Question about Whirlpool ET1FHTXM Top Freezer Refrigerator

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Ice Build up on back panel of top freezer.

I removed the back panel from the top freezer and tried to put it in defrost mode. But realized that the defrost mode does not function. I was forced to defrost using a heat blower. Do I need to change the entire condensor mechanism? Thanks!

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Re: Ice Build up on back panel of top freezer.

You have a Adaptive Defrost Control problem or a bad heater...the heater is in the freezer it is a Black wire just like in an oven.. after unpluging the refigerator...Unplug the header and check the heater with a multmeter check for Continuity if it's open you have a bad header... let me know..

Posted on Aug 22, 2007

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We own a 15 year old Maytag Plus, model #RSW2700, side-by-side refrigerator. Several months ago it was leaking water onto the floor. Additionally the outside of the refrigerator, freezer side, was very...

Hello, first thing that you would check would be to remove this panel numbered 28 on this diagram click here
following your removal of the panel then you would have access to the evaporator drain coil. If you noticed any icebuild up on the drain coil this would first have to be defrosted using a hair dryer due to this is termed as a defrost issue whereas either the defrost thermostat, the defrost heater, the defrost timer or the adaptive control would have a fault and have to be tested. If you do see the ice build up message me back and I will instruct you how to test. The next area that you would look at behind that same panel is the evaporator fan motor which is part number 16 on the same diagram if there is no air flowing from this fan then the air cannot go into the refrigerator side of the unit. If the fan is working and you have no ice build up on the evaporator you would then go to the inside rear wall of the refrigerator click this link notice parts 12,13 these parts mainly 12 is the freezer damper it is a small door that is supposed to open and close letting the cold air from the freezer side of the unit into the refrigerator side of the unit. Assure that there is no ice build up on the damper door and that the door does open and close easily and is not stuck in the closed position. This damper control is located in the ceiling of the refrgierator which is part 5 on the diagram as well. If you also unscrew that entire panel that is on the ceiling is how you would access the control which is attached to the knob that you turn the refrigerator to become colder. Check to see that the fan is working in your freezer and to see if you have any ice build up first and then message me back. Also If you have any questions message me those back as well. I await your reply. Thanks

Sep 25, 2011 | Refrigerators

2 Answers

Freezer works, warm air in fridge.

If the ice/frost buildup is fairly thick and only on the back freezer panel then you have a defrost problem. Most likely the defrost thermostat is bad. It would be hard to explain how to test this in writing but there is a tech sheet underneath the fridge behind the grill on the r/f. It is in plastic which is stuck to the fridge. This tech sheet will tell you how to put it into diagnostic mode. First take the back panel of the freezer off (may need to get frost off first). Should be four 1/4" screws in each corner of the panel to remove. Will need to remove racks, door (should just lift off), and ice maker first. Remove vent in center of freezer panel by pushing up little tab in the center of the vent and using a screw driver to pop it loose on each side of the vent. Then remove thermistor cover on right hand side of panel. Remove (by pushing thru) ice maker plug. Once the panel is off put the fridge into defrost by the instructions on the tech sheet. If it goes into defrost (heater will get hot) then the main control board is bad. If not shut the doors to reset, defrost evaporator with a hair dryer and remove the defrost thermostat. It is a little metal round piece with two wires coming out of it and just clips onto the evaporator. Cut the two wires coming out of the thermostat, strip them back and splice them together. Now put it into defrost again. If the heater comes on then you know the thermostat is bad. Diagnostics mode can also test all functions i.e. condensor motor, compressor, evaporator fan, and thermistors. With all of that said, if it isn't a thick frost buildup the evaporator fan motor may be bad which is the most common repair on this model. It sits just behind the vent in the center of the freezer panel. Let me know what you find.

Oct 06, 2007 | Maytag MFD2560HES Bottom Freezer French...

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Inside bottom of freezer every few days theres about a 1/8 of an inch of ice. Can you help me. I have cleaned out the freezer several times but cannot find the origin of the water. Thank you

The water is from the defrost cycle thawing the evaporator coil.
The defrost drain line in the freezer is frozen over with ice and the defrost water is not draining.
Turn off the power and remove the rear freezer panel and the freezer bottom panel.
Use a hair dryer to defrost the ice at the drain hole in the center of the drain trough underneath the coil in the back of the freezer.
This will take some time to do because the process will be slow.

Jul 31, 2011 | GE GTS12BBPR Top Freezer Refrigerator

1 Answer

Fan not working .water collecting in the fridge and build up of ice in both

The fan may have stopped working due to the build up of ice on the evaporator coil in the freezer. The most likely cause would either be a burnt out defrost heater or a bad defrost timer. Normally the defrost timer turns the heater on for about 30 minutes every 8 hours to melt the ice on the coil. If the timer fails it will either stay in cooling mode or defrost mode. The timer is usually located in the temperature control box in the refrigerator. It looks something like this:

slamfix_55.jpg On the side of the timer is a small cam that you can turn with a flat screwdriver. With the refrigerator plugged in, turn the cam until it clicks. When it clicks, it should be in defrost mode and the heater should start to get warm and melt the ice. You should be able to hear the ice crackling and hissing if the heater is working. If it does nothing then the problem is probally due to a burn out heater.

