Ball Park estimate for repair of GE Refrigerator Compressor

I am considering buying a used GE Monogram Refrigerator, (42" side by side, worth lots when working) but it has a known bad compressor and likely a Freon leak.
What would be best case to worst case estimate range for these repairs.
Example : 300 - 700
I would like several people to respond and that will give me a really good feel of my total investment needed to get this refrigerator working.
Thanks, Tom
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I can't give you any numbers, but I own one of those, and have done just about everything except change the compressor. The sheer size of the unit makes taking it to the shop questionable, so it would likely need to be done on site. It shouldn't be all that much work though. The compressor is on a removable tray, so much of the work is bench work. Soldering it in would have to be done on a ladder unless the tech is 7' tall. That leave vacuuming it out and charging it. Vacuuming it will take some time, but if the tech will work with you, he can leave and come back, preferably the next day. I'd guesstimate a maximum of 4 hours + parts
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Thanks for the useful info Eric.
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I recently had the compressor in an upright freezer go bad. The service guy quoted $600 and advised against putting that much money in when a new unit was essentially the same price. This was an independent repair company that wasn't trying to sell a new appliance.
Charlie
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I had two bad experiences with refrigerator repair. I would never sink one dime in a sick fridge, but rather just chuck it and get a new one. I know they're a big ticket item, but by the time you get through, you could have bought a new one, and you have no guarantee that they won't fail again soon. Either the same component or another. And then you are out the money and you STILL have to go out and spend more to buy a new one.
Never again.
Maybe a used one?
Steve
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I would not even bother with the frige from the point of electric usage. Since maybe 98 new Gov regulations have made new units 50-75% more efficient. I went from a double door unit that consumed 20-25$ a month to a single door Sears that consumes 4-6$ a month. Giving literaly a payback of several years. Even if you repair it ok door seals will be very poor. And very possibly other things that will hurt efficiency even more. You realy should consider what the unit costs to run that you want, and check out new units of all types by the Yellow Energy consumption tag, or go to www.EnergyStar.com for a complete rating of all friges comparing utility costs to operate. At the time I bought the Sears 19.5 it was the most efficient frige I could find, on par with a Sun Frost. Even if you repair it now, at that age there is 1000$ worth of more repairs looking right at you to keep you throwing money down the drain. Id pass on that junker for many reasons.
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I don't like the direction of this thread at this point. It is definitely worth fixing, it is a $6000.00 fridge. What I'm hearing is; don't restore that Mercedes, I fixed a Chevy once and it still sucked. One of the reasons it is a $6k fridge is that it is completely repairable, the way commercial equipment is. I find that refreshing in our throw away world.
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Then just do whatever you want. I'm sorry that I offered my advice based on my experiences. It the thing's so good why are you having problems so soon with it?
Steve
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I can't speak for the original poster but mine is well over 10 years old and has had only minor repairs = 2 timers (and defrost thermostats that it probably didn't really need, I just changed out all controls except the thermostat, which is working fine). I'd gladly toss mine a compressor. I'd forgotten just how expensive it was until the timer quit a couple of months ago, I thought of just replacing it. I went shopping and found what I could get for $2k was crap compared to what I had. $35 later it is purring like a kitten.
http://www.us-appliance.com/noname35.html
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Eric So you dont like the direction of the thread, so what. Since when is a old frige compared to a Mercedes, old friges only go down in value. Most people today consider cost to operate most important, obviously you dont. Last I heard most utility companys are scheduling 15-20% increases as soon as they can. That new 6000$ frige can easily use 75% less energy than an old beater.
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Top of the line older appliances are often pretty efficient, the incentive is there for the engineers to perfect the design a bit. I honestly don't remember any spike in our bill when we installed it, it is apparently as efficient as the smaller unit it rap laced. Energy efficiency ratings are a lot like gas mileage figures, the average user will never see those numbers, as real world use differs from the ideal setting in the lab. I concentrate on big usage units like the A/C and furnace, all replaced in the last 3 years all highly efficient.
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Eric Its to bad you havnt read up or tested a refrigerators electric usage. A 20$ Kill-A-Watt meter is all you need, this is what I used to verify its rating. www.energystar.com will explain the design changes that Gov laws required. An efficient frige is something anybody will benefit from . From your statements its obvious you know little or care about reducing your utilities. A frige is one of a homes largest energy users. 50-75% savings of newer units is real.
