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Name:  Tammy
Status:  other
Age:  30s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: 1999-2001


Question:
Is it true that when the temperature outside is colder than that inside a refrigerator that the DuPont's Freon (TM) migrates to the warmest spot (being the compressor) and therefore the DuPont's Freon (TM) sucks out the oil and fries the compressor? If so, can you explain how this happens? If not, can you tell me what would cause a refrigerator to stop working in very cold weather (single digits)? I read your excerpt on how a refrigerator works, but am still unclear as to how cold weather would affect it. By the way, the refrigerator sits outside in an uninsulated garage. I also do not understand how the DuPont's Freon (TM) gets to the compressor to evaporate the oil. The DuPont's Freon (TM) and oil do not ever mix do they? Thank you very much for your input.


Replies:
I shall not comment on the dynamics of DuPont's Freon (TM) migration and the well being of the compressor. However, a refrigerator stored in an unheated area (at about 35 F) will not run if the interior thermostat is fooled into thinking its cold enough. As a result, anything stored in the freezer may thaw out. If it gets really cold in your garage, things inside the refrigerator that you don't want frozen may freeze, break, and make a mess.

Regarding your refrigerator in your unheated garage: It would probably be better if you simply didn't use it in the winter.

Regards,
ProfHoff


Tammy,

Just two quick comments.

First, I believe there is a switch used to indicate ambient relative humidity for the refrigerator. By this I mean in the summer one selects high humidity since that is what one would experience (depending on the location). In the winter, with colder weather and less water availability (again, depending on location), ambient air heated within the home results in low relative humidity, and that switch position is used.

Secondly, i don't believe it is wise to operate a machine to refrigerate air when the surrounding air is in fact cooler than the temperature setpoint. I'd recommend pulling the plug when the weather outside is expected to be 5 degrees over the setpoint or less.

I unfortunately do not have any specific information to address your original question.

Thanks for using NEWTON!

Ric Rupnik



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