Refridgerators in Cold Weather
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
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
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.
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
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Update: June 2012