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OK let's say it is an real energy hog (which I doubt) and using $40 a month of electricity. Now you say I can get one that is 75% more efficient or $10 a month. At $30 per month the newest model of the Monograms is roughly $7k retail, it would take 19 years to save any money. Since I never pay retail, lets say $5,500 / $30 per month now we are down to 15 years before I save a dime. This assumes that I'm entitled to a 26 cu. ft. top of the line, built in refrigerator. So lets say I slum a little and go to a 19 cu. ft. and can get it down to $2,000. Now in 5 and a half years, I begin to save $30 a month and have a lesser machine than I started out with, and when it is done it is off to the land fill or recycle if they still take them, no rebuilding one of those. From an ecology stand point I'm actually more enlightened than are you, the 3 R's are; Reduce, Reuse, And the very last resort; Recycle.
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OK let's say it is an real energy hog (which I doubt) and using $40 a month of electricity. Now you say I can get one that is 75% more efficient or $10 a month. At $30 per month the newest model of the Monograms is roughly $7k retail, it would take 19 years to save any money. Since I never pay retail, lets say $5,500 / $30 per month now we are down to 15 years before I save a dime. This assumes that I'm entitled to a 26 cu. ft. top of the line, built in refrigerator. So lets say I slum a little and go to a 19 cu. ft. and can get it down to $2,000. Now in 5 and a half years, I begin to save $30 a month and have a lesser machine than I started out with, and when it is done it is off to the land fill or recycle if they still take them, no rebuilding one of those. From an ecology stand point I'm actually more enlightened than are you, the 3 R's are; Reduce, Reuse, And the very last resort; Recycle.
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Id first get a Kill-a-Watt and check its consumption-efficiency, it will record KWH used over 100hrs to give you a log, other units can log data to your computer for longer tests. If your unit is recessed what I did was enclose the recess in 3" of R7.2" foamboard on 4 sides, Feel your fridge, its cold on the outside, the insulation value on old models is very low, on new units it is better but not optimal as size of the unit would be excessive, look at Sun Frost, they use apx 6" of foam to achieve their high ratings which I have matched with a Sears. If you have the room for any insulation in your enclosure you can dramatically improve efficiency. That how I got mine to 4.3- 5$ a month to operate. A new top line recessed unit with added insulation I think could do as well from my viewing the Yellow Energy Tags consumption rating. With utility trends electric costs could be 40-80% higher in 5 years, this month I go up 15%. The life of a fridge is 10-25 years so plan for the future. You might save at .12 kwh 250 a year, at todays costs, it will be higher every year as electric costs increase. Only you can run tests to see what you could save. Many recessed units are superior in design, but don`t forget there are allot more things to wear out than just the compressor, everything has a design life, next year it could be the condenser coil leaking and be un repairable, etc, etc. If it was an antique Mercedes it would obviously be worth restoring since values go up every year. Only you can run numbers, but you likely have the option to insulate the enclosure to make it more efficient.
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I'll consider all that. Anything I can do to reduce bills, without laying out money that wouldn't be recovered in the likely lifespan of a given unit is fair game. Actually the Monogram is warm to the touch on the outside, that has always been a bit of a head scratcher for me. As to future repairs, since the works are segregated to a very accessible compartment on top, I can't see even a leaky coil as a major problem. It is a model of simplicity, like a 50's Chevy. Next I suppose you'll be wanting me to upgrade my '79 F-350 to one of those new-fangled fuel-injected ones to save a few gallons of fuel. Let's see $40,000 divided by..............
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Who decides if you're entitled?
You never heard of melting down scrap steel to make other steel items?
Do you live in Soviet Union, comrade?
--

Christopher A. Young
You can\'t shout down a troll.
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Maybe I'm still smarting from my oven. It quit, and a guy charged me $80 to come and tell me it needed fixing. The fixing would cost $300. He said it needed a couple of fuses. I have a friend coming today who is competent in a lot of areas. We are going to pull the oven and see if it is just a couple of fuses that they want $300 for or not.
It is difficult these days to get a guy to show up, do the work, and not work you over. Seems like a competent honest guy would have all kinds of work. But I guess he wouldn't make double what the ones do who are dishonest.
Steve
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If a hard start kit gets the compressor going, about $150. If the compressor needs replacing, $300 to 400.
Freon leaks are a wild card, they are often near to impossible to find.
--

Christopher A. Young
You can\'t shout down a troll.
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