My refrigerator/freezer does not defrost. I had someone look at it and he thought it needed a defrost timer which is built into the mainboard. So, he replaced the whole main board. It is still doing the same thing. The "snow" collects on the back freezer wall. When it gets about 1 in thick both the freezer and refrigerator stop cooling. If I unplug it and let it defrost (usually overnight) and plug it back up it will work fine for about 2 weeks and once the "snow" builds up again we have the same problem. Again, the whole mainboard has been replaced. Do you have any other suggestions?
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Re: GE Side by Side not defrosting
Hello little G,
there are two more components that u need to check,
the defrost heater. ( heating element ) - it should have continuity ( low resistance ) and the bi-metal. ( should have continuity while the coil is covered with ice.) check it before you unplug the fridge.
the main board that you replaced is just the controller for defrosting.
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How to check
If the evaporator coils behind the back panel of the freezer
are icing up because of auto defrost failure that will stop the circulation of
check defrost timer, defrost heater, defrost thermostat. In
most newer models the timer has been replaced by an electronic control board.
If the heater and thermostat are ok it’ll be the control.
You can turn the defrost timer till it clicks
and everything shuts down. The heater should now come on. If it does, replace
the timer. If it doesn't, check the heater and defrost thermostat. Turn the
timer again till everything starts back up to end the defrost cycle.
If freezer is icing up, you might have a defrost problem. Frost free models have a heating element that is controlled by a timer to automatically defrost ice, defrost timer turns on defrost heating element every 12 hours to melt ice in freezer and allow good air flow. You can test defrost element with an ohm meter(located inside freezer coils-will have two wires going to a plug connection), if OK replace defrost timer (located in various places depending on make and model
if u have frost build up in the freezer it will affect the temperature and it needs to defrost problems could be defrost timer. thermostat. terminator. heater s. unit problems (unlikely) if even frost coating.
It may just be a defrost timer. Search online for information. There is plenty to be had. Check with the website of GE for a parts breakdown or your manual if you still have it for the location of the defrost timer. You can turn it manually so it goes into defrost. Does the unit seem to be running all the time and never shuts off? If so that timer could be stuck in the cool mode and the evaporator is freezing up solid so air wont flow over it to properly cool. I've had two refrigerators I've had to repair that had defrost timer problems. One stuck in the defrost cycle and wouldn't turn on to cool, the other did what you are describing. It stuck in the cool cycle and wouldn't defrost you may need to manually bypass the cooling cycle several times to allow it to completely defrost. Usually it cycles in cool from 6,8 or ten hours and only stays in defrost for over twenty minutes. That should defrost it and allow it to start cooling again. If you notice that frost has disappeared inside on the wall replace the timer.
The defrost timer is what I think you are asking. It is behind a cover near the light, The timer puts the fridge in defrost ever 6 to 8 hours. If the timer is bad it will stop the cycle of defrost and cause the freezer and the cold food section to warm spoiling the food and increase the freezer temp. Try turning the timer screw clockwise until you hear the fridge compressor stop. If after this listen for a crackling noise that will be the sound of defrost taking place. If doing this starts defrost, you will need to replace the timer.