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Old 03-11-2009, 05:14 PM   #1
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Default Avanti Kegerator for Free - No Freon. Help?

My buddy has a brand new one of these:

Amazon.com: Avanti Keg Beer Cooler and Tapper - BD6000 (Black/Stainless) (48.5"H x 20"W x 30.5"D): Home & Garden

It's a brand-spanking new Avanti kegerator.

Long story short, it's brand new and he'll give it to me for free. But...it apparently was accidentally shipped without freon, or whatever kind of coolant they use.

I don't know ANYTHING about HVAC, fridges, etc...

Can I get this sucker recharged? Anyone know how, or who to ask?

Avanti just sent him a new one, for some reason, and this one is just sitting there...but they wont tell him how to "fix" it.

Any advice?

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Old 03-11-2009, 05:47 PM   #2
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Call a local appliance repair center and ask for a quote. I am not sure if filling a fridge is a DIY possibility. If the fridge is free, it might be worth having charged.

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Old 03-11-2009, 06:01 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Homercidal View Post
Call a local appliance repair center and ask for a quote. I am not sure if filling a fridge is a DIY possibility. If the fridge is free, it might be worth having charged.
Pretty sure it's not a DIY kind of thing...I think that the copper tubes actually have to be tapped to recharge a fridge, but I don't know about the actual process/cost. I'm hoping someone on here does/knows something about appliance repair.

Thing is, I'm in Mississippi (location of the appliance), and will have to lug this monster back to Florida, up and down stairs, etc. So...I want to know if I'm getting into a lost cause before I do a damn fool thing like carry it halfway across the country
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:06 PM   #4
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My (limited) understanding is that the coolant in small refrigerators is generally in a closed system that cannot be refilled. That being said, if you have a line on a free kegerator, it's at least worth a few phone calls. Call a few appliance repair centers in your area, and see what they know about them.

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Old 03-11-2009, 06:16 PM   #5
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Chances are there are no refrigerant charge ports. To charge this the tubing would have to be cut and soldered into charge ports, similar to home A/C units. The exact weight/type of refrigerant and volume of lube oil would need to be known for the proper charge for the system. "Performance charging" would not work due to the time it takes a refrigerator to stabilize temps, which is not cost effective. Its possible that some appliance centers or maybe A/C tech forums might know the refrigerant weight/type and oil volume.
Take it, do some research to find refrigerant weight/type and oil volumes, then contact an A/C repair facilities with this info for a quote. My guess would be about $120 if you take it to their shop.

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Old 03-11-2009, 06:30 PM   #6
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If it does use freon, that's a very dangerous chemical, meaning it would absolutely be a closed system, and there might be safety laws against intentionally opening it to try to refill. If it's a new model, I wouldn't be surprised if the refrideration industry has started using a different chemical. If it's freon, I wouldn't mess with it or trust anyone else to mess with it, if it's a safer chemical, see if you can get it fixed. Probably cheaper than a new fridge.

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Old 03-11-2009, 06:47 PM   #7
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If it does use freon, that's a very dangerous chemical, meaning it would absolutely be a closed system, and there might be safety laws against intentionally opening it to try to refill. If it's a new model, I wouldn't be surprised if the refrideration industry has started using a different chemical. If it's freon, I wouldn't mess with it or trust anyone else to mess with it, if it's a safer chemical, see if you can get it fixed. Probably cheaper than a new fridge.
This is a fairly new model and likely will contain SP34e and R414, not freon.

And by the way - freon is non-toxic and non-flammable. You can breath freon and suffer no ill effects whatsoever. It's use has been discontinued due to the chemical reaction is has on the earth's ozone layer. Freon gas rises higher than the ozone layer in the atmosphere, then gets altered by UV light and breaks down into its original chemical parts - one of which is chlorine. This chlorine molecule can destroy millions of ozone molecules (changes them to oxygen) as it falls back to earth.
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:51 PM   #8
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Even if you can't get it recharged, if it's free I'd take it anyways. You can always strip the kegerator parts off of it, buy a cheap fridge on craigslist and you're set to go.
Heck even if you can get it "recharged" it'd probably still be cheaper to just buy a used fridge on craigslist.

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Old 03-11-2009, 06:55 PM   #9
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Even if you can't get it recharged, if it's free I'd take it anyways. You can always strip the kegerator parts off of it, buy a cheap fridge on craigslist and you're set to go.
Heck even if you can get it "recharged" it'd probably still be cheaper to just buy a used fridge on craigslist.
This is a very good point...

...actually, right now my minimal plan is to haul it back to Pensacola (I'm near New Orleans now), strip the parts, then just hang on to them until the rest of what I need falls into my lap.

I actually don't mind bottling, so I'm in no rush to get a kegerator...but free is a good price, and hard to pass up.

I guess I could always drill a couple of holes into my fermentation chiller made of extruded polystyrene and just keep it filled with ice every day
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Old 03-11-2009, 10:30 PM   #10
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Default could be bigger promblem

im an hvac guy and most likely it has a leak in one of the joints...they just dont ship empty....also you can buy a self piercing valves to put on the cooper tubing and nitrogen test it for leaks and either solder or braise the leak shut...the problem you will have is you need a licence to buy refrigerant to fill it back up ....most likely if it is a leaker you will have to pay somone to fill it but make sure there are no leaks because the refrigerant you put in will just leak out again.....once a leak,always a leak....unless fixed

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