Frequently Asked Questions

Simply select the following questions below to view the answer and help you out. Otherwise, feel free to contact us.


Fridge - Do you need to unplug the 12 volt cord when plugging into a 240 volt?

Simply click on the questions below to view the answer. Fridge – Do you need to unplug the 12 volt cord when plugging into 240 volt? The latest models (E & F Series) fridge / freezer will detect when 240 volt is now available and select it, leaving you battery alone. Same in reverse simply unplug the 240 volt lead and the fridge will switch back onto 12 volt keeping everything cold with out you needing to lift a finger.

Fridge - Digital Temperature Read Ou on my fridge has gone blank?

Usually this is just the battery has gone flat. It is quite easy to change, please refer to your user manual, simply remove the lid and the Philips head screws holding the top compressor cover in place, on the MT45F-S and MT35F this includes the hinge screws. Then gently turn over the end cover and you will see on the back of the temp display a round cap, to remove turn anti clock wise with a flat screw driver bit, and you will see the battery inside, remove and replace with a new battery. Replace cap, cover and all the screws and you are done. There have been two types of battery fitted, once again please refer to your user manual or the label on the inside of your lid for battery selection, LR44, or CR2032.

Fridge - Do Engel Fridges need to be perfectly flat and level when running?

Unlike other brands of portable fridges, Engel doesn’t need to be level to perform. Engel has a unique compressor that is designed to be portable, the famous Sawafuji Swing Motor (please refer to the Swing Motor link on the right) it can run up to a 30 degree angle without losing efficiency.

Fridge - How cold will me Engel fridge get?

An Engel chest type fridge / freezer can be used for either a fridge or a freezer it’s just a matter of adjusting the thermostat. Set to freeze number 5 on the dial it will get to approximately minus 18 degrees C

Fridge - How do you plug my Engel into 24 volt?

It is recommended that you use the Engel Posi-fit connection for connection to a 24 volt system. This fitting is supplied with your 12 volt lead as standard, simply unscrew your cigar lighter fitting and this will expose the pos-fit connection two pins with a keyway to prevent incorrect polarity damage, and also has a screw on flange to prevent the fitting vibrating out. This is the best fitting for all your off road uses. Please refer to the Posi-Fit connection under fridge accessories. Part Number # ASPAN, APAN, BPAN, MPAN, NPAN.


Fridge - Can my old fridge be repaired by someone who is not an Authorised Engel Service Agent?

The quick answer is probably however, only Authorized Engel Service Agents have specialized testing equipment supplied by Engel, training and access to genuine Engel parts to ensure a fast accurate diagnosis and repair.  Any parts fitted by someone who is not authorized will not carry the full Engel Warranty.

Please click the contact us tab for Authorized Service Agents List in your area or call our Customer Service Centre on 1300 302 653 to find your closest Authorized Engel Service Agent.

Fridge - How long is the warranty on my Engel Fridge / Freezer?

Engel has a three year warranty backed up by over 200 service agents around Australia and New Zealand. Plus the peace of mind that you are dealing with a brand of over 50 years of history with in Australia, so we will be here if you need us.

Fridge - I have an old Engel can I still get parts for it?

In most cases yes we still carry many parts for the older models, in some cases we have an updated part replacement, for example replace an old B – series cooling unit with a later model E – series cooling unit with the new ozone friendly refrigerant.

Fridge - How long will my fridge run on my car battery?

This is one of the most common questions we get and also the hardest to answer. There are many variables when it comes to refrigeration. It can depend on many things for example, the temperature on the day, what you have inside the fridge, how many times you open and close the lid or door, the size and charge of your battery, etc……..But as a guide the 40 litre chest fridge / freezer (MT45F-S please refer to the chest category) is our most popular model the maximum current draw is only 2.5 amps on 12.8 volt, so the way you would calculate the number of hours your fridge would run on you battery is divide the number of amp / hours your battery holds by the maximum current your fridge draws and that will give you an approximate time. Keeping in mind if you only have one battery you will need this battery to start your car. This is of course worse case scenario your Engel will cycle on and off controlled by the thermostat so the current consumption would be much lower when being used as a refrigerator.

