Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 01-12-2019, 07:33 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
JESSEDIVER49's Avatar
 
City: Houston, TX
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Good Vibrations
Vessel Model: Grand Banks Classic 42
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 112
Refrigerator/Freezer Replacement on GB 42

I have a 30+ yr old GB 42 with a Grunert holdover plate-type refrigeration system, 110v AC air cooled w/404A refrigerant and two boxes, 24" wide by 30" high, one for refrigerator and other for freezer. Besides its age, the 2 problems are refrigerant very slow leak (last charge lasted 3 years) and control system for on/off does not work properly, it runs continuously 24/7. I thought about solving 2nd prob by putting a timer on the power supply but haven't done that yet. My thinking now is to replace the unit but is there a reasonable solution that will work for the two 24"x30" openings I have?
__________________
Advertisement

JESSEDIVER49 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-2019, 07:40 AM   #2
Guru
 
City: Atlanta
Country: USA
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,284
24 is standard width for a domestic unit. I bet you can find a separate freezer and a fridge that can fit. If a modern unit (as opposed to a typical dorm unit) then you might cut your power consumption drastically
__________________

makobuilders is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-2019, 08:07 AM   #3
Guru
 
Maerin's Avatar
 
City: East Coast
Country: USA
Vessel Name: M/V Maerin
Vessel Model: Solo 4303
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 774
As a veteran of several "marine" refrigeration replacments, I'd suggest thinking outside the box. Literally. Modifying cabinetry to accept a standard size piece of equipment is a one time operation. It doesn't require maintenance once it's done, and the cost relative to replacing that specialized "marine" refrigeration system multiple times is low.

After having replaced 3 marine 12V fridges in 10 yrs at a cost of nearly $6K, there's a strong case can be made for an apartment fridge that can be purchased at nearly any appliance source that handles domestic fridges.

You'll need to consider how you intend to cruise, domestic equipment will likely use more power than a marine 12VDC unit, but that marine unit may not do as well at the job of keeping stuff cold.

Pay premium prices for "marine" fridge that requires monthly defrosting, won't keep ice cream hard, provides stinky milk in a few days and slimy deli meat in a week. Or get a domestic frost-free that keeps frozen stuff frozen, maintains a box temp of <38F, and won't wilt your lettuce- and run it on your inverter, or fit a dedicated inverter for the fridge. Replacement cost probably <$600 vs up to $3K for "marine". So cabinetry maybe isn't that expensive in the big picture.

Now, all that cynicism aside, you could also opt for conversion of the existing boxes to evaporator plate operation, and oversize the system a bit. I did that for my holding plate freezer, but rebuilt the box with vacuum panel insulation, a big job, but it works. The biggest consideration is if the existing boxes are adequately insulated, and the insulation is intact- read: DRY. Old freezers have a tendency to develop air ingress into the insulation where the moisture condenses or freezes in the insulation, rendering it wet & non-insulating.

The guiding factor is how you're going to use the boat, and what works best for that use.
__________________
Steve Sipe
Selene 4303 Maerin
http://maerin.net
Maerin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-2019, 08:35 AM   #4
Veteran Member
 
AvalonGB's Avatar
 
City: Noank
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Avalon
Vessel Model: Grand Banks 46 Classic
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 54
Sea Frost - Very Happy

We replaced the Grunert system in our 1990 GB 46 in 2012 with three separate systems from Sea Frost, 2 refrigerators and 1 freezer. One of the best upgrades we've done on Avalon and we've done many upgrades. The 3 compressors take up less than half the space the Grunert compressor did.

We installed with the digital controls and the units have operated flawlessly over the last 7 seasons. Being 12v dc makes them extremely efficient and very quiet. In addition if you have questions on installation or operation you can call Sea Frost and speak directly with the owner Cleeve. He was so helpful in designing our system and like I said they've operated flawlessly-very happy,

Since we located the compressors in the engine room we opted for the water cooled units and the March pump is super efficient and near silent.

Tim
AvalonGB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-2019, 11:19 AM   #5
Guru
 
Ken E.'s Avatar
 
City: Bellingham WA
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Hatt Trick
Vessel Model: 45' Hatteras Convertible
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 890
As Maerin described, it might make sense to use your existing boxes and convert them to 12VDC with external compressors, if the boxes are in good shape and have adequate insulation. I just converted a 12 cubic ft Kenmore AC household power hog to 12 volts, the work being done by Sea Freeze in Bellingham. It gets just as cold as the AC version and I'm happy with the result.
Ken E. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-2019, 04:40 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
JESSEDIVER49's Avatar
 
City: Houston, TX
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Good Vibrations
Vessel Model: Grand Banks Classic 42
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 112
Thanks all for the advice. BTW - my Gruenert system has a common 110v compressor/condenser unit in the engine room with the evaporators in each box. The freezer box and refrig box have separate controllers but as I mentioned, the system runs 24/7 due to a fault in the controls.
JESSEDIVER49 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-2019, 07:47 PM   #7
Guru
 
Datenight's Avatar
 
City: Noank, CT
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Datenight
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 524
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken E. View Post
I just converted a 12 cubic ft Kenmore AC household power hog to 12 volts, the work being done by Sea Freeze in Bellingham. It gets just as cold as the AC version and I'm happy with the result.
Ken,

What was involved in the conversion? I'd imagine the compressor, interior light and controls. Can you give some details?

