Question about Kenmore 50522 / 50524 Side by Side Refrigerator

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Potential bad start relay

Kenmore Cold Spot 20 #106.9710680, 16 years old. When compressor starts I hear a 5 second buzzing sound. At times its louder then others. If thru process of elimination I replace it. What does it look like and or where do I find it under the frig. Thanks much.
Karl

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  • karl_juers May 11, 2010

    Kenmore Cold Spot 20 #106.9710680, 16 years old. When compressor starts I hear a 5 second buzzing sound. At times its louder then others. If thru process of elimination I replace it. What does it look like and or where do I find it under the frig. Thanks much. Karl

  • karl_juers May 11, 2010

    This is not a side by side, it has the freezer above. I did get a FixYa reply to my intial question.

    I actually suggested that it was probably the start relay vs the over load relay. The person, I think it was John thought it was the same thing. My question yesterday was where will I find the relay under the frig.

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5 Suggested Answers

watugot
  • 290 Answers

SOURCE: Kenmore not cooling, compressor cycles on and off

It sounds like the compressor relay mounted to the side of the compressor is out. Very common problem on these units. The replacement relay is supposed to be stronger and less likely to give a problem. Remove the relay and shake it. If you hear it rattling inside it is definately burned out.
Do not replace it with a 3 in 1 or kickstart relay. It will work fine for a few months and burn the compressor out. Get the correct replacement part.
Post back to let me know what you find.

Posted on Nov 19, 2007

  • 116 Answers

SOURCE: Sears Kenmore 53652300, doesn't cool

This usually indicates that the compressor is working too hard and drawing too much current. The click that you hear is a safety shut-off. Possible causes of this are numerous and usually require having a professional come in to fix the issue, it can range anywhere from a faulty compressor to a bad start relay.

There is in most cases a temporary fix, it is called a hard start relay/capacitor. It is usually available from an appliance parts retailer for around $15 to $20. Installation instructions are included, just be sure to unplug your refrigerator first and make sure that someone following you can repair from where you left off. This relay assembly can normally get you up and running but it should not be used as a permanent fix. This will not correct for a refrigerant leak in the system.

Check your refrigerator owners manual before making any repairs or modifications to your refrigerator, there may be an extended warranty on the sealed system and compressor.

Posted on Aug 01, 2008

  • 1169 Answers

SOURCE: my kenmore frig is not staying cold in frig. or freezer

Also check the defrost element in the freezer side mounted on the evaporator coil. They tend to burn out over time causing the coil to freeze up causing the same problem.

Posted on Apr 20, 2009

localwonder
  • 6784 Answers

SOURCE: kenmore refrigatorstart/relay/overload switch has burned spot on

HI. i would recommend to check the relay first, then the compressor last to confirm total failure. If both devices test out ok, this will lead to a failed main power control board.

THE RELAY

The compressor relay starts the compressor. A fault relay can result in the compressor failing to cycle on. The relay is accessed from the lower rear of the refrigerator. The compressor relay can be accessed by removing the terminal cover box. The cover is held on by tension or with a retaining clip. On some units. the relay may not be covered at all.(each model may vary). Beneath the terminal cover(if equipped), you will find the compressor relay, and the overload protector as well. The electrical terminals of the compressor motor are located here also. Remove the compressor relay by pulling it straight off from the compressor, gently. Pull the wire off of the side terminal of the relay. It is connected with a slip on connector. Firmly pull the connector, do not pull on the wire. You may need to use a pair of needle-nose pliers. Inspect the connector and terminal for corrosion. If either is corroded they should be cleaned or replaced. There are two types of relays you may encounter, wire coil and solid state. If the relay has an exposed wound wire coil it can be tested for continuity. Otherwise, the relay is of solid state design and requires specialized equipment for testing. Test the relay with a ohm(multimeter), for continuity. Set the meter to the ohms setting X1. With the relay upside down, place the probes into the terminals labeled "S" and "M"(the labeling may vary on each model). The meter should display a reading of zero ohms, indicating continuity (or if using a continuity tester, it should light up). With the probes still in place, turn the relay over. You should hear the click of the magnetic switch engaging. The meter should now display an ohm reading of infinity (or the tester should not light up). Turn the relay upside down again, place the probe on the "S" terminal and place it on the side terminal labeled "L". The meter should now display a reading of zero ohms (continuity). Turn the relay over and the reading should change to infinity. With the relay upside down place one probe on the "L" terminal and the other probe on terminal labeled "M". The meter should display a reading of zero ohms. Turn the relay over and the reading will stay the same, zero ohms. Now, if the relay fails these described tests, it should be replaced asap.

COMPRESSOR TEST PROCEDURE

The compressor is accessed from the lower rear of the refrigerator. Generally the same proximity of the relay. The compressor motor can be accessed by removing the terminal cover box. The cover is held on by tension or with a retaining clip. The main testing points will be the actual terminal post that hold the relay, gently pull the relay of the terminal box on the side of the compressor, and use the relay holding probes for testing. Once the relay is removed, Place one probe on any terminal and then touch the other probe to each of the other two terminals. The multimeter should display a reading of zero ohms. Be sure to set your meter to 1X before beginning. Now move the first probe to a different terminal and test the other two terminals with the other probe. Finally, move the first probe to the last terminal and test each of the other terminals with the other probe. Every test should have continuity with the multimeter displaying zero ohms. If the compressor motor does not pass all of these tests, the compressor will require professional service. Now test the compressor for ground. With the multimeter still set to X1, touch one probe to bare metal on the compressor housing (it may be necessary to scratch away a little paint to expose the metal). Touch the other probe to each of the three terminals in turn. None of the terminals should have continuity; the multimeter should display a reading of infinity. If any of the grounding tests show continuity, the compressor will require professional service.

Posted on Jan 10, 2010

  • 82 Answers

SOURCE: compressor is making very loud clunk when shutting off.

I think the wire was kinda expensive. If I were you I would try to save the fridge. I think you should unplug it for a couple hours, take everything out for a while and remove any ice. Once the fridge reached room temp, the refrigerant should have made its way back to the compressor. Plug it back in and see if it makes the noise again.
It might just be the fan in the freezer. I would try the unplug/deice for a few hour method first because it is free before you try to replace a fan that might be bumping ice. Good luck!

Posted on Mar 10, 2010

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It will rattle slightly, this is normal. The ones that are burned out will sound like they have gravel in them, you can defininely tell something is wrong.
The problem with diagnosing Kenmore fridges with this problem is that there are different manufacturers. Yours is built by Frigidaire and probably has a Tecumseh compressor. We find more failed compressors with the Tecumsehs than we do with the models that have Embraco compressors. The models with Embraco's generally have more relay failures.

You should not hear the buzz/hum at startup. You will need to replace the compressor, which will be replaced at no charge to you if it is less than 5 yrs old.
If it is older than 5 yrs, you can have it replaced, but it will be almost as expensive as a new fridge. You can buy an aftermarket start device called a 3-in-1. This has a start capacitor built in to give it a little more boost on start up. I don't recommend using them unless it is a short term fix until the compressor can be replaced or if it is out of warranty and there is nothing to lose anyway.
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