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Whirlpool Refrigerator Side by Side Door the Bar in the middle gets HOT

I have a side by side Refrigerator. The section between the two doors, why would it be so HOT? My husband had to replace the relay switch and when he pluged it back up that section started getting so hot he couldn't touch it. Please HELP!

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  • jenncox1 Apr 18, 2009

    Hi,



    The freezer side is freezing and the refrigerator side is trying to cool. But the strip between the two doors is still extremely hot and the compressor is very very hot.



    Thanks so much for your help!

    Jenn

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Hi Jenncox1,

This area is called the mullion and should be a little warm so it doesn't sweat. If it is too hot then two things could be the problem. 1. The condensor is plugged (dirty) and needs to be swept out. 2. The condensor fan motor is not working. This cools the condensor coils and is mounted in the back of the fridge behind the bottom panel.


I hope this would be help to fix the issue.


Thanks for using "Fixya"........

Do rate the solution as "Fixya" if 100% satisfied.....

Posted on Apr 18, 2009

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Hi

As you have already replaced the relay switch the compressor can also seize and click on and off or one of the electrical windings inside the compressor could have opened up. You can use a test cord to help check the compressor and this also will help with the amp test. If the compressor checks ok and you want to install a replacement start relay. You will need to find out which winding is which. You will need an ohm meter to determine the windings. First check to see if you have windings in the compressor. Then check to see if they are grounded. If the compressor has windings and they are not grounded, you can find which winding is which. Check for grounded windings by reading from each terminal to a good ground on the cabinet.Using the original style relay is always preferred, but using a general replacement can "get you by" if needed.

Most of relays can control the compressor, refrigerator/freezer defrost heater, and several option functions. 


Please do accept the solution and revert for further assistance.

Thanks Rylee

Posted on Apr 18, 2009

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1 Answer

Will the very warm to touch problem with middle bar that doors close against on Whirlpool side by side also happen if you run it with the ice chute cover off overnight?


FRIDGE COILS or door walls SEEM VERY HOT:

The condenser coils do get hot. They can even be to hot to comfortably touch and this is normal.

The refrigerator should not run constantly but shut off with each defrost cycle.

Running constantly and never cycling off can indicate a cooling problem.

One thing to try is to wait till it has been running a few minutes then open the door and turn your cycling thermostat towards the off position. It should cycle off before getting to the off position on the dial.

If it does not cycle off then it's not getting cold enough to satisfy the thermostat. This is likely the reason the refrigerator runs all the time.

A thermometer in a glass of water can be used to check the temperatures in the refrigerator section.

You can check that all fans are running.

the reason the outer side of the door seal area is getting hot is the compressor is over heating, probably the condenser fan motor to your compressor is bad.
It should be a little warm but not hot. they don't use heaters anymore ( some older models still use heaters) around the doors, instead they use the condenser coils to remove condensation and moister, you might want to check your condenser coils on the bottom or back of fridge to see if they need cleaning
If the condenser coils/condenser fan are all plugged up they need cleaning and/or the condenser may fail or has failed..

The ones that use an electric heater will have an "energy saver" switch that will turn it off.

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The process of Refrigeration is for one section to be hot while cooling another section. I.e freezing in one section result in the heat build up and dissipattion else where. Any compressor working properly is going to be quite warm to the point of being hot to the touch when working NORMALLY. There is nothing that you need to do for the continued safe operation of your compressor. If your freezer has ice build up again in the near future your uint is not defrosting properly. If it functions normally after 2 or 3 days of use then you more than likely had a one time buildup of ice usually caused by someone leaving the door partially open

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Hi, Under normal operation the middle bar will be quite warm and under heavy load or higher ambient temperature's sometimes hot, yes it is normal. It is most noticeable following a defrost cycle, new "thawed" item's being placed in the freezer section ( or following someone standing there with the door opened for a lomg time trying to figure out what they want...i.e. my son. lol) and also very hot summer day's.(depending on your geography obvioisly). It is a means in which the manufacturer's has designed to prevent condensation from building in the area commonly referred to as a "perimeter heater/loop". Hope that help's and if so please rate the answer you received from me here at fixya. Thank you andgood luck. macmarkus :)

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It is normal for the middle strip to be hot. Did you check the temp setting in the fridge section?
Also - you might check for blockage in the bottom. Excessive dirt/dog hair can block the air flow.
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If you mean the area where the gasket is...yes.  This is a mullion heater designed to prevent freezing the gasket to the box.  It should be slightly warm.  Some units have the option of turning thi feature off.  Check your manual.

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You have a refrigerant loop that runs through the cabinet of the refrigerator and usually runs right under the door gasket seal. Usually, when you are getting too hot on the loop, it is because your refrigerator cannot shed the heat it is removing from inside the refrigerator. This is most likely caused my either a dirty condenser unit or a faulty condenser cooling fan. (both located underneath the unit). The fan should be running anytime the compressor is running.

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If the mullion heater around the doors is hot to the touch the inside temperatures are not being maintained. They should be warm but not hot. This usually indicates a problem in the internal temperatures. Check the back wall of the freezer section for frost buildup. Your defrost system may not be working and it had not gotten to the point of complete failure as far as you noticing the temperature differences yet.

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