In an attempt to help fund our homesteading dream, we sell pastured pork to customers off farm. As this endeavor grows, we have to have appropriate storage for our frozen pork.

Last year I built a walk-in freezer on the farm. This video discusses the issues I have encountered over the past year.
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36 thoughts on “Farmstead Walk-in Freezer: Don't make this mistake

  1. Andrew Eastaughffe says:

    Just out of curiosity why didn't you just build the walls and roof of the box out of insulated panels you know the 1's that are 2 layers of sheet metal with foam in between them. they use them all the time in commercial kitchens here in Australia and we get rather high in the temperature

  2. Steven L says:

    I have been thinking about building a cender block room probably 10×10 and using something called a cool bot, now this is something I want so can raise and process my own beef as well as any large hogs or deer that I can't do in a given day just something to keep everything cool enough so flys and things won't get to it, now i told you all this to say what is your opinion on something like that keep in mind I live near Houston tx so it gets 103 or so here with 90 percent humidity it's like Satan's armpit here lol I plan to obviously try to butcher in what mild winters we have here to try to help the cooling but again just curious if you think it would be a good idea or not so much. Thanks for your video I'm officially a sub lol

  3. Reid Crosby says:

    Good video. Thanks for sharing.
    I bought a used 16×12 …. partitioned…newer, brand new freezer compressor….gonna make large cooler room 10×12' into clean room for honey extraction/butchering. 6×12 freezer and adding on the other side for cooler. Cooler will be used for "free" livestock food storage (keep from freezing in winter, rotting in summer) I get lots of Brew grains, produce and food bank surplus. "Free" in quotes because it takes time and fuel to retrieve/manage. My hope is to help overcome operation cost by these food inputs. Also, advantage of on farm butchery. Gonna stick build an exterior over the cooler/freezer panels to super insulate. Hopefully that'll help with electric cost. Yes, also a small diesel gen outside for power outages.

  4. Lolitabonita says:

    do an ice ground cellar…same concept but the temp will be constant…plus you can do big chunks of ice on winter and place it on the floor…sawdust…and you are in business..

  5. Eagle Camp Homestead SWFL says:

    I have found that it is better to raise and sell live hogs and let the purchasers arrange for the processing, which makes it affordable, and easier as I don;t have to have inspections or licensing requirements as a food provider or the cost of electric and maintenance of the freezer

  6. Teal Kerberus says:

    I'm still debating whether to sell direct to the public or aim for the local tourist restaurants when I have enough stock to get into marketing them – probably both, so I will definitely need a commercial freezer. At least here we have enough sunlight to run things like this on solar, so after that up-front investment there is not an ongoing running cost for electricity.

  7. Zaappp !!! says:

    Good informative video. I realize you're not looking to add to your cost but I wonder if just building a simple open pole shed using regular silver colored metal roofing to deflect heat would reduce your electrical cost. It sounds like your unit is pretty well insulated but a black roof does add to the equation and it increases the surrounding air temps making it harder for the freezer unit to dump the hot air.

  8. Ray Pflomm says:

    I'm not a freezer guru, but did you consider using multiple freezer chests? The chests not in use could be turned off to save power. With large chests you could sort out your cuts/ meats types to keep things organized.

  9. ChuckK45 says:

    Nice video! I’ve been wondering about starting pork production in a year or two, after I get my farmstead up and going. Watching this, made me wonder about just buying 2-4 used chest freezers.. don’t know how well that would work, though.

  10. Kyu T Lee says:

    Bacon, Ham, Pork rinds anyone??? I would make salt or salt & brown sugar cured, smoked, canning, dehydrated meat products and other pork products that will stay good longer and not need refrigeration or freezing first. The stuff that would not I would eat. Lol

    You might want to add an additional exterior wall with more insulation so the freezer works less on hot or sunny days.

  11. oggyreidmore says:

    Hate to be "that guy" but you've created a potentially deadly hazard by framing the door that way. Now if the door swings shut with you inside the emergency door handle on the inside is walled in with stick framing. You'd be trapped inside with no way out. Even if you managed to avoid freezing to death, think about how long it would take someone to come check on you in your homestead location – and even if they did stop by and saw you not in the house or the barn or the shed or out in the fields – would have the wherewithal to check if you're trapped in the freezer. I'd guess far longer than it would take to die of dehydration and leave a frozen corpse. If you're gonna frame a smaller internal door, at least frame it so the door can be opened from the inside.

  12. Scott Heikkila says:

    Let me ask have you ever thought of using a refrigerated trailer. I have seen short boxes for as little as $2k on up.

    Even if the refer unit didn't work you could install your unit on the box.

    Just wondering if it is something you had thought of or if it was possible in your area

  13. Nehemiah Marcus says:

    I know it must have been tough to admit to all of these mistakes, but thank you. I was thinking of buying a cooler/freezer for a home I was looking at. After watching this, I am going to just buy a brand new freezer and save all the headaches with used or home-built.

  14. DR. Feelgood says:

    make friends with someone that installs walk-ins. usually when someone is replacing one, the old unit goes straight to the dump even though they are often only in need of a little tlc and recharging the refrigeration unit. i'm planning on installing a coolbot in mine if it costs too much to reinstall the refrigeration unit.

  15. jimmyt568 says:

    no offense..would have been best to consult a builder.. my son and i build those all day long for 2500 to what ever..energy efficient..and made totally to customers needs.some we have built for as low as900.00..biggest expense is the cooler unit itself and the door

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