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Old 09-08-2014, 10:35 AM
 
Location: plano
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In the mountains of New Mexico at an elevation of 9700 feet above sea level can a freezer or refrigerator survive in an un heated garage where temps in the teens are common in the winter and zero is possible? The freezer is upright and about 18 cubic feet in size if that matters. Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-08-2014, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Tyler, TX
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If the inside of the garage reaches those temps, your refrigerator will become a freezer. They're built to cool things, not warm them, so there's no way for it to increase the temperature inside the box.
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Old 09-08-2014, 04:11 PM
 
Location: plano
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swagger View Post
If the inside of the garage reaches those temps, your refrigerator will become a freezer. They're built to cool things, not warm them, so there's no way for it to increase the temperature inside the box.
How about the freezer? Will those temperatures damage the components?
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Old 09-08-2014, 04:17 PM
 
Location: Tyler, TX
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Originally Posted by Johnhw2 View Post
How about the freezer? Will those temperatures damage the components?
Probably not, but you should be able to find the specs for your particular model and verify what the operating temperature range is.
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Old 09-08-2014, 11:13 PM
 
Location: God's Gift to Mankind for flying anything
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Somewhere I still think that there is a thermostat in the unit which turns the cooling cycle *on* when the food inside gets *too warm*.
So ... , if the ambient temperature is really low, there is no heating of the stuff inside, so the fridge or freezer would never be running !
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Old 09-08-2014, 11:52 PM
 
Location: Caverns measureless to man...
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnhw2 View Post
In the mountains of New Mexico at an elevation of 9700 feet above sea level can a freezer or refrigerator survive in an un heated garage where temps in the teens are common in the winter and zero is possible? The freezer is upright and about 18 cubic feet in size if that matters. Thanks in advance.
It depends. Are you talking about a refrigerator/freezer combination, or a stand-alone freezer or stand-alone refrigerator? That's important, because different types of units have different potential functionality issues in cold ambient temperatures. Knowing which type of unit you're planning to use will save a lot of typing, and spare you the boredom of reading a lot of irrelevant details.

Also, how old is the unit? That can actually make a difference as well, because many manufacturers switched to a different type of coolant in the mid-90s, and redesigned the heat exchange technology as well. Short version is, many of the newer consumer-level units are less tolerant of extremely cold ambient temperatures than older appliances. What exactly are you planning to use, or have you decided yet?
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Old 09-08-2014, 11:55 PM
 
Location: Caverns measureless to man...
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Quote:
Originally Posted by irman View Post
Somewhere I still think that there is a thermostat in the unit which turns the cooling cycle *on* when the food inside gets *too warm*.
So ... , if the ambient temperature is really low, there is no heating of the stuff inside, so the fridge or freezer would never be running !
That's true, but in a dual unit, that can present problems. The temperature control sensor is in the refrigerator portion of the appliance, so if the ambient temperature is in the 30s, the unit may shut off - and your frozen food will thaw.
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Old 09-09-2014, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Tyler, TX
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Why not put a space heater in the garage with a thermostat keeping it at around 35?
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Old 09-09-2014, 09:01 AM
 
Location: plano
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The unit is a standalone upright freezer. It came with a mountain home purchased. The home is 13 years old so it probably is as well. A space heater is a solution but at 9700 feet above sea level and for a home occupied part time could be expensive and unnecessary. The brand is kenmore.
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Old 09-09-2014, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Caverns measureless to man...
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Oh, you're probably alright then. A standalone freezer poses fewer potential risks than almost any other similar appliance. The only thing you probably need to worry about is that if the ambient temperature becomes very cold, the lubricant in the motor can become too thick to circulate properly, and that can damage the motor. In theory, if it gets cold enough, the liquid refrigerant may not convert back to gas as readily as it's intended to do, and that can also cause the compressor to become "slugged up", but that's pretty rare.

You can probably prevent both problems pretty easily by putting a 60-watt incandescent light bulb near the motor. Just keep the area around the motor/compressor relatively warm, and you shouldn't have any problems.
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