To get to the heater, you will need to remove the back panel from the freezer and the heater will be attached to the coil. You will need a hair dryer to melt the ice from the coil, to get to the heater. Parts can be found at your local appliance supply house or online at Hope this helps you.

Jun 30, 2011 | Frigidaire FRT21H8 Top Freezer...

1 Answer

Ice forming in the top freezer, leaks in the bottom refrigerator section

Sounds like the defrost circuit of your fridge has failed. If you remove the back panel of the freezer compartment, you will see the evap coil encased with ice. Normally the defrost circuit will turn off the compressor and turn on a heater to warm the coil to about 45 degrees to melt any frost build up. After about 40 minutes the compressor will kick back in to keep your fridge cool again.

The typical failures are that the defrost heater burns out. If you have an older fridge, the defrost timer fails to advance, causing the fridge to stay in cooling or defrost mode.

May 27, 2011 | Kenmore 18.2 cu. ft. Top Freezer...

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The inside of freezer is leaking from back wall - there is no ice maker. water that leaks is freezing and taking up space. what can be causing this

the drain line is clogged causing the ice build up .the frig has to defrost every 6 to 8 hours so every time it defrosts is when it will leak will have to defrost the frig manually ..turn it off. open the doors. let it defrost. remove the thick ice on the bottom ..after its defrosted take the bottom an back panel off.. un plug frig first !! drainline is in the back in the middle of the freezer. unclogg it hot water or shop vac be carefull good luck!! drain line should go to a pan under the frig, in the back make sure it drains before putting back together

Aug 21, 2010 | Estate TT18TKXKQ Top Freezer Refrigerator

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Hotpoint refrigerator freezer(top) mod ctx18bacerww not cooling/freezing correctly. removed inside back panel in freezer compartment,found coils partially covered in frost, fan not blowing.. flicked fan...

Hi, fan may have stuck, but you could have a defrost problem, check defrost heater, thermodisc(defrost thermostat) and defrost timer. or excessive moisture, if your days are hot, or if you put hot foods in ref. could result in excessive ice build up. you can manually defrost it, by unpluging ref. for couple of hrs, until all ice melted. then restart. you make get excessive water on floor. be prepared.

Aug 02, 2009 | Refrigerators

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Freezer drain plug

Self defrosting refrigerators as well as freezers all have a defrost drain system. This drain system can become plugged or frozen causing defrost drain water to back up into the refrigerator or freezer compartment. The water may gather under the crisper drawers on top freezer models. On side by side, bottom or stand alone freezers ice will build up in the freezer at the bottom and eventually leak out the door.

Plugged Defrost Drain - Freezer on Top (Water under the crisper drawers)

At the top of the refrigerator next to the temperature controls there usually is a cup-like part that carries the defrost drain water into a tube and out the back of the refrigerator to a defrost drain pan behind the unit. Pull the cup out of the tube and clean the cup with hot water and soap. If there is no cup, pull the refrigerator out away from the wall, go behind it and disconnect the drain tube to clear it. If the drain tube is not accessible from the back or the drain can not be cleared from there the main back panel in the freezer can be removed to access, thaw and flush out the drain under the cooling coil.

Use a turkey baster to flush HOT water into the tube to clear any obstruction. The water squirted into the tube should end up in the defrost drain pan.

If the tube will not clear with hot water try blowing it out with compressed air.

Put the cup back on and make sure it is all the way on or in the tube.

Plugged Defrost Drain - Side By Side, Bottom-Freezer Refrigerator or Stand Alone Freezer

The defrost drain pan is located at the bottom of the freezer compartment behind the back wall of the freezer. On some models, the pan is accessible without removing the back panel and others are not. After you get to the defrost drain pan use a hair dryer to melt the ice from the pan.

Once the ice is removed use a turkey baster to squirt HOT water into the drain hole to clear the drain.

When the drain is clear you should hear or see the water you are squirting into the hole enter the pan under or behind the refrigerator.

TheRepairGuru ----

Jan 26, 2009 | Whirlpool ET9FTKXK Top Freezer...

1 Answer


If the ice build up is only on the back panel of the freezer then you have a defrost problem. Most likely a defrost thermostat or control board/timer. If frost build up is around the walls of the freezer then warm air is getting into the freezer. Most likely cause of this would be gaps in or torn door gasket or door alignment. In some cases the door was left cracked open. If gasket and door alignment is ok remove the frost and see if it comes back.

Oct 05, 2007 | Jenn-Air JBR2088HES Stainless Steel Bottom...

1 Answer

Ice build up in back section of a Whirlpool no frost top freezer refrigerator 66"hx30"wx27"d

your sure the defrost cycle works? sounds to me its not. you need to remove the freezer back and check the defrost components. or put it in the defrost cycle and see if it is working. to get that much frost as you describe the dor would have to be left open. also check all door seals. let me know what you find and we can go from there

Aug 10, 2007 | Whirlpool ET1FHTXM Top Freezer...

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