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Do I need a voltage regulator for my new Engel fridge?

4088 Views 7 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Minnewaska
I am about to install my new Engel fridge (MB40 drop-in model) and I came across something in the manual that left me a bit confused. They say to connect the fridge directly to the battery (with a 10a fuse near the source) and then go on to say that higher voltages can damage the compressor. I've seen my alternator put out 14.2 volts, though usually it's a bit less, and my solar panels are putting out more than 13 volts during the day. My question is this- will the higher voltage when I'm running the engine or solar charging hurt the fridge? I can't imagine a 12v fridge made for boats and RVs wouldn't be able to operate in the 12-14v range, but I'm no expert... The manual does mention that a voltage regulator should be installed if the fridge is connected to a generator to avoid surges.

Thanks in advance!
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If you have solar with a charge controller, I don't think you have any reason for concern.

You won't see voltages that should cause any concern from your alternator and won't from solar either - if you have a charge controller.

The problem that can result in higher voltages is mostly due to small solar installations where there is no controller. Even a small panel can generate consistent high voltages that can damage a battery (and certainly a high-efficiency compressor motor) if left unregulated.

Don't forget to report on your satisfaction with the Engel. One of there models is going into my boat late this spring and I'm always interested in first person feedback.


S/V Amalia
1965 Cal 30
Muskegon, MI

Starting The Loop In 2015
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