I don't know when I realized it, but for a long time now I've been troubled by the design of refrigerators.
So you've basically got a pump for moving heat from inside an insulated box to somewhere outside of it. Pretty simple concept. So why is the motor for this doohickey *underneath* the insulated box, where the heat from its operation will rise up into the insulation? Why are the cooling elements on the back of the box in a specially made closet where they get so little airflow? And why is that done indoors?
My question to you, good Permies, is this:
Why aren't modern refrigerators basically insulated closets? The insulation will last your lifetime. The gaskets might occasionally need replacing. The appearance could perfectly match the interior of your home. If you lived outside of the tropics, you could mount the entire mechanics of it on the outside of the wall, outside the house! Then, for half the year, the only real cost is moving the coolant, and nature takes care of the cooling itself. And if the mechanics break, you just replace them, no need to replace the whole insulated box!
I have to believe this would be much better for the environment, and for energy needs.
So how come I've never seen one like this?