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Jason, MOST refrigerators get there cold from the freezer side and circulate it via a fan that's also normally inside the freezer. There are three motors normally in a refrigeration system. The inside Evaporator fan motor that circulates air across the evaporator coil inside the box, the Condenser fan motor near the compressor that cools the freon after compression, and the compressor itself. If you open the doors (and sometimes you may have to hold in the door switches) do you hear a fan running? If not you could have a couple things going on: 1. The fan(s) has failed. 2. The freezer Evap coil may of iced over and the fan too is frozen stopped. 3. Your condensing unit:(compressor, condenser fan, condenser coils) has a problem. It is important to know if the compressor itself is running. If there is a loose connection to the compressor via the start/over load relay (normally attaches directly onto the compressor), or if the start/over load otself is bad the compressor will not run. Best way to tell is via gauges but I doubt your frig has ports. Check to see if your compressor is really hot. Could be bad start/over load relay or bad compressor. Try unplugging your frig for say 30 min then, with your hand on top of a cool compressor, plug the frig back in and see if compressor smoothly vibrates for at least 5 min without becoming very hot or shutting off even though fan continues to run. The fact your fan is running TYPICALLY means the thermostat is calling for lower temps and the fan/compressor kick in together.
Usually that is a sign that there is a blockage to the condenser fan below the cooler. See if the condenser is dirty, or something blocking the flow of hot air from the condenser fan area. Check the condenser fan motor to insure it is healthy and running strong. Recommend cleaning condenser to allow air to circulate the area freely. If fan is slow, stopping or not running I recommend replacing the fan motor. Sea Breeze
Possible solution to original question at top of page: Recently worked on a Delfield F2FH with the exact same problem. Would get to 12 degrees and then go up and down either to -10 degrees or up to 12 to 55 degrees. Although I cleaned the condenser coil of some dust it was not the problem. There was no icing of the evaporator either. The defrost timer was also working. There was icing of the lines coming off the compressor but this was simply a symptom of the real problem. After checking everything out carefully and talking more with the customer about how the unit was fluctuating in temperture I noticed something that I had not paid much attention to as a possible factor in the problem. It seems a previous technician had worked on the unit and was very sloppy in his work as he did not put many of the screws back in place after taking the unit apart. Two screws that he did not put back were the ones that secure the overhead outside front panel where the door switches are located. As a result the switches were only making a hap hazard connection with the striker pads on the top of the doors. Whenever the owner moved the unit or, wiped the panel or, even opened the door the top service panel would move slightly out of allignment causing one or both door switches not to contact the striker plates. This in turn shut down the evaporator fans inside the freezer compartment which then only allowed cold air to drift to the bottom of the inside of the unit. The temp control sensor, mounted inside at the top near the evaporator fans, was reading tempertures inside the freezer compartment warmer at the top as all the colder air was at the bottom. On this unit there was only about a half inch of tolerance on the door striker plates so if they were not alligned properly the fans did not come on. So, check your door switches and see if they are engaging. One or both of your doors may have dropped to low to fully engage your door switches due to worn bushing or hinges (each door will only turn half the fans on inside); your striker plates may be worn cracked or out of allignment; your top panel is loose and moving the strikers out of allignment. Don't forget to manually test the evaportor fans to see if they are all working. Do this by opening both doors and pressing both door switches. If the fans do not come on suspect a bad switch which controls the fans which failed. If all the fans come on the problem is in the contact of door to striker plate. If one or even two fans do not come on test the fan itself. The air must circulate insde to keep a proper temperture. I hope this was helpful.
Check to see if the
condenser fan at the back underneath near the compressor is running. If no
Are the condenser coils near there warm or room temp. should
How to check stuff> http://www.acmehowto.com/howto/appliance/refrigerator/refrigerator.php
Is the evaporator fan in the freezer running. It blows cold
air into the fridge side through a damper in the wall between the freezer and
fridge. Make sure the damper is open.
Below the evaporator fan is the evaporator coils. Remove the
back cover inside the freezer to observe the frost pattern. Light frost everywhere(NORMAL)
or a partial pattern of ice(LOW ON FREON) or nothing(LOW FREON OR COMPRESSOR
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
cold air and eventually affect the freezer too.
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.
can not immediately locate manual.
If this unit is a cooler, check this:
Anything that can effect air flow. Fans not running or running in wrong direction.
Too much product in unit.
Thermostat set too low or stickes and unit does not shut off unit.
Possibly has a defrost timer. Most coolers do not but some do. Look for one and see if it is working. Make a mark on the face and wait 15 minutes to see if it moves.
Drain pan clogged.
Doors not closing or seals not sealing.
The fan that is under the frig is the condensor fan(the fan the cools the condenser coils and the compressor. It does not have a direct effect on the chilled air circulation inside of the frig. The evaporator fan is the unit that circulates the chilled air thru your freezer and frig. I am not sure what make model unit you have, but I have found that this fan motor is 90% of the circulation problems i have seen.
The condenser fan only circulates air around the condenser and compressor. There should be another fan that circulates the air around the refrigerator, it should be located inside of the freezer section at the rear. I would look for this fan and see if it is operating first.
It can take a very long time to get a keg of beer down in temperature. The heat transfer from a keg is slow due to the lack of air circulation inside the keg. You should also check your condenser coils, make sure they are clean. Door gasket should also be in good repair. Hope this helps.
Only the fan at the compressor turns on and off with the compressor cycle. The evaporator fan runs steady to maintain air circulation and temperature balance and to affect evaporator defrost in the off cycle. Sometimes the condenser fan will run continuously to assist in the evaporation of condensed moisture from the evaporator drainage.