Refrigerator in the Garage

Garage Refrigerator

Why won't your Refrigerator Work Properly in the Garage?

This is a common question. I will do my best to explain why your Freezer won't freeze properly when it's kept in the garage. More than likely you only notice this problem when the temperatures outside get down to freezing or close to it.

Basically there really isn't anything wrong with the Refrigerator itself. The problem is the outside air temperature. The Refrigerator Section in most Top Freezer Refrigerators is where the only thermostat for the machine is located. The Freezer Temperature is determined by how long the fridge runs, more on that later. The Refrigerator running in 70 - 75 degree temperatures(kitchen) will be "calling for cold" 45 -55 percent of the time. That means the machine is running about half the time. This keeps the temperature in the fridge compartment just below 40 degrees or so. By running about half the time causes the temperature in the freezer to toggle around zero.

Now, how do you adjust the freezer temperature then if the only thermostat is in the refrigerator compartment? ah, Good Question. That is pretty simple. The evaporator is located in the freezer section. This is what "gets cold" when the compressor runs. The fridge section gets its cold air from the freezer. There is an air diverter that only allows a small amount of air to circulate from the freezer to the refrigerator when it's calling for cold. So, at the factory settings in an average room temperature setting, the freezer will have to run long enough to freeze when it needs to cool the fridge compartment. Make sense? If you want to make the freezer temperature lower, you are essentially going to starve the refrigerator side's air flow. This will keep the freezer running longer to cool the fridge section and therefor you have lower freezer temperature.

Now here is the reason your Freezer won't Freeze in the garage during the winter months. If the outside temperature is close to the temperature your refrigerator section needs to be, the compressor will only have to run for a very short time to make the fridge happy. That will not be enough time for the freezer to pull down to the proper temperature.


There are kits you can get to solve this issue. There are normally called Garage Kits. Pretty easy to remember right. How a garage kit works is by tricking the refrigerator to think it's in a warmer environment. A garage kit is placed by the thermostat in the Refrigerator Compartment and it puts off a small amount of heat causing the freezer to cycle on and off more frequently. This allows the freezer to get down to the proper temperature and keep the things in your freezer completely frozen all the time. Not most of the time or sometimes.

It is a rather simple solution that the average person can do themselves. The kit shown in this post is a garage kit for a Frigidaire Refrigerator. This will give you an idea of what one looks like. If you have any questions about this, just visit Appliance Outlet and you can get more help there.