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How to keep fridge cold when it's sunny and hot?

Discussion in 'Gear and Equipment' started by cat007, 1/12/18.

 

  1. cat007

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    Posted 1/12/18
    Hi all.

    My kegorator is outside.
    On hot days in Melbourne it struggles to keep temps under control.
    I've got a small amount (all I had) of silver bubble wrap on the top and one side but it's not cutting it.

    Any suggestions?
     
  2. Outback

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    Posted 1/12/18
    Bedroom?
     
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  3. Nullnvoid

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    Posted 1/12/18
    Give it to me and Ill put it in a cool spot?
     
  4. goatchop41

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    Posted 1/12/18
    Is it out in the sun, or in the shade?
     
  5. altone

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    Posted 1/12/18
    If it gets sunlight put some shadecloth or a tarp to protect it.
    Mine sits in the garage (soon to be in a steel shed which will make the oven effect worse)
    and even though it might be 40C on really hot days it manages fine.
    If it's a dark colour - paint it white or as you said cover it in reflective bubble sheet with an insulating layer between that and the fridge if needed
    (expanded polystyrene, cork underlay or yoga mat type stuff would all work - even corrugated cardboard)
    I hope my poor ferment fridges can handle their new harsher environment.

    Oh something to help in the short term - corrugated cardboard covered with aluminium foil might do the trick.
     
  6. Garagebrew

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    Posted 1/12/18
    Is your kegorator a keg king or keg land unit?
    If so the condenser is on the right hand side of the fridge when standing in front of it, if you can keep this side out of direct sunlight that should help it to run more effectively, also make sure the condenser is open to air flow or it will struggle in warm weather.
    Cheers.
     
  7. peteru

    Here, taste this!

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    Posted 1/12/18
    Do not insulate the sides of your kegerator if it has the coils there. You will just reduce the efficiency. An easy way to check is to feel the temperature. If the side of the fridge is warmer than other parts, then it has coils there. Adequate airflow is super important if you want it to work properly. Wrapping it in silver insulating material will make it not work as well as if it was left alone.

    You can enhance the cooling on a hot day by draping some wet towels over the heat exchanger coils. The evaporative cooling effect will help if there is airflow. You just need to make sure that the towels stay moist at all times.
     
  8. cat007

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    Posted 2/12/18
    It's not a brand kegorator. It's just a regular fridge I've converted.
    It is outside in direct sunlight. I can't move it indoors or have a garage to keep it in so it has to stay where it is.
    I don't think there's coils in the sides. Only the rear.
     
  9. Hangover68

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    Posted 4/12/18
    Mine is outside on my deck and gets wind and morning sunshine, no problems staying cold so at a guess your fridge may need re-gassing.
     
  10. peteru

    Here, taste this!

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    Posted 4/12/18
    Except that if it leaked the gas in the first place, it will do it again after a re-gas. To fix it permanently, you'll need to find and fix the refrigerant leak. The trouble is that the "find leak, fix leak, re-gas fridge" process is probably too much of a headache when compared to the "replace fridge" option.
     
  11. Hangover68

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    Posted 5/12/18
    Not always, might just be old and gas has lost its cooling capacity.
     
  12. altone

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    Posted 5/12/18
    True, but wouldn't regassing a fridge be more expensive than buying another used one off gumtree or similar?
    my old kegerator is strugglng to get below 6C so interested in knowing.
     
  13. peterlonz

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    Posted 5/12/18
    Both my beer fridges, (controlled bY STC 100's), which not long ago, were able to cycle down to 1.5C. can no longer manage that.
    The very hot Queensland weather seems to have affected both which now can manage only 5 C.
    Could be the weather or just that age is catching up & I am demanding more.
     
  14. brewermp

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    Posted 5/12/18
    This is why I buy freezers only and have a temperature controller.
     
  15. Rocker1986

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    Posted 5/12/18
    Depends on the age I guess. I have an old Frigidaire that dates back to the 1950s that I'm using as a brew fridge, and it has no trouble dropping a brew to zero for a cold crash any time of the year. Granted, at this time of year it takes a little longer, but it still gets there. The only thing that's ever gone wrong with it is the door seal needed replacing a couple of years ago. They don't make em like that anymore.
     
  16. cat007

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    Posted 6/12/18
    I'm going to grab some shade cloth from bunnings and make a frame to create an air gap between it and the fridge. Will see how that goes. It's bloody 36C here in Melbourne today - and the same again tomorrow. Will check the STC1000 to see how the fridge is coping in this heat!
     
  17. cat007

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    Posted 6/12/18
    So turns out the silver backed bubble wrap I have actually works really well. I might try and find some more of that. I guess the bubble part creates a small air gap and the silver reflects the sunlight/heat.
    36C this arvo and I came home and the fridge was cold and not even running.

    I do have an issue with the taps getting hot which of course turns the beer to instant foam as soon as it touches it. You get about half a glass of foam before it pours nice.
     
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  18. Pookie

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    Posted 6/12/18
    Keep an eye on the internal wiring (underneath, round the back) if it's original it's rubber and after half a century should probably be replaced - mine shorted out and tripped our circuit breaker. Not a big job to replace the compressor wiring BUT the wiring to the internal light disappeared into the guts of the fridge and I was gleefully teaching for tools to access it when the penny dropped- ASBESTOS. Never did replace the wiring to the light ....
     
  19. brewermp

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    Posted 6/12/18
    You putting the bubble wrap on the inside or outside of the fridge?
     
  20. rob bradbury

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    Posted 6/12/18
    I am going to try putting foam on my garage door which is supposed to drop the garage temp significantly. $240 from https://www.foamsales.com.au/products/garage-door-insulation
    Or you could cut foam yourself.
     

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