A post earlier this year gave me an idea about 'upgrading' the fridge cooling
system on my boat. The DB 50 was cooled by a coil thru which sea water
was circulated. I switched it over to fresh water
is in the engine
room, along with a 85 gal diesel
tank and a water tank of similar size right beside it. By replumbing the cooling
coil I now use the water tank to cool the refrigerant. The freshwater exits the tank at the bottom, circulates thru the coil and is pumped back into the tank thru the top. I use the breather for the tank for the return.
This summer was the test as we cruised north of Desolation Sound for three weeks. The system worked flawlessly. I checked the temperature of the fresh water tank
a few times each day and found the temperature was generally only about 2 degrees centigrade higher than the diesel
tank next to it. This temperature varies according to how much motoring we do. At anchor
or while sailing it was around 23 degrees, and after a few hours of motoring it would reach around 37 degrees (about the same temperature as the engine
room). I didn't keep track of how often the compressor
cycled on and off, but I really didn't notice a difference.
-Two seacocks no longer needed, with all the advantages that entails-No need for the sea strainer, always a pain in the butt to clean and maintain.
-I now turn on the reefer a day before embarking on a cruise
, ensuring it is nice and cold when we load it without me worrying about seacocks left open when away from the boat.
-The system seems to run more efficiently, no hard data.
-Fresh water less corrosive on the whole system than sea water.
-85 gallons less fresh water. The other tank holds around 130 gallons so this was not a problem on a three week cruise
- partly because we carry bottled fresh water for drinking.