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Old 06-11-2012, 12:09 AM   #1
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Freezers in freezing weather

I've lived here for 11 years, and most of our married life we've had a small (I think 8 cubic ft) freezer. We went on the road for three years, then moved to this old house.

My intentions were to buy another small chest freezer, but we somehow got by with the freezer on top of the fridge (the fridge is probably about 15-20 years old, and the freezer is just typical of the era).

Lately I'm getting fed up with juggling and jigsaw puzzling my way through the freezer. Needless to say, since we're all DC here, I cook a lot. It is very difficult to cook for two, so I tend to cook a regular meal (I learned to cook for 6), and freeze. I also make a lot of stock.

I told DH that I'm not making stock any more unless we buy a freezer. I feel like Fibber McGee and Molly every time I open the freezer door. He couldn't possibly in a million years find anything in the freezer. It is always packed totally; sometimes you have to almost empty it to find something that is in there.

Here's the question. For some reason DH does not want to put it in the cellar. After 30 years of living together, I am not going to go anywhere. He wants it in the garage.

The question is this: does a freezer function well in the winter when there is no heat (in other words, for the couple of months where I could literally put anything that needed to stay frozen in the garage without a freezer)?

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Old 06-11-2012, 04:44 AM   #2
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morning claire
apparently the best ambient temperature for a freezer to operate efficiently is 50f.below this it may actually attempt to defrost the contents.read this on a few manufacturers/retailers sites.other side of the coin is that the main freezer at bolas's is located in an unheated outbuilding where temperatures drop well below freezing during the winter & it works fine,so......
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Old 06-11-2012, 06:24 AM   #3
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We have nine freezers, several of which are outside in outbuildings. In the summer, we try to make sure the outside freezers are empty and unplug them until harvest time. They use more energy in the summer (the outside ones) than they do in the winter. As we are emptying the freezers, we replace what was in them with 2 l bottles of water. These freeze, of course, but a full freezer uses less energy than one that is partially full.
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Old 06-11-2012, 06:34 AM   #4
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I guess having a freezer in an unheated building won't be a problem, then. CWS, When I lived in Florida and in Hawaii, in the spring I'd start collecting 2 liter bottles, fill most of the way with water, and freezing and make sure my freezer was almost full at all times. The bottles of ice made sure the freezer was full, would help keep the contents frozen through power outages, and, thankfully never needed as such, could provide backup water if we lost that (we often lost electricity for rather lengthy times when hurricane season came around).
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Old 06-11-2012, 10:50 AM   #5
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Many modern refrigeration systems are not designed to function in cold environments (below say 50*F).
See- Freezer operation in my garage
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Old 06-11-2012, 10:53 AM   #6
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I recommend you check the owners manual for any model freezer you want to buy. I too have heard that freezers don't do well in freezing environments.
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Old 06-11-2012, 11:07 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claire View Post
I guess having a freezer in an unheated building won't be a problem, then. CWS, When I lived in Florida and in Hawaii, in the spring I'd start collecting 2 liter bottles, fill most of the way with water, and freezing and make sure my freezer was almost full at all times. The bottles of ice made sure the freezer was full, would help keep the contents frozen through power outages, and, thankfully never needed as such, could provide backup water if we lost that (we often lost electricity for rather lengthy times when hurricane season came around).
Quote:
Originally Posted by justplainbill View Post
Many modern refrigeration systems are not designed to function in cold environments (below say 50*F).
See- Freezer operation in my garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
I recommend you check the owners manual for any model freezer you want to buy. I too have heard that freezers don't do well in freezing environments.
i dunno claire,andy & jpb seem to have come up with same info that i did in my original post.this figure of 50f keeps cropping up.while it is true that bolas's works fine in an unheated outbuilding it is about 30-35 years old which may account for it working ok.as jpb says:"Many modern refrigeration systems are not designed to function in cold environments (below say 50*F)".
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Old 06-11-2012, 02:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Cobean

i dunno claire,andy & jpb seem to have come up with same info that i did in my original post.this figure of 50f keeps cropping up.while it is true that bolas's works fine in an unheated outbuilding it is about 30-35 years old which may account for it working ok.as jpb says:"Many modern refrigeration systems are not designed to function in cold environments (below say 50*F)".
I would have to agree. We did give an old fridge/freezer to a friend who keeps it in his garage workshop, but the room is heated in the winter.
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Old 06-11-2012, 02:30 PM   #9
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Have you asked the company that sells the freezer you are interested in buying? If the sales person doesn't have the answer, they can contact the manufacturer. Different freezers manufacturers might have different requirements for installations.
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Old 06-11-2012, 03:11 PM   #10
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Many if not all of Sears' Kenmore freezers are supposed to be ok for use in unheated garages.
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