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Old 10-29-2013, 02:07 AM   #1
FrenchyRaoul
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Default First Kegerator Build.... botched?

Hey homebrew talk,

I'm new to the forum, as I've just created an account out of panic. I've just 'finished' my first kegerator build, but I made a mistake. The fridge I am using is a Danby Designer DAR044A1WDD, of which I purchased new from Amazon. In addition, I'm using a double tower conversion kit from beverage warehouse, new ball lock corny kegs.

So, starting the project, I cut my hole for the tower, making sure I did not hit the thermostat electronics. In addition, I cut off all of the door shelving, and put a piece of Plexiglas in its place. However, as of today, I realized, I had not ever plugged in the fridge. I assumed it was new, and therefore worked. Yes, I know, obviously a mistake, and of course, any of the modifications would void the warranty. Well, as of now, when I plug the fridge in, the compressor does no kick on, at all. The light does come on. I did realize this, and taped down the door close switch, and the light goes off, but no compressor. I didn't think any of the modifications affected any of the electronics, but at this point I'm not sure.

I did pull the thermostat and measure the resistance over the two leads (red and black), and I did measure 0 ohms when it was on. At this point, I'm not sure what to do. I am sure I have no warranty on the fridge, and am not sure the best course of action in terms of troubleshooting or repair.

Can you help a worried brewer out?


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Old 10-29-2013, 02:26 AM   #2
jro238
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First, make sure you glance at the manual and make sure there's nothing you need to push/pull/change thermostat setting to something other than room temperature before the fridge is supposed to come on.

If this doesn't work:
As long as you're sure that you didn't hit any lines or wires (really shouldn't be hard to tell if you did), I would probably just call the seller and let them know that the fridge they sent me didn't turn on. I assume they'll get someone to come out and look at it and (hopefully) with a little talking on your part and a slightly understanding technician, they'll realize that you didn't actually break anything and offer to fix it/send you a new one. This definitely isn't a fool-proof plan but it's the best I can think of right now. I mean honestly, as long as you didn't cut through any wiring then I'm pretty sure the compressor should still come on even if you did happen to mangle the refrigeration lines.

EDIT: and welcome to HBT


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Old 10-29-2013, 02:26 AM   #3
jmichaeldesign
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i once bought a brand new window ac unit that did not power on for next to nothing. I opened it up and one wire wasn't connected to the power switch on the unit.

I'd go through the unit and make sure the wires are all connected. Then maybe try by passing the thermostat to see if it will kick on and cool. If thats the case just use a temp controller on it. It's nice to be able to set the exact temp you want anyway.
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Old 10-29-2013, 03:38 PM   #4
FrenchyRaoul
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jro238 View Post
First, make sure you glance at the manual and make sure there's nothing you need to push/pull/change thermostat setting to something other than room temperature before the fridge is supposed to come on.
I took a look, but it looks like it should just power up.

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Originally Posted by jro238 View Post
EDIT: and welcome to HBT
Thank you, this seems like a nice community!

Quote:
I opened it up and one wire wasn't connected to the power switch on the unit.
So far, I haven't seen anything disconnected. I am hoping that one of the screws holding up the tower didn't go through a wire (although, very unlikely). I know the hole I made for the tower didn't. I'll pull off the tower when I get a chance to double check. I guess I'll have to take a more in depth look at the back.

Quote:
Then maybe try by passing the thermostat to see if it will kick on and cool.
Done by simply shorting the two terminals of the thermostat... is there a better way? Or should I just do this (obviously safely, as this is 120VAC)?
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Old 10-29-2013, 05:13 PM   #5
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Did you cut anything on the inside of the fridge? When I did my conversion I accidentally cut through a couple wires that were buried in the insulation. I had to pull them up and reconnect them and all was well.
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Old 10-29-2013, 05:59 PM   #6
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Did you cut anything on the inside of the fridge? When I did my conversion I accidentally cut through a couple wires that were buried in the insulation. I had to pull them up and reconnect them and all was well.
What wires, do you know, were cut? And where in the fridge were they?
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Old 10-29-2013, 06:29 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrenchyRaoul
Done by simply shorting the two terminals of the thermostat... is there a better way? Or should I just do this (obviously safely, as this is 120VAC)?
Yup. If that doesn't work wire up the two leads off the compressor directly to an extension cord. You may have cut a wire between the thermostat and the compressor. If your concerned about safety just plug it into a power strip and use the switch on that.
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:06 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmichaeldesign View Post
Yup. If that doesn't work wire up the two leads off the compressor directly to an extension cord. You may have cut a wire between the thermostat and the compressor. If your concerned about safety just plug it into a power strip and use the switch on that.

Yup I agree. I just went through this on a fridge I got. Make sure you are getting 120v to the compressor leads. That will eliminate bad electronics from a bad compressor. If its on the compressor side it could be a bad PTC relay.

is a video to test the compressor.

Disclaimer: I am by no means any kind of HVAC guy. This is just some of the knowledge I picked up while trying to fix the cooler I have.
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Old 10-30-2013, 02:05 PM   #9
FrenchyRaoul
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmichaeldesign View Post
Yup. If that doesn't work wire up the two leads off the compressor directly to an extension cord. You may have cut a wire between the thermostat and the compressor. If your concerned about safety just plug it into a power strip and use the switch on that.
Directly to the compressor leads, or directly to the PTC relay? I was under the impression I needed the relay in the circuit for operation? If I am taking that out of the circuit, should I be shorting the start/run terminals with one side of the hotwire cable, and the other conductor of the cable goes to the third pin?

Or, am I hotwiring to the PTC? I am assuming this is what we want, and that's what is shown in the video?
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Old 10-30-2013, 09:03 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrenchyRaoul View Post
What wires, do you know, were cut? And where in the fridge were they?
They were the wires going to/coming from the T-stat. They went back to the compressor by the bottom of the compressor hump. I cut through them when I was cutting away plastic and foam from the hump so I could fit two ball locks in.


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