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Old sub zero refrigerator model 241rfd (at least 16 yrs old)

The refrigerator freezes things while the freezer keeps defrosting

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  • 175 Answers

SOURCE: Sub-Zero 550 with Bottom Freezer

The life expectancy of these is as long as you want to fix em. I stll work on plenty of them builty before 1980. You may have to pay $900 for a bad compressor, but the fridge replacment cost is around $600, so it's up to you. take the back wall off behind the shelves an look at the coils. If the coils are frosty on only part of the coils (less than 2/3 I would say) Then you have a freon leak. likely from the evaporater (this will need to be cut out and soldered in with aq torch) If you have all frost top to bottom, defrost it, turn down the setting, and check that your door seals well and the door doesnt bounce open when you swing it shut. If there is no frost at all, feel the frame around the door opening. If its warm, take of the upper grille and then the upper sheild on the left side (2 screws). Use a flashlight to shine trough the condenser (thing on the right, looks luike a radiator) if you shine a light throuhgh towards the fan, but cannot see the light come through on the fan side, you need to vacuum off the condenser and try again. If light still does not get through, go to your local auto parts store and buy 2 cans of NON FLAMMABLE brake cleaner. Unplug the unit and hose the condenser down with the stuff untuill you can see light through it from the flashlight. this will be messy, so have a spare rol of paper towels handy. The fumes will be bad too so open a window and put a fan in if you can. If the frame of the fridge is not warm, and there is no frst, discannect the cold controll and use a piece of wire to connect the two wires together after you disconnect them from the cold control. Do not connect the green wire, and be carefull as ther will be 110volts in one of those 2 wires if you didnt unplug the fridge. let the thing run with the control bypassed for 15 minute or so and watch the coils to see if they frost. If they frost all the way, top to bottom, replace the cold control (one for the fridge on the right, by the way)Hope you can get the info you need out of this. Good Luck!

Posted on Sep 07, 2007

  • 130 Answers

SOURCE: Sub Zero model 550 bottom

Clarkk I have seen this many times. Your drain is clogged. If you pull the drawers out and pull the top cover you will see the evap. On the cover you will find a nozzle that goes to the drain. Use some compressed air and blow out the drain. In some cases there will be some silicone that will need replaced. You can get a food grade silcone sealant at a hardware store. Hope this helps.

Posted on Aug 10, 2008

  • 56 Answers

SOURCE: Sub-Zero 550 water dripping on right side of freezer forming ice on draw

The drain line has been clogged. There is actually a defrost heater kit for that problem if you can get the obstruction out. Did you call factory at 800-222-7820 or a local factory authorized servicer? The drain is accessed by removing the fan shroud and evaporator cover. There are a number of of phillips head screws that hold this in place. Once you have removed the two cover you will see the drain tube on the left side of the unit. I use a hair dryer to start defrosting the tube. If you have another freezer in the house it is easier just to turn the freeezer section off for a day or so. I use nitrogen to blow the line out from the bottom once everything has defrosted. Test for water flow, then put unit back together. Call the factory at the number above for the heater kit part number and they will also give you the local authorized parts supplier. The locator web address is

Posted on Feb 22, 2009

  • 3600 Answers

SOURCE: Sub zero refrigerator has stopped cooling but freezer still works

is this a side by side?

Posted on Jun 20, 2009

  • 401 Answers

SOURCE: Sub Zero 561 Refrigerator side is not cooling.

pop the top panel and clean your condenser,this is the most common problem,other than that it could be your compressor or refrigerant leak.this model i believe is two separate systems so one will not effect the other/. good luck!

Posted on Jan 17, 2010

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 Its best handled by a Technician butyou could possibly do it by taking your model number to the nearest appliance parts store  and asking for the parts.  They are mostly located in freezer ,behind back panel on freezer coils.except the card which is usually located in ref  The parts store will have info  Also check evaporator fan in freezer If this was helpful please rate me
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Subzero 550 coils

I had same problem very recently.  The problem with both the refrigerator and freezer on the 550 is that the drain line that takes condensation and water from the defrost cycle to the drain pan freezes up. Sub Zero parts suppliers will sell you a fix-it kit which I used for the refrigerator.  The kit is simply a heater wire that you plug into one of the existing circuits and runs down the length of the drain pipe to keep it from freezing up.  When my freezer started doing the same thing I ordered the kit for the freezer but the wire was too fat for the drain pipe so a Sub Zero rep gave me a better and more elegant solution.  You need a length of bare 12 guage copper wire, about 24 inches.  Run it through the drain pipe with about 6 inches exposed at each end.  On the underside of the fridge, wrap the end of the copper wire a few times around the black heater coil that you will see running back and forth.  At the upper end, wrap the copper wire around the black heater coil that defrosts the freezer coil.  The heat generated by the two coil will simply conduct heat through the copper wire and keep your drain line from freezing up.  There is a 90 degree bend in the drain line which makes it difficult to feed the copper wire through.  I suggest using guitar string or picture hanging wire as a snake.  Feed that through first, then us it to pull the copper wire through.  Good Luck!

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