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Old 02-07-2019, 12:04   #1
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Best Vertical Fridge for my space

My current Vitrifrigo fridge is in need of replacement due to a refrigerant leak that's been deemed non-fixable (leak is in the evaporator and apparently the evaporator isn't available to replace and it can't be fixed).

So now I'm fridge shopping. I'm limited to staying with a vertical setup, as going top-load would require gutting and re-doing the entire galley due to the current layout.

For off the shelf fridges that fit the current space well, it looks like my best choices are a Vitrifrigo DP2600 or a Novakool RFU 9000. The Isotherm Cruise 219 would fit as well, but that would require a little bit of trim work on the opening it goes into (it's a little taller and narrower than the other 2 options which almost perfectly match the current cutout). Basically, the space for the fridge is about 54" tall, 24" wide, 24" deep (allowing for some air space around the unit in the cabinet it sits in).

Of those options, I like the Novakool best I think, although it is the most expensive (but also the biggest internal volume). 12v and 120v operation is preferred, but 12v only is ok.

I'm left wondering if building something custom might end up being a better option in terms of having good insulation and making good use of space, especially considering it doesn't look like it would be all that different in cost. However, most of the custom builds I've seen are top loading, not front loading.

What does everyone think?
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Old 03-07-2019, 07:16   #2
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Re: Best Vertical Fridge for my space

Vitrifrigo is from the Italian co Indel-B, great reputation worldwide.

Nova Kool is Canadian, I believe still independent, more focused on the NA market.

Pretty sure both use the standard Danfoss (Secop) compressors.

One consideration would be to identify good service shops in the places you go, and ask which they are more familiar with, pricing and how easy to get parts. . .

Ideally never needed of course, all these brands are pretty long lived and reliable, but

often a given unit gets prematurely replaced just because the break/fix cost gets unreasonably high.

If a particular brand actually strived to be easy and cheap to repair, personally I'd be all over that.

But unfortunately they all seem to prefer you buy a new one 8-D
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Old 03-07-2019, 07:40   #3
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Re: Best Vertical Fridge for my space

How about just replacing the old danfoss? It could be mounted remotely
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Old 03-07-2019, 10:59   #4
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Re: Best Vertical Fridge for my space

Not the compressor, rarely is.

Read the OP first sentence.
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Old 03-07-2019, 11:12   #5
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Re: Best Vertical Fridge for my space

Contact Seafrost in New Hampshire. They can provide any shape or size without paying extra for "custom". Very high quality with stainless steel thin plate evaporator.
I bought mine last year and very happy with the results (bd50 compressor and digital thermostat
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Old 03-07-2019, 12:47   #6
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Re: Best Vertical Fridge for my space

Yes Cleave Horton, very highly recommended.

Also Rich Boren @ Cruise RO / Technautics, stellar service
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Old 03-07-2019, 15:30   #7
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Re: Best Vertical Fridge for my space

Why not just repair the evaporator if its leaking. Ive repaired plenty using a refrigerant safe Epoxy resin.
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Old 03-07-2019, 17:07   #8
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Re: Best Vertical Fridge for my space

As an interesting twist, I heard back from a not-local Vitrifrigo service place today. And they were able to figure out a part number for a replacement evaporator and can get it for me. So now I just have to confirm that there's nothing else that needs attention and get the parts ordered. And I just might be able to avoid needing to go fridge shopping for a while.
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