fridges and heat

Submitted: Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 12:43
ThreadID: 66130 Views:2404 Replies:8 FollowUps:7
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have had my 80 litre for 3 years 6 months and already had the lid replaced twice and it has warped again and the company will not replace it as to quote them "if it is left or used in a vehicle that temp goes above 45 to 65 something has to give. no fridge is able to cope with those extremes. also if it is exposed to direct sunlight it will warp."
so they sell them for four wheel driving in the outback as we were informed to handle the extremes heat and cold.
we have had it a bit warm in adelaide but not the extremes of up north. oops mind you a couple of weeks ago was hot.
looks like i will have to resign myself to replacing the lid every 12 to 18 months quoted price $120.
just thought to warn others as it is a real pain, we only noticed it as the fridge had been stored in our house for the 8 months leading up to selling it(the house) and only noticed it on a trip to the yorkes as the fridge kept cycling continually. we travel with 2 rugs covering it to keep the direct sunlight off of it.sorry about the b**** but very annoyed.
spoke to consumer affairs and have to get back to them.
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Reply By: Willem - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 13:03

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 13:03

AnswerID: 350049

Follow Up By: whale - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 13:07

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 13:07
i was being nice, but pretty p*** about it.
repairer has a scratched new one and fitting it at half price.
would have got the steel brand but came down to $$$$ at the time and the guarentee that it was designed to take deserts and all. must be ice deserts.
that is life
FollowupID: 618382

Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 17:25

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 17:25
I agree with Willem's "cynicism".

The Engel may be dearer to purchase initially but it works out much cheaper if you have to buy a new lid at $120 a throw each year.

Had mine eight years now, but it's still running as sweet as when it was brand new. No problems, no hassles. I purchased a "fridge bag" at the time to give it a little extra scratch protection and improve it's insulation properties.
Bought a couple of other accessories along the line such as a hinge lock, which is a cheap and brilliant plastic device to stop the Engel's lid sliding off the hinges. One little press of the release and you can remove the lid if desired.
Another accessory was a roller which fastens to the underside rear and enables easier manoeuvrability when the fridge is full .

Love my Engel and its additional features.



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FollowupID: 618422

Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 13:08

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 13:08
Hi Whale
My older Engel - 15 years old still running like a charm. In the back of our locked up vehicle a number of years ago in October at Yulara, we had a digital thermometer and it was 62C inside the vehicle with side windows open near fridge. Drinks inside the fridge were icy cold. With a comment like "no fridge is able to cope with those extremes" and the warped lid tells me only one story, it is a "W" and not an Engel.

Best of luck


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AnswerID: 350050

Follow Up By: whale - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 13:12

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 13:12
had engel in cabs of prime movers doing roxby/cooberpedy, air con gave out one trip engel just kept going, i was down to jocks and wet towel and backside burning on seat
should have remembered and saved a bit longer
FollowupID: 618383

Reply By: Member - Mark E (VIC) - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 14:03

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 14:03
Autofridge is white to reflect heat and the case is made of tough fibreglass. Never had a problem with stuff not being cold during hot weather or things warping or breaking.

There are plenty of good fridges out there that don't warp or break down.

Cheap at the time of purchase isn't always the wisest investment.


AnswerID: 350066

Reply By: Notso - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 15:47

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 15:47
My Eva Kool has been through the Kimberlys and all over the top end in temps up to 52 degrees outside, lord knows what it was in the truck?.

Always used as a freezer, always maintained -12 inside never any sign of warpage or any other damage for that matter.

Still I probably paid a bit more for it than a waeco I guess.
AnswerID: 350079

Reply By: MEMBER - Darian (SA) - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 16:08

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 16:08
Suggest you look for promotional material from them, suggesting that their fridges will "perform wonderfully in Australia's outback etc" - words to that effect. 4WD and caravan / motorhome mags at the library all have plenty of their adverts. Then take that as evidence to Consumer Affairs - all you need to do is establish that the unit is not performing as the manufacturer assured you it would. You can easily establish the sort of temperatures we get in the outback, in the cooler part of the year (high 30's). The fridge is designed to go in a car - you can't always park in the shade etc etc etc. Worth a go ?
AnswerID: 350082

Reply By: CJ - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 17:27

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 17:27

It is intersesting that thhere has not been a reply to your post by anyone who had a similar experience. It must havebeen an extreme situuation
Many of EOiites do extreme trips including deserrt trips in extreme heat, many like myself live in the tropics with fridges in the truck 24 7. Yet I have not heard of a lid warpiing.

Are there in fact similar experiences out there?
AnswerID: 350101

Follow Up By: Batboy - Sunday, Feb 22, 2009 at 10:34

Sunday, Feb 22, 2009 at 10:34
Mine has done it too. its going on 4 years old but have long since given up buying new lids. It was exposed to direct sunlight on occasion which would have contributed but I still did not expect it to warp.
The next lid was not exposed to sunlight but still warped and was again replaced under protest by Waeco. I was also told not to come back for another.

In a way we did okish as we only paid around $800 for it as a second with a few marks on the case and lid which they then had to replace anyway. So thats a total of three lids that have warped for us including the one we are currently using.

This is going back at least two years when the last was replaced so they are still crap

Cheers Jim
FollowupID: 618668

Follow Up By: Shaker - Sunday, Feb 22, 2009 at 13:12

Sunday, Feb 22, 2009 at 13:12
Waeco lid warping used to be a big problem I thought they had the problem fixed.
FollowupID: 618705

Reply By: Best Off Road - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 17:59

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 17:59
Firstly let me say I currently own a Waeco 80 and previously owned an Engel 39. Both are OK but I wouldn't buy either again, I'd get something with better insulation, probably Fridgemate/Evakool.

Now that we are clear that I don't have brand loyalty I hereby state as follows.

My Waeco 80 is over 4 years old. No issue with the lid. In fact two weeks ago on Melbourne's hottest ever day it sat in the closed car with the lid open in the upright position. A sure recipe for heat warp if ever there was one, but it didn't happen.


AnswerID: 350107

Follow Up By: RV Powerstream P/L - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 20:46

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 20:46
With the lid up it is not exposed to sunlight as much as with the lid down as the contact area is reduced .

The sun coming through windows plus a high ambient could do damage.

Refrigeration Research had a series of plastic units in40L, 60L and 100L and in sunlight the 100L lid used to try and open on its own at each end in direct sunlight.


FollowupID: 618457

Reply By: whale - Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 19:41

Friday, Feb 20, 2009 at 19:41
we are going to invest in fridge cover to see if it helps.
had a look at the manual as they suggested and it does say the fridges are only designed to operate to a max 55degrees ambient temp and 90% humidity.
so that qualifies their arguement that in a vehicle temps exceed 65 degrees.
it is being fixed for 60 bucks (repairer has a scratched new lid ) so at least we'll have it for our venture north in a few months.
AnswerID: 350128

Follow Up By: RV Powerstream P/L - Sunday, Feb 22, 2009 at 10:07

Sunday, Feb 22, 2009 at 10:07
I had a special cover made up of top quality wet suit material not cheap but excellent insulation.
FollowupID: 618666

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