Will a refrigerator compressor run when on it's side?

I'm building a Keg-erator out of a used Bourbon Barrel. I've stripped the guts from a 'Dorm Fridge' and planned on using it as my cooling element, but when I plug it in, it only runs for about 10 seconds, then shuts off. I tried to make sure the grounds were attached to: (first the metal bands on the barrel, then second the piece of metal, then onto the floor). I'm wondering if the fact that the compressor is now on it's side has anything to do with it, or if it is in fact a grounding issue. The outlet does not trip when plugged in.

Anyone have any ideas?

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The compressor should NOT be on its side - they are specifically designed so that a sump of oil settles to the bottom. If the sump is tilted there is a very goo dchance the the oil will enter the compressor as a liquid and not as a vapour, and you WILL damage the compressor.

Most fridges when you buy them say specifically "leave for three hours" or somesuch before switching on, if they are leaned over during installation.
caarntedd5 years ago
It may also have a low oil cut out. Which means you can't run it on it's side as the sensor is detecting "low oil". It probably can't be easily adapted to run that way either. Other answers posted here have covered everything else.
rickharris5 years ago
Compressor if full of oil running on side not too good in most cased - A dry compressor should be OK.
Vyger5 years ago
I think there are some that are made to work with any orientation but I believe most of them rely on gravity to return the warmed refrigerant back to the low side of the system. You would think that it would not make a difference for a sealed system, but its more of a gas to liquid flow rather than a high pressure pump system. SO what is happening with yours is that its running out of refrigerant and then shutting off. You can think of it almost like a closed steam powered system, the condensed water has to return to the boiler otherwise it will run out of steam. I might be wrong about the correct terms but I think you get the idea.
lemonie5 years ago
Being on it's side; these systems have liquid in 'em.
New fridges tend to come with advice to let them stand for some time before switching them on so that fluid has time to settle after been disturbed in moving.