Freezer Baskets

Anyone who owns a deep chest freezer will testify to the requirement for freezer baskets to effectively organize the contents. Without some careful forethought you are likely to find your freezer jammed full of a random jumble of items without rhyme or reason. To avoid this situation any owner of a large freezer should consider purchasing and using chest freezer baskets.  Unlike upright freezers, deep freezers do not come with built in freezer bins.

In a large freezer items may be stored for many months before being used. Often you will find yourself looking in the freezer at a mysterious container or bag that is covered in frost, and having no idea what is inside or how old it is. This is bad for multiple reasons.


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First of all, let us say you are looking for some frozen pork. You will have to rummage through the freezer looking for a bag that looks like it is pork. If you own a chest freezer this can be very rough on your back. Once you finally find what appears to be the right bag you will pull it out, and after it has been defrosted hope your visual inspection was correct and you did end up with what you were looking for. Was it the wrong bag? Oh well…you are stuck eating chicken tonight!

A second concern with unorganized freezers is that it can be very difficult to know how long a frozen item has been in there. With a big deep freezer it is easy to end up with unidentified items that have no indicate of age. Due to this you will likely find yourself throwing away perfectly good food simply because you don’t know how old it is.

By investing in some freezer baskets you can turn the chaos in your freezer into a well-organized, easily accessed frozen paradise. Both sturdy plastic and wire baskets are readily available; your best choice for a material for a chest freezer basket is up to you. If your deep chest freezer is particularly large, you have the opportunity to utilize stackable freezer baskets.  Stackable freezer bins are particularly popular, in some deep freezers these can be stacked 3 or 4 layers deep allowing for a very sophisticated organizational system. When you have several baskets available in your deep chest freezer you gain the ability to organize your food by both type and age. You might have a basket labeled for 2009 Pork, 2009 Chicken, 2010 Pork and 2010 Chicken. This allows you to solve both the issue of unidentifiable type of food, and unidentifiable age of food.

Also, by having everything neatly organized this way, you can find things fast. No more digging through the depths of the freezer item by item. You can also organize so the baskets for the newer food are placed at the bottom. By doing this you can ensure you are rotating your food out regularly. I.e. you will finish off the 2009 pork before starting on the 2010 pork. This will greatly reduce food wastage, thus saving you money.

As has been demonstrated, the benefits of freezer baskets are many. And any money you invest in purchasing them should be recouped fairly rapidly via the reductions in spoiled food. If you have a deep chest freezer you owe it to yourself to purchase a set of stackable freezer baskets.

Originally posted. May 28, 2010

Who Invented the Refrigerator?

Most of us use our refrigerators every day to keep our food cold and to keep our beverages icy chilled. While the refrigerator  has become a staple in everyday life, not many know about its historical origins. So, exactly who invented the refrigerator? Take a look at the following timeline of who invented the fridge to get a good sense of the roots of this vital appliance.

A Timeline of Cooling

The concept of cooling food to keep it fresher longer has been around since the days of the ancient Egyptians, a culture which froze water at night to keep perishable foods cold during the day. But landmarks leading to the modern refrigerator happened in more modern times. From the discovery of the temperature lowering properties of cooling gases to revolutions in beer production, take a look at these founding fathers of cold.

  • 1720: Dr. William Cullen studies the cooling effects of liquids evaporating in a vacuum, the process by which we cool foods today.
  • 1834: Jacob Perkins produces his own ice making machine, using an ether vapor compression cycle.
  • 1856: James Harrison hires a brewery to make an experimental machine to cool beer.
  • 1859: Ferdinand Carre (France) invents the first refrigeration machine using water and ammonia.
  • 1873: The first portable refrigeration machine produced by Carl von Linde in Munich.
  • 1894: Linde AG (a refrigeration company started in 1878) installs a cooler at the Guinness Brewery in Ireland, revolutionizing how beer is manufactured.
  • 1911: General Electric unveils their refrigeration model, invented by a French monk.
  • 1918: The popular brand Kelvinator becomes a new brand, named after the famous scientist Lord Kelvin, who invented a temperature scale used commonly in science.
  • 1920: More than 150 different models of domestic refrigeration units available on the market, although domestic uses of fridges didn’t become popular until after World War II.
  • 1923: Kelvinator the most popular brand of fridge, dominating 80% of the market.
  • 1925: Electrolux introduced the D-Fridge into the market, one of their most popular models.
  • 1936: The common coolant R-134a is produced by Albert Henne, revolutionizing cooling efficiency in the home.
  • 1937: Refrigeration becomes commonplace in America, with more than two million households containing the appliance.
  • 1939: General Electric introduces a fridge with both freezing and cooling sections.
  • 1955: More than 80% of Americans have a refrigerator in their home.
  • 2005: 99% of Americans own and operate a fridge at home.

