Author Topic: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??  (Read 1251 times)

red_pill

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Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« on: May 29, 2018, 07:38:17 PM »
Has anyone here installed extra insulation for a chest freezer?   The lid to our large chest freezer is cool (almost cold) to the touch, which makes me think it isnít as efficient as it could be.  Iíve thought of maybe putting a heavy blanket inside over top the food.  Or maybe some foam insulation either inside or outside the lid?  My Google-Fu has not revealed any great treasure trove of insight.  Any suggestions?
« Last Edit: May 29, 2018, 09:43:28 PM by red_pill »

Fishindude

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2018, 12:36:16 PM »
Having your freezer in a space that is relatively cool and shady, such as in the house, in a basement or well insulated garage will keep it from working too hard.   If it's half or more empty, put some jugs of water in there.   They will help it stay cold longer, plus they are free cooler ice for excursions.    I suppose you could put a piece of styrofoam on top of it, or even drape and insulated blanket or sleeping bag over it, just don't cover the compressor area in the back which might make it over heat.

nereo

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2018, 01:52:42 PM »
Has anyone here installed extra insulation for a chest freezer?   The lid to our large chest freezer is cool (almost cold) to the touch, which makes me think it isnít as efficient as it could be.  Iíve thought of maybe putting a heavy blanket inside over top the food.  Or maybe some foam insulation either inside or outside the lid?  My Google-Fu has not revealed any great treasure trove of insight.  Any suggestions?

It's not very efficient.  Chances are it never was to begin with, or the foam has cracked/seperated now so that there is thermal bridging going on.
First step is what Fishindude already said - placing it somewhere so it doesn't have to work too hard. You can add a sheet of rigid-foam insulation over the entire top as well.  Are the sides cold too, or is it just the top?  Is it icing up quickly (signs it isn't sealing properly)?

Ultimately if its using a lot of electricity you'll be better off (have a short ROI) by getting a newer model with an energy-star rating. After heating/cooling, fridge/freezers are typically hte biggest energy suck in a home. If yours is cold to the touch you are losing a TON of energy.  Some of these older models can cost >$10/month to run. You can find out just how much by using a Kill-a-watt to measure energy use (if you are curious).

red_pill

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2018, 04:14:04 PM »
The freezer is 21 cu ft and i have already done the jugs of ice thing.  It is kept ina cool garage.  I measured the consumption and it is using around 2.4 KWh per day.  Thatís about 25% of my entire usage (Iíve got it dialed pretty tight everywhere else).  The freezer has a massive frost issue.  Itís less than ten years old and honestly I donít know what itís usage is supposed to be (will check model number when I get home).   Iím actually thinking if I have to replace it of getting two 10 cu ft freezers - we get a half side of beef every year so need the space but obviously space needs dwindle through the year.  But ideally Iíll be able to fix up the one I have.

BTDretire

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2018, 09:37:18 PM »
You could insulate the top of the freezer. There is usually a piece of fiberglass insulation in it.
 You could buy a sheet or two of Styrofoam to fit the thickness and put it inside.
Or, easier is to just cut a piece to fit on top, notched for the handle area.
 I recently dissected a 25cuft freezer, just because I wanted to know.
This one didn't have any tubing on the bottom, so you could put the freezer on top of foam
to insulate the bottom.
 I can't vouch for all freezers, so, make sure the bottom doesn't radiate heat when the freezer is running.

FiftyIsTheNewTwenty

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2018, 03:41:32 PM »
You could cut some styrofoam sheets to fit inside the top - a tight fit is important - but it's probably "leaking" through the sides and bottom too.

What's your energy cost compared to a new one?  Would a new one pay for itself?  They're pretty inexpensive, and new ones are very inexpensive to run.  Maybe to defray the cost you could get a few bucks for the old one, as well as have someone take it away.

Sibley

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2018, 08:05:23 PM »
You're missing the simplest solution: unplug and don't use it.

If you've got jugs of ice in it, how much food are you storing anyway?

clarkfan1979

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2018, 10:51:57 PM »
You're missing the simplest solution: unplug and don't use it.

If you've got jugs of ice in it, how much food are you storing anyway?


He is storing 1/2 of a cow.

red_pill

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2018, 03:36:59 PM »
Yeah the freezer is in constant use.  We stockpile frozen berries and get a half side of beef every year.

Itís using 20 cents of electricity a day.  I was thinking of replacing it with two smaller freezers with the idea being able to not use one at all. But at max 10 cents a day savings itís be hard to get that to be worth it.

I think Iíll try the styrofoam on the lid first.

SweatingInAZ

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2018, 06:08:02 PM »
I don't have a chest freezer, but I have been toying with the idea of getting one at some point. Tips that I have found:

Clean the condenser coils. Ensure that the air intake is unobstructed. If it draws from the bottom and sits on carpet, you may need to elevate the freezer.
Ensure that the air exhaust is unobstructed. If it is against a wall, pull the freezer a few inches away.

Feel around the lid for leaks, and fix them. It might be beneficial to just lay a heavy blanket over the lid instead of foam. It will insulate and impede air leaks.
If the freezer is in a humid room, be aware that adding insulation might allow water to condense between the foam and the freezer and accelerate rust.


WranglerBowman

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2018, 03:13:32 PM »
I have two 12 CF freezers.  One runs year round, the other is just an overflow freezer incase too many critters make unfortunate missteps during hunting season.  The one freezer that runs year round I move out into the garage during the winter, and then down into our basement during the summer so it never works too hard and saves on electricity.  Not sure what your freezer lid is like, mine is just hollow plastic, if yours is like that you could fill with expanding foam or, as mentioned, cut a piece of Styrofoam to fit.  If you're not happy with that just pick one up for free from Craigslist or Freecycle or something until you find a freezer you're satisfied with.

narrative

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #11 on: June 29, 2018, 10:27:33 AM »
The freezer has a massive frost issue.

It sounds like you have a manual defrost model. It might help to defrost it. If the frost gets too high on the top it can also break the seal making it run harder.

More here:
http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/bills/article-2605935/Is-defrosting-freezer-easiest-way-cut-energy-bills-overnight.html

Cadman

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Re: Anyone know how to insulate a chest freezer??
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2018, 01:13:14 PM »
As Narrative pointed out, chest freezers require manual defrosting. If you haven't done that lately, your compressor is going to be working harder and using more power. On the other hand, $6/mo is pretty much in line with expected consumption. Adding insulation in the top might help, but be careful because it can shift your vapor point and cause condensation to form somewhere you don't want it, which can then freeze and expand leading to damage, or cause rust issues.