Our refrigeration and freezer systems are running! It was quite exciting to see the freezer get down to temperature, and stay there.
We installed a new keel-cooled Frigoboat system. There had been three separate refrigeration systems onboard. One engine driven, one air cooled, and one shore powered. We disconnected all of them, tore out the evaporator plates and compressors, and started from scratch. We decided to use only two systems, and converted the third to regular pantry storage.
The keel-cooled system works by a plate that is mounted through the hull. While the boat is in the water, the submerged keel plate cools the refrigerant before it reaches the compressor, and ultimately going to the evaporator plate. We installed a keel cooler for an upright refrigerator and a keel cooler for a top loading freezer.
Since we’re sitting high and dry in a boatyard, how is the freezer up and running? For the freezer only, we installed a fan cooler inline between the keel cooler and the compressor. When we are out of the water, we can switch over to the fan cooler. Now, we know that it works!
Electrically, we know that the refrigerator works, but we will have to wait until we’re in the water to fully test that system. In the meantime, we can make ice and enjoy some ice cream!