(you quoted what the bloke said he was getting from his Engel)
"I have found that short cycles and high start up current cause many fridges to show an 'ERROR' (Low battery warning) too soon."
(these features are not in an Engel, Is this where you were refering to the other fridge?)
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FollowupID: 563626

Follow Up By: Derek from Affordable Batteries & Radiators - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 23:05

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 at 23:05
They way I understood it was Geoff was asking why the other make had the bigger gap and thought the other one should also have a 1 to 2 deg difference between switch on and switch off. I am sorry if I misunderstood you or Geoff. I really thought he was asking about the other fridge and I was referring to the other one not the engel. I stand by my start up current / error and low voltage on the other makes (not Engel).

Sorry once again.

Regards

Derek.
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FollowupID: 563746

Reply By: Robin Miller - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:44

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:44
Hi Geoff

What you are describing is quite normal as is the
variation in set temperatures on the different fridges.

Main reason for this is that there is a temperature gradient
between the outside air and the fridges temperature sensor.

So unless you measure at exactly the same spot as the fridges sensor you will get a variation that depends on the outside air temp.
i.e. if you place 3 temp sensors inside the fridge (bottom middle top) you will get 3 different reading - if these reading were 5 degrees different on a 20 deg day with fridge at zero then they would be further apart (6-7 degrees) on a 40 degree day.
The amount of variation depends on the insulation.


On top of this is the fridges actual temp cycle usually a couple of degrees.
On top of this again is that the temp sensors set point are only with 2 or 3 degrees anyway.
Robin Miller

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AnswerID: 293305

Follow Up By: Geoff M (QLD) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:26

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 21:26
Robin, I understand your reply and appreciate your time, but I fully understand what you're saying about where the probe is placed, but .........

Given that ALL fridges have THIER probe placed in what THEY think is the appropriate place, then one would have to surmise that they have set their fridge to cut out at a predetermined number and kick back in at another predetermined number.

All I wanted to know is what that/those numbers are.

I happen to think that 5 or 6 degrees is too great a spread.

Geoff
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Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, Mar 19, 2008 at 08:05

Wednesday, Mar 19, 2008 at 08:05
Hi Geoff

Those numbers , not being a constant even at the sensor, would be hard to get but I agree that 5-6 is to great.
My Waeco appears to be about 2c at the sensor in around 30c ambient.
Robin Miller

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