 

Invention of the Fridge

As you can see, the answer to who invented the refrigerator is a little more complex than a simple name. In reality, when we examine the invention of the refrigerator, the cooling units we know and love today are in fact a long compounding of countless scientific discoveries and engineering feats. From Lord Kelvin to the Kelvinator refrigerator, the road to the Common Cool has been a long and interesting one.

 

Originally posted. June 7, 2011

United Refrigeration

United Refrigeration is one of the largest suppliers of HVAC/R equipment, with branches all over the United States.  URI even has an international aspect with additional branches scattered throughout France, Canada and The United Kingdom.

With a vast catalog covering everything from Food Service and Refrigeration to A/C and Heating, this provider is one of the go-to sources for buyers of heavy duty climate control equipment.

Food Service and Ice Machines

The URI catalog lists a vast selection of commercial refrigeration, water filtration and ice manufacturing solutions.  Featured brands include Manitowoc, Scotsman, Continental, Bally and Servend.

Refrigeration Equipment

Trenton, Larkin, Copeland, Tecumseh and Bohn products are all listed in the Refrigeration equipment portion of the United catalog.  Along with this, they offer compressors from Tecumseh, Copeland, Hermetics and Maneurop.

Refrigeration and AC Accessories and Lubricants

Featured also are a large selection of products – such as valves, regulators, water pump and separators – often required in large scale cooling systems.  The manufactures Emerson, Superior, Watts, Henry, Hartell and Sporlan are all represented in this portion of the catalog.  Along with accessories, a comprehensive selection of oils, refrigerants and testing kits is listed from National Refrigerants and Nu Calgon.

Air Conditioning Equipment

Contractors or builders seeking quality Air Conditioning equipment need look no further than the United Refrigeration catalog.  It features units from Thermal Zone, Unico, National Comfort, Arcoaire and Sanyo in sizes ranging from small window units, to those suitable for apartment or residential use, to units designed for large scale commercial or industrial applications.

Heating Equipment

Purchasers needing equipment for heating installation are also well served by United.  Their catalog lists a large selection of heater units from Slant Fin, Crown Boiler, Bradford White and Reznor; including equipment for heat recovery systems.  Heating accessories such as blowers, gas connectors and nozzles are also available in the URI range from well regarded brands including Beckett, Amtrol, Bell and Gossett, Carlin and Field Controls.

Controls and Motors

Essential in any installation, quality electrical accessories and controls are also well represented. Product listings include Thermostats and other control mechanisms from Honeywell, PSG, W/R, Johnson Control and Invensys.  They also offer an extensive selection of motors from NRP, GE, Fasco and A.O.Smith.

Tools

A tradesman is only as good as his tools.  The United Refrigeration catalog offers all the tools HVAC/R professionals need.  From electrical measurement, to refrigerant reclaiming and recharging, they list the right tools for it.  Manufacturers such as Fluke, Supco, NRP, Malco, Uniweld, Klein Tools, Imperia and UEI are all represented in their product line-up

United Refrigeration Inc. is the professionals’ one stop shop for all their HVAC and Refrigeration products.  They offer many purchasing solutions including ecommerce via their website www.uri.com , or convenient branch locations in most major population centers.  During business hours they also offer a customer service center to address questions at 1-888-578-9100.

 

Originally posted. April 4, 2011

Igloo Coolers

Igloo coolers are the ideal mobile chilling solution for consumers on a budget.  They produce a diverse range of products that vary from personal to full size coolers.  Also on offer they haves beverage and thermoelectric refrigerators. There are a lot of different Igloo cooler models, and good options exist for nearly any buyer.

