How do you use the minifridge to keep things cool?

  Just as it says above /\
  I placed the minifridge on the ground, but I'm not sure that anything got stored in it, does it NEED to be in a vehicle?
  EDIT: does a regular fridge work? And do you need to power either. I forgot to ask that earlier. I have both a minifridge and a regular one in my home, not sure if they would both work. I could simply use the fridge if the minifridge didn't work, but I want to have some late night snacks right next to my bed with the minifridge.

The refrigerator furniture doesn’t do anything. The minifridge is a vehicle component; it has to be mounted onto a frame. You can mount it to a vehicle if you have one, or you can get a frame of any sort and deploy it (the frame) through the construction menu (*) with the Start Vehicle Construction option. You will need either a wrench, or a welder and welding goggles to mount the fridge (I can’t remember which).

The minifridge can be engaged through vehicle controls, meaning that if you are setting one up in your base you will need to install a vehicle controls to actually turn it on.

The controls do not need to be installed exactly where the minifridge is, but they must be on the same “vehicle” as the minifridge is.
Once it’s mounted you will need a power source (Car Battery, Storage Battery, or the like) mounted on an attached frame to power it. Without a power source the minifridge won’t do anything anyway. Be warned that it will consume power at an immense rate, so a Storage Battery is best.

 Can you use a solar panel to power the battery back up? Or something similar? If you can recharge the battery, what ways can you?

Ready for another long post?

Installing Solar Panels onto a vehicle with a dead battery can charge it as long as it’s in direct sunlight. This is good if you have no other option but at the rate it charges your food will likely expire before it’s finished. Upgraded Solar Panels can be found on Solar Cars. They charge batteries more effectively than the regular flavor, but are also more fragile so it’s best to put them in hard to reach places. There is a third rank Solar Panel as well, but I won’t spoil everything. A Battery does not have to be on the same square as a Solar Panel to charge from it. As long as they are on the same vehicle it will charge. In my experience, the condition of the Solar Panel seems to affect charge rate, but I’ve never tested to confirm that.

Storage Battery Cases (appear as “Swappable Storage Battery Case” in the Vehicle Construction Menu) are found on Electric Cars (not Solar Cars). They are used to install Storage Batteries onto vehicles without having to weld the Batteries in (Storage Batteries installed in this manner appear as “Swappable Storage Battery” in the Vehicle Construction Menu). Car Batteries, Small Storage Batteries, and Medium Storage Batteries can be installed using only a wrench, or possibly pliers + mechanics, but Storage Batteries need to be welded if there is no Swappable Storage Battery Case on the square you are trying to install the battery onto.

If you install a Swappable Storage Battery Case onto a vehicle, but don’t install a Swappable Storage Battery then you can install a Solar Panel onto that square as a Turreted Solar Panel. Turreted Solar Panels are slightly more effective than Upgraded Solar Panels (so a good bit more effective than the normal ones), but remove the ability to use the Storage Battery Case for holding Storage Batteries, meaning that you’ll have to weld the Storage Battery in.

It’s usually better to use a vehicle’s alternator for charging, since they are faster and can charge at night. Just plop the battery onto a vehicle (wrench or pliers + mechanics 1, or 2), start the engine, and it will begin charging. It will make noise though, so make sure all the zeds are back in the ground before you start.

There are some things you need to know before attempting to start charging a battery like this. You’ll need to "e"xamine a vehicle to find most of this out.

[ul][li]First, If the engine is destroyed then it won’t start no matter how hard you try. If the Alternator is destroyed then it won’t charge the battery even if you do manage to get it started. In the vehicle construction menu, destroyed parts are greyed out. Destroyed parts can be replaced with an equivalent part using the "r"epair function in the Vehicle Construction Menu. Depending on what you’re repairing this may require a wrench, jack, duct tape/superglue, or a welder and goggles. In some cases engines are not destroyed but won’t run anyway. This is usually because the engine is faulty. Faulty engines will be indicated as such in the Vehicle Construction Menu. It is possible to repair them, but it is usually easier to just find another one.[/li]

[li]Second, an engine cannot start without some charge in a battery already. It usually requires slightly above 125 charges (or 5% of a car battery) to begin. This is the largest concern with charging like this since many vehicles start short of this amount. You may need to use Solar Panels to charge a vehicle battery high enough to start the vehicle, or take a battery from another vehicle and installing it into the one you’re attempting to start may work.[/li]

[li]Third, even if a vehicle has battery power it cannot run without fuel. Fuel can be acquired from other vehicles that have it by siphoning it via rubber hose (smash/disassemble a refrigerator furniture) into any watertight container. Gas Engines cannot take Diesel and vice versa. Also beware of the gas tank’s condition; a damaged tank will leak fuel onto the ground. Damaged Batteries will leak charge, and cannot be repaired from the Vehicle Construction Menu[/li]

[li]Finally, Some vehicles don’t have keys in them. This means that you will need to hotwire them using a screwdriver. If you don’t have good mechanics you’ll set off the alarm first, and it will continue making noise until you try to shut it off, which usually ends in destroying the vehicle controls. In my experience, hotwiring a vehicle will always work, but may require several tries, and without high mechanics you’ll always set the alarm off.[/li][/ul]

Once you manage to get the vehicle started the batteries should start charging so long as the Alternator is in good condition. Truck Alternators charge faster than Car Alternators, and you may sometimes find a part called a 7.5 kW Generator (I think it was 7.5 kW, it’s been a while since I’ve see one) in Garages. It functions like an insanely potent Alternator even down to bolting to the engine, but slows the vehicle down quite a bit. I’d recommend it for stationary setups.

EDIT: Once installed into a vehicle, a minifridge will be treated as a space in which to place items. While engaged (again, this is accomplished by interacting with the Vehicle Controls. When you select “Control Vehicle” there will be an option to turn the fridge on in the menu.), it will begin cooling items, delaying spoilage. Sometimes you may see (cold) attached to items that were in the minifridge for a while.

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I place minifridge in electro car. But can’t open it, can’t place item in it.

I access the minifridge in my Luxury RV by just 'D’ropping the items onto the tile and 'g’et from the tile (half of the time I 'G’rab the vehicle instead…). Excess items fall to the ground and can be picked up with 'g’et (you get a menu to select whether to pick up from the storage or from the ground when there’s stuff in both places).
The same logic applies to accessing car trunks.

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Thank, you deal my day in cataclysm )

D to shove items into tiles you can’t walk on
e to get them back out