When considering a portable fridge ask the question “What is the Maximum current draw?”

Fridge - Can my fridge be repaired by any refrigeration mechanic?

The quick answer is probably however, only Authorized Engel Service Agents have specialized testing equipment supplied by Engel, training and access to genuine Engel parts to ensure a fast accurate diagnosis and repair.  Any parts fitted by someone who is not authorized will not carry the full Engel Warranty.

Please click the contact us tab for Authorized Service Agents List in your area or call our Customer Service Centre on 1300 302 653 to find your closest Authorized Engel Service Agent.

Only Authorized Engel Service Agents can do warranty work.

Fridge - I ow an Engel Combi Fridge & Freezer. Can I use this unit as all fridge?

For the MT45FCP Combi, the simple answer is “YES” just remove the divider and dial the control knob back to 2 degrees and you now will have a 40 litre full fridge.

For both the 57 litre MT60FCP and 75 litre MT80FCP Combi units the Freezer must be maintained at or below  -4 degrees Celsius to ensure the Fridge is holding +4 degrees. If you wish to use the Freezer compartment as a Fridge, you can use the Fridge compartment to store dairy products, which will be approximately 6 to 8 degrees higher than the Freezer.

Fridge - What does the green mat in the bottom of my 32 / 40 litre fridge do?

The green mat distributes weight across the bottom of the cabinet, it protects the inner liner and allows air to flow beneath over the ribs in the floor, and yes with all new fridges you can remove the plastic wrapping it is shipped in.

Fridge - What is special about the Engel 12 volt fuse?

The 12 volt Fuse is designed to protect your vehicles wiring harness in addition to working as a normal fuse. The thermal fuse is unique as it measures resistance. Resistance generates heat (heat and wiring don’t mix). The amount of resistance will vary depending on the length and thickness of the cable used in the installation. If the cable has too much resistance the fuse will blow, protecting your vehicle. These fuses are also directional, the arrow marked on the side of the fuse should point in the direction of the cigarete lighter socket. If you find that the fuse has blown we would suggest that you consider having your vehicles wiring tested and fitting an Engel pos-fit connection. (Please refer to the  “Posi-fit connection” under the fridge accessories category). Part Number # ASPAN, APAN, or BPAN. The fuse Part Number # 12VFUSE.

Fridge - What type of compressor does Engel use?

Engel’s World Famous Sawafuji Swing Motor

Unique to Engel this purpose built compressor is designed to be a portable refrigeration compressor and is one of the key reasons why ENGEL is ‘A LEGEND IN RELIABILITY’.

What is the first rule in engineering? –

Keep it simple!

The Sawafuji Swing Motor is a true reciprocating compressor; it has only one moving part. It doesn[squote]t get any simpler. The piston is connected to an electro dynamic device which is powered by the use of magnetic fields. With this technology there is no need for bearings, cranks or con-rods, so less moving parts means less chance of failure. With only one moving part there is a very low friction loss which means this is a highly efficient compressor.

It has no high start up current draw because when it starts up it can simply move down just a fraction then return. Then it slowly increases the distance the piston travels each stroke until it reaches a full stroke. The Sawafuji Swing Motor does not need to perform a full stroke on start up unlike many rotary type compressors that must perform a complete cycle and need much more current to start.

Because this is purpose built and designed to be a portable refrigerator compressor it has to be engineered to take the harshest of Australian conditions.

The Sawafuji Swing Motor is located inside the compressor casing with pins locating in rubber bushes then suspended in between shock absorbent springs. It operates at 30 degrees angles and on rough corrugated tracks without losing efficiency.

The leading brand for over 40 Years, only ENGEL portable fridge-freezers guarantee to go anywhere. Their reputation speaks for itself. ENGEL’s commitment to continuous improvement means that the ENGEL of today is the most reliable, the most efficient ever, quieter and full of features to ensure it is easier to use than ever before.

Fridge Accessories - What does the Engel Transit bag do?