Thanks,

Rob
__________________
North Pacific 39
Datenight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-2019, 08:18 PM   #8
Guru
 
OldDan1943's Avatar
 
City: Aventura FL
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Kinja
Vessel Model: American Tug 34 #116
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 3,698
Quote:
Originally Posted by JESSEDIVER49 View Post
I have a 30+ yr old GB 42 with a Grunert holdover plate-type refrigeration system, 110v AC air cooled w/404A refrigerant and two boxes, 24" wide by 30" high, one for refrigerator and other for freezer. Besides its age, the 2 problems are refrigerant very slow leak (last charge lasted 3 years) and control system for on/off does not work properly, it runs continuously 24/7. I thought about solving 2nd prob by putting a timer on the power supply but haven't done that yet. My thinking now is to replace the unit but is there a reasonable solution that will work for the two 24"x30" openings I have?
30+ years on the original cold plate? ZOWNS
A home refrigerator wont last that long.
With the tech improvements with efficiency you should give serious consideration to total replacement.
Next, do you want 12vt or 120vt. 120vt can have an auto defrost. The 12vt, can live on batteries (if you have enough batteries) but requires manual defrosting. Each has certain advantages and disadvantages. 120vt needs either a really good maybe dedicated inverter and lots of batteries or running the gen for the 120vt necessary. The 12 vt cold plate freezer on my N46 had a timer.

My current AT has 12vt fridge and separate freezer, (NovaKool) supported by the 3x200amp house battery bank. There is a gadget called Stainless Lobster that is supposed to reduce the running time of the compressor and also, force a defrost cycle by shutting off the compressor based upon the manually setting.
I think I have space for another layer of foam insulation to the box. On the AT, the microwave cabinet sits on top of the fridge so, I will have to drill two 3 inch holes on the microwave shelf, a couple of 3 inch flex vent piping from the back of fridge to a collector box and vent the heat out behind the back of the microwave cabinet, with a small box fan in the vent hose. Yes, I enlarged the air inlet to the fridge cabinet too.
Yes, first thing I did was change out the door gaskets.
The fridge should be defrosted every week or two and the freezer once every couple of months. This leads me to believe the ice build up is a result of normal every day activity interacting with the fridge.

Tuesday, I have a tech coming out to verify the freon charge. We shall see how everything pans out after venting the back of the cabinet and installing the Stainless Lobster controls.
I shall try and remember to post an update here.
__________________
SPAM on a tacco? Pork favor.
OldDan1943 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-2019, 10:35 PM   #9
Guru
 
BruceK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 9,808
Jessediver49,Doesn`t it depend where the slow leak is? If it`s in the compressor unit you can replace that,and it should come with controls. If it`s elsewhere, in the boxes or cold plate tanks, replacing the whole system may be the right option.
Once you do it and revert to 12v fridge and freezer, your refrigeration loads are on the batts instead of off them. They are major power users, which may require more battery capacity, or very good management, even some solar.
__________________
BruceK
Island Gypsy 36 Europa "Doriana"
Sydney Australia
BruceK is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2019, 01:05 AM   #10
Guru
 
Ken E.'s Avatar
 
City: Bellingham WA
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Hatt Trick
Vessel Model: 45' Hatteras Convertible
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 890
Quote:
Originally Posted by Datenight View Post
Ken,

What was involved in the conversion? I'd imagine the compressor, interior light and controls. Can you give some details?
Everything AC was removed from the box, replaced by a DC compressor and evaporator, plus a DC light, fan, thermostat and defroster. The Sea Freeze website has lots of specifics and details on conversions like this.
Ken E. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2019, 06:18 AM   #11
Senior Member
 
bnoft's Avatar
 
City: Lottsburg, Va
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Amazing Grace
Vessel Model: Ocean Alexander 52 Sedan
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 239
We replaced the holding plate system win our '91 GB with 2 Sea frost systems, one for frig and 1 for freezer. Utilized existing boxes. Worked for the 10 years we had the boat, freezer made ice and kept ice cream hard. We could turn the temp up on it and make it a 2nd frig if needed. We opted to air cool the system , drew air from the forward hanging locker with knowledge that if it didn't work we could water cool it later. Didn't need to. Vey efficientB
My only complaint was not with the system but with the style of the boxes, one must approach in a "prayerful manner", on your knees. If I did it again I would explore a drawer system using existing openings.
bnoft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2019, 06:34 AM   #12
FF
Guru
 
FF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 19,508
Eutetic systems are great , but rely on the insulation to function.

