Question about Kenmore Elite 22.4 cu. ft. Bottom Freezer Refrigerator with Adjusta Cube Ice Maker

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Interior Lights "ON" With Doors Closed

How does the average consumer get a copy of the service bulletin? Sears wants me to schedule a service call first. This refrigerator should be recalled. The web has many complaints about the same problem. In October 2006 we brought from Sears a Stainless finish Kenmore Elite 25 cu. ft. TRIO French Door Bottom Freezer Refrigerator, model 795-77543. On August 2008 this Refrigerator MALFUNCTIONED. I had left the house for about 2 hours, when I came back and I opened my refrigerator doors the heat and smell was awful. At once I could tell the interior light was the source of the heat. The push-in switch on the door frame was not working. As I tested, the switch was pushed in the interior light continued to stay on and the circulating fan was not working, as well. The plastic over the light fixture was partially melted, the light fixture was scorched. The food products on the 2 top shelves and doors had to be thrown away as well as some other iffy products. After removing all the food items in the refrigerator, cleaning the inside because of melted food products (e.g. stick butter in tray on the door), and opening and closing the door so many times in a row to do this process of empty and cleaning; the light switch on the doors began to work properly again. After several hours and many tests later all seem well as the refrigerator began to cool down again. When pushing the light switch on the doors, this time, the light went off and the fan turned on. So, again I re-loaded my refrigerator with what was left of the food products not ruined. My first concern is the lack of confidence we now have that this failure/malfunction won't happen again. If it does happen again, and not caught in time, the possibility of a fire seems inevitable. Since the refrigerator is now working properly I consider this a DANGEROUS MALFUNCTION to consumers. Of course, the warranty on this product is now expired. But this is not a breakdown. Again I stress, this is a Dangerous Malfunction and Sears/Kenmore needs to step up with a Recall and fix/replace the parts necessary and as soon as possible. We paid Sears $2,346.98 just less than 2 years ago for a SAFE Refrigerator. The loss of some food items are small compared to the loss our home and/or our lives. As a long time, loyal customer of Sears, I expect to see Sears stand behind their products, especially in the concern of safety to consumers and respond with solution to the malfunction of this refrigerator. I have filed complaints with Sears by telephone, and emails. Sears maintains there is no Recall for this model # 795-77543 and since it is no longer covered under the manuafacture warranty the burden of cost is to us, the consumer. I filed complaints with Consumer Product Safety Commission and several other website that consumers can reference. We have thought about taking the light bulbs out of the refrigerator until, hopefully, Sears/LG will issue a recall.

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  • cthompson13 Sep 19, 2008


    1. I have the exact same problem and got the same run around. I want to take this further and get a recall on this. Can anyone help me? Ours started burning while we were at work and luckily my husband, an electrician, came home and found our smoking frig. He doesn't think it is in the door switch and ours has reset also. We do have a Sears repair person coming in a few days at no cost to look at it. Our liner and light cover was melted around a jelly jar. The top of our refrig is scord and bubbled. The light sockets are discolored with the heat. Thank God we didn't have a pizza box on the top shelf. Something needs to be done to address this so others do not have something more unfortunate happen to them.

  • Jane0901 Jan 15, 2009

    I HAD the same problem. My Kenmore Elite 25 cu.ft. TRIO French Door, Bottom Freezer had the intermittent malfunction of the lights staying on when the doors were closed. I had posted the original problem here, but here's my update. First, my husband replaced the light bulbs with a GE Fluorescent Helical 15Watt. This reduced the heat value to almost nil, so when the lights did stay on, no harm done. Then, when one of the bulb castings did fail and the bulb housing needed to be replaced, I called Sears service, made the appointment, told the operator to add the Service flash "sf46-515" to the order complaint for the technician. When, the technician came, he verified the model number, ordered the parts (4 of 'em) needed to be shipped to my home, rescheduled the service for installment and added there was "no charge". Very easy! THANK YOU ..... FIXYA Technical Support for your instructions and ideas. VERY HELPFUL!

  • tyzac Mar 25, 2009

    I have the Kenmore Elite Trio Mod.#795.77543600.   I had the same problem with the lights not turning off in the refrigerator.   Fortunately I was home and removed the light bulbs before the plastic light shield melted.  I called Sears and was told there was a service bulletin for this problem and that it involved a broken relay on the "mainboard".   Since my refrigerator was past the 1 year warranty the repair would not be covered -which will probably cost $300 to $350 parts and labor.   I wish Sears would stand behind their products like they did 10-20 years ago.  Why sell a product costing $2000 and expect the customer to pay $300 dollars 2 years later to fix it and continue to feel they bought a quality product?  I will try writing letters to the corporate offices to convince them to return faith in buying USA (even though they did not make it.)

  • jdtallen Apr 24, 2009

    I have the 79577543600 and it just happend last night after a year and a half of service. These units cost to much for this kind of issue. I just unscrewed the bulbs for now. I am out of warantee and decided not to extend back in December but I guess that is how they make money right? Buy cheap components from Korea that burn out and then have people pay rediculous amouts of money to replace them with the same components huh? Next time I'll buy Bosch or Wolf.

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I had this same problem several months ago and got nowhere with Sears. We have not repaired it because we have read that the Sears fix doesn't solve the problem. My fridge is dark inside, but at least it's cool and not on fire. Earlier models of this fridge were recalled by Sears, LG and the Consumer Products Safety Commission. I think they need to expand the recall.

Posted on Feb 10, 2010

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Jane0901. Go to the following web site. Look at the solution section concerning Sears Normal 0 MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman";}Service flash "sf46-515". I am "DaleCos" and have the same problem. I have reported the probem to Consumer Reports and the Consumer Product Safety Commission. More people need to contact these two organizations. Good luck.
Normal 0 MicrosoftInternetExplorer4
http://www.fixya.com/support/t968825-interior_lights_doors_closed

Posted on Sep 05, 2008

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1 Answer

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Hi Hope, usually when the door(s) have been opened for longer than 10 minutes, an audio alarm sounds and the interior lights shut OFF. This protects the liner from melting due to the heat produced by the light bulbs. The alarm will sound every two minutes until the doors are closed. Once the doors are closed, the alarm is reset.

The refrigerator will also beep on some models to inform the user that the door has been left open and the cool air is escaping.

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All refrigerators have light switches, that depress and shut off the lights when the doors are closed.
First, make sure the bulbs are left out. I would replace all of the light switches because of the newness of the machine.
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My Kenmore Elite (Model 795.7755 3600), less than two years old, had the same problem. One morning I opened the doors to a hot fridge and burning plastic. The light housing was sizzling hot - much of the unit literally melting away. Another hour or two and it could have been much worse.

Called the 1-800 number listed in the fridge. After about 45 minutes of patient talking, I learned that Sears (or Kenmore) have issued what they refer to as a "flash warranty) on the light fixture kit (Kit # 6871JB1423N) which in effect, for this part only, extends the factory warranty from one year to three years. I may even be able to have a factory tech install the parts. Hope it works out.

Bottom line: if you have this fridge, be very careful and monitor closely. An pursue the part warranty!

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