I have two Isotherm
systems on board -- one freezer
, and one fridge. I love them. But the first year I had the boat (four years ago), the fridge stopped cooling
well, and I had a local refrigeration
guy look at it. He said no problem -- just a little low on gas. He topped it off and it worked perfectly for four years.
I'm now cruising in the Baltic
, and have sailed a few hundred miles to get here, often on a significant heel. At some point the fridge stopped cooling
well (would cool just a little bit, or if on a starboard tack, would suddenly start cooling full blast again). Meanwhile it was running hot and making strange noises. Not good, I thought.
I had a guy in Sweden
look at it, and he said -- no problem, low on gas. And boy, is that compressor
hot. He topped it off. It seemed to work fine. But this morning it wasn't cooling right for a while; now cooling fine again (we're on passage
so maybe the liquid freon got stirred up again).
So what do you guys think? My understanding of practical issues of refrigeration is very weak. Maybe I killed the compressor
letting it run low on gas and getting too hot? Or should I put oil
in it or something?
The system uses Danfoss BD35F compressors, which I don't think are too expensive, so yanking it out and replacing might not be the end of the world. On the other hand, would be nice to revive the old one if there's any hope. It's only 12 years old or so and has not given any trouble other than the apparently pinhole leak (not worth chasing -- both the previous tech, and this one, said).