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Old 12-07-2012, 14:27   #1
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Evaluating 12v Portable Freezer Options

I posted a similar question on another thread but thought I might start fresh with some info I have uncovered. Im looking at adding a portable freezer to the boat. I have been looking at the Engel, Dometic and now Edge star models. Im focusing on the 35-40 qt range. Heres what Im seeing:

Dometic Model CF-035DC
Power consumption 45 watts or 3.75 amps
Size 33qts 1.1 cu ft
Price: $630-$650

Engel MR040F
Power Consumption 36 watts or 3.0 amps
Size 40 qts
Price: $849-$899

Engel MT35F
Power Consumption 30 watts or 2.5 amp
Size 35 qts
Price $868

Edge Star FP430
Power Consumption 75 watts or 5.4 amps
Size 43 qts
Price $410

Certainly the Engel and Dometic units seem more efficient but at double the price? Thoughts? Other models I should be looking at?
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Old 12-07-2012, 15:04   #2
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

Yeah, they're really small arent they. Dometic is the brand used alot for refrigerators in RV's . Seems they're always broken! But in fairness, they are different units, 12v, 120v and propane powered. The edge star seems to use power like a big unit.
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Old 12-07-2012, 15:10   #3
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
Yeah, they're really small arent they. Dometic is the brand used alot for refrigerators in RV's . Seems they're always broken! But in fairness, they are different units, 12v, 120v and propane powered. The edge star seems to use power like a big unit.

To be fair there are plenty of bigger portable units available I just dont have the need for a huge one. Im just looking for a small freezer to supplement my built in fridge. Yes the edge star seems to be the most power hungry but I wonder about the "fast freeze" mode and whether thats the mode that draws the 5.4amps? Im pretty sure they all use a BD35 compressor so Im a little suprized and the range of power consumption numbers. Rigth now Im leaning towards the Dometic as I cant justify an $800 freezer although the edge star is an attractive price if only the consumption were lower...
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Old 12-07-2012, 15:20   #4
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

Must be a different compressor. I havent found insulation to be as big a factor as people think.. Yeah, for a freezer only 1.1 cu ft is likely enough. I lived with that or smaller. Hard to argue with Engel's reputation....
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Old 13-07-2012, 05:51   #5
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I have a Mobicool and works great. Don't know about the price in the US.
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Old 13-07-2012, 06:55   #6
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

Quote:
Originally Posted by SV Demeter View Post
I posted a similar question on another thread but thought I might start fresh with some info I have uncovered. Im looking at adding a portable freezer to the boat. I have been looking at the Engel, Dometic and now Edge star models. Im focusing on the 35-40 qt range. Heres what Im seeing:

Dometic Model CF-035DC
Power consumption 45 watts or 3.75 amps
Size 33qts 1.1 cu ft
Price: $630-$650

Engel MR040F
Power Consumption 36 watts or 3.0 amps
Size 40 qts
Price: $849-$899

Engel MT35F
Power Consumption 30 watts or 2.5 amp
Size 35 qts
Price $868

Edge Star FP430
Power Consumption 75 watts or 5.4 amps
Size 43 qts
Price $410

Certainly the Engel and Dometic units seem more efficient but at double the price? Thoughts? Other models I should be looking at?
I've been using an Engel on board for ten years. First as a refrigerator now as a freezer to make ice and store frozen food:
THE BIANKA LOG BLOG: IS THIS A COOL WORLD OR WHAT!
My two 75 watt solar panels keep up with demand during the day. Draws down the battery a little during the night but, never enough to trip the low voltage cut out on my solar controller. Since there is no fan involved it's pretty quiet and has been trouble free for a decade on board.
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Old 13-07-2012, 12:55   #7
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

Ah! Mobicool and Dometic are the same products/company, I think.
Mine is a C40. I don't use that much, so is kind of new after 3 years yet.
But, anyway, works very very well.
I didn't need it yet but one of the very attractive points I've pondered when I got it was the possibility to take away when in need of any cleaning or repair.
I'm in Brazil and if one needs any prosaic thing and says it's for a boat, it'd cost 20Xs more. From engine oil to a popcorn bag. And even worse is the quality of the specialized service. One of these cost/harm situations.
Right now, I'm fixing the bulkhead and the fridge is safe, wrapped in blister plastic at home, 250km away.
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Old 13-07-2012, 15:26   #8
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

We have been using the Engel 35 Quart unit for the last four years as a freezer to supplement the on board Aldler-Babour.

