Solar Powered Fridge Fans

Oct 8, 2006
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Fithawk said:
Anyone used/using, solar powered fridge fans?

Would you care to expand upon your query? I have never heard of solar powered fridge fans, nay I have never heard of fridge fans (as an accessory) either.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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I presume Fithawk is refering to the practice of adding one or two computer style fans to the external grill of the fridge to force fresh air through the fridges condenser coils.

Several contributors to the forum have done this to assist when the ambient air temperate is high.

Logically its most likely to be sunny when its extra hot, so having a fan that uses solar power to help ventilate the fridge makes quite a lot of sense. But in some climates it can be quite hot even when there is no sunlight, so solar in that instance would not be effective.

It might make more sense to have a solar panel that recharges the main battery , and run teh fans from the battery when needed. Some people use a thermostat to control the fans so it only comes on when its needed.
 
Oct 8, 2006
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That was why I specifically said solar fans "as accesories." Yes I know about computer fans - a friend has done same and I'm thinking about doing it on the poiwer supply as well - and as they only pull about 50mA a solar panel with voltage regulator would work quite well. Having said that 100mA off a 100Ah battery is a mere drop in the ocean.
The fans, for the record, should be wired in series so that they make less noise - after all it is only about getting the air to move, not forced draught cooling. Wired in series two 50mA fans would likey draw much less than 50mA.
 
Jun 15, 2014
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This is the top vent fridge fan accessory, to help exhaust hot air from the fridge rear in hot weather. Most are hard wired, but this looked like a viable option. It’s cable is long enough to be able to move the solar panel into sun, when needed. Hope that helps. Thanks.
 
Nov 16, 2015
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Fithawk, I have used our Dometic Fridge in our Coachman at temps of the high 30c's in Southern France without the need for the cooling fans, and also the same about the winter vents. Maybe just having a newer caravan though. I don't think you need them.
 
Jun 15, 2014
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Thanks Hutch. However my fridge struggled in the hot weather and returned to normal running in cooler weather. That’s why I’m looking at options. Cheers.
 
Jul 15, 2008
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Fithawk said:
However my fridge struggled in the hot weather and returned to normal running in cooler weather. That’s why I’m looking at options. Cheers.

.......in my opinion it is a false assumption to think that an absorption refrigerator will work better if you fit cooling fans.
Hot air given off will vent quite naturally through the top vent by convection ....... one of the most powerful natural forces on the planet!
What happens in hot weather is that the refrigerator is used a lot more and is expected to be able to supply cold drinks and cope with the door being opened more often......all this from a refrigerator that is far lees efficient than the domestic compressor refrigerator you will have at home.

I solved the problem by purchasing a compressor table top freezer........obviously that stores frozen food but it will also cool drinks and is very handy to pre cool anything before you place it in the caravan refrigerator.
As long as you have the means to transport the freezer you will never want for cold food or drink however hot the weather is..................Table top Freezer example
 
Apr 2, 2019
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Absorption fridges require a temperature of about 50 degC to vaporize the coolant liquid. While the fans might be usefull in extremely hot weather, and with the fridge side exposed to the sun, they will lower the efficiency of the fridge in normal operation conditions.
So be sure to include a temperature switch (bi-metal type) to stop the fans when temperature at fridge backside is below 50deg.
 

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