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I accidentally poked small hole in freezer cooling line, can I patch it with flex seal or something like it? Answered

Was de-icing my haier mini fridge, when I accidentally punctured a tiny hole in  freezer wall cooling line, it hissed for like 2 seconds. Is it safe to plug back in? and can I patch the hole?

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user
MishuP (author)2018-04-19

You have very expensive experience.

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user
tractorman44 (author)2015-03-25

The evaporator is made of aluminum. There is a green 'hot stick' that is used to seal small puncture holes. It is similar to epoxy, but applied with a heat source. The refrigerant must be totally vented...in other words zero pressure....the area is sanded clean and slightly warmed with a propane hand held torch to the melting temperature of the sealant. Apply the sealant liberally over the area, thickly and the size of a dime. While cooling, the factory installed refrigerant 'strainer' must be replaced with the appropriate sized liquid line drier, a schrader valve must be silver soldered into the steel process tube on the side of the compressor, then the system must be properly evacuated and the refrigerant charge weighed in. The charge has to be adjusted to compensate for the additional capacity of the drier.

If the system was allowed to run after the refrigerant was lost, and because the hole was poked in the 'low side' of the system, the compressor has sucked in moisture laden air and other contaminents because without pressure, the system pulls itself into a vacuum.

Time to call a pro.....Be prepared to spend a couple hundred at the least....and good luck with it sir.

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petercd (author)2015-03-25

If it hissed its toast, you've just learned an expensive lesson as to why one should always use a plastic scraper for de-icing.

The coolant and oil for the compressor are mixed, ie the lubricant is coolant compatible, something similar to Reflo 68A.

Running the fridge will pump out all the oil leading to compressor failure.

It needs to be sealed and then recharged as others have said.

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iceng (author)2015-03-24

DO NOT PLUG IT IN !! Or it will be total scrap for sure...

That was a very expensive hiss.

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Downunder35m (author)2015-03-24

Depening on the gas used and if your fridge has a charging port you can solder the hole and get a refill kit for car aircons, they around the 50$ mark.
Some companies might offer you a repair if they can be bothered but without a charging port it will cost you more than a new fridge.

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Vyger (author)2015-03-24

NO

You let all the coolant out and there is nothing for the compressor to pump anymore. If you run it with out the coolant it will probably ruin the compressor.

The tube would need to be patched and tested. Probably soldered. It is under high pressure and temperature, something like glue will not work. And after it is patched it needs to be recharged. So this is something that needs to be done by a person who has the correct tools. You can ask around about price but I have a feeling it will cost less to just buy a new one.

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Wired_Mist (author)Vyger2015-03-24

+1

It is Repairable. I think my mini fridge was about $200. That sounds slightly more then the Repair will cost. Still, a quick Quote won't hurt :)

If your lucky you can Recycle it ( Don't know if you will get the Tax credit/Rebate though, or If your State / Prov even has one.

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