Question about Refrigerators

1 Answer

20 + year old Whilrpool refrigerator cycles on or ~8 minutes then goes off ~7. Temp in freezer normally zero and frig. is ~38 F. Ambient temp is 70 F, and coils are regularly cleaned. Is this normal or do i need a new box? Thanks so much in advance, Donnie

Posted by on

  • Donald McNight
    Donald McNight Oct 13, 2013

    I feel no leakage around the seals, humidity in the home is very low (30% or less) this is a top freezer


1 Answer

  • Level 3:

    An expert who has achieved level 3 by getting 1000 points


    An expert that got 20 achievements.


    An expert that got 10 achievements.


    An expert that got 5 achievements.

  • Refrigerators Master
  • 4,654 Answers

Can you find a model number Donald? It could be just a start relay, overload and run capacitor. A defective fan motor can also cause those parts to go bad. Not sure about your 20 year old Refrigerator but from my view I believe they will outlast today's refrigerators. Just depends on what you can tell me more about the symptoms and results. Is the compressor hot? Sea Breeze

Posted on Oct 13, 2013

Testimonial: "Thanks for the quick reply John. Actually it is from 1981, Model EHT-201AK. I am physically unable to move the unit so I will try to get a friend to check the compressor (I assume the back panel needs to be removed? ) Also I only open it 5 or 6 times a day for very short periods of time. About 2 years ago the unit was running (at least the fans were) but there was no cold air and ~$150.00 was spent to repair it but I can not locate the paperwork for specifics. (I do recall it was not a compressor issue)"

  • 6 more comments 
  • Donald McNight
    Donald McNight Oct 14, 2013

    One other symptom, the on/off dial's highest setting is 5. I used to keep it at 3 for the aforementioned temps. NOW I need to keep it between off and 1. The air control's setting has not changed it is at C.. the range is A - E

  • John Tripp
    John Tripp Oct 14, 2013

    Wow a 30 plus year Whirlpool refrigerator! Yes the paper cover on the back will need to be removed to reach the compressor start components. Sounds to me that the compressor is short cycling and caused you to lower the temperature settings because of the compressor being on a few minutes and off for the same time. . When you are ready to have someone to have a look at what may be happing. Let me know the results. I have been working two shifts because the man on that shift was killed about two weeks ago car accident so I may be late answering you back. This refrigerator may be worn out so please let me know the test results. Thanks JT

  • John Tripp
    John Tripp Oct 14, 2013

    Here is a link to the parts beakdown click the link below, Thanks JT

  • Donald McNight
    Donald McNight Oct 17, 2013

    I had a local appliance repair man out, he had worked on the same frig, (the $150 repair mentioned above) and he also fixed my oven 5 years ago. He removed the panel at the back of the freezer and there was no ice buildup (GOOD). He also set the controls to 2 for overall temp and put the air "director" toward 2. This setting directs more air to the fridge. The back panel was never removed and he kept reminding me of the age of the unit. Bottom line temps are fine and it cycles off for 20 + minutes now and on for ~ 10. I am sorry to hear about your coworker.

  • John Tripp
    John Tripp Oct 18, 2013

    Thanks for your comments and coming back explain what is going on with your refrigerator. There is a time when a refrigerator is just not worth spending money on to repair. The technician is letting you know also that you need to be on the lookout for a replacement. My coworker was a good person and happened to be on his lunch break picking up a Submarine sandwich at Subway. When leaving he simply pulled out into the path of a standard size pickup truck that hit him in his drivers door. From other drivers at the scene he never saw it coming and died instantly. Let me know if I can help you again Donald, Thanks John Tripp

  • Donald McNight
    Donald McNight Oct 21, 2013

    No problem John, I spend a lot of time on the forum at notebookreview and I see people posting all the time without any followup. From a few converations I gather it is preferable to avoid the new tech in refrigerators and go with dial controls, not water in the door, etc. But no one seems to recommend a brand in the sub $700 price range. I need 18 - 20 Cubic Foot and it must be less than 70 inches in height. If anyone needs laptop help I am Josea on that forum

  • John Tripp
    John Tripp Oct 21, 2013

    I will try that link for notebookreview and you can try to e-mail me the complete link below=>

  • John Tripp
    John Tripp Oct 21, 2013

    Or try to paste one here. Not sure but Fixya may try to block some links. We just purchased a Whirlpool from Lowes and other than the noisy ice dispenser I believe it will be fine. Stay away from LG and GE until they start paying attention to the customer and consumers. Still you will need to pay around $800.00 to get a basic side by side....JT


5 Suggested Answers

  • 2 Answers

SOURCE: I have freestanding Series 8 dishwasher. Lately during the filling cycle water hammer is occurring. How can this be resolved

a 6ya expert can help you resolve that issue over the phone in a minute or two.
best thing about this new service is that you are never placed on hold and get to talk to real repairmen in the US.
the service is completely free and covers almost anything you can think of (from cars to computers, handyman, and even drones).
click here to download the app (for users in the US for now) and get all the help you need.

Posted on Jan 02, 2017

SOURCE: freezer temp

Normal 0 MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman";} hi!! we have read your problem..every problem has a solution.the temp depends upon your need.if you are using stronly freezers for storing food items like meat, then you can set the temperature to (0-10) degree celsius. else you can set it to (5-15) degrees.always keep the liquid items closed in the refrigerator failing to which it causes also costs dearer since you have to defrost then. so always keep your food items covered.hope your problem is tackled..have a nice day

Posted on May 22, 2009

  • 6784 Answers

SOURCE: freezer temp

No, these fluctuations are a sign of a unstable control unit. test the control unit for its operational value and , replace the thermostats as well.

