Older Edgestar Fridge w/out low voltage cutoff...anyone add an external one??

67cj5

Man On a Mission
Thanks again for the replies, that Dometic Voltage monitor is pretty slick, might go that route...

I plan on solar and a second battery, if fitting the second battery was easier it would come first.

Thanks again all!!
The good thing about the Dometic Gizmo is that you can use it with other Items,
 

cjthing

New member
So trying to locate the Dometic part and I'm not certain its available in the U.S., only shows up on their website when Europe is selected. Hopefully U.S. dealers have them...
 

67cj5

Man On a Mission
Well let me know if you have any luck and if not I will see if I can get you one

You might have more luck if you contact the Dometic bloke who is a member here on the forum coz he might be able to help as well,
 

nixid

Observer
I have an older hand me down Edgestar FP630 63 qt. fridge. It keeps my food and beer cold but have an issue. I have recently found out, via Edgestar, that there is no low voltage cutoff. I have obviously killed the battery and started digging and instead of buying a fridge have found some external voltage cutoffs.

Has anyone else used one of these products to solve a similar issue? I have found posts where people use similar products for saving trailer/secondary batteries etc. Cant find much in the way of using it in my intended fashion.

Example of what I am referring to...


My thought is to put this cutoff inline before a "fuse block" in the rear which a number of accessories (including fridge) could be run off of. This way if battery voltage drops the non essential items wont work, which I am fine with.


I am seeing mixed reviews and most are not being used as I intend. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!!
Do you just have one battery?
 

DaveInDenver

Expedition Leader
Would argue that if you need a low voltage shutoff, then you need a bigger/second battery first, not last. A low voltage cut off is a bit like looking for a better parachute, rather than designing a plane that has enough fuel to reach its destination. ;-)
I would say a low voltage disconnect is more like a rev limiter for your engine or fuses for your cables. Most of the time you never notice but if you do something extraordinary (or stupid) it keeps you from doing more damage.

We all eventually hit a limit to how much space and money we have. Batteries and appliances are expensive, so why wouldn't you want to protect them?
 
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luthj

Engineer In Residence
It depends on your risk tolerance. I have had solar controllers fail, fuses blow, etc. All resulting in no charging to a battery bank. Not only will a low voltage cut-off prevent a totally discharged battery, it can save electronics. Can you imagine a cheaper/older fridge seeing 10.5V, and repeatedly trying to start, pulling the bank down to 9V, cutting out, and trying again in 30 seconds? Not good for any of the components involved.
 

DaveInDenver

Expedition Leader
It depends on your risk tolerance. I have had solar controllers fail, fuses blow, etc. All resulting in no charging to a battery bank. Not only will a low voltage cut-off prevent a totally discharged battery, it can save electronics. Can you imagine a cheaper/older fridge seeing 10.5V, and repeatedly trying to start, pulling the bank down to 9V, cutting out, and trying again in 30 seconds? Not good for any of the components involved.
I had a battery break, physically break. The post apparently developed a crack that had it making intermittent contact with the grid inside. It appeared like a failed cell since the voltage would settle to about 9V and when the fridge would kick on the voltage would drop to 3 or 4 volts, which made my Engel sound terrible (my old MT45 does not have LVD). Your point to me is rationale for both an under voltage lockout and probably an over voltage one, too.
 

cjthing

New member
Yes I currently have one battery, the plan is to add a dual battery setup. I have solar on the way now as well.

I have contacted a US Dometic dealer and they cannot get the coolpower inline voltage cutoff. That does seem like the easiest way to get a cutoff for the fridge...if I can actually get my hands on one.
 

dreadlocks

Well-known member
IMHO a system wide LVD is more useful/reliable than per-appliance LVD.. first of all it will do its job and protect battery from EVERYTHING, including dumb little devices like phone chargers and stuff that can be quite parasitic over time.. I purposefully bought a fridge w/out an LVD this time, because the one on my ARB fridge was more trouble than it was worth.. I had it shutting down way too early when I'd shove fridge in a bear locker and power it off 30ft of wire.. I've gotta keep insulin for my pyrenees (born w/it, not just fat) and the only stuff we can afford is not stable at all, goes bad within like an hour or so of reaching room temp so I dont need any of that nonsense.

You can also tie the BatteryProtect (in relay mode) in with a Victron Battery Monitor (BMV) and get disconnects based upon calculated State of Charge %, Low/High Voltage, Low/High Temp and a toggle over-ride switch.. which is quite a bit of protection when you got alot of money into your batteries.
 

cjthing

New member
Thanks dreadlocks, I am leaning back towards the LVD as it is more useful...and actually available. I just did a quick check on the Victron battery monitor, they look pricey. Is there a specific model you recommend? Seems like a good upgrade down the road possibly.

Thanks again all!
 

dreadlocks

Well-known member
712 model is what I have, it uses a mosfet instead of a relay internally so its draw is miniscule.. via bluetooth it feeds my Victron SmartSolar and provides at the battery post voltage and temperature data to the solar charger.. it measures all load going into or out of your battery and does a very good job at calculating its current charge rate.. for me this is critical because I'm on LFP and you simply cannot gain any insight into its current state via voltage alone.. my battery dont even reach most LVD's max cut off til its at about 5% SOC.

Also keeps nice fancy graphs and historical data, knowing your usage and consumption makes it alot easier to predict and plan.. sticking your head in the sand and ignoring your usage is pretty much the best way to destroy a battery and everything in your fridge.

Ive got mine setup w/BMV to give me reserve capacity, the BMV will drop the loads at a certain calculated SOC%.. above the LVD cutoff.. so the way it works is I can draw battery down to 20% SOC, then BMV will drop all loads.. I have an over-ride switch wired in parallel w/the BMV, when I flip that switch it turns the LVD back on and it'll run until low voltage cut off, which is ~5% SOC.. so in effect, I have a reserve power switch I can activate manually that will give me ~15% more, for backup/emergencies.. I can take my battery that low without considerable harm, if I don't make a habit out of it..
With FLA you'd probably want it to cut off at 50% SOC, and then mebe set the LVD to whatever voltage its at ~35% SOC.. tha'd give you another 15% to get through a cold night or whatever with your implied consent, while normally safe-guarding your battery from much abuse.
 
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cjthing

New member
Thanks for the detailed response dreadlocks! I think the BMV might be an upgrade I do down the road a bit.

My current weekend project is hopefully getting the solar installed. Anyone have insight on solar controller location for SUV use? From what I understand the controller should be close to the battery, in a well ventilated area, and needs to be kept away from water etc. I don't see how I meet all those requirements as the battery is under the hood, and the controller would not be ideal under the hood as well. How critical is it that the controller be close to the battery? As of now, mounting the controller in the cab and running wires through the firewall to the battery seems the only option, but does not keep the controller close to the battery. Most info I find applies to a second "house" battery, but in my case batteries are under the hood.

Thanks again all!
 

DiploStrat

Expedition Leader
The only thing magic about proximity is length and gauge of wire. You want to minimize voltage drop. Once you grasp that, it's easy. You could have the controller in the next county as long as the wire gauge is large enough for the load.

In your case, with a little care, you could easily put the controller in the cab; indeed, that sounds like a good idea for protection from water and dust.

Do remember that the same caveat applies to the downleads from the panels. And if you ever plan to add panels, then size your wire for the anticipated TOTAL load, that way you only need run short wires from your new panel to the main downleads.


 

cjthing

New member
Have 8 gauge wire for connection from controller to battery currently. I need to see how close to the firewall I can get the controller to limit the distance. Seeing as I will be running a single 100 watt panel I don't anticipate seeing high amps to the battery.
 
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