To test the system empty one box , install a big hunk (30-40lb) of ice give the box a day to normalize , then weigh the ice block.

Wait at least 48 hours and reweigh the block of ice.

If you lost 5 lbs of ice per day the insulation is OK and you could simply repair the existing system .

A refrigerant leak is findable and better controls are OTS.


5lbs a day is ice melt also the cut off for DC refrigeration , removing the eutetic plates will make the reefer interior much larger and cost no efficiency .
FF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2019, 04:17 PM   #13
Guru
 
BruceK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 9,808
The OP`s compressor unit is air cooled. Water cooled is better, many a compressor sits in a hot ER and is starved of cool air for heat exchange. Took me a while to realize my ER exhaust fan sits over my air cooled compressor unit. Intentional or just good fortune,running the exhaust fan while running the fridge/freezer compressor pulls temps down way quicker,so much less genset run time. The fan pulls amps, I run the battery charger so the batts keep up.
__________________
BruceK
Island Gypsy 36 Europa "Doriana"
Sydney Australia
BruceK is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2019, 07:46 PM   #14
Guru
 
Datenight's Avatar
 
City: Noank, CT
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Datenight
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 524
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken E. View Post
Everything AC was removed from the box, replaced by a DC compressor and evaporator, plus a DC light, fan, thermostat and defroster. The Sea Freeze website has lots of specifics and details on conversions like this.
Thanks Ken, I'll check it out.

Rob
__________________
North Pacific 39
Datenight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2019, 08:21 AM   #15
Senior Member
 
JESSEDIVER49's Avatar
 
City: Houston, TX
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Good Vibrations
Vessel Model: Grand Banks Classic 42
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 112
AMAZING GRACE - Can you tell me who you used to do the conversion and roughly the cost? My boat is currently in the Chesapeake Bay north of you. At this point I'm considering Sea Frost conversion vs doing a bunch of cabinetry work and using 12v Apartment size refrigerators.
JESSEDIVER49 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2019, 03:40 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
bnoft's Avatar
 
City: Lottsburg, Va
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Amazing Grace
Vessel Model: Ocean Alexander 52 Sedan
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 239
Really not difficult. the lines ran from forward in the ER, portside up to both units. The refrigerant lines basically followed the lines that lead from the old Groco units. Used black water hose (new not used) to guide tubing up above the port fuel tank. We cut 2 circular holes in the forward bulkhead into hanging locker and ran flex hose to them for fresh air cooling.The electrical was handled by a yard in Deltaville. Subsequent experience with this yard prevents me from recommending them.
bnoft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-26-2019, 09:48 AM   #17
Senior Member
 
JESSEDIVER49's Avatar
 
City: Houston, TX
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Good Vibrations
Vessel Model: Grand Banks Classic 42
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 112
After review of threads sent and talking to a marine refrigeration installer, I'm leaning toward replacing my old greunert system and boxes with a 12 volt 22"x30" marine refrigerator and similar size marine freezer. Mainly an economics decision. It appears the total installed cost difference is $10-11K versus about $4K or less. I'm looking on the Defender site at Isotherm, Dometic and Norcold. Does anyone have experience with these brands that can tell me which have the best reliability and lifespan?
JESSEDIVER49 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2019, 06:07 AM   #18
Senior Member
 
bnoft's Avatar
 
City: Lottsburg, Va
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Amazing Grace
Vessel Model: Ocean Alexander 52 Sedan
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 239
In # 16 above Should read Grunert not Groco units
bnoft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2019, 06:49 AM   #19
Guru
 
City: Atlanta
Country: USA
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,284
Quote:
Originally Posted by JESSEDIVER49 View Post
It appears the total installed cost difference is $10-11K versus about $4K or less.
Is it really going to cost you 4k to replace two tiny fridges? Is that considered a good value??
makobuilders is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2019, 08:12 AM   #20
Guru
 
OldDan1943's Avatar
 
City: Aventura FL
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Kinja
Vessel Model: American Tug 34 #116
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 3,698
Quote:
Originally Posted by JESSEDIVER49 View Post
I have a 30+ yr old GB 42 with a Grunert holdover plate-type refrigeration system, 110v AC air cooled w/404A refrigerant and two boxes, 24" wide by 30" high, one for refrigerator and other for freezer. Besides its age, the 2 problems are refrigerant very slow leak (last charge lasted 3 years) and control system for on/off does not work properly, it runs continuously 24/7. I thought about solving 2nd prob by putting a timer on the power supply but haven't done that yet. My thinking now is to replace the unit but is there a reasonable solution that will work for the two 24"x30" openings I have?
JesseDiver, the leak can be located and repaired. That is assuming the coils are not plastic. Plastic may be more difficult to repair.
Finding a working control may be elusive.
Replacing the 2 units ..... I'm not sure they make the units anymore and therefore may require cabinet work....
__________________

__________________
SPAM on a tacco? Pork favor.
OldDan1943 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:41 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012