Igloo Thermoelectric Cool Chill


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Igloo has a selection of small 12v refrigerators suitable for light duty in car use.  These include the Igloo Cool Chill 26 quart – which has a capacity of 32 cans, and is tall enough for 2-liter soda bottles – and the larger Igloo Cool Chill 40 quart, which can store half as much again.

Also available is the Cool Chill 40 quart Thermoelectric with 110-volt convertor. Not only a vehicles cigarette lighter, but also a regular AC power outlet can power this particular model.

Note that these models just cool the contents. Do not purchase one of these units expecting it to function as a freezer for your automobile; if you seek that functionality look at alternatives like Waeco or Engel compressor type refrigerators.

Igloo Full Size Coolers

The Igloo Island Breeze selection is a handy range with capacities varying from 28 quarts up to 60 quarts.   Many of these models have wheels and a handle – similar to that on an airplane carry-on bag – for easy of transportation.

The Igloo Ice Cube selections are cubical shaped coolers very similar to their other full sized models.  Their shapes make them a little easier to store when not in use. They designed the Ice Cube Marine Ultra with fishing trips in mind, and included two fishing rod holders.

Designed for nautical use, the Igloo Marine cooler collection is manufactured in Ultra-violet resistant marine white.  They include solidly insulated body and lid to ensure maximum cooling for a long day at sea or on the lake.

Igloo also manufactures a large range of wheeled coolers. These include the Igloo Wheelie, the Ice Blue MaxCold Wheeled, and the Igloo Cold Fusion collection.  Also available are the camouflaged Igloo Realtree coolers, designed for serious hunting or wildlife watching use.

Igloo Personal Size Coolers

Many of the full size lines discussed above are also available in smaller personal sized models.  There are a few unique products ion this selection however. The Igloo Playmate units range in size from 4 quarts to 17 quarts.  Many of these models are clearly intended for children, but some of the larger Igloo personal refrigerator models could function as a very functional lunch-box for the job site.

Igloo Beverage Coolers

Instantly recognizable, Igloo beverage coolers are usually present at construction sites or on landscaping crews’ trailers.  The large 5 gallon or 10 gallon yellow beverage coolers provide an ample supply of water to keep crews hydrated during a hot days work.  Job site coolers are great for keeping employees productive.

Igloo Coolers offer many different chilling solutions, and are capable of providing cold liquid refreshment for nearly any conceivable day’s activities.  In case of breakage, Igloo Cooler replacement parts are cheap and readily available.

 

Originally posted. April 17, 2011

Sub Zero Wine Refrigerator

For a true wine lover, a wine storage or a wine cooler is the best option to keep your wine collection chilled in the right temperature.  And if you are looking for the best chilled wine storage, the line-up of Sub Zero wine refrigerator selections is very hard to beat.

In general, all sub zero refrigerator designs are famous for their utmost cooling performance tied to a deluxe refrigerator design.  But when it comes to storing a huge number of wine bottles, it is best to keep them inside a Sub-Zero wine storage unit rather than store them inside a typical refrigerator.  Why is this?

Good wine refrigerators are built to have the right temperature to keep your wine chilled perfectly.  The standard refrigerator is too cold, and may adversely affect the quality and flavor of your wine over time.

If you can’t afford to build a full-blown wine cellar inside your house then buying a wine refrigerator is a very viable alternative; especially if it is from Sub-Zero.

A Sub-Zero wine storage cooling center can easily accommodate 130 bottles of wine – just the right number of wine bottles for the typical wine collector. While multi-millionaires may have a larger collection, if you buy quality wines it will be difficult to fill one of these unit without spending a vast sum of money.

The exterior design overlay of a Sub-Zero wine refrigerator is highly customizable – you can opt for the classic custom wood design for a traditionally styled home or go contemporary with the stainless steel finish.

At the outset, the subzero wine fridge may appear like any other refrigerator; but when you open it, you will realize how well space is optimized in this wine cooler.  With discreet soft and low lighting, your treasured collection of wine bottles is elegantly displayed.

