$500 on WHAT?!

For those of you not up to date with our fridge troubles you can read our blog and fridge update!

Bye, bye old evaporator plate!

Why the Repair People Weren’t Interested…

I’m starting to understand why so many refrigerator repair people were not willing to help us with our fridge… Materials have been EXPENSIVE, and it will still take quite a bit of time to take apart and put back together. It basically isn’t worth the time or the money for the repair people, and for most mini-fridges, it is both cheaper and easier to buy a new one.

However, when Zak and I bought this fridge, we wanted something that was “top of the line” and was used by a lot of vanlifers. Our fridge was $1300 in summer of 2021… The same model fridge is now $1700. So, we’re going to fix this thing!

Always Learning!

Regardless of whether we try and fail or don’t try at all, we’d still need to get a new fridge, so we might as well learn a new skill along the way, right? Plus, I absolutely hate the idea of throwing out a perfectly good system if there is a fix. Again, we have to thank Clark from Emily and Clark’s Adventure for all of his help and expertise. Make sure to check out their playlist about AC and Refrigeration as well as their Patreon!

The hole in this plate is literally the ONLY issue with the fridge! Not garbage worthy in my book!

Breakdown of Materials

  • $130- Evaporator Plate (I ordered this from Beard Marine)
  • $6.99- Glazing Putty
  • $2.99- Pipe Insulation
  • $5.18- Two 1/4″ Flare Nuts
  • $2.85- 1/4″ Flare Union
  • $22.99- Flare Tool
  • $16.99- Tubing Cutter
  • $7.58- Tru-Blu Thread Sealant
  • $5.97- 3 feet of 3/16″ Copper Tubing
  • $5.99- Steel Wool
  • $32.99- Solder (Lead Free, has more Silver in it)
  • $7.99- Flux
  • $0.69- Flux Brush
  • $6.99- Propane
  • $21.99- Propane Torch
  • $3.49- Triangular Metal File
  • $0- Darning Needle (I had this at home)
  • $94.99- Vacuum Pump
  • $64.99- Gauge Set (with three tubes, blue, yellow, and red)
  • $11.49- Small can of 134a Refrigerant
  • $6.99- 134a Can tap/ adapter

Total Spent on Materials: $459.95

All the materials receipts from today

A Note About the Evaporator Plate

Luckily, I already had ordered the evaporator plate from Beard Marine, which shipped to me in about a week. (They are located in Ft. Lauderdale, FL). You can usually get the exact part number you need by calling the company, and they will direct you to a retailer. The evaporator plate itself cost about $89, but with shipping, it came out to $130.

A Three Project Process!

Because of the original soldering done in the refrigerator, we are going to be doing some work-arounds. This will make fixing the fridge a three project process. The first part will be cutting and creating a flare fitting in the suction tube. The second part will be cutting and soldering the capillary tube. Lastly, we will evacuate and recharge the refrigerator with 134a refrigerant. The most expensive parts of this project have certainly been actually buying the evaporator plate, the vacuum pump, and the gauge set. If you are going through this and you can borrow the vacuum pump and gauge set, I highly suggest doing this. It will save you tons! In addition, if you have the time to wait, buying on Amazon may be a bit cheaper than buying in real stores.

Stay tuned– we hope to have this project done tomorrow! For now, you can read more about life on the road in our Vanlife Journal.

1 thought on “$500 on WHAT?!”

  1. Pingback: Replace Your Evaporator Plate | Isotherm Elegance 130 - Zak & Fal

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