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Old 01-23-2009, 03:29 PM   #1
JaggedZero
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Default Can I Drill??

Please help...I have a home bar and would like to drill into the side of my current fridge for a keg conversion kit. Drilling in the side would make it easier to tap from. The fridge is a vertically split freezer/fridge but it is an older model (80s? early 90s). When you look behind the fridge you can see a black grid of coils mounted to the back. What is the possibility that there are cooling lines in the side? I have heard that some of the older fridges to not have lines run in the sides. Can anyone please help?? Model number is below and I have pics that I can post somewhere if needed. Thanks guys.

White-Westinghouse Model RS229G

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Old 01-23-2009, 03:41 PM   #2
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An easy way to tell would be to use the cornsugar mixed with vodka trick. Make a reasonably thick slurry and spread it on the area you want to drill. The heat from and coil should evaporate the vodak rather quickly leaving behind a conrsugar powder/film.
I've only used it on a horizontal surface (the top of my sanyo), so I don't know how/if it would work on a vertical surface.

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Old 01-23-2009, 04:20 PM   #3
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Another trick i heard is drill through just the plastic on the inside. You can then dig around in the insulation to see if there are any coils hiding. Although this is still a little destructive, the way I did it on my early 90s fridge was to find the parts list for it online. From the exploded diagram I could see that there was nothing in the sides or even close to the sides of my fridge.

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Old 01-23-2009, 04:22 PM   #4
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I know for the freezer on top variety of fridge you don't have cooling lines in the refrigerator wall section, since the cooling all comes from a duct to the freezer. I'm not sure how the side by side systems work, but it may be similar.

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Old 01-23-2009, 04:42 PM   #5
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If the freezer is a frost free freezer then the fridge should be fine. The fridge probably is fine either way. But the best thing to do to play it safe is what jcb317 said.

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Old 01-23-2009, 08:55 PM   #6
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Another trick is to unplug the fridge, let the fridge come up to room temp over night, then plug it back in with the door open. Condensation will slowly form where the coolant lines are, then you can mark and drill. This is how I drilled my CO2 line when I converted a chest freezer into a kegerator.

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Old 01-23-2009, 10:29 PM   #7
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I'm a fire fighter -- each shift at the station has their own fridge with a pad lock. The b-shift hit the refridgerant line on their fridge when drilling for the lock hasp. I have an older Maytag fridge that I tapped on the side, but there was a diagram glued to the back of the fridge showing a loop that forty fived up the right side of the fridge to the front, looped around the opening of the freezer and then forty fived back down the left side to the compressor. I felt pretty safe installing the taps near the top of the refridgerator compartment centered on the side, but was nervous about drilling for the drip tray about a foot lower. I didn't hit anything in either case. I also drilled throught the right side and ran 2 CO2 lines so I could store my 20# CO2 tank outside the fridge.

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Old 01-24-2009, 04:04 PM   #8
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I did the pilot hole and poke around trick, but still hit the line on the freezer I had just bought, damn the luck. It was flush to the exterior wall.
-Ben

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Old 01-24-2009, 05:55 PM   #9
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Just drilled my fridge for the CO2. Thankfully I didn't hit anything. While it's an old fridge, and I was pretty sure the sides were clear, I was going into the side where the contols are. There are also two refrigerant lines that (I assume) take some sort of path to the compressor via the contols. One minor niggle is that I drilled a little cockeyed, so my manifold (homemade with brass fittings) probably isn't going to sit flat on the wall.

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Old 05-07-2011, 03:57 AM   #10
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Has anyone used a Viking VUAR140 wine cooler to convert to a kegerator? I am getting ready to drill through the top but am worried about hitting the cooling lines. Any help would be appreciated.

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