Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 22 Old 03-17-2013 Thread Starter
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Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

Well, there you have it; if my 40' boat just had a good ice box before, could I install a 12V refer unit without hiring it out? (Assuming I was - am - reasonably handy?)
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post #2 of 22 Old 03-18-2013
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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

Yes, and most of the systems are designed for the DIYer. Most important is to add more insulation if at all possible and if the sides are in-assessable, the bottom and lid are very important.
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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

yep and Denises advice is spot on.
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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

I've not done one, but from what I've seen out there it should be no problem as long as you can follow the directions and have the basic skill sets of being able to measure, drill and saw.
The conversion kit's I looked at were all 'cut a hole, insert unit' types - with quick connects on the piping so no plumbing skills etc. Wiring is or should be as simple as black wire to this and white wire to that (with drawings to show which is which).

If you do it please come back and post your story with pic's. Good or bad it will help other forum members.
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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

The thing beyond the reefer instructions themselves is how you will drain condensation water from it.

Directly into bilge below it is a generally accepted no-no.

Plumbed to drain directly to lower bilge and out via the bilge pump, is better but can still be stinky.

Separate dip tube and pump overboard is least stinky, but has a tendency to fill water too much before you remember to pump.

Take heart that the pros don't know which is best either.


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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

I hope so. I'll probably give it a try in the next month or so!
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post #7 of 22 Old 03-18-2013
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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

Controlling the drainage stink is the challenge for sure. While there shouldn't be much drainage, there is always some,especially if you carry ice for cocktails. Depending on how big your 40'er is you might consider a shower sump box in the bilge to collect and discharge water. Hi-effiency furnaces have a consendate pump that sends the water to a floor drain or laundry tub drain. Lacking either, your choices are limited to a separate collection site below the drain level (sealed sump pan, 'colostomy bag') , T into a nearby drain (galley sink?), or plug the drain hole and remember to spounge it out regularly.
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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

We are all bufoons. Being self-professed qualifies you as evolved.
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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rugosa View Post
.....While there shouldn't be much drainage......
Always more than one would think. Nothing sweats more than a beer or soda can. When I plug the drain in mine, I can get an inch of water in no time. Add any organic substance and it does stink. Even if you don't spill, things may have spilled on your containers in the factory or store. The condensation washes it off and it seems to like to grow on boats..........
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Re: Could a self-professed bafoon install 12V refrigeration?

There are plenty of professional bufoons that manage to install them, so there is no reason you can't.

A few tips:

Choose the location of the condensing unit carefully. They need good air circularion to work efficiently. If you put it in an interior locker, make sure there is a grille for air to be drawn in, AND a route for the warm air to escape. Remember, they are quiet, but you will hear it if it is in the cabin.I always preferred to put them in an exterior lazarette where there is lots of air space.

Keep the connectors clean. Wrap them with electrical tape or plastic so that you don't force debris into them when you fish them through.

Insulate the lineset with Armaflex pipe insulation if it didn't come insulated. This will prevent condensation and reduce pipe corrosion. It will help efficiency too.

Strap down excess lineset coil in a location where it is safe from damage, and in such a way that the pipes do not vibrate or chaffe. Soft drawn copper that is allowed to vibrate excessively will work-harden and become brittle and prone to cracking over time.

Good luck, and enjoy your cold beer!
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