With wire shelves and natural cherry word roller-glide shelves there are beautiful storage options inside.  For the more high-end options – such as the Sub-Zero 427 Wine Storage – the two different wine compartments have individual temperature and humidity controls.  These exquisite dual compartment wine storage units really reflect high sub zero refrigerator prices however. If your installation space is contrained you should consider the Subzero 315W wine storage which is only a little over 15-inches in width

Your Sub Zero wine cooler can be installed in an integrated manner – similar to many other sub zero fridges – between counters or cabinets, or it can be freestanding like the 424 Sub-Zero refrigerator.  A Subzero wine cellar provides a lot of flexibility in this area with their wide selection. The large Sub Zero WS-30 wine storage unit is capable of housing almost 150 bottles, and can easily be built-in to your wall for a very stylish look.

This rust-proof wine refrigerator does not come cheap though. It is not surprising that Subzero prices for fridges are very high, as they are one of the best brands out there. However, if you truly value your wines – and have the budget to afford them – Sub-Zero wine storage options are well worth the money.

 

Originally posted. March 7, 2011

Chest Freezers On Sale

Consumers are constantly on the lookout for great bargains, and shoppers seeking chest freezers are no exception.

Anyone who is in the market for one of these appliances is well served by seeking out chest freezers on sale.  Thankfully there are plentiful sources of cheap chest freezers available for discerning buyers.

One great source for cheap chest freezers is the online retailer Compact Appliance. They offer 10% off Select Home Appliances + No Sales Tax (Excludes NY) + Free Delivery on $1199, the combination of which makes them a very competitive seller.

One great model on offer is the Haier HMCM106EA 10.6 Cu. Ft. Capacity Chest Freezer in White but there also many other great deep freezers.


Haier HMCM106EA 10.6 Cu. Ft. Capacity Chest Freezer White

Home Depot also frequently has some great chest freezer specials.  One advantage to purchasing from a local Home Depot is that it can eliminate expensive shipping costs that some of the less generous online stores impose on buyers.

14.8 cu. ft. Chest Freezer in White: WAS $449

Chest freezers are one of the most expensive purchases you can make if you are required to pay for the shipping yourself!

By buying locally you can save on that additional cost by picking up a model like the 14.8 cu. ft. Chest Freezer in White (reduced from $449) from your local big box store.

This is a great value discount chest freezer selection.

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Originally posted. February 9, 2011

Looking for the Best Ice Cream Freezers?

An ice cream freezer is a very popular appliance, but there is often a little bit of confusion when shopping for them as more than one type of appliance might be called this.  Part of the reason for this is that many people refer to an ice cream maker or an ice cream machine as being the same thing as an ice cream freezer.  While the first two certainly have a part of the machine that acts like a freezer (otherwise they wouldn’t be able to make ice cream at all), normally when someone is thinking about an ice cream freezer you’re talking about a business appliance for an ice cream truck, convenience store, or ice cream shop.  However technically the freezer that helps produce soft serve ice cream can also be referred to as an ice cream freezer, so this article will cover both common types.

The commercial display ice cream freezers

These are the kind that many people are used to seeing.  These are box freezers specifically designed to hold ice cream and other frozen products, and include glass tops to allow customers to see what’s inside.  These are very common in convenience stores, gas stations, and ice cream stores.  Several different styles are also offered depending on the specific needs of the retailer.  For example, in a convenience store normally the freezer will be a simple rectangular box model with sliding doors at the top which allows a customer to see what they want, then open those doors and grab whatever tickles their fancy.

On the other hand, the kind you see in an ice cream store like a Cold Stone’s or a Baskin Robins are going to be different.  These will be set up in a similar way, but with an additional glass shield so customers can see what is on offer, but then the worker behind the counter is the one who has to scoop out the ice cream from their side.  There are even some ice cream stores that may have both types of freezers on hand and many different businesses find these useful.

