Author Topic: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge  (Read 3870 times)

Offline kramerog

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 776
    • View Profile
Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« on: August 15, 2012, 06:13:31 PM »
I have an opportunity to get a 5-year-old fridge for free from my neighbor.  The fan blowing cold air from the freezer into the fridge is broken.  I was thinking of getting the fridge and just drilling hole(s) through the bottom of the freezer into the fridge so I don't need to replace the fan.  I don't need the freezer. Good idea?  Any tips to make sure I don't drill through something important?  A search on the internet didn't reveal much.
Brewers of South Suburbia
Brixie's Brewers
Oak Park Homebrewers

Offline mtnrockhopper

  • I spend way too much time on the AHA forum
  • ********
  • Posts: 2876
  • Delaware
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2012, 06:29:39 PM »
You might just make a bigger freezer, unless you're hooking it up to a temp controller.
Jimmy K

Delmarva United Homebrewers - President by inverse coup when the old president ousted himself.
AHA Member since 2006
BJCP: B0958

Offline bboy9000

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 216
  • KCMO
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2012, 06:45:49 PM »
Cool air is more dense than warm air so it sinks.  The fan may be needed if the freezer is below the fridge. The broken fan wouldn't be as big of an issue if the freezer was above the fridge.  But if you're getting it for free...
Brian
mobrewer

Offline kramerog

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 776
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2012, 07:16:50 PM »
You might just make a bigger freezer, unless you're hooking it up to a temp controller.

Good point.  I may not really be saving any money up front.  Plus I'm likely to interfere with the self-defrost.
Brewers of South Suburbia
Brixie's Brewers
Oak Park Homebrewers

Offline harbicide

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 83
  • Barkeeper's Friend will not passivate stainless.
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2012, 10:01:10 AM »
To answer your question about tips:  leave the door of the freezer open and see if you can detect where the coolant lines are by condensation forming.

Even if that works, for each hole you want to drill, first barely pierce the plastic liner.  Then probe about with a nail to see if a coolant line is beneath the pierced hole or is close that the drill could nick it.
On Tap: Barleywine, RIS, Scotch Ale, Wit, Blueberry Wit, Weizen, Dortmunder

Offline davidgzach

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1498
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2012, 12:24:50 PM »
Can you get a replacement fan online?  How big of a job is it to fix?
Dave Zach

Offline khillje

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 105
    • View Profile
    • Twitter
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2012, 12:37:48 PM »
I did this before with a fridge that was on it's last legs.  It definitely worked.  For a while.

Offline weithman5

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1668
  • naperville, il
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2012, 12:41:25 PM »
most of the time those fans are easy to fix and replace.
Don AHA member

Offline kramerog

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 776
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2012, 07:30:50 AM »
To answer your question about tips:  leave the door of the freezer open and see if you can detect where the coolant lines are by condensation forming.

Even if that works, for each hole you want to drill, first barely pierce the plastic liner.  Then probe about with a nail to see if a coolant line is beneath the pierced hole or is close that the drill could nick it.

Good advice.
Brewers of South Suburbia
Brixie's Brewers
Oak Park Homebrewers

Offline kramerog

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 776
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #9 on: August 17, 2012, 07:35:43 AM »
The fridge that my neighbor is giving me is working again so I don't need to fix it for now.  If the fan needs fixing, I'll just replace it because it'll be nice to have an ice maker even if it is in the basement and because of other unintended consequences.
Brewers of South Suburbia
Brixie's Brewers
Oak Park Homebrewers

Offline corkybstewart

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1299
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #10 on: August 17, 2012, 09:15:38 AM »
The coils on my old beer fridge are between the freezer and the fridge so drilling there would destroy the whole fridge.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico

Offline kramerog

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 776
    • View Profile
Re: Drilling through freezer compartment into fridge
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2012, 10:11:33 AM »
Here's what I did: Once I moved the fridge it stopped working.  Armed with the part number for the fan, I was able to find a replacement fan for $25 inc. shipping on EBay rather than $80 when I only knew the model number of the fridge.  At $25, the cost was too low to fix the fridge properly.  Besides no having the fan would have been tremendously inefficient for the fridge.  I'm going to connect the icemaker and the cold water dispenser to serve other beverages in the house.  At some point, I'll consider putting taps through the fridge but the water dispenser in the fridge door makes me think I'll have to put the taps through the side.
Brewers of South Suburbia
Brixie's Brewers
Oak Park Homebrewers