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re: more, please, on refrig not allowed in < 40f environment
25 aug 2004
david combs  wrote re:

>>an eh38 "easy heat thermostatically controlled device" ($10.99 at lowe's)
>>in series with a 100 w trouble light in a drawer can prevent freezing.
 
>(1)  in a drawer?   what drawer?   perhaps some drawer *inside* the
>     fridge, eg the "meat drawer"?

i put it in a bottom drawer, since warm air rises.

>(2)  if so, how much power would be used in heating?

depends on the ambient temp. keeping a typical fridge 36 f in a 30 f barn
(the average jan temp in phila) might take about (36-30)72ft^2/r10 = 43 btu/h,
ie an average of 13 watts. i unplug the fridge from november through march.

the easy heat turns on at 38 f and off at 50 (average 44), so i put 
2 water bottles in the drawer to reduce cycling and some fiberglass
insulation over the lamp and thermostat and closed the drawer to make
the fridge closer to 36 f. it's hard to do this exactly with a varying
outdoor temp, but it seems to work nicely. no frozen carrots.

           36
      r    |  1/7.2          r = (44-36)/43 = 0.186 ~ r0.2/1ft^2. 
44---www---*---www---30
              43-->

>     if the thermostat clicked-on, wouldn't the 110-volts
>     go unimpeded to that 100-watt light-bulb...

yes.

>     in an enclosed space, that can get awfully darn hot, melt plastic,
>     even try to start a fire...

the trouble light is rated for a 100 w bulb at "room temp." i use
a long-life bulb. the drawer is about 10" wide x 16" deep x 8" tall.

>     or is the operative term here is "trouble light", which 
>     might be something totally different from what i imagine?

the $5 trouble light is a lamp socket with a plastic lamp guard on the end
of an extension cord. the easy heat is a 1"x1"x2" little shoebox with a plug
on one side and a receptacle on the other.

nick




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