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Most fridges and freezers pull a slight vacuum on the
you close the door, to suck the door closed and form a
This makes opening the door more difficult, because you
pull hard enough to overcome the slight external air
multiplied by the area of
Solution: Put a sensor on the door handle. It can be a
activated by pulling, or a capacitive sensor that detects
grip (e.g. [link]). This activates a solenoid to release a
somewhere around the back of the fridge, to let air in
and the door
open more easily.
Fancy version can reverse the suction pump to help push
Cheap version can have the handle pull directly on the
door seal. On most
fridges, this is just a rubbery thing that you can pull
away from the doorframe with
your fingers to break the seal, if the surround doesn't get
in the way. So just mount
the handle so that it pulls on that rather than on the
door. Once it's pulled open,
then the seal will spring back and push the door open.
Capacitive touch sensor that can tell apart different touches
Mentioned in idea body [notexactly, May 11 2018]
||My freezer handle pulls out slightly, operating a small lever
that pries the door open far enough to break the suction. It
works great. For some reason they didn't think this feature
was needed on the fridge. Combine that with smooth rolling
wheels and a hard-wood floor...
||... and the case for chocks becomes cogent.
||Replaceable Nitrogen bottles regulated into the fridge?
||Theres a lot of fridges that have broken-off
handles. Our fridge and our freezer both lost their
handles well over a decade ago. The one at work is
also long broken. Not having a handle on a fridge
seems to be no impediment whatsoever to opening
it. It seems that although we can put men on the
moon (not women yet, obviously) and we can put a
tailors dummy in a car cluttering up in orbit (no
doubt as target practice), we very evidently have
not mastered the technological prowess of making
a fridge handle last as long as a fridge (and no, this
doesnt mean making fridges last fewer long).
||It's Ford's fault for not having a deconstruction/R and D line. He wasn't to know that Humans would choke themselves with all the different vehicles.
||Hmmm ... airbag cartridge ? That would open the door ...
||// The one at work is also long broken.//
||WHAT????? SAY THAT AGAIN?????? You have a job?? [Ian], I
have been labouring under a misunderhension.
||He didn't say it was his work.
||He might work at home, repairing his broken fridge - and he didn't say he was paid for his work
||This is, actually, a real problem. In our lab, many things
are stored with various levels of frigidity. One particular
fridge/freezer combo that's used the most suffers
dreadfully. My solution was to build up a gap in the seal
with a couple of ramps of layered tape. Works a bit but
it's still a problem. The -80 freezers have a tenacious grip
and it's best to go equipped with an ice scraper to pry the
seal. All these problems are MUCH worse in summer when
the humidity is high.
||The door handle could at least open a little hole to allow
air in, but I guess that would ice up very quickly. Some
older -80 freezers are hooked up to a CO2 supply, mainly
as an emergency coolant, but CO2/Nitrogen would be
pretty useful to break that pressure gradient, instead of
moist O2 soaked room air, some nice dry inert gas would
rush into the freezer, would really cut down on the ice
||My -80 has some sort of a valve. I think its purpose is to let
air in to relieve an internal vacuum. In any event, once the
door is closed, it opens again quite easily after about a
||Added an economy version.
||Several of the ULT freezers I've seen at the government
surplus store have lever handles, IIRC, and I guess now I
know why. Would heat tape around the door help, or would
too much heat get into the freezer?