Offshore Reefer

Common Offshore Reefer Issues

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Common Offshore Reefer Issues

The refrigeration plant is one of the few equipment systems on a ship that must function continually.

The refrigeration plant is one of the most critical systems on ships since it provides a lifeline for all perishable food products and temperature-sensitive cargo.

It demands constant attention from engineers.

The refrigeration system, like all other gear on ships, might, nevertheless, develop problems from time to time.

Some of these issues are frequent, but they must be addressed right away.

The following are some common difficulties with the ship’s refrigeration system:

Common offshore reefer issues

1. The compressor begins to run, but then abruptly stops.

The following factors might cause the compressor in the reefer circuit to start and stop unexpectedly:


  • The low-pressure cut-out is turned on
  • Oil pressure was taken out due to a defect
  • The defrosting timer is regularly engaged
  • The amount of lubricating oil in the system is insufficient
  • Oil foaming causes a reduction in oil pressure
  • Cutouts for motor overload are active


  • Make that all of the suction line valves are open, the refrigerator is charged properly, and the low-pressure cutout isn’t broke
  • Examine the oil pressure cutoff for correct operation and replace any that are damaged
  • Check and fix the defrost timer if it is regularly engaged, resulting in the compressor cutting out
  • This might be due to lubricating oil leaking from the seal or oil carryover. Repair the leak and top up the oil level
  • Check for foaming and, if necessary, replace the oil
  • Check that the electrical motor trips are in good operating order

2. The compressor frequently starts and stops

If the reefer compressor is regularly cutting in and out while maintaining the proper temperature of the ship’s supply room or reefer cargo, the problem must be addressed promptly.

The following are the most common reasons for such an operation:


  • It might be because the high pressure (HP) cutout is set too high or the low pressure (LP) cutout is set too low.
  • The low pressure (LP) cut out has a small differential setting span with a beginning and ending pressure settings. If the setting span is too short, the compressor will often cut in and cut out.
  • Defective Valves: If the compressor discharge valve is leaking or the line solenoid valve isn’t shutting properly, the sensor pressure may fluctuate, resulting in frequent compressor cut-in and cut-out.
  • Clogged Suction Filters: The suction line of the compressor is equipped with a filter. If it becomes blocked, the LP will frequently cut off.


  • Check and adjust the setting to the recommended limit.
  • Increase the time between starting and stopping compressor pressures by changing the setting.
  • Replace all of the faulty valves.
  • The filter should be cleaned.


In conclusion, we have discussed common offshore reefer issues which include compressors running and stopping abruptly as well as compressors starting and stopping frequently.

We also talked about the causes as well as give solutions respectively.

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