Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 53

Heating, Ventilating, Air-Conditioning & Refrigeration Technology

SECTION 9 DOMESTIC APPLIANCES

UNIT 45 DOMESTIC REFRIGERATORS

UNIT OBJECTIVES
After studying this unit, the reader should be able to

Describe refrigeration as it applies to domestic refrigerators


Describe the compressors, condensers, metering devices and evaporators that are used on domestic refrigerators Describe the various methods used to defrost domestic refrigerators Explain how condensate is removed from the refrigerator Describe the controls and electric components used on refrigerators Discuss various service procedures used on domestic refrigerators

REFRIGERATION
Heat enters the refrigerator by conduction, convection and the introduction of warm food Warm food in the box raises the temperature Air in the box is circulated over the cold coil The air in the box transfers sensible and latent heat to the cold refrigeration coil The evaporator dehumidifies the air, causing frost to accumulate on the coil surface

Freezer Compartment

Freezer Compartment Refrigerator Compartment

The load on the system increases as warm product is added to the box

Heat is also introduced to the box when the door is opened through the doors and gaskets that seal the box Heat infiltration increases the temperature of the air in the box

NATURAL DRAFT EVAPORATORS


Normally of the stamped plate variety Product in the frozen food compartment may be in direct contact with the evaporator Evaporators can have manual or automatic defrost Most evaporators have an accumulator at the outlet Evaporators are not equipped with air filters

Freezer compartment

Capillary Tube

Suction Line

Stamped-plate Evaporator

Product in contact with the evaporator coil

EVAPORATOR DEFROST
Manual Defrost
Unit must be turned off and emptied Room heat, a pan of water or small heater is used to melt accumulated frost Never use sharp objects to remove frost
Accomplished with internal or external heat Hot gas or electric heating elements

Automatic Defrost

Frost on Coil

NEVER USE SHARP OBJECTS TO REMOVE ICE FROM THE COIL

THE COMPRESSOR
Pumps heat-laden, vapor refrigerant from the evaporator to the condenser Usually of the hermetically sealed, reciprocating or rotary, variety, ranging from 1/10 to 1/3 horsepower Compressors are located at the bottom of the unit Compressors can have oil cooler lines Refrigerant lines connected to the compressor are often made of steel or copper

THE CONDENSER
Air-cooled variety Can be of the natural or forced draft variety Natural draft condensers Forced draft condensers
Located at the back of the unit Must have proper airflow across it

Usually located under the unit at the back Must have a set air pattern

BACK OF REFRIGERATOR Natural-draft condenser

Compressor

Suction line

DEFROST CONDENSATE, AUTOMATIC DEFROST


Domestic refrigerators are low-temperature appliances Frost will accumulate on the evaporator coil Evaporator coil must be defrosted The compressor and condenser help to evaporate the water that accumulates during defrost Defrost water pan should be periodically cleaned

Condenser Coil

Condensate Line Condensate Pan Discharge line run to bottom of condensate pan

COMPRESSOR OIL COOLERS


Helps keep compressor oil cool Line leaves the compressor and makes several passes through the condenser The line then returns to the compressor Air passes over the line just as air passes over the coils of the condenser coil Oil cooler lines are closed loops

BACK OF REFRIGERATOR
Oil Cooler Line

Chimney-type condenser

Compressor

Suction line

METERING DEVICE
Domestic refrigerators use capillary tubes Capillary tube is usually fastened to the suction line for increased heat exchange rate Capillary tube can also be run inside the suction line Refrigerant flow through the capillary tube is determined by the length of the tube, the bore size and the pressure difference across the tube Designed for indoor operation

Suction Line

Capillary tube connected to the suction line

Capillary Tube

Capillary tube run inside the suction line

Suction Line

Capillary Tube High Temperature, High Pressure Refrigerant Heat is transferred from the refrigerant in the capillary tube to the refrigerant in the suction line

Suction Gas

THE DOMESTIC REFRIGERATED BOX


Modern refrigerators have magnetic gasket material around the door for a better seal Condensate flows from the box, through a trap to the condensate pan The trap prevents air from entering the box Different compartments can be maintained at different temperatures Some units are equipped with ice and water dispensers

WIRING AND CONTROLS


Wiring diagrams permanently attached to the unit Diagrams can be of the pictorial or line variety Components controlled in a domestic refrigerator
Compressor Fan motors Heaters Lights Ice maker Defrost components

Water Valve Solenoid

Ice Maker
Lamp Energy Saver Thermostat
M

Mullion Heater

Defrost Timer Defrost Heater


M

Evaporator Fan Motor


C S

Line Cord

Overload

Compressor

Relay

COMPRESSOR CONTROLS
Compressor is controlled by a line-voltage thermostat The thermostat
Closes on a rise in box temperature Passes power to the compressor when closed Has a remote bulb and is field adjustable Does not have a numerical temperature scale Remote bulb contains a volatile fluid that pushes against the diaphragm in the thermostat

COMPRESSOR START CIRCUIT


Designed to help the compressor start The starting components give the compressor additional starting torque Circuit often consists of a relay and a start capacitor Some units use a positive temperature coefficient
Known as the PTC Resistance varies with temperature As the temperature increases, so does the resistance

Current Relay
Coil

Overload
Run Terminal

Thermostat
Compressor

Contacts

Start Terminal Common Terminal

SWEAT PREVENTION HEATERS


Designed to keep the refrigerator cabinet above the dew point temperature Cabinets will sweat more when the humidity level is high Small wire heaters are mounted within the cabinet walls Some units have manual switches to turn the heaters on and off