The Engel Transit Bag does three things, the first thing is that it protects your investment, Engel have a great resale value so if you decide in a few years time that you would like to update your Engel to a larger unit you can remove the transit bag and the unit looks near new you get better money for it. The second thing is the transit bag helps insulate so the fridge holds temperature longer and the compressor doesn’t need to run as often. The third thing is the storage pocket on the front of the bag allows you to store you cords, user manual and purchase receipt in so where ever you travel with you Engel you have everything you need. (Please refer to Transit Bags in the Fridge Accessories category).

Fridge Accessories - Wireless Thermometer - How do you set up an EDTHERM Wireless?

It is important to follow the instructions when initially setting these up, install the batteries in the receiver first then the install the batteries in the sender unit. Leave side by side for approximately 20 minutes then place the sender unit in the refrigerator. If the signal is broken repeat the set up steps from the start.

Fridge Accessories - What is the Engel Transit base for?

The transit base is a board with specially designed springs mounted on it that bolts to the bottom of your Engel and works like a shock absorber for the goods inside your fridge, so if you travel a lot of corrugated roads and have broken bottles or your eggs are cracked this accessory could help. When using the transit base you remove the feet from the bottom of the fridge and bolt the transit base with the springs and metal brackets towards the fridge. And don’t forget to tie your fridge down by the handles.

Fridge Accessories - What's the difference between a fridge slide and a slide-lok

A “Fridge Slide” is a steel tray on rollers that allows you to slide you Engel completely out of you vehicle to access the contents then slide it back away possibly under a set of shelves allowing you to utilize the entire luggage area of your wagon. The “slide-lok” is an accessory used for securing your Engel into your vehicle with out the need for tie down straps and anchor points. (Please refer to the “Fridge Accessories” category).

Off Road Accessories - Wireless Thermometer - How do you set up an EDTHERM Wireless

The Engel Inverter is a modified Sine Wave Inverter, that converts 12 volt DC into 240 volt AC designed for powering TV’s, DVD, charging mobile phones, and digital camera batteries. You do not need an inverter to run your Engel fridge, and using an inverter to do so does not make your battery last longer.

Fridge - Can I run my Engel Fridge on a generator?

The only requirement needed for running your “E” or “F” series Engel Fridge – Freezer (The later Models) on a 240 volt generator is to ensure the generator you are using is A.V.R. Automatic Voltage Regulated. Please refer to your generators user manual. If it is an older generator with A.V.R., it doesn’t hurt to add an in line spike protector or surge arrestor.

Dometic / Waeco

What temperature should I set for fridge and freezer operation?

Typically your home refrigerator would be running at between 2 and 4 °Celsius which is optimum for good food preservation. With camping refrigerators, some campers choose a temperature a little higher than that to conserve battery power. With DOMETIC / WAECO CFX portable refrigerators you are able to select a temperature to suit your needs in 1 °C increments.
For freezing, your home deep freezer would operate somewhere between minus 18 and minus 20 °Celsius. For camping applications however, minus 15 ° Celsius would be more than adequate and also conserve battery power.

How long will my refrigerator keep running for on my battery?

You need to ascertain how much power your refrigerator will consume on average per hour under certain ambient conditions; DOMETIC / WAECO provide this information in our catalogues and on our website. You also need to know the size of your battery in amp-hours. Once you know these figures, you can divide the size of the battery by that average consumption figure (multiplied by 24 hours) to give you approximate run time. e.g. If the stated consumption is 1 amp per hour average, multiply that by 24 hours. (equals 24 Amp hours per day). You should understand that you never get the full amount of amp-hours from a battery however. You should use 80% as a good rule of thumb. So if you have a 100 Amp hour deep cycle battery, you can assume 80 amp-hours of usable power. So if a refrigerator consumes on average 1 amp per hour, and is the only appliance running from a 100 amp-hour battery, you should be able to have the refrigerator run for around 80 hours before recharging becomes necessary.

Where is the serial number?

The serial number is beneath the refrigerator on the identification plate.

