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Old 06-03-2013, 10:12 PM   #1
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Electric fans for speeding up fridge cool down?

Has anyone tried using small computer/amp cooling fans to help speed up the cool down of an RV fridge? I am finishing up installing 4 fans; 1 inside the fridge and 3 external fans to hopefully speed up heat transfer and cool down...wondered if others have tried it.
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Old 06-03-2013, 10:26 PM   #2
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I have a two fan configuration inside the fridge and it is a huge help! It was a fan deal I purchased on ebay....I had limited success with the fan outside the fridge.
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:44 AM   #3
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Same as Terry. The two fan config inside has worked great for me here in the south TX heat
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Old 06-04-2013, 08:09 AM   #4
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Thanks...good to know. What type of fans are you guys running?
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:38 AM   #5
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bbrown, the link below is the type I use which I got off ebay. You run the hot wire down the drain tube to tie into the power wire of the fridge, the circuit is complete and will run when you clip the fan onto the fins in the fridge (ground)




http://www.ebay.com/itm/RV-Refrigera...t_10178wt_1136
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Old 06-04-2013, 10:13 AM   #6
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Interesting idea. If it is blowing when the door is open it'll probably kick more cold air out of the unit than would just roll out without the fan. It would also increase battery current drain fairly significantly when off grid. The power difference would be insignificant when plugged in.

Has anyone noticed whether it changes the relative temperatures (delta) of the freezer compartment and the refrigerated section? I'm not saying that would be a real problem or bad thing. I'm just curious as to whether it affects the overall operation. vic
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Old 06-04-2013, 11:23 AM   #7
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VicS1950,
The fan I installed blows air toward/onto the fins not out the door. The fan draws only 0.12 amps/1.44 watts. You can do a search within this forum, there are many threads regarding the topic and how well they have worked.
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Old 06-04-2013, 11:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VicS1950 View Post
Interesting idea. If it is blowing when the door is open it'll probably kick more cold air out of the unit than would just roll out without the fan. It would also increase battery current drain fairly significantly when off grid. The power difference would be insignificant when plugged in.

Has anyone noticed whether it changes the relative temperatures (delta) of the freezer compartment and the refrigerated section? I'm not saying that would be a real problem or bad thing. I'm just curious as to whether it affects the overall operation. vic

The most noticeable benefit of the fridge fan seems to be the reduction/elimination of frost and/or ice buildup on the fins. I wouldn't hazard a guess on how much air movement around the fridge section takes place since the fans are very small, or whether it contributes to faster cool down of the fridge and freezer section. Think a fan at the top of the fridge vent would help with cooling speed. If you have ever traveled with your fridge on, you have probably noticed that from a "dead" start (warm fridge), after an hour or so travel, the freezer is usually below 32 degrees and the fridge section has cooled to below 40 degrees. The more heat absorbed by the refrigerant and carried away by airflow over the RV roof, the faster the fridge seems to cool down.
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Old 06-05-2013, 07:55 AM   #9
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Nice fan rig! I had no idea ebay or any retailer offered a specific RV fridge fan set. I'm using adapted standard 3.5" PC cooling fans and some of the more exotic horizontal 8" amp cooling fans...these: http://www.walmart.com/ip/21647872?w...l5=pla&veh=sem
I've got one inside the fridge blowing up through the fins and one more of the 8 inch long fans externally mounted that blows up through the heat excanger piping outside. The previous owner installed 2 of the standard 3.5" PC fans at the top of the vent stack to draw the hot air up and out. Also, the fans are controlled manually by a switch on the outside...I only run them when starting up the fridge and without the fans it would normally take 8-10 hours when it's 80+ degrees outside, before the fridge is at or below 40. The freezer section gets frozen a lot faster on it's own so I wanted to speed up the fridge. On the night before we get hooked up to go camping...I'll go start up the fridge and by the next day or overnight, we can put our food and stuff in for travel. Most times its barely gotten cold enough on its own so the fans should solve that.
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Old 06-05-2013, 04:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thomasmnile View Post
The most noticeable benefit of the fridge fan seems to be the reduction/elimination of frost and/or ice buildup on the fins. ...
Thanks. That sounds like a nice benefit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Explorer03 View Post
VicS1950,
The fan I installed blows air toward/onto the fins not out the door. The fan draws only 0.12 amps/1.44 watts. ...
I did mention that it wouldn't matter when plugged in.

If you accept that the typical propane RV refrigerator draws about 0.5 amp operating current, even though 0.12 amps sounds minimal, it is a 20% increase in consumption. I know many people who would love to avoid a 20% increase in appliance 12 volt consumption when off-grid.

Some of the RV refrigerator units also have a 12 volt heater on the door seal. I know that power consumption isn't a priority with most TT campers. It can't hurt to increase awareness for those who may spend an occasional night without pedestal/shore power. vic
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