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Posted: Sat May 01, 2010 7:40pm

Post Subject: types of fridge

What's the difference between compressor and absorber friges and which is best for a grp cruiser used mostly in the summer for short breaks ? Is it true that it damages them if you switch them on only when the engine is running, then off when you stop, because they will run down the battery otherwise ?


Posted: Mon May 03, 2010 9:47pm

Post Subject: types of fridge

I note that you do not mention the outboard in this question but I will assume its the same boat. An absorption fridge draws 8 to 10 amps all the time because none of the common ones that you are likely to come across (actually dual or three way fuel units) have no thermostat on the 12 volt system. The compressor fridges will probably have an AVERAGE consumption of about 2.8 to 3 amps per hour over 24 hours because they do have a thermostat. They are the most economic. HOWEVER you will be very lucky to get a 10 amp charge (I expect 5 to 8 amps would be more likely)out of a typical outboard and in my view it is unrealistic to expect that to cover the demands of the fridge and all the other electrical loads. You could do it for weekends by fitting a larger battery bank and taking them home to fully charge at the end of each cruise. I can see no way you will damage either type of fridge by only having them turned on with the engine running because both types should be designed to run at the charging volatge and that will not be very high on an outboard. I really can not advise that you even think about an electric fridge on an outboard powered boat. I think you can still get coolboxes from camping shops that work by evaporating water.

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