Help me identify old chest freezer - Whirlpool with pink interior
January 14, 2022 10:09 AM   Subscribe

We have a very old, ginormous Whirlpool freezer in the basement. From the stylings and pink interior, I would have to guess 1960's or early '70s, but I'm not sure. It was in the house when we purchased it. The house was built in 1967. Location is Western Canada. I have questions.

I'm asking out of curiosity, mainly. I love this thing. It fits so much food, it's as sturdy as hell, and it's pink inside! But I also often wonder, how much does it weigh and how did they get it into the basement - and how are we ever going to get it out if we need to? I feel like it might run forever, so hopefully this won't be an issue. Still, I'd love to know what the model is and how much it would have cost originally. Thanks!
posted by kitcat to Grab Bag (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Whirlpool made Kenmore appliances, which were sold by Sears, so you might be able to find something similar digging through the online Sears Wish Books. That could give you a sense of pricing too. If it's pink inside, I'd guess late 50s/early 60s. Seventies was all that dreadful avocado/poppy stuff. Pink kitchens were a very 50s thing.

If you're up for a longer term project, you could set up a saved eBay search for "Whirlpool vintage freezer ad", and you'll get sent ads as they are listed.

(You probably know this, but just in case, old chest freezers did not have the safety features they do now, so make sure kids can't get inside.)
posted by FencingGal at 10:58 AM on January 14 [1 favorite]

This website (I'm linking you directly to the search page) includes a greater number of catalogs than Wishbook Web - it has Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter ones in addition to the Xmas books. Search for the word freezer - there are a lot of results to sort through; I agree with FencingGal - look in the 1950s and early 1960s.
posted by jocelmeow at 11:17 AM on January 14 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Wow, this is fascinating, thank you guys! I can't find an exact match, but visually it's most like this one from the 1958 Sears Spring/Summer catalog, the "most beautiful chest freezer ever designed".

I didn't imagine it was quite so old! I suppose it must be costing a fortune in electricity. But it would be a huge pain to remove, and besides I'm very fond of it.
posted by kitcat at 11:46 AM on January 14 [2 favorites]

Some of those old appliances are surprisingly efficient. The compressor and fans are much less efficient than modern units, but they often had a lot of insulation, perhaps more than modern units, so in the balance not so bad. If you're really curious, you could plug it into a "Kill A Watt" energy usage monitor. It's about $30 and will tell you how much energy any given device plugged into it is using.
posted by Larry David Syndrome at 12:51 PM on January 14 [3 favorites]

We have a ginormous 1970s era Sears Kenmore chest freezer, and up until last fall I had been thinking about replacing it. Then we had a three day power outage during which the temperature in the freezer never got above freezing. I figured if the freezer kept it's cold for that long*, I probably wouldn't gain much more efficiency by replacing it with something more modern.

* Two caveats: It was chock full with stuff and hadn't been defrosted in a while. The thermal mass of frozen food + an inch of ice on the interior probably had some contribution to the freezer lasting through the outage.
posted by RonButNotStupid at 2:12 PM on January 14 [1 favorite]

Somewhere, there's bound to be an ID plate on the thing. Possibly inside, on the lid, or near wherever the electrical cord mounts to the freezer. If there's a ventilation kickplate at the bottom that is easily removed for cleaning, possibly in there. That should have the model & serial numbers, and possibly date of manufacture. Often, tucked in near the compressor, you'd find a little packet of service documentation, parts list, etc.
posted by xedrik at 4:31 PM on January 14 [2 favorites]

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