For hunters and homebrewers, a regular old refrigerator just won’t cut it on volume. They need a small room size to store five deer carcasses, or the last 8 brews in corny kegs, but who wants to shell out a few grand for a proper walk in cooler?
Enter, the $300 Coolbot! It tricks a regular AC window unit into cooling a space down to 40 degrees or lower. It is so simple, I could cry. It has 3 probes that come off the main body. One senses the room temperature. One senses the temperature of the cooling fins in the AC. The last one is a tiny little heater, which gets attached to the AC unit’s original fin temperature sensor. By heating the sensor, the AC unit can be tricked into not turning off, because it thinks it’s work isn’t done. Typically this wouldn’t work because the fins would ice up into a solid block. They aren’t engineered to do this amount of cooling. What’s so awesome about the Coolbot is that it also runs a defrost cycle that keeps the AC humming along.
There are a few caveats. It doesn’t work on all models, portable units, or non-digital control models, but there are a plethora of cheap to free units on Craigslist. The one I picked up today fell out of a second story window and sounded horrible, so they were giving it away. I took them on their word that it still worked because it was free and I only had to drive over to West Seattle for it. When I opened it up, I found the noise was coming from a piece of duct tape that was touching the fan blade. I bent it over and it ran silently. Boom. See that goofy repair at the top there? That’s the first time I’ve seen duct tape be the problem instead of the solution.
Plugged in the Coolbot:
and it immediately started cooling. So rad.
So now I just have to cut a vent hole in the roof and install it, double insulate the walls and the floor, add an exhaust duct for the AC and slap it in place. Well, hanging the door is going to be tricky, but I’m almost there.