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Fridge heating...?

I remember someone telling me that in northern climates that you should not have a refrigerator left running in a unheated garage in the winter time.
This will cause the frige to possibly heat up the contents...
Is this true and why would it do that?


  • Vinny_5
    Vinny_5 Member Posts: 59
    edited December 2017
    I had a refrigerator in the garage for a few years, and every winter the freezer items like ice cream would be soft and the refrigerator not nearly as cold as it should be. They make refrigerators especially for garages that have a built in heating element to trick the unit into working. My friend however, has a 20 plus year old GE fridge in his uninsulated garage and never had a problem with it keeping meats frozen all winter long.
    This article explains it pretty well:
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,074
    The version I always heard was that it was hard on the compressor. Any system without head pressure control might suffer. Or if unplugged and then turned on the oil/charge may slug the valves.

    But we had a 5' long chest freezer live in an unheated garage for 20 years, then it was moved to a heated room for maybe 10 years. We just gave it away because it was too big for empty nesters. It is still running elsewhere. It was old when we got it, totaling maybe 40+ years old today. Would have been R-12.

    But chest freezers do not have a defrost cycle that a fridge may have. This may make a difference. Fridge ice cream may have a melted/refroze layer because of defrosting. Whereas freezer ice cream is always rock hard.
  • jumper
    jumper Member Posts: 2,282
    I think only some compressors,like recips,suffer from low head pressure.

    If defrost element goes on by timer,then freezer section warms up. But in a low ambient main compartment might not warm up enough to turn machine on. Especially if freezer is on top.