REFRIGERATOR FAN MOTORS


Evaporator fan motor
Connected to small squirrel cage blowers Runs all the time, except when the unit is in defrost Usually an open-type motor

Condenser fan motor


Connected to a propeller-type fan Usually a shaded pole motor Located under the refrigerator at the back of the unit

ICE MAKER OPERATION


Located in the low temperature compartment Water flow to the ice maker is solenoid controlled Water flows to fill the ice maker tray A timer gives the water ample time to freeze The ice is then harvested by either twisting the tray or by heating the tray to free the ice Ice-making sequence is often time controlled

GAUGE CONNECTIONS
Domestic appliances not equipped with service ports Installing gages is not always necessary When to install gauges:
When there is a leak When repairing the refrigerant circuit As a last resort

Use process tubes for taking pressure readings Process tubes can be pinched off

LOW REFRIGERANT CHARGE


If there is a low refrigerant charge, there is a leak Leak should be located and repaired One method to determine if the charge is correct

Turn unit off for about five minutes Turn unit on while touching the outlet of the evaporator If the line gets cold for a short period of time, the charge is most likely correct If a low charge is suspected, gauges can be installed

REFRIGERANT OVERCHARGE
Forced-draft condensers are more efficient than natural-draft condensers Systems with forced-draft condensers operate with lower head pressures The head and suction pressures of the unit will be higher during a hot pull down (excessive load) If the compressor sweats around the suction line, there is most likely an overcharge

REFRIGERANT LEAKS
Small refrigerant leaks affect units performance Domestic refrigerators only hold a few ounces of refrigerant, so even a small leak will prevent the unit from operating effectively Leaks are best found in the shop Small leaks are difficult to locate in the home Very small leaks are found with high quality leak detectors

EVAPORATOR LEAKS
Soldering aluminum evaporators is not practical Aluminum evaporator leaks are repaired with epoxy The area around the leak should be cleaned well before attempting to make a repair Always follow the manufacturers instructions before attempting to make epoxy repairs Pulling a slight vacuum in the system while making an epoxy repair can help pull a small amount of epoxy into the leak, creating a stronger bond

CONDENSER LEAKS
Refrigerator condensers are often made of steel Leaks usually occur at the ends of the coil where the coil connections are made to the rest of the system While operating, units lose refrigerant faster through high side leaks than low side leaks Solders with a high silver content are best for repairing leaks in steel tubing

REFRIGERANT PIPING LEAKS


Interconnecting piping leaks can be very difficult to repair The evaporator may have to be removed Often more economical to replace the entire unit Leaks within fiberglass walls are often caused by electrolysis If one leak is found, there are likely others Flare unions can be used on aluminum/copper joints

COMPRESSOR CHANGEOUT
Use an exact replacement whenever possible Identify all tubing connections before removing the old compressor from the unit The refrigerant should be recovered from the unit Remove piping connections from the compressor using a tubing cutter or torch Clean all tubing ends and compressor stubs Add process tubes and a liquid line filter drier

SYSTEM EVACUATION
System evacuated after repairing and leak checking Removing Schrader pins (stems) and valve depressors will speed the evacuation process Moisture may be trapped under the compressor oil Use full size gage connections on high and low sides Allow vacuum pump to operate for about 8 hours Perform a triple evacuation whenever possible Minimum vacuum should be about 500 microns

CAPILLARY TUBE REPAIR


Capillary tubes can develop leaks when they rub against another surface Capillary tubes are delicate and must be handled carefully Capillary tubes should be cut with a file Care should be taken to protect the bore Capillary tube sections can be joined with a section of larger tubing Use as little filler material as possible when brazing Capillary tubes can be replaced if necessary

Leak in the Capillary tube

Use a file to cut through the capillary tube on both sides of the leak point. Be sure not to cut all the way through to the bore of the tubing!

Repeat the process on the underside of the capillary tube

Gently bend the tubing to break off the damaged section of tubing

Damaged section of tubing

Insert the ends of the capillary tube to be joined into a small section of larger tubing

Crimp the larger tubing around the two ends of the capillary tube, making certain that the ends of the capillary tubes are not damaged

Pinched portion of copper tubing

When brazing, use as little filler material as possible!

Make certain that the ends of the capillary tubes do not touch!

COMPRESSOR CAPACITY CHECK


Before condemning the compressor, check
The door gaskets Excessive load on the box Leaking hot gas solenoid (defrost) Improper condenser airflow

Use manufacturers guidelines when evaluating the compressor Determine compressor amperage

UNIT SUMMARY
Heat enters the refrigerator by conduction, convection and the introduction of warm food Warm food in the box raises the box temperature and the evaporator saturation temperature and pressure Evaporators can be natural or mechanical draft Evaporators can be either automatic or manual defrost Natural draft evaporators are defrosted manually

UNIT SUMMARY
Compressors are often equipped with oil cooler lines Condensers are air cooled and can be natural or mechanical draft devices The metering device used on domestic refrigerators is the capillary tube Different compartments in the refrigerator can be maintained at different temperatures and humidities

UNIT SUMMARY
The electrical components controlled in a domestic refrigerator are the compressor, fan motors, lights, ice makers, lights, heaters and defrost components The compressor thermostat closes on a drop in box temperature The compressor uses starting components to increase the starting torque of the compressor motor Gauges should be installed on process tubes and only when absolutely necessary

UNIT SUMMARY
If there is a low refrigerant charge, there is a leak Evaporator leaks can be repaired with epoxy Condenser leaks are often repaired with high silver content brazing filler materials Capillary tubes can be repaired or replaced Care must be taken to not block the bore of the capillary tube during the repair process