Can you leave it plugged into 12 volts DC and 240 volts AC at the same time?

Yes you can. If both power sources are available to your DOMETIC / WAECO CFX refrigerator, it will automatically select 240 volts AC as the priority so that you are not consuming battery power.

I press the power button but nothing happens.

You need to press and hold the power button for several seconds to turn the refrigerator on or off. This is designed to prevent accidental shutdown or start-up and prevent children fiddling causing shutdown of the unit.

Where can I get spare fuses from?

Most service agents will be able to supply fuses if needed and most DOMETIC / WAECO retailers either keep them or can get them in. If you are traveling and need a fuse and a service agent is not nearby, fuses can usually be sourced via a local Auto electrician.

Can I run the refrigerator on its side/end?

It is not recommended to run refrigerators on their side or end. 30 degrees angle is the steepest recommended angle to leave the refrigerator running at.

Can I tip it upside down to clean it?

With the CFX models this is not necessary as there is a drain bung in the base of the refrigerator for ease of cleaning and draining. With earlier CF models, yes you can upend the refrigerator if necessary for cleaning, but this should only be for a short period, you should not leave the unit upside down for extended periods and you should not restart the unit for several hours after turning the unit upside down, so that the oil can resettle in the compressor.

Can I leave it on the back of my ute?

Yes you can is the short answer, but you should consider that in direct sunlight the refrigerator will not perform as well usually, and if you get sufficient rainfall at the right angle it may cause damage to the refrigerator by interfering with the electrics. Damage by external causes is not covered by the Manufacturer’s warranty so steps to protect the unit should be taken.
It should also be considered that DOMETIC / WAECO refrigerators left on the back of a ute unattended may prove irresistible to thieves.

Do you have an extension lead for the cable?

No.  It is recommended that you do not extend or modify the 12 volt cable supplied with the refrigerator as this can lead to voltage loss and potential poor performance. Designated in car wiring kits such as the RAPS12RU2 are available inexpensively which negate voltage loss.

What does the flashing light mean?
There are a number of error codes which mean different things. They can mean that there is a lack of ventilation or that the unit has overheated due to being locked up in a vehicle in direct sunshine for an extended period etc. If the power light flashes once every 5 seconds, this means that there is insufficient voltage available to run the refrigerator. This could be due to a battery needing charging or to inadequate vehicle wiring. It may also simply mean that you have selected the wrong level of battery protection for your situation. See FAQ on “What are the battery protection levels and what should I set mine for? for details.”
Refer to your User Manual for further details.
What sort of inverter or generator will it run from?

It is best to use well regulated AC (240 volt) power sources such as pure sine wave inverters and good quality generators that are invertor equipped. Some lower priced generators can have voltage fluctuations that could potentially cause harm to the refrigerator electronics. It makes more sense to use the DC voltage output of a generator to charge a battery and run the refrigerator from the battery. This way you need not have the generator on for extended periods.

I sometimes hear a light knocking noise from the refrigerator when driving over pot holes/speed-bumps/rough roads.

This is nothing to be concerned about. The mechanicals/electricals inside the compressor unit are mounted on springs to absorb centrifugal force on start-up and shut-down. The cylinder head has a heavy duty nylon buffer which prevents the metal cylinder head striking the metal top dome of the compressor. This will just make a dull light noise of the nylon striking the metal and certainly does not cause any damage. It is a solid piece of electro-mechanical equipment and we are so confident in the reliability of the compressor that we supply a five year warranty on the compressor part!

What solar panel do I need to run the fridge?

The panel should be of a suitable size to meet requirements of the refrigerator and any other appliance running from the battery. You should always use the solar panel to charge a battery, not to run the fridge directly from the solar panel as voltage will drop if clouds come overhead for instance. The battery means your refrigerator keeps running even if the voltage output of the solar panel drops severely due to cloud cover. A good rule of thumb to prevent inadequacies with power supply is to have a solar panel large enough to provide enough daily power to run your refrigerator, and have battery storage of an extra 2/3 on hand. So, if your refrigerator (or any other appliance) will consume 30 amp-hours per day, you should have battery storage of 90 amp-hours capacity and a solar panel of around 80 watts or greater capacity to ensure you won’t have problems. It is advised to go a little higher in specification than your needs, however.
For a range of DOMETIC / WAECO Portable solar panels, click here

What temperature do I set for the CFX-65DZ?