Soft serve ice cream freezers

One way to think about this type of ice cream freezer is to imagine it as more of an ice cream maker slash ice cream freezer.  These machines are very commonly seen in ice cream stores as well, and even in general restaurants who also serve ice cream.  These freezers are generally silver in appearance and look like a long rectangle shape.  The ingredients are mixed in the back, the freezer does its work, and soft serve ice cream ends up being the result.  These sometimes appear as much larger “bulk freezers” where a lot of ice cream can be mixed at once.  This is a common practice for ice cream shops or stores that specialize in blizzards, flavored ice cream, or any other type of set up where a lot of vanilla has flavors and additions added in to create the complete project.  These can come in very small sizes or in very large sizes, depending on the specific need of the business.

Other types of ice cream freezers

Most of the other ice cream freezers are one variety or the other of those two types, and can include the large shelved units you see in grocery stores that sell ice cream, although those are usually just referred to as large or walk in display freezers and not specifically as ice cream freezers.

For large display ice cream freezers the prices can start as low as $1,300 and run as high as $12,000 for the newer and most top of the line models, while the smaller ice cream freezers that also provide soft serve ice cream often start up around $4,500 and can go upwards of $16,000 or even higher.

Originally posted. July 23, 2011

Used Refrigerators – Pros And Cons

New refrigerators can cost a lot more than many families can afford, so when the time comes to get a new fridge sometimes a family benefits from selling a used refrigerator while at other times a family needing a new appliance will be looking to actually buy a used unit.  There are some definite advantages to going this route as opposed to shopping brand new at full retail prices, but there are also some potential negatives to going the used route.  Knowing where to find the best used refrigerators for sale is also a large part of deciding whether or not going used is a good idea or not.

The pros of going the used route include price.  Obviously any used refrigerators for sale, even if they are only mildly used, will be heavily discounted compared to a brand new fridge right out of the store.  Depending on how well taken care of the fridge was, there’s a decent chance that it not only works as a stop-gap but it that appliance could last several years and work just as well as a brand new model, and without having to pay hundreds and hundreds of dollars more.

The potential cons are also fairly easy to recognize.  There’s always the potential that a used fridge will break down earlier than a new model, and worries about being conned into buying a “jerry-rigged” fridge which will then break down later.  Quality can be an issue, and you will want to keep an eye especially on very old models.  Most likely you will also have to handle the transportation yourself.

If you decide the pros outweigh the cons then the first step is locating ads for used fridges.  Generally speaking, you don’t find too many used appliance stores.  Because of this, looking at local classified ads is often the best way to get solid leads on where to find some cheap used or even free refrigerators.  This not only includes newspapers or local penny savers, but also online sources like Craigslist or even online sites which specifically focus on serving as local online classified ads.  This allows you to figure out the best options available at a local level, which is critical since you should never agree to buy used refrigerators without inspecting those appliances in person.

If you have friends who have experience with these appliances, ask for their assistance and hit up several places in one day.  While they are somewhat rare, taking the time to find a used appliance store could help out immensely as many of them offer warranties on any appliances they sell, and that extra piece of mind is worth considering when looking to purchase an inexpensive used refrigerator.

 

Originally posted. May 27, 2011

Wine Refrigerators – Choosing a Fridge for your Vino Collection

A wine fridge can be the perfect appliance for the wine aficionado. Wine fridges are specially made to keep wine perfectly chilled until just the right moment, giving you the perfect wine experience.

You can find a wine cooler fridge from many brand names including Avanti, Cuisinart, Danby, EdgeStar, Frigidaire, General Electric, Haier America, Marvel, Samsung, Sanyo, Summit Appliance, Sunpentown and Vinotemp.

You may find some specially made wine refrigerators that exclusively hold wine for less than $100 or you may get luxury cabinets that cost more than $1000.

For instance, Haier America’s 12-bottle freestanding wine refrigerator only costs around one hundred dollars. This design boasts a soft interior light as well as adjustable thermal control so you can have your wine at the temperature you like.

The double pane insulated glass door has a recessed handle. The interior contains five full-width chrome wire shelves to hold the wine bottles.

On the other hand, Marvel’s beverage and wine refrigerator has two temperature zones to accommodate four wine bottles in one and sixty 12-ounce cans in the other. Digital controls and an LED panel allow you to adjust and monitor the refrigerator’s internal temperature.

