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Old 28-06-2011, 13:14   #1
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Removing Engine Driven Refrigeration System

Hi there, I have an engine driven fridge system I would like to remove. It is a home built one, looks like a really good install -- as was everything the PO did. However, it does not work and I want to remove it. There is the big SS plate, the compressor in the engine compartment, a tank(coolant?), various hoses both copper and PVC, and even a pump - a water puppy, which I can find a use for.

I think the tank was evacuated, per PO. Anything else I need to be aware of when removing the system?

We'll likely add a 12V system one day but too much $$ now and I don't even have a depth sounder for crying out loud.

Thanks for any help, I don't have any experience with refrigeration.

csh
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Old 28-06-2011, 13:58   #2
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Re: removing engine driven refrigeration system

csh, The holding plate or plates in the fridge may very well be filled with a liquid. When you mention the coolant tank, not sure what you might be referring to. The system should have been charged with some type of refrigerant which by law needs to be evacuated by a pump and disposed of properly. We removed a SeaFrost system and it was not fun. The copper lines had been run and then the ends attached. We had to cut the copper tubing in several places to get it out. Chuck
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Old 28-06-2011, 19:48   #3
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Re: removing engine driven refrigeration system

Thanks Chuck, there is a small little tank that looks like a very small pressure tank, maybe it is for water. Does this thing circulate water? Part of the system is a drain pipe that empties above cockpit drain, but looks like more than for just a little condensate. Like I said, I know nothing about refrigeration/
AC. What would the pump be for? There are a lot of gauges, switches, timers, and some other controller in the lazarette, it's really pretty involved. That's part of why I want it gone, it is complicated and kinda in my way. Not to mention the giant plate in the icebox.

csh
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Old 28-06-2011, 21:02   #4
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Re: removing engine driven refrigeration system

The very small tank is likely the dryer, it has descant in it to trap any moisture that may be in the system.

First, Why remove the system? Engine driven sustems are easy to use, and generally reliable. If you are going without refrigeration you can leave it and use the ice box for stowage... BUT if you are going to add an ac system later, you can do that with the engine driven system in place.

You may find it is not too hard to fix later.. but once you have scrapped it you will have much more trouble putting it back in.


Second, Chuck is right.. it is illegal to cut the lines and remove it yourself unless you have paid someone who has the recovery equipment to pump it down... BUT if you are going to pay them, you might have them check it first to see if it can be fixed.



Third, If it were me... I would either fix it or just remove it myself....
if you happen to 'accidentally' open the system yourself, make sure to have lots of airflow and evacuate the boat until you are well sure the coolant has cleared... it may displace oxygen. If you 'accidentally' vented it, you would be able to remove everything yourself without trouble.
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Old 28-06-2011, 21:37   #5
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Re: removing engine driven refrigeration system

Faith, good options and advice. I'm afraid it is too much of a load on my Yanmar 3HM35F, along with the upsized alternator. Not load so much, but taxing the shaft. I also don't really like the idea of running a big hot hunk of iron next to the fridge to make it cold, but as I read through other threads I do see that people like their engine driven systems. My first mate is gonna mutiny if we have to throw any more big fish back while offshore so I guess this would be an option to keep some fish cool.

I've just added two new grp 31 batteries and also adding a Kyocera 135 watt panel in hopes that my engine will run only when I need some aux propulsion. I need aux propulsion enough that it borderline makes sense to take advantage of this current system though. I'm on a mooring so AC add-on is not in my cards. The PO gave me some spiral bound book on DYI marine refrigeration, so this is a good opportunity to read it and learn something new. He really did a tidy install from what I can tell, so I'll hold off on ripping it out and destroying the planet.

Thanks for the ideas guys.

csh
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