Liemack Fridge

Submitted: Saturday, Feb 02, 2002 at 01:00
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Am interested in buying a Liemack Fridge and am wondering if anyone has any experience or knowledge (good, bad or otherwise) of that particular brand that they could offer.

Cheers
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Reply By: rich - Sunday, Feb 03, 2002 at 01:00

Sunday, Feb 03, 2002 at 01:00
darren,

I've been tossing up gas/12v..gas/12v for months now and am leaning towards a Liemack if I go 12v...My concern is servicing, it probably needs to be sent back to Adelaide? to be fixed whereas a Engel/ARB (same fridge) has national backup.
Liemack is Aussie (so is Engel) and recommend a really simple battery setup for their fridge, as theirs has a safety cut out inbuilt, which may save you hundreds in vehicle setup costs...worth a thought.
If you hear more please post, I have six weeks to go before WA and still no decision on fridge....
AnswerID: 1936

Reply By: Jeremy - Tuesday, Feb 05, 2002 at 01:00

Tuesday, Feb 05, 2002 at 01:00
Be aware that the Liemack fridge has the largest start up current in any fridge.......... 60 odd amps and requires starter cable run to the back of your vehicle to start it up ........once going they are a very econonical fridge with a huge compressor (which is 240Volts running through a inverter)I seem to always be trying to fix battery problems by the start up current caused by liemacks !........ otherwise they are a well built fridge.
AnswerID: 1955

Reply By: Andreas Heydler - Tuesday, Feb 05, 2002 at 01:00

Tuesday, Feb 05, 2002 at 01:00
Darren,

We have the 70l DTV, ie. door at front with freezer below where basket sits. Absolutely no complaints. Fridge has been used on several trips to Central & Northern Australia. The freezer well and truly freezes and is useful for taking precooked meals for those occasions when it is not practical to cook. Spare power from inbuilt inverter is useful for fluro lights, shaver etc. It is necessary to follow Liemacks advice regarding wiring. Fridge draws a substantial amount of current on startup so if the wiring is not done correctly the low voltage circuit will detect a lack of battery capacity and shut down. The run current is a lot less than that required to start the unit. The fridge is solidly built and the backup and support from Liemack has been first class. Not that we have had any problems with the fridge but in answering questions and supplying the odd accessory they have been excellent. In terms of service the refrigeration system is standard so any refrigeration service centre would be able to service it if required. The electronics is packaged in modules which again makes it field servicable. These were things we looked at before buying the fridge. They are relatively expensive but in our opinon well worth the money. No hesitation in recommending a Liemack.
AnswerID: 1957

Follow Up By: Rich - Tuesday, Feb 05, 2002 at 01:00

Tuesday, Feb 05, 2002 at 01:00
Andreas,
Perhaps you could supply some simple 'real world' battery advice for a Liemack, for both Darren and I?

I dread the end result as described by Pete below.
Thanks
Rich
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FollowupID: 682

Follow Up By: Andreas - Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00
Rich,

Below are the details of the aux battery setup of the 2 vehicles I have used the Liemack with.

Another point about the Liemack is that should you be camped anywhere that 240V power is available it is a trivial matter to connect the fridge to this supply since it runs off 240V internally anyway.

On the first vehicle (LR Disco 2) I had the aux battery installed before I bought the Liemack hence it was fitted with an isolater. The D2 is very crowded under bonnet so there wasn't much room to fit a decent sized battery. I am not sure what the capacity was but it was the size you find in your typical small sedan. This battery would run the fridge for 36 hours but I found that as it discharged it didn't have sufficient reserve capacity to allow the fridge to start even though there was sufficient capacity to allow it to run. On my current vehicle (3l TD GU Patrol) I have 2 equal capacity starting batteries wired in parallel. This setup has allowed the fridge to run for 3 days without an engine start. I haven't tried it for longer than this yet.
Liemack stress that this is the battery arrangement that should be used with their fridges, ie. wired in parallel & no isolator.
The other point which Jeremy highlighted is that heavy duty cable needs to be run to the fridge. I had the cable supplied by the Liemack agent I bought the fridge from and it is something like 10mm^2 in area. Liemack supplies a sample of the required cable with the documentation that comes with the fridge. It is also necessary to ensure that the earth connection is 100%.
In summary - 2 (or more) starting batteries wired in parallel with heavy duty cable runs to the fridge should result in trouble free operation.

Hope this helps

Andreas
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FollowupID: 683

Follow Up By: Rich - Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00
Thanks andreas,

Most helpful, it appears from the available info. that resistance has a lot to do with potential problems, e.g your isolator. This would make sense with a 60amp draw.
Might I ask the size of your batteries?
"have 2 equal capacity starting batteries wired in parallel"
Can the CCA (cold cranking amps) rating on a start battery be used as a measure?