This design also includes a MicroSentry system that alerts you when your desired temperature is higher or lower for an extended period of time. This Marvel model also has two adjustable shelves, one pull-out wine rack and a removable tempered glass shelf. The dual-paned tinted glass door protects wine from UV rays and provides insulation. This model costs from $1200 to $1300.

You could also go with a countertop design such as Avanti’s 16-bottle countertop wine cooler. Although it can fit 16 bottles, it is a compact design that can adjust the thermostat for red and white wines.

The slide-out chrome shelves also keep your wine secure as does the vibration free operation. A reversible thermopane glass door lets you observe the softly illuminated interior.

The Avanti refrigerator costs between $90 and $125, which makes it a great option if you are looking for a wine refrigerator but have a limited budget.

Another more upscale option is the GE Profile 29 inch Wine Center.

For wine collectors who need a little more storage space for their collection, this particular wine fridge can be an excellent choice.

Koolatron has designed an even more compact four-bottle wine cellar that can be either free-standing or mounted to the wall or a cabinet. This design holds four 25-ounce bottles. Like other wine fridges, it has a thermoelectric cooling system, removable shelves and a transparent door to see the softly illuminated interior. Koolatron compact designs cost from $100 to $140.

Edge Star also carries a slim-fit wine cooler with its 12-bottle freestanding wine refrigerator.  It has all the features of many other refrigerators except this design is only ten inches wide.  The EdgeStar also has a modest price tag from between $120 and $140.

Whether you are looking for luxury, compactness or simply a good way to keep your wine at your desired temperature, a wine fridge may be just the thing you need.  There are many options available to you, so you should be able to find the right refrigerator at just the right price.  You are sure to enjoy the wine the way you have always wanted when it is chilled exactly to your liking.

Have you ever considered bottling your own delicious wine?  If so, learn the fine art of wine-making by Clicking Here!

Originally posted. August 12, 2010

Dyna Glo Heater

If you are in the market for a Dyna Glo Heater there are many different offerings in their model line.

From small portable Propane heaters through industrial strength Kerosene Forced Air, Dyna Glo Delux heaters are available to suit every need.

The Dyna Glo Delux, TT15DGD, 9k – 15k BTU Single Tank Top Heater consists of a heating element that attaches directly to the top of a liquid Propane tank using a standard P.O.L. tank connection. With an output of up to 15000 BTU – depending on the setting – this Dynaglo propane heater is great heating solution.

A similar solution – but with two heating elements – is the Dyna Glo Delux TT30DGD, 18k – 30k BTU Double Tank Top Heater. This propane heating device offers double the BTU output, though gets mixed reviews from buyers.  I would advise avoiding this particular model in favor of one of the others.

Those looking for more powerful propane heating solutions should consider the Dyna Glo Delux, RMC-FA150DGD, 100k – 150k BTU Propane Forced Air Heater. This Dyna-Glo heater is great for use outdoors – in applications such as industrial workspaces, barns and construction sites – able to heat up to 2700 square feet for up to 5 hours on one 20lb propane tank. This Dyna glo propane heater model is also available in a smaller model – the Dyna Glo Delux, RMC-FA125DGD, 70k – 125k BTU Propane Forced Air Heater.

A model suitable for even larger scale applications is the Dyna Glo Delux, RMC-FA300DGD, 300k BTU Propane Forced Air Heater. This unit can be fuelled by a large 500lb propane tank for well over 36 hours, and includes a high powered 1800 CFM blower to circulate the heat. The 300000 BTU of heat this propane heater generates can warm up to 7000 square feet.

While all the models described above are Dyna Glo Propane heaters, there is also a sizable selection of Dyna Glo Kerosene heaters to select from. One such unit is the Dyna Glo Delux, RMC-KFA75TDGD, 75,000 BTU Kerosene Forced Air Heater with Thermostat. This dynaglo Kerosene heater can produce 75000 BTU of heat – great for outdoor applications – and can run for ten hours on its five gallon fuel capacity.

Those seeking the ultimate in Dyna glo kerosene heating solutions also have the option of purchasing the Dyna Glo Delux, RMC-KFA650TDGD, 650,000 BTU Kerosene Forced Air Heater with Thermostat, but this unit will be overkill for any but the largest heating needs.

Originally posted. December 18, 2010