Engel Freezer Capabilities

Submitted: Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 08:42
ThreadID: 8693 Views:1724 Replies:3 FollowUps:3
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Hi guys,

Recently had an Engel 40l with dual battery fitted - unfortunately, due to a house move, the first time use will be 2 weeks on Fraser at Christmas..

We are planning to completely fill the thing with pre-cooked and other frozen foods, and also to cycle a couple of freezer blocks through for the other esky. Is this unreasonable for the fridge? (Obviously within the limitations of the second battery) Will it keep all of that frozen? I did read a post about having to 'stir' up the stuff on the bottom to keep it frozen.


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Reply By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 09:06

Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 09:06
Ivan why do you want to keep every thing frozen ? All we do and we have done many trips the longest without supplys is 16 days ,we have our meat cryovaced and take about 12 or so meals them the rest of our meals are tuna etc .Our fridge is a 39 engel.
I think if you try and keep every thing frozen the poor old fridge is going to run the baterry down verey quick.
To keep the batery going you are going to have to do a lot of driving or let the motor run to keep the charge.
If your lucky you may get a day out of the battery if trying to keep all things frozen.

All the best

4wd tag alongs to the cape and beyond

www.capeyorkconnections.com.au Cape York Connections
AnswerID: 38157

Follow Up By: isanders - Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 09:52

Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 09:52

Fair point - let me add some detail then - Because of Christmas in the middle, we will be leaving Canberra on the 21 Dec, and house hopping up to Brisbane by the 26th (ie will either be on the road, or have 240V).

We get on to Fraser on the 27th and come off on the 10th of Jan - therefore we will be packing the eskies on the 20th - what about a plan of running it in Freeze mode until we get on to Fraser, and then backing off to Fridge mode - will that mean the cryovac meat will last that little bit longer - or will it last the full three weeks anyway??

We will have another esky (or two), but had planned on generating ice out of the Engel - I guess there's no point even taking another esky then...

Thanks for the advice!!

FollowupID: 27689

Follow Up By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 10:36

Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 10:36
Ivan Cryovaced meat will last 3 weeks and a lot lot longer easy as long as its cold. Ask your butcher what cuts he suggests .

If taking chicken it wont last as long we always eat it first. Just another thought get your cryovced stuff in brissy and save carting all of that other stuff buy as you need only stock the fridge for a couple of days.

It only takes a few minutes to go to the supper market and restock every few days .

All the best
EricCape York Connections
FollowupID: 27692

Follow Up By: Groove - Monday, Nov 24, 2003 at 16:46

Monday, Nov 24, 2003 at 16:46
The butcher in Gympie Cryovacs, (not far from rainbow beach) and does a very nice steak.
FollowupID: 27799

Reply By: Member - Jim - Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 12:17

Sunday, Nov 23, 2003 at 12:17

An Engel is not a good ice maker, or to be more correct when you put a tub of water in so that you can make ice the rest of the freezer contents start to defrost.

Once you have frozen your food down, which will be done prior to departure or at least during the trip to fraser you can turn the Engel down from freeze to say 2 or so and it will still maintain frozen contents.

This will take some of the load off the battery but you will still have to drive for some time each day to keep the battery topped up.

I'm afraid you will still have to buy ice for the eskys though, travelling to get the ice will help the battery state!.

I have 2 Engels and on longer trips always have 1 as a freezer.

Have a good time

AnswerID: 38169

Reply By: MikeyS - Monday, Nov 24, 2003 at 13:48

Monday, Nov 24, 2003 at 13:48

We did what you are proposing for a Cape York trip a few years ago and it worked very well. We had stuff stay frozen in the Engel for over 4 weeks despite the fridge being on less than full power (Aux battery wasn't charging- always check the obvious like fuses!). We had frozen all our pre-cooked meals for 8 people in descending chronological order so tonight's meal was always on the top, and we just transferred the top meal to our friend's fridge to thaw during the day. Sure all that planning might be a bit anal, but there was nothing better than just having to reheat a meal after a long day on the track.

Because there was such a large chunk of frozen mass it still kept frozen even though the fridge wasn't working to the max. The more densely it is packed the better it should keep, so it just comes down to insulation rather than refrigerating power. Every time you stir it up, you are letting in warm air which needs to be cooled.

As for freezing stuff when on 12Volts, it seems to work really well for lettuce and tomatoes, which turn to mush when they thaw out, but I've always found that it struggles a bit for big volumes. No problems when on 240v though.


AnswerID: 38263

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