This is a long post, about a freezer in an unheated space. I'm looking for advice on a replacement freezer.
We live in Indiana, and our weather varies a lot seasonally -- from 100 degrees in the summer, to 20 below in the winter (most of our winter nights are down in the 10s and 20s and most of our summer days are in the 80s and 90s, but we regularly have some more extreme days and nights.)
We have a very old upright freezer (probably from the 60s -- inherited it from my in-laws) that we keep in our back porch/mud room/entryway.
This is a concrete-floored, roofed space, about 10' x 10', enclosed by the house on three sides, with a partial wall on the fourth side. It is unheated and uncooled. It gets hot in the summer and cold in the winter.
The freezer has done great in an inside corner of this space for over 20 years. We have been considering replacing it, however, since it needs a new gasket, at least, and clearly cannot last forever. We also thought it would be nice to have a no-frost freezer.
That is, until we started researching a new freezer. The internet people seem to think that newer freezers could not withstand the cold on our porch, and that a no-frost freezer would be an especially terrible choice. The problem seems to be that the fluid in the compressor would freeze and the compressor would be damaged when the unit cycles on.
It is hard for me to believe that I cannot buy an freezer that will work under the same conditions that my 50 year old freezer does!
Do any of you have a newer freezer in an unheated garage or porch? What kind is it? Do you have any small heater or light bulb to warm the compressor? Do you have a thermostat to turn off the power when the temperature is too low?
It is so convenient to have the freezer right outside the kitchen door. We are currently procrastinating replacing the old freezer, hoping for a solution. I am hoping to gather some reliable data from Chowhounds -- you guys are usually both knowledgeable and reliable.
Please let me know if you have any experience to share on this topic. If you have a new freezer that is surviving similar conditions, please let me know the brand and model. Thanks.
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