Question about Refrigerators

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The other day the freezer was not that cold but there was frost on some of the stuff in the back. We moved stuff around and the freezer was back to being cold. Now our refrigerator is not cold, we turned up the tempature on the refrigerator and nothing. What could be the problem?

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The freezer section has the only cooling coil. It sounds like it is blocked with frost and thus wont let the air circulate from freezer to refrigerator.

There is a defrost timer, (or board), a defrost heater, and a defrost safety thermostat. Any One of these or a combination of 2 can be your problem. If you have a energy efficient model that has electronic controls then you will have a board. The procedures for checking the circuit on a board vary by manufacturer of the board used and manufacturer of the appliance.

The defrost heater always has resistance and is attached to the freezer coil.
The defrost thermostat is also attached to the heater electrically, unless it is an electronic sensor type. Sensor types have a range of resistance that needs to be known to check and varies slightly with the temperature of the sensor.

If I haven't lost you here you maybe equipped with the life experiences that will allow you to do most of these checks. If its over your understanding I recommend you contact a reliable technician.

If this helps you please rate me as high as you can and thank you for using fixya.

Posted on Apr 17, 2009

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Is my defrost timer broken or my thermostat? The freezer was holding -30 temp but now is at +30.


Is the compressor running? If not - the timer could be stuck in defrost mode. If it is ruinning, then the freezer coil should be cold. If it is choked with frost & ice - then the defrost heater isn't getting powered (bad timer or defrost terminator - or is getting powered but has burned out.

You should allow the ice and frost to melt completely before turning back on again. Typically ice and frost don't build up so bad in a few days time to cause the temperature rise you're describing If getting cold - the compressor and refrigerant is likely OK, if not the defrost circuit is suspect. If compressor running but not getting cold - a refrigerant leak / charge level may be causing the problem.

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The freezer works well but the fridge is not cooling.


Classic symptom of: the connection passageway between the freezer and the fridge compartment
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If this passageway is blocked, then just the freezer works, and cold air never makes it into the
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OK this is whats has happened. Your freezer has frozen up. You need to get a large cooler, get your hands on some Dry-ice put all the stuff you want to keep in the cooler lay news paper on top and put the dry-ice on top of that. a 30qt cooler will take 1 - 2lbs dry-ice. Working as quick as you can get all the stuff out of the freezer, get the shelves out and get the back of the freezer off to access the freezer coil. (unplug it from the wall. You can use a hair drier and warm water thaw out the coil and be sure the drain in the back is clear and water drains out to the pan underneath. Look closely at all the wiring in there, look for a switch that mounts on to a coil it has a clip that will hold it onto one of the coils, be sure it is clipped on to the coil make sure no wires are broken Put it all back together leaving access in case we need back in to the coil. (do not put it all the way back together). plug it up and run it for a while putting some stuff back in with a cup full of water to check how fast it freezes. If it works for 4 days and all stays frozen all is well. If it quits next day -- re-post with results.

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We have a 1999 Whirlpool side by side refrigerator and Freezer. Model number ED25EQXFW02. Last night the Refrigerator and Freezer stopped cooling and freezing. After taking everything out of the freezer,...


Usually when the freezer is still giving cold but the frig is not receiving cold you have an ice build-up on the cold (evaporator) coil that is hidden behind the rear panel of the freezer compartment. If you push on this panel, you usually will hear a cruntch sound (this tells you there is ice/frost on the coil). There are 3 components that affect this problem: defrost timer, defrost stat, defrost heat coil. In other words, something is not working to remove the frost from the coil and it is building-up day after day (takes about 5-7 days to become full (blocked). When this happens, no air can move over the coil to take the cold away and blow it throughout the frig or freezer compartments.
To access the defrost coil or stat, you have to ren move the back panel (in the freezer) and remove all the ice with a hair dryer only or let the door open all day and allow it to melt. DO NOT PUSH OR PRY OR CHOP WITH ANY TOOL OR YOU WILL BE GARRANTEED TO PUNCTURE A HOLE IN THE COIL AND YOU ARE REALLY SCREWED. The time is either: under the front of the whole refrigerator, or in the frig compartment (towards the back or attached to the ceiling of frig compartment). If you have some experience with electrical parts, you can test to see which part is at fault. Good Luck. Macgivor

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Check to see if there is any frost buildup in the back wall of the freezer. If so, it is not defrosting as it should.
  • possible causes:
  1. bad defrost timer
  2. bad defrost heater (in freezer)
  3. bad thermo switch in freezer
If you don’t know what these are then unplug the machine and let the ice melt in the freezer overnight with the door open. Then try it the next day, if is cooling fine then you need to have a service person replace one of the above items.

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Sounds like a defrost problem. Check to see if there is any frost buildup in the back wall of the freezer. If so, it is not defrosting as it should.
  • possible causes:
  1. bad defrost timer
  2. bad defrost heater (in freezer)
  3. bad thermo switch in freezer
If you don’t know what these are then unplug the machine and let the ice melt in the freezer overnight with the door open. Then try it the next day, if is cooling fine then you need to have a service person replace one of the above items.
if you already checked this and think it is a different problem then let me know, i will help you figure it out. 
Mike  

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