Dead Wine Cooler

I bought a used wine cooler a while back. It worked great. It holds 12 bottles and uses a peltier cooler rather than a vapor-compression cooler. This makes it less efficient, but it is quiet and relatively simple for an electronics guy like me to understand. I kept some wine cool in it.

Then, one day, I grabbed a bottle and noticed it wasn’t cool. My wine cooler was no longer cooling. So, I took off the back cover.

Why, oh, why would someone use 5 #2 Robertson screws and 7 #1 Robertsons? They’re all holding the same two pieces of sheet metal together. There is literally no good reason.

And there it is. 120V AC goes in the right-hand side of the board. That likely gets converted to 12VDC to drive the fans and the peltier cooler. There’s a thermistor somewhere inside the cooler and, I suspect, the LM358 is being used to condition the signal from that thermistor to turn the cooler on and off.

There was nothing obviously wrong on either side of the board. There is a fuse soldered on the board. I tested it with my multimeter and it was, indeed, open.

I didn’t have another 2.5A leaded fuse, so I jumpered the fuse on the PCB and installed an inline fuse holder on the incoming AC line.

Sadly, the new fuse blew immediately when I plugged the cooler back in.

I pulled the board back out and will have to take a closer look at it another day.


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