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Old 03-28-2011, 10:27 PM   #1
Oct 2009
Bloomington, IN
Posts: 62
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

My chest freezer seems like it's giving out. It's slowly been building temperature (last month it would stay at 50, this month at 53). The compressor constantly runs. It's not the Johnson controller, I checked that by putting an ice cube on it until it shut down the compressor (it's hard-wired, so I can't easily take it out of line).

I took everything out yesterday and defrosted it, let it sit for 5-6 hours, then plugged it back in. Temp was at 62, was only down to 53 by tonight. There are no coils to be cleaned.

It's been freezing up at the upper left corner for a while, so something in the walls is getting cold enough to make it ice up. So it confuses me why it's not working.

Here are two pictures of the lines near the compressor. It appears to be corrosion, but I wasn't sure if it's actually freon leaking from that area.

So, am I screwed?
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Old 03-28-2011, 10:48 PM   #2
Backporchbrewery's Avatar
Feb 2010
Columbus, MS
Posts: 286
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Sounds like you're losing freon. Freon leaks usually look oily, the problem is still finding them. They can be anywhere in the coil. You can try to spray soapy water to find the leak, but even so you'd need to drain the freon, solder the leak, and re-charge it if there is a leak.

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Old 03-28-2011, 11:57 PM   #3
Oct 2009
Bloomington, IN
Posts: 62
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That's what I was afraid of. I'll try the soapy water trick to see if I can find anything. At least if it were an accessible leak I might be able to get someone to help me fix it for cheap.

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Old 03-29-2011, 01:17 AM   #4
Nov 2010
Solway, MN
Posts: 10,036
Liked 1877 Times on 1488 Posts

You might find it cheaper to replace than to repair. Craigslist is where I would start looking. If you live in a college town, sometimes graduates sell out pretty cheap since they are moving and freezers aren't the easiest things to move.

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Old 03-29-2011, 03:05 PM   #5
Nov 2009
Alternate Universe
Posts: 2,281
Liked 72 Times on 61 Posts

Originally Posted by sativen View Post

It's been freezing up at the upper left corner for a while
Prime indication of a leak. There is only enough freon to 'get that far' in the system. It runs constantly because it isn't cold enough and the area that is iced up gets bigger.

There are a couple of other possible causes, but they aren't any better in terms of what it would take to fix it.

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Old 03-30-2011, 04:58 PM   #6
Aug 2009
Posts: 45

Same thing just happened to me. 15 year old freezer. Exact same things exactly as you wrote.

I priced out finding and fixing the leak and buying the older coolant.

Buying a craigslist 1yo used was 1/10 the price.

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Old 03-30-2011, 05:19 PM   #7
Oct 2009
Bloomington, IN
Posts: 62
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Yea, this sucks for multiple reasons:

1) My beer is warming up, and lonely without me drinking it
2) It's only 7 years old, 1.5 to me
3) I'm a hippie and don't like waste/throwing things out

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Old 03-30-2011, 05:53 PM   #8
Licensed Sensual Massage Therapist.
Homercidal's Avatar
Feb 2008
Reed City, MI
Posts: 31,676
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You can save it and use it for a heating chamber in the winter. I've been to Bloomington a few times and I know it gets cool in the winter! Same thing as a chilling fermentation chamber, but heat it up when it gets cold.

You could also cut a hole in the back and mount a cooler with an ice block back there, and have a computer fan kick on now and then to draw the cold air into it. Sort of a Son of Fermentation Chamber thing, but half made already.

Or find a dorm fridge on sale after classes let out and mount it into the side.

I hate throwing things away too...

You could also make it into a worm box if you think you might want to raise worms...

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