The Engel has performed flawlessly and hard freezes everything. The power consumption estimates are acurate.

The nice thing about the Engels is the dual voltage plugs... It automatically senses if it is drawing 12v or 120v and switches to the appropriate voltage automatically. OK not needed, but one less thing to think about when you plug into dock power.
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Old 13-07-2012, 15:55   #9
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

I have a Waeco Coolmatic CR-50 fridge on my boat - details below - and is run solely on Solar - Battery is an AGM 12 Volt 110 amp hour single unit and is good for weekend trips - any longer and I think I would need to charge it up with the generator - it is new and lives in Southern Australia - I have not experienced a summer as yet so time will tell - Has anyone got one of these - please comment - MVRPrice

$1,049.00
DimensionsW380 x H534 x D500 mm - with doorWeight19 kgCapacity48 litres
5 litres freezerPower1.4 Ah/h at 25 C
1.7 Ah/h at 32 C
both at 5 C food, -18 C freezer temp.Voltage12 / 24 volts DC and 100-240 volts ACTemperature Range+5 C - Fridge
-18 C - Freezer
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Old 13-07-2012, 17:13   #10
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

I had a used Engels 35 serial # 0006 that just died on me. I do not know the age of it, but hadt for 2 yrs.
I did replace it with another Engels 40 the marinized version in plastic for $839. I use it as a fridge,but am planning to buy another for use as a freezer.

2.5 amp draw and very, very quiet. The fuller it is the more efficent it is.

Have experiance with dometics in hotel industry and think they are a ripp-off.

Sold on Engels products.... they do what they claim well. One does pay for quality
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Old 13-07-2012, 17:25   #11
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I have a 40 qt Engle on the boat and a Edge Star in my camping rig. I actually like the Edge Star better, the fast freeze feature really works well and the temperature display really helps. Engle has no temp display so you have to guess and/or use a separate temperature device. Energy consumption may be slightly better with the Engle, but not enough to really matter to me. Both have even very reliable, probably have 700+ full days on theEngle and 200 on the Edge star.
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Old 20-07-2012, 15:48   #12
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

anybody with a Waeco cr 50 out there ? how long will it operate on a AGM 110 amp hour fully charged battery with out being hooked up to solar or being charged ?? MVR
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Old 26-07-2012, 09:22   #13
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

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Originally Posted by MV-Romnya View Post
anybody with a Waeco cr 50 out there ? how long will it operate on a AGM 110 amp hour fully charged battery with out being hooked up to solar or being charged ?? MVR
Waeco specs say 1.7 amps/h at 32c ambient air temps. To be safe I would round up to 2.0 so figure 48 amp hours consumed in 24 hours. Thats about 50% depth of discharge for your 110 amp hour battery ignoring other variables. Many other considerations though so in actual usage your mileage may vary.
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Old 26-07-2012, 17:00   #14
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

Thanks SVD that is a great help - I am connected to Solar - this summer I am going to record hours of sunlight etc and post how long that fridge will work without a generatotr charge - MVR
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Old 28-07-2012, 04:09   #15
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Re: Evaluating 12v portable freezer options

Have you thought about just getting a small/medium (I looked at a small one first and then noticed a bigger one with the same watt rating) house unit - it would be cheaper as it is made in larger quantities. To run it you would need an inverter, and I was thinking one of those things that you plug the refrigerator into to reduce the draw at start-up - not sure what they are called, sometimes called a 'power saver'. I was also thinking that if you could mount it so the coils were on the outside (like a window aircon unit where the coils and condensate are not inside the room), this would keep the heat build-up down inside the cabin. If this is not possible, put a plenum around the back with a fan to push the hot air out (unless you want to heat the boat - not needed here in the tropics). You might also set it up so there is more insulation on the sides and top. Such a unit might only cost a couple of hundred dollars so you could get in much more cheaply.
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