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Meplat

Fucking with Fridges~

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Got a vintage (1970's) fridge that is slowly dying.  I really do not want to replace it with some modern POS, as this thing is huge, and has a giant herm that still wants to run.

So.

My plan is to evac the system, check for leaks, then service it with R-134.

Any of youall done  this kind of stuff before, and if so, how'd it work?

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On 6/12/2018 at 7:14 PM, Meplat said:

Got a vintage (1970's) fridge that is slowly dying.  I really do not want to replace it with some modern POS, as this thing is huge, and has a giant herm that still wants to run.

So.

My plan is to evac the system, check for leaks, then service it with R-134.

Any of youall done  this kind of stuff before, and if so, how'd it work?

 

I really only understand fridges on a theoretical basis.  Don't really have practical experience.

It sounds like most of the time they break because the coolant leaks, rather than the compressor breaking.

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One of the four freezers we use to store our processed salmon essentially died when we got up to Bristol Bay this fishing season. It "runs" but doesn't get very cold. Probably needs new coolant added. So if I have the time, I might learn how to "fix" an old freezer over the winter in time for next season. 

 

...

 

Or else we'll just ship up two more used/free freezers off of Craigslist on the barge next season.

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late followup-

 

Yes, it is doable. Right now R134 is VERY cheap (meaning they are about to get rid of it) so stock up.

Be aware of what you are charging. If it says "R410A" or similar, it operates at a much higher pressure, and you will fuuuuck your gauges.(let alone having the can pop while trying to "top off". ).

 

I managed to recharge the old beast, but getting service ports was a bigger pain. A lot of places do not want to sell them to you without certs.  I managed to BS it with my A&P ticket. 

Second PITA was the can tap that hooks to the gauge manifold. Most are these "DIY" grade" hook it to the low side and juice it" rigs.

All in all it was "a useful waste of time" as the compressor was (is) dying, but it works well enough to chill beer/etc, so it acts as an overflow from the main. 

 

If you're doing a top off, and it's a R12 or R22 rig, you HAVE to evacuate and change the oil and freon. R22/R12 and R134 do not play well.  You have to evac, purge and then fill. Replace the dryer as well. 

 

Optimal would be a really old R22 rig with a piston compressor and existing service ports, that's robust enough to self evacuate.  But reefers like that, even industrials, are pretty old. 

 

TL_DR I should go back to school for HVAC, but I'm stuck as a mechanic. 

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Adding-  R134 test mule is doing okay, but running hot. 

Was off for  week for training (lol)  came back to find the high end fine, but low end was a bit high. 

Herm is running hot. 

 

TL-DR "cheap R134 may not be  quick fix for R22/R12 units, depending on herm".

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