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Fridge warm I have a GE. the freezer works but has frost build up on the back (inside). the refridgerator section is warm

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The frost build up is blocking the flow of cooling air from reaching the refrigerator section. If you take the cover off the frosted area and melt the frost off with a hair blower your refrigerator will work fine for a few days to a couple weeks, and then the problem will show up again. You need to determine why it is not defrosting by itself. You do not list the model number or even an aproximate age of your unit, so I can not be very specific with a solution. Test the defrost heater and then look at the defrost control timer. Also, look for any signs of air leakage into the refrigerator, such as a poor gasket (look at the bottom of the fresh foods gasket in particular) or a dispenser area if your model has a through the door ice dispenser.

Posted on Jun 21, 2009

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Possibly a problem with the defrost system. If the cooling coils behind the freezer wall start to build up too much frost or snow, the air flow to the refrigerator section gets blocked first. So the freezer still works but the fresh food section starts to get warm . As the frost continues to build up, in time the freezer section will only get as cold as the fresh food section should. There are 3 main parts to the defrost system. You could have a burned out defrost heater, a bad defrost timer, or a bad defrost termination thermostat. The heater is located directly under the cooling coils in the freezer. The termination thermostat is a silver round disk clipped to the top of the same cooling coils, and the timer in located in the control panel in the fresh food section.

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Typically a frost build up would indicate a low charge. Partial freezing as evaporation happens too quickly in part of the circuit. Check the charge.

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This is typical for frost-free refridgerators/freezers. In order to keep ice from buiding up on the interior walls of the freezer section, the manufacturer installs electric defrosting elements and extra "warming" elements in the outer edges of the cabinet, normally around the door openings to help mitigate any frost/ice build up and surface condensation that typically occurs on the exterior surfaces as the doors are opened and closed frequently.

These edge warmers stay very warm to keep ice and condensation from accumulating and will become VERY very warm (hot) when the fridge/freezer is in the once a day defrost cycle.

Unless you have an energy saver switch (GE trademark) inside the fridge section, which you can turn off, there is no way to disable these added elements. If you find that you're getting ice building up in the freezer, you'll need to turn off the energy saver switch to resolve that issue.

Energy Saver switch "ON" means these elements are off, while having the ES switch "OFF" means those heaters are running all the time and costing you more in energy consumption

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Make sure that the light in the ref side is not staying on when the door is closed. Could have a bad door switch. Probably have a defrost problem in the freezer. Check to see if there is a lot of frost build up on the inside/back of the freezer. If there is then you have a bad heater or defrost thermostat or a bad timer. Also another possibility is make sure the freezer fan is working. If there is no circulation of air then the fresh food side will get warm. Then replace evaporator fan motor.

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It is possible to get this build up in the return vents.  Check seals for any possiblilty of warm air getting into the fridge.  Warm air getting in will cause this.  For now use a hair dryer or some hot water to clear the vents.  Let me know what you find.  Would appreciate a solved rating for expert advice.

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