Why Can't You Lay Refrigerator Down??

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Is it true that laying a refrigerator down on it's side ruins it and/or voids any warranty? I read something about how when you lay it on the side, that oil and coolant get up into the coils. Other people say you CAN lay it on the side, as long as you leave it unplugged for a few hours after getting home and standing it up.
Also, I am not talking about a full size fridge. We are thinking of getting one of those small "college dorm" type of refrigerators to put in our basement to keep some extra water bottles, soda cans, beer cans, etc. nice and cold, because in the Summer we go through alot of beverages.
Our local "P.C. Richard" store has a nice "Avanti" 3.3. cubic foot for sale right now for $124. That's pretty cheap considering that Wally-Mart has the same size "Black and Decker" for $168, and Target has a smaller 3.1 cubic foot one for $139.
Anyway, on the box it specifically says "Do NOT lay refrigerator down on it's side! KEEP UPRIGHT AT ALL TIMES!!". The problem is, we don't have a truck, so laying it flat on the seat would be the only option of getting it home in our small Chevy Cavalier!!!! Would laying it flat for a 20 minute drive home, really damage the fridge? It's to tall to stand it up on the seat, so without spending extra money to rent a truck, or pay for delivery, laying it down in the car is the only way to get it home.
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On Apr 12, 9:02 am, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (MICHELLE H.) wrote:

I think you have the issue correct. Laying it on it's side may result in the oil going places it shouldn't. I think with some refrigerators if you then return it upright and wait a day, it will be OK. Is that true for all of them? IDK. Whether it's true for that particular one, who knows. I would suggest two options:
A - Call the manufacturer's help line and visit their website.
B - HD rents trucks for like $20 for 90 minutes.
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How about C - if you have tools (this is home repair newsgroup after all) remove either the front passenger seat or the back seat. The back seat is the easiest to remove, often only two bolts hold them in place, but if you have a 2 door car, you may need to remove the passenger seat and disconnect the seat belt wiring (disconnect plugs) and any other encumbrances you meet up with. This way your mini-fridge should fit when sitting on the floor, but measure first.
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The risk is getting compressor lubricating oil in the piston. When it's plugged in, the piston pump is uanble to compress liquid, and damges the valves. Set upright for a while might help. There is no really good totally specific answer. Yes, I've known of refrigerator compressors to be broken. . Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org . .
Is it true that laying a refrigerator down on it's side ruins it and/or voids any warranty? I read something about how when you lay it on the side, that oil and coolant get up into the coils. Other people say you CAN lay it on the side, as long as you leave it unplugged for a few hours after getting home and standing it up.
Also, I am not talking about a full size fridge. We are thinking of getting one of those small "college dorm" type of refrigerators to put in our basement to keep some extra water bottles, soda cans, beer cans, etc. nice and cold, because in the Summer we go through alot of beverages.
Our local "P.C. Richard" store has a nice "Avanti" 3.3. cubic foot for sale right now for $124. That's pretty cheap considering that Wally-Mart has the same size "Black and Decker" for $168, and Target has a smaller 3.1 cubic foot one for $139.
Anyway, on the box it specifically says "Do NOT lay refrigerator down on it's side! KEEP UPRIGHT AT ALL TIMES!!". The problem is, we don't have a truck, so laying it flat on the seat would be the only option of getting it home in our small Chevy Cavalier!!!! Would laying it flat for a 20 minute drive home, really damage the fridge? It's to tall to stand it up on the seat, so without spending extra money to rent a truck, or pay for delivery, laying it down in the car is the only way to get it home.
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wrote:

From experience, after moving/jostling a fridge; leave stand OFF for 24 hours. Also from experience upon receiving our first new fridge the idiot turned it on immediately to show us how it worked! Yes, it failed in about one year.I should have declined delivery right then and there. But, one learns with age.
Checked with manufacturer of last year's new fridge. They recommended 8 hours after tilting to put in place. We still let it stand for a week, before powering it up. This oil damage has to take some time and probably is some kind of exponential decay, so longer is better.
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On Fri, 12 Apr 2013 09:02:34 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (MICHELLE H.) wrote:

You should be able to find the warranty before buying, but I wouldn't be surprised. After all, even when it's sure to put the oil back where it was, they have no way of making you let the fridge sit upright for a day, and no way to stop you from lying and claiming you did. OTOH, the only way they would claim you put it on its side is if you put in a warranty claim and a) the symptoms were that of one that was put on its side and not given time to recover (assuming it could) or b) they took it back and examined it, and then they could be sure.
And I'm sure they test every fridge before shipping it.

