Click for Llebroc Click for Stats Click for DeAngelo Click for Bering Click for Frigibar

Troubleshoot cockpit bait freezer?

Discussion in 'Technical Discussion' started by Prospective, Jul 17, 2017 at 12:31 PM.

You need to be registered and signed in to view this content.
  1. Prospective

    Prospective Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    Messages:
    50
    Location:
    New England
    I have a cruisair cockpit bait freezer in my 43' ocean. In consists of a unit in the engine room plumbed to a freezer box in the cockpit with two cold plates and a temp sensor in it. It is AC powered and is air cooled and does not appear to rely on any raw water feed. I would tell you more about it but that's really all I know and can't seem to find much in the way of reference on-line. It has always worked up until last week. Now it runs as normal but the plates do not get cold. There is a simple display/control panel in the ER that shows temp, and temp set at but nothing else. No error messages or codes that are obvious.

    I have called my refrig tech to come take a look but he's backed up a bit. Any thoughts on any troubleshooting I could try?
  2. bluesuit

    bluesuit Member

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2013
    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    new orleans
    maybe clean the coil in the engine room. sounds low on freon. i've had them
    on my current and former boats and thats been the biggest problems with them is the freon charge. is the fan motor on the unit in the engine room running? could be out or fan blades not functioning properly.
  3. wdrzal

    wdrzal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Messages:
    249
    Location:
    Baltimore
    If it's a air cooled condenser (fan), it might just be to hot in the engine room for the refrigerant to condense fully into a liquid and stay a liquid until it reaches the metering device.. Technically that's called a lack of sub-cooling. Try running your freezer when The engines aren't running and it's cooler in the engine room.

    You could have leaked some refrigerant as mentioned above . There are other reasons also but that would require specific data to diagnose correctly.
  4. Prospective

    Prospective Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    Messages:
    50
    Location:
    New England
    Thanks guys. Can confirm it's air cooled and the fan is running and blowing air out of the side of the unit. Our normal practice is for us to turn the freezer on about 24hrs ahead of a cruise so wife can fill it with frozen food, which is what we did most recently. So engines were not running and engine room ambient temp was not unusually high. Tech guy will be out in next week or so and lack of a freezer is not a cruise killer for us so that's the good news. I was just surprised that I could find little reference to these things on line and was wondering if there's any obvious things to check.
  5. wdrzal

    wdrzal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Messages:
    249
    Location:
    Baltimore
    There no ports to puts gauges on to check for low refrigerant, but they do make a ultra-sonic sight glass, it just clamps to the cooper tube . I bet you wouldn't happen to have one. Another way is if you have a multi-meter with a amp probe you can measure the current draw, if it is low on refrigerant the current will be lower than at a full charge because the compressor is doing less work if low or empty of refrigerant.
  6. Prospective

    Prospective Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    Messages:
    50
    Location:
    New England
    Huh... I think there is some kind of sight glass thing on it. I'll have to take a closer look and snap a picture.
  7. wdrzal

    wdrzal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Messages:
    249
    Location:
    Baltimore
    If there is a sight glass, Turn unit off, wait ten minutes then turn unit on. observe sight glass. You will first see bubbles in a clear fluid then in a few minutes the bubbles should go away and you'll see clear refrigerant only if it has a full charge. A completely empty sight glass looks like a completely full one. If you see bubbles it's not completely empty.
  8. Prospective

    Prospective Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    Messages:
    50
    Location:
    New England
    Just putting these on for the heck of it. First is the display on the unit. This code alternated with the freezer temp for about 30 seconds until the fan kicked on. Not sure if that means anything or not.

    Second is a pic of the site glass. I didn't see any bubble when I turned it on, no visible change in site glass. Not sure what that means.

    There is a sticker on the unit that says it contains leak detection die and leaks can be found with a UV light. Don't have one handy but may try to get one if I beat the AC tech to the boat. Probably a moot point as I'll need him to make any repair or recharge but just curious. display.jpg stie glass 2.jpg display.jpg stie glass 2.jpg
  9. bobhorn

    bobhorn Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2014
    Messages:
    121
    Location:
    Kemah, TX
    Looks more like a moisture indicator than a sight glass.
  10. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    9,401
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale
    I don't know anything about your system. BUT, I can say with 99% certainty that under neath that blue and red cap in the picture are your high side and low side freon charging ports seen in the picture with the moisture gauge.
  11. wdrzal

    wdrzal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Messages:
    249
    Location:
    Baltimore
    Almost all sight glasses double as a visible moister meter. They put a piece of hydroscopic paper inside that turns a different color when moisture is present. Oil circulates with the refrigerant , look for signs of oil on the tubing at all connections, whether brazed or flared. If you find a oily tube you found your leak. In your picture the joint above the sight doesn't look dry but oily plus the braze job looks terrible.
  12. Prospective

    Prospective Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    Messages:
    50
    Location:
    New England
    I just want to say thanks for the good natured help. Not the case on some other sights. Pretty clear this will be beyond my my ability to fix so I'll patiently wait for the tech. But I'll talk to him about that suspect joint. Will let you all know the result for future reference.

Share This Page