Why Isn’t My Outdoor Fridge Cooling?

An outdoor Fridge is an electric refrigerator and freezer combined into one appliance. This appliance is meant to be operated outdoors because it does not require a permanently attached water line or drain to operate. You also need to have access to a 110-volt electrical outlet for the Outdoor Fridge. Although you can use a converter so that you do not need access to this type of outlet, this will not work all the time & you will want access when camping or using your outdoor fridge at a remote location where other types of power sources are unavailable for the fridge/freezer to operate.

Whereas Indoor Fridges & Freezers typically have a permanently attached water line and drain(s) to allow the indoor fridge/freezer to be connected to an outside water source such as a sink, dishwasher, or hose at the outdoor location. These appliances commonly have an electrical outlet installed which can sometimes be converted to use with an Outdoor Fridge if you are camping or need one at a remote location where other power sources are unavailable.

Although Outdoor refrigerators & freezers are often used for recreation or to keep food cool for home storage in freshness & taste, be sure to research the best location for your Outdoor Fridge/Freezer before purchasing one. You will want to make sure that your location has less sun exposure & good ventilation. If it is not inside a shed or building you need an Outdoor Fridge with shock-absorbing feet on all four corners of the unit (some have only 3). This will prevent the wiring & wires from being damaged by sharp rocks, ice strikes, & hail. It will also protect your unit from electrical problems in severe weather conditions.

Although Outdoor refrigerators & freezers are sturdy products built to sustain the rough and adverse climate outdoors, at the end of the day they are electronic products. They are deemed to malfunction sooner or later (depending on usage). Below are the top 11 reasons why your outdoor refrigerator might malfunction.


11 Reasons Why an Outdoor Refrigerator Isn’t Cooling

These are the top 11 reasons why your outdoor refrigerator may not be working as it should.

  1. Fuse Blown, Circuit Breaker Tripped, Electrical Interruption

    First, please make sure that the refrigerator is plugged in and that the fuse isn’t blown or the circuit breaker hasn’t tripped.

    Fix it by: If the refrigerator is plugged in and you are certain that the fuse is not blown or the circuit breaker has tripped, remove the plug from the wall outlet to reset the circuit breaker. If this doesn’t work, call a licensed electrician to repair or replace the fuse or circuit breaker.

  2. Power Cord

    Check the power cord and refrigerator plug. They may have nicks or cuts, it happens due to rodents plying their trade on the power cords while looking for food. If the plugs are tight and have no breaks, then proceed to the next step.

    Fix it by: Replace the power cord if it is worn, frayed, or not properly attached to the appliance. If the plug is loose in the wall outlet, then check the slot in which you are inserting the cord and try to tighten it with a tool. If this doesn’t work, try tightening the plug that goes into your extension cord.

  3. Unit Placed in Direct Sunlight

    Refrigerators need to be kept where it is shady. Prolonged exposure to the sun may cause it to malfunction. Refrigerators aren’t meant to be placed in direct sunlight or exposed to heavy rain, humidity, and wind, so keeping them in poor locations can cause many problems.

    Fix it by: storing the unit away from the day’s direct sunlight where it will be shaded; place it in an area where it is never exposed to heavy wind and rain, and protects the refrigerator from dust, dirt, and pests.

  4. Thermostat Not Set Right

    Make sure that the temperature is set to a level that will keep the refrigerator cool.

    Fix it by: Setting the thermostat to a lower temperature setting. Make sure that you are following the directions that came with your unit regarding the proper placement of the thermostat inside the unit.

  5. Too Much Warm Product Put inside Fridge At Once

    If you have put a lot of warm food in the fridge at once, the cold will last only for about 4 – 6 hours. So you should store the refrigerator accordingly to avoid the problem.

    Fix it by: Placing only one product (hot cup of coffee, a hot bowl, “stew” or some other hot dish/dish) in the refrigerator at a time, and then placing it in the refrigerator.

  6. Door Not Closing Properly

    The door may not close properly. Make sure that the door is closing properly. You should try to keep the door of the refrigerator closed for as short a time as possible. Leaving it open for too long, even if it’s just a little bit open, could cause the cold air to escape out into the summer heat and leave your food warm and unrefrigerated.

    Fix it by: Closing the door properly every time you use it. Make sure the hinges on the doors are tight, if the screws get loose the door may come off its hinges.

  7. Door Gaskets Not Sealing

    Make sure that the gaskets are not torn, broken, or missing. If they are, replace them.

    Fix it by: Using pliers to close the holes in the refrigerator door and the gasket. If you can’t do it by yourself, it is advised to call a technician.

  8. Dirty Condenser Coils and Condenser Malfunction

    Make sure that the coils and condenser are not dirty. Clean them with a soft brush. If you have a dirty condenser, you must immediately contact an expert. Several condensers have built-in thermostats, so make sure the thermostat is working correctly.

    Fix it by: Cleaning the coils and condenser with a soft brush to remove all dirt, dust, or contamination that may have accumulated on the coils. If you have a dirty condenser, then you must contact an expert immediately. Several condensers have built-in thermostats, so make sure the thermostat is working properly.

  9. Iced Over Evaporator Coils

    The ice may be prevented from forming on the walls of the refrigerator. This can happen when the humidity level is high. Some heaters are placed inside the fridge. So make sure that they are working properly. These heaters don’t work well when they are placed in direct sunlight, so make sure that they don’t get too hot if you leave them directly under a sun lamp or window.

    Fix it by: Keeping the room cool, with around 60% to 70% humidity. This will allow the ice to form on the walls of the refrigerator. If you are having a problem with this, try using an ice cube tray to contain the humidity within your fridge and room.

  10. Air Flow Blocked

    Make sure that the air is flowing properly. You may need to clean the coils and filter. If there are any obstructions in front of the condenser unit, they must be removed. Some problems with cooling are caused by moisture and humidity, so if you want to cool your products fast, ensure that the air is dry enough for these appliances to run properly.

    Fix it by: Cleaning the coils and filters with a soft brush. Ensure there are no obstructions in front of the condenser unit (condenser fan, air vents, and air conditioning units). If you have a broken handle, then you must call a licensed technician and have them replace it.

  11. Unlevel Unit

    If you have an uneven unit, you should have this checked out as soon as possible. If you let the problem go on for too long, it can cause warping of the shelves. A good-quality level will solve most problems.

    Fix it by: Making sure that the floor is level and that the unit is level. If it’s not, you need to contact an expert immediately.

A repairman should be called if these do not solve the problem.

Refrigerators and freezers are not used only for food storage purposes; they also serve other important purposes like keeping food cool or frozen, preserving food, and for household needs such as storing beverages, fruits, and vegetables. People who love outdoor activities enjoy having outdoor fridges and outdoor freezers to prevent them from buying anything at a store during their camping trips because they will not be required to carry extra weight on their backs or in their bags.


Refrigerators and freezers have been around for many years. They have been used by a lot of people, and they will continue to be used in the future. So, why not try one of these suggestions next time your cooler isn’t doing what it should? And remember: if you aren’t getting the results you want with one of these ideas, search online for a second opinion!

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