Outback 4WD Travel In Australia 

By (WAM)  Western Australia Multimedia


Home ] 4WD Info ] General Info ] East to Adelaide ] South Australia ] WA North ] Links ] User FAQ ] Search ] Video Clips ]


Up ] Accommodation ] [ Fridges ]

Portable Electric Fridges

50 Litre Waico Versus 49 Litre Engel  Fridge Freezer

After much deliberation on whether to update the Engel or get a Waico I ended up getting a Waico fridge which came with a special deal at the camping show. Engel have not changed much at all and I do not like the side opening Lid which is a nuisance and always falling off and hard to get back on in a cramped 4WD. I liked the Waico idea of the lid fitting in any position so it did not matter where the fridge is located as the lid can open in all positions and does not fall off no matter which way you have it opening. 

I do not like all the plastic the Waico uses, especially the lid and clips, as this in time may lead to problems. I saw one at the car spare parts place and the lid no longer clipped closed due to all the people which had been opening and closing the lid. Hope this does not happen to mine, LOL. Still all facts taken in to account the Waico comes with a very good warranty and from what I hear any one having a problem it is rectified very promptly and a spare is supplied should yours have to go in for repair. Engel lids are however a mix of plastic and metal. 

What I have found that I like very much is that the Waico unlike the Engel is so quit that sometimes I wonder if it is running. It also cools much faster and keeps its cool far longer.  I also like the interior lamp it has, Makes a big difference in dull light. It also actually can hold far more than the Engel and is basically the same dimensions. You can freeze and keep cold using its side compartment which Engel cannot.

The one thing I don't like is that the Waico draws far more current than the Engel and the Electronics is set up switch off at a particular voltage to protect the battery and Fridge motor. Although it has a range of cut out voltages, They did not take into account that long leads in a 4WD has current drop and this leads to problems where the electronics keep shutting it down. I feel they could have set the switch off at .5 volts less than it is. This would solve allot of problems they have with people complaining about getting their fridge to work. A real heavy current cable is needed straight from the battery to the fridge for it to work good, both Positive and Negative. In my case I am running it at its least sensitive cutout setting which really I don't think is enough.

 Ultimately now that I have used the Waico in the bush a few times the Waico has turned out  more economical as it is not running as often or as long as what the Engel does. I do have the mains adapter but as yet have never used it as the battery charges up pretty good and fast from the generator and as the fridge keeps its cold so good and hardly switches on or when it does it is for short periods I found no problems charging the battery with the fridge still connected.

The Engel on the other hand I had to run off the mains and disconnect it from the battery while charging the battery to enable a full  fast charge. The generator I use is a small 4 hour run time 600 watt Dunlite.

Up ] Accommodation ] [ Fridges ]

Home ] 4WD Info ] General Info ] East to Adelaide ] South Australia ] WA North ] Links ] User FAQ ]