Setting the “dual zone” refrigerators temperature should be at freezer temperature as that is the temperature sensed and displayed. Minus 14 ° or 15 °Celsius is usually more than adequate for camping requirements and should equate to refrigerator section temperatures of between 2 ° and 4 °Celsius.
For single zone DOMETIC / WAECO refrigerator/freezer, set the control at minus 14 or minus 15 °C if using as a freezer or plus 2 to plus 4 °Celsius if using as a refrigerator.

My fridge switches off as soon as my car ignition is switched off, but the dvd/promotional material says it will run with the ignition off?

Check that the 12 volt outlet you are running the refrigerator from still has power available when the vehicle ignition is switched off. It may need to be wired independently of the ignition. If power is available but the refrigerator shuts down, the wiring may not be heavy enough to carry the current required by the refrigerator. The voltage needs to be tested under “electrical load” by either a DOMETIC / WAECO service agent or a qualified auto electrician. Another potential cause is that the voltage protection level you have selected may be too high and need to be set at a lower setting.
(See user guide)

I can hear the refrigerator making a "breathing" noise when it is in a quiet area such as a tent at night.

This is standard in all capillary refrigerators in varying degrees. It is simply the refrigerant returning to gaseous state from liquid state as it moves through the system. Mostly you will not notice it unless you are very close to the refrigerator. If you put your head close to the freezer in your home refrigerator whilst it is running you will likely hear this noise.

What are the battery protection levels and what should I set mine for?

There are three set-able battery protection levels;
“Hi” equates to 11.8 volts (High cut-out)
“Ned” equates to 11.2 volts (Medium  cut-out)
“Lo” equates to 10.1 volts (Low cut-out)
These are the voltages sensed at the refrigerator under load at which the compressor will shut down to protect your vehicle battery.
If you have a small battery in a smaller vehicle, you should select high so that you are able to restart your vehicle easily.
If you have a larger vehicle and larger battery capacity you should select the medium setting.
If you have a dual battery set up and the secondary battery is able to be isolated from the starter battery you should select the Low setting.

What do the "error" flashes mean?
If the power LED is flashing once every five seconds this means that the refrigerator is sensing low voltage. The battery needs to be recharged or the wiring in the vehicle may be inadequate, or, you need to adjust the battery protection level to a lower setting.
The error LED flashing means;
Twice every 5 seconds: The fan has a problem. Is something jamming the fan blade such as a pencil poked through the vent by a child? If not, the fan may be faulty and you should contact an authorised service centre.
Thrice every five seconds: Power may have been interrupted at a critical stage of the refrigeration cycle. Switch off for ten minutes then restart the refrigerator. If problem persists, contact an authorised service centre.
Four times every five seconds: Compressor struggling to achieve speed. Switch off, wait 10 minutes then attempt restart. If problem persists contact an authorised service centre.
Five times every five seconds: The unit is overheating. Check that the vents are not blocked by other equipment in the vehicle. It is easy for example to toss a sleeping bag in the back of your wagon and it could roll against the vent causing an overheat situation. The vents should be kept clear at all times.
What is the emergency Switch for?
The emergency switch should be left in the “Normal use” position at all times, except if you cannot get the refrigerator to switch on for some reason. Switching to “Emergency override” feeds power straight to the compressor so that you do not lose your foodstuff. The thermostat control is overridden when emergency override is selected and the compressor will run constantly which may cause fresh food to become frozen.
Manual turning on and off will be necessary to prevent that until service is arranged.
My food is frozen solid even though I have selected a temperature above zero °C. What is wrong?

Check that the emergency switch is set correctly to the “Normal use” position. Having it set to “Emergency Override” will cause foodstuffs to become frozen.

Still have questions?