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Old 06-29-2018, 11:06 PM   #1
MYTraveler's Avatar
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Freezer Problem

My boat has a home-style refrigerator (on top) freezer (on bottom). I have not yet figured out the problem, but periodically about a pint of water comes pouring out of the bottom of the unit onto the teak and holly floor. I suspected, and after several cycles am now convinced, that the freezer goes through a defrost cycle during which frost melts and runs into some kind of drain pan. Normally, that works well, but, at least in my suspicion, something somewhere gets clogged with ice and ends up all over the floor.

In the past, I have solved this problem by defrosting the entire freezer. The first time, I used (or at least the tech I hired used) a hair dryer to accelerate the melting part. And the problem was solved for a while. (I suspect that interrupting the power supply, as may happen when I disconnect from shore power, results in the defrost cycle getting out of phase with the evaporate the water in the pan cycle.) But, sooner or later, the problem resurfaces.

So, next time, I am going to take all the food out of the refrig and freezer and put it in some ice chests (in the cockpit). Problem is, the frozen stuff will defrost and will need to be eaten right away. First world problem I can live with.

But, the point of the post, is to hope that someone has a better insight as to the cause and solution to my problem. Anyone?

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Old 06-30-2018, 12:10 AM   #2
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Household refrigerator/freezers often have a drain pan located in the bottom of the case to catch defrost water. The condenser fan typically blows warm air across the drain pan, evaporating the water. If you're seeing water on the floor, perhaps the pan is improperly placed, or the drain leading to it is out of place or perhaps blocked. The machine may need to be moved to gain access to determine what's actually going on. Incorporate a good coil cleaning in the process.

Steve Sipe
Selene 4303 Maerin
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:26 AM   #3
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with a domestic type fridge the pan at the bottom is near the condensor which is warm so when water from the defrost cycle drains into it evaporates fairly quickly if the power is turned off this method fails to work
could you divert and extend the drain pipe so the water drains into the bilge ( or suitable container )
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:39 AM   #4
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Some designs are simply prone to the drain tube freezing up. I had an Amana deep freeze that did this chronically, and the manufacturer admitted that it was a fault of design; they had come up with a retrofit heater wire for the drain tube to keep it from freezing up during the defrost cycle.

Have a look at the drain tube. It should be kept spotlessly clean because dirt & debris promote freezing. You can also spray silicone spray into it.
Anson & Donna

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. ~The Dalai Lama
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