Can anyone assist?

Cheers
Rich

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FollowupID: 685

Follow Up By: Andreas - Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00
Just stuck my nose under the bonnet. Batteries are N70Z's which I think are pretty standard for diesels. Had the same size in my Troopy. The 60A draw which has been mentioned is only for the few seconds while the compressor starts. Previously other posters have explained the various parameters to look for in batteries so you might want to search back in the forum under the topics about aux batteries & isolators. (Might have been on the overlander forums as well). As an aside, before the Liemack we had a Trailblaza which was an excellent fridge as well.
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Follow Up By: Darren - Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00
Andreas

Thanks for your input am wondering if you can help with two other queries? I have been advised that Liemack prefer the use of the yellow top deep cycle Optima batteries. Have you heard this before, if so, do you think it is necessary as the cost of Optima's are pretty high? Also, am curious as to why you decided on the 70litre DTV model.

Cheers, Darren

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FollowupID: 691

Follow Up By: Andreas - Thursday, Feb 07, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Feb 07, 2002 at 01:00
Hello Darren,
Liemack recommending/requiring Optima batteries is news to me. The docs that came with the fridge stated that starting batteries wired in parallel are all that is required. I certainly don't have Optima batteries. I would suggest that they would only be a consideration if either money was no object or it became necessary to put the second battery in vehicle say in the cargo area, since they can be mounted in any position.
Why the DTV? Main reason was ease of access. By the time a top opening fridge was placed in the back of the vehicle possibly on drawers it became next to impossible for my wife to gain access to it. With a front opener the basket can be pulled out at chest height as opposed to having to be lifted out of the fridge. Second reason was that it gave us a very usable freezer which could be easily accessed. I am told that a top opener is more efficient in that opening the fridge causes less loss of cold, but I have no empirical evidence either way.
Why the 70l? Difference between 50l & 70l is in the depth of the fridge. In our setup the space behind the fridge is not easily usable so it might as well be used by a bit of extra fridge capacity. The extra space in the fridge has proven useful for some of our extended trips. If you have a family I am sure you wouldn't have any trouble using the extra capacity.
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Follow Up By: Pen - Thursday, Feb 07, 2002 at 01:00

Thursday, Feb 07, 2002 at 01:00
Darren, have been following this with interest. I intend buying a liemack myself in the near future, as have heard good reports from people who have them up here. I currently have two engels 29lt & 39lt & use them for work trips (the 29lt as a freezer). I have found them to be trouble free, but difficult to cope with the extreme summer temperatures up here in Central Oz. Liemack have a web site (www.liemack.com.au)which is very informative and will answer many of your questions re:wiring & battery setup. I have found them very helpful and prompt with answers to my emails. Cheers.
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Reply By: Pete - Tuesday, Feb 05, 2002 at 01:00

Tuesday, Feb 05, 2002 at 01:00
Darren I bought a ST 50 liemack in October last year after posing the same question on this site.
Unfortuneatley I cant give you an accurate response as the fridge has'nt worked properly since I got it!
It took 3 goes by 2 different auto electricians to get the wiring right (obviously not liemack or the fridges fault), & still only runs for 18 hours on two fully charged batteries and does not cut out to leave enough power in the batteries to start the car.Liemack have taken the fridge back and its checked out all ok so I now have to get it back from them and have the wiring checked again.The only other thing we can think of that may be affecting performance is that i'm using 2 calcium batteries and these may not be suitable but I will have to wait until I get fridge back to check.
Its been an extremely frustrating excercise but i'm determined to get it right as I do believe the liemack is the best fridge available.
Good luck , pete
AnswerID: 1972

Follow Up By: Nigel - Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00
I had a calcium battery once - and never will again. They are only suitable as a starter battery in southern areas. If they are used to run accessories (ie discharged more than 20%) then the alternator will never charge them back up properly. You have to use a mains slow charger to get a charge back into them.
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Follow Up By: Mark - Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00
Hi guys. This may explain a problem that I have with my Waeco. It is meant to cut out at 11.8V and save the battery (currently running on single starting battery supplied new with car), however even when this happens my battery is dead! Thanks for the info!
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FollowupID: 696

Reply By: Paul - Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00

Wednesday, Feb 06, 2002 at 01:00
I have owned my 70DTV for two years and cant fault it. I have a Jackaroo with 2 NZ70 batteries in paralle the fridge runs for 4 days without starting and then cutsout at 11.8 volts and thats in january in nth qld. At 11.8 volts it starts everytime even in winter in the vic high country, this is a no bull statement because I have a auto petrol and cant afford to have flat batteries. Ive had an Autofridge and will never look back after purchasing the Liemach it's the best in the business in extremme conditions.
AnswerID: 1996

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