Posted on May 22, 2009

  • 614 Answers

SOURCE: I have a 7 year old sub zero 632. The

The sub zeros I have worked on have a compressor for each side. Is your fan blowing. You may have a defrost timer or heater. Possible low on gas but thats not very likely the sub zeros are made very well. Check to see if fan is blowing. Check condensor coils on top to see if they are clean. Check to see if your condensor fan is blowing. These are just possoble problem you can check if every thing looks good. Call a service tech ask for free estimate on repairs. Rus

Posted on Jul 06, 2009

  • 2299 Answers

SOURCE: RB1955VQ Frig. with bottom freezer

Is the compressor running constantly? Or is the compressor not running? Please explain. Thanks!

Posted on Mar 10, 2011

Add Your Answer

Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add



Related Questions:

2 Answers

My GE profile side by side frig goes into defrost mode more often, every 1-2 days. Temps go up to 46 degrees for frig and 8 degrees for freezer. It doesn't take too long before it cools back down. Is...

. Every 8 to 10 hours for around 20 minutes the defrost timer (or in most newer models the electronic adaptive defrost control) will turn the defrost heater on to melt the built up ice. There is a defrost thermostat which prevents the heater from overheating the freezer by breaking the heater circuit when the temp reaches close to 32 degrees F. The entire cooling system shuts off during the defrost cycle and starts back when the timer advances through the cycle.

If this ice is not melted it will continue to build up until the air can't flow over the coil to circulate the cold air through the freezer and into the fridge. The temperature change in the fridge is usually noticed first followed by the freezer.

If the defrost thermostat is bad, it can prevent the heater from coming on OR it won't turn the heater off when it gets too warm. It is clamped to the evaporator coil at the top to sense the temp. If it appears to be misshapen it is bad.
With an ohm meter it should show continuity when cold and none when warm.
You can also bypass(disconnect the two wires plugged into it and twist them together) the thermostat to see if the heater comes on then. If it does then you know the thermostat is bad and needs replaced.

Mar 08, 2011 | GE Refrigerators

2 Answers

I have a 690 subzero refrig that runs almost continually and temps jump around from 38-46..any ideas

I had the vacuum condenser message on my sub zero for about five years. I vacuumed it every six months (as per the owners manual) and the message would go out for about a day and then come back. I figured it was just a bad code.

Recently, my frigerator temp went from the normal 38 to 40 deg F to about 53 to 55 deg F. My freezer temperature was normal (0 deg to -2 deg F). My unit is under warranty (parts only) -- Model 560 -- so I called an authorized service company. They found that my evaporator coil was bad and replaced. I had to pay for labor and freon so my bill was about $300.

Since then -- my warning message is gone and my frig temp is at 38 deg F. Constant. No waivering.

So - for those of you with a Sub Zero with a wandering frig temp and with the "vacuum condenser" message on all the time -- I am suggesting that you get service out to look at it immedately. More than likely -- you have a freon leak and the frig cooling is insufficient leading to the error message ("vacuum condenser"). I am guessing that my frig was running all the time leading to a higher electric bill (potentially -- an extra $10 - $15/month * 12 months * 5 years of owning the house = $600 - $900 of money thrown out the window.

Hope this helps!


Mar 31, 2010 | Refrigerators

2 Answers

My frig. in the garage.. The freezer works great in summer months but in winter months it doesn't. Why is that?

Good day,
That is normal. The thermostat that runs the whole machine is located in the refrigerator compartment.
When it reaches normal temperature, it shuts off. In winter months that may mean as long as 12 hours or more. Thus not enough running time per day to keep the freezer near it's normal temperature.
Engineers design domestic refrigerators to be in an area comfortable to humans. Normally 70 degrees or higher. Thus your problem.
The only solution is to bring the machine inside.

Thank you for using FixYa

Dec 29, 2009 | Refrigerators

2 Answers

Indoor unit coil air temperature 60F - 70F after R22 charge..

Clean the outside and inside coils and filter. This could be an air flow problem

Aug 21, 2009 | Sanyo Split System Air Conditioner

1 Answer

I have a 7 year old sub zero 632. The

The sub zeros I have worked on have a compressor for each side. Is your fan blowing. You may have a defrost timer or heater. Possible low on gas but thats not very likely the sub zeros are made very well. Check to see if fan is blowing. Check condensor coils on top to see if they are clean. Check to see if your condensor fan is blowing. These are just possoble problem you can check if every thing looks good. Call a service tech ask for free estimate on repairs. Rus

Jul 06, 2009 | Sub-Zero 632 / S

1 Answer

Freezer is at 38 currently has been climbing all day

Hi!!! Yes its normal dont panic just relax and have a cold soft drink..Nothing is wrong with your frig..Remember defrost cycle is 15-20-or 30 minutes depending on the frig..Good luck..Its all normal..

Jan 03, 2009 | Kenmore 72073 Top Freezer Refrigerator

1 Answer

Sub-Zero temperture fluctuation

Just posted this elsewhere and it sounds like the same problem:
As you probably know, the recommended temperature range is between 35-45 F so if your control will not allow you to set this, the sensor or associated regulator has failed. 

This seems to be an issue with Sub-Zero.

Aug 02, 2008 | Sub-Zero 650 / O Bottom Freezer...

Not finding what you are looking for?
Refrigerators Logo

Related Topics:

135 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Refrigerators Experts

John Tripp
John Tripp

Level 3 Expert

4654 Answers


Level 3 Expert

75807 Answers

Brian Coughlan

Level 2 Expert

275 Answers

Are you a Refrigerator Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides