vehicle-refrigeration-hints-and-advice

Vehicle Refrigeration Hints and Advice

Why Choose a DC Compressor Fridge over a Traditional 3 Way Fridge?
A compressor fridge is more efficient, it will chill faster and is thermostatically controlled, so will maintain a constant temperature in the fridge or freezer.  Correctly specified and installed they are virtually maintenance free and will provide many years of efficient service.

How to Minimise Your Power Consumption
The key to an efficent fridge is to ensure it has an aluminium finned, forced air condenser.  In recent tests, the aluminium finned forced air condenser was found to be 30% more efficent than the steel wire cage condensers used by our competitors. The Vitrifrigo C51i kept a constant fridge temperature of 3 degrees C consuming just 0.5A per hour in 25 degrees ambient.

Run your Fridge from a Solar Panel
You can run a Vitrifrigo fridge powered solely from a solar panel - see the article from MMM where we ran an experment to run a 62 litre fridge continuously with the only charge for battery coming from a 55 Watt solar panel.

Once you have selected the most efficient cooling unit you need to ensure you then provide it with the best source of cool air to the condenser that you can.  For example, a couple of floor vents close by to the condenser are ideal as they allow cool air to be drawn up from beneath the vehicle, but it is equally important to make sure that there is somewhere for the warm air to go once it has been drawn through the condenser. 

Installation of your 12 Volt Fridge or Freezer
All Vitrifrigo and Frigoboat compressor fridges and freezers are pre-charged with refrigerant and designed for self installation with either pre-connected refrigerant pipes or pipes fitted with 'quick seal couplings', so no need for a qualified refrigeration engineer to install and ‘gas up'. Just ensure you use the correct size wiring with the correct size fuse (15A for 12 volt and 8A for 24).  We provide technical manuals and phone support as required for all our products.

The key thing is to get the wire sizing correct to ensure enough current can travel down the cables at the moment the compressor tries to start.  Rule of thumb is a mm2 diamter of cable per meter length, so 4m from battery to fridge requires a cable diameter of 4mm2

Full Availability of Spares and Accessories for your 12/24 Volt Fridge or Freezer
We expect all our 12/24 volt fridges and freezers to run trouble free and last a very long time, however during their life you may need the odd spare part like a thermostat or a fridge door shelf. Whatever it is we aim to have it in our warehouse ready for your call. How to find your spare part

12/24 Volt Fridge and Freezer Service and Support 
Well specified and correctly installed a 12/24 volt fridge or freezer needs minimal attention and just basic, routine maintenance will ensure years of faithful service. However for the occasional times when things do go wrong we are here to help. We have a comprehensive self help section in our support centre area or you can phone us for further technical support or we can arrange an engineer to visit the vehicle if necessary.  Please remember two things:
a. It is extremely rare for a DC compressor to fail.  We strongly recommend that you contact us before you start paying for engineers, as we can generally solve your problem over the phone.
b. If you are having problems please get in touch 12V Fridge Support

For technical advice on an existing 12v or 24v system go to Troubleshooting page in the Support Centre