I thought, even before this thread, that I had heard "a day". I certainly wouldn't plug it in until at least a day after it was upright.
Anyone you know have a convertible? I can carry just about anything even in a compact convertible.
Can you tie it well right-side-up while it sits on the trunk or roof? And then drive at 10 mph over all but the smoothest roads, and 20 where it is very smooth. And run your 4-way flashers the whole way. You can tie ropes to the door and trunk hinges and will still be able to close the doors.
Doing this, and with a double bed mattress on top of the trunk and under the piano,, with a full-size convertible, I was able to move a spinet piano from mid-Brooklyn to W. 85th St. in Manhattan.
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Yeh. but NYC traffic only moves a couple of miles per hour anyway<g>.
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I expect that warning to never turn the fridge on it's side is just because it's small enough to fit on a large shelf or counter top, and so people might be thinking that they can have it operating on it's side. That warning is there just to keep the manufacturer out of court.
Still, I'd call the manufacturer's 1-800 customer service phone number on this one. Most likely they'll say it's OK provided you turn it upright for a few hours before plugging it in. (People often leave it for a day, but that's entirely unnecessary.) No appliance manufacturer in either the US or China would make a fridge that could be permanently damaged by merely laying the fridge down on it's side.
--
nestork

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On Fri, 12 Apr 2013 14:59:49 +0000, nestork

What about what Stormin' said? It's not just that it was on its side, but that that allowed oil to get into the compressor and then the compressor was run with oil in it, oil that can't be compressed.
The time it would have to stand upright is the time it takes for the oil to get back to the bottom,.....
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That assumes that the oil will in fact run back away from where it doesn't belong. Depending on the design, that may not happen.
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Single cylinder piston compressors can be like that. I can imagine oil getting into the cylinder, and not wanting to drain out if it's open at the top of the piston. . Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org . .

That assumes that the oil will in fact run back away from where it doesn't belong. Depending on the design, that may not happen.
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On Sat, 13 Apr 2013 04:58:35 -0700 (PDT), " snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net"

You're right. That makes it all the worse.
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replying to nestork , Offred wrote:

I'm currently on third mini freezer so this post probably applies to small refrigerator as well as of late 2015. My first freezer was a GE, the second an Igloo, and the most recent an Avanti. It seems these China made boxes won't work if they are even transported at an angle. I have gone through three now that, despite the seemingly high odds against failure have all failed nonetheless. All three sound perfectly normal just no cold.
So why did I think the third time would be the charm? Stupid mistake! I should have researched it all first. So now it seems I won't be able to install a freezer in the basement at all because the entrances are just too small and the freezer would have to be tilted anyway to get it down there.
The local repair people won't touch these boxes; they consider these things to be disposable I guess.
Avanti CS will ship you a brand new freezer if you send them the receipt and the snipped off power cord. Trouble is, they consider this to be warranty coverage. So what happens to the defective freezer? You'll have to dispose of it yourself.
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On Wed, 06 Jan 2016 04:44:01 +0000, Offred

I believe you can lay a refrigerator on its side if you then allow it to sit upright for several hours, maybe a day, afterwards, before plugging it in. Did you do that?
If yours still didnt' work, maybe there is something different about it from the rest.
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Because the compressor lubricating oil gets into the piston cylinder.
--
.
Christopher A. Young
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is that why you must wait a day, or why you cannot turn it on its side period?
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On 1/6/2016 8:51 AM, taxed and spent wrote:

piston, the valve break when the compressor is turned on.
Ideally, waiting a day allows the oil to drain back to the base of the compressor. Where it belogns.
--
.
Christopher A. Young
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wrote:

In past years I transported many many refrigerators for my rentals on their sides. Typically for no more then an hour or two. I always put the compressor side down if possible, that is, if the compressor was on the right side of the cabinet I would put the right side down against the pickup bed, if it was against the back side I would put the back side down against the pickup bed. In many cases I only let them stand upright for a few hours before plugging them in. I never had any problems with them not working.
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wrote:

I've moved a few on their sides, stood them up for 10 or 15 minutes to let the oil in the compresor settle, then started them up. Never a problem.
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On 01/05/2016 10:44 PM, Offred wrote:

<http://products.geappliances.com/appliance/gea-support-search-content?contentId 747> "Freezer Moving Instructions
Please use the following steps when relocating an upright or chest freezer:
Disconnect the power cord from the wall receptacle. Remove the food, defrost, and clean the freezer. Use blankets to protect the freezer finish from scratches. Place the freezer on its side for moving only if you have no other choice. When transporting a freezer, keep it in an upright position. If transporting it in an upright position is not possible, lay it down on the compressor side of the unit. Be careful to secure the door to prevent it from opening. If it has been transported on its side, set it right side up in its final location and allow the freezer to sit for the same amount of time that it was on its side (24 hrs max.). Do not plug the unit into the electrical receptacle without allowing this settling time. The unit can be damaged if it is plugged in prematurely.
If the unit was transported in an upright position there is no waiting time required."
Above from GE is pretty typical of what I've seen from manufacturers -- it's far and away _preferred_ to transport upright; if must transport horizontally, lay on the side so the compressor is down, not up.
As for the basement, we've got both a fridge and an upright freezer down there and both have to be tilted to get them down and in the area. Had to replace the old freezer that finally died just last year; the new one turned out to be taller by just enough had to lay down on back to be able to set it upright; it wouldn't clear ceiling width-wise trying to stand it up. We did, of course, transport it on its side as directed.
Left it sit a day even though it had only been a few minutes simply as precaution; it's now been about 9 months, seems OK. Hopefully it'll last 30 yr more as did the one it replaced.
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