Question about Refrigerators

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My freezer is cold, the refrigerator is warm. This machine is only 4.5 years old. Had one part replaced a few weeks ago (defrost terminator). Now, I am back to the same problem. Freezer is cold, refrigerator warm. It does not help to turn the dials to colder. HELP!

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  • Master
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Hi,

You need to investigate a lot :-

Check the below mentioned points :-

If the refrigerator isn't cool, you need to answer some questions, then see if the compressor is running.

First, answer these questions:

  • Is the refrigerator completely dead? If so, see “It's stopped completely.”


  • Is the thermostat knob turned to the proper setting? If not, reset it.


Next, see if the compressor motor is running

The compressor is a football-sized case with no apparent moving parts. It's on the outside of the refrigerator at the back near the bottom. If it is humming or making a continuous noise and your refrigerator is still not cooling, there may be a more serious problem with one or more of several different components, we recommend contacting a qualified appliance repair technician for further help.

If the compressor is not running but you do have power to the refrigerator, there may be a problem with one or more of these:

  • The compressor


  • The Thermostat


  • The overload, relay, or capacitor


  • The defrost timer


  • The condenser fan motor


Cooling is poor For an overall understanding of how refrigerators should work, read about refrigerators in the How Things Work section of our website. A refrigerator or freezer that is cooling, but cooling poorly, may have a problem in one of several areas:

Evaporator coils
Condenser
Poor cooling is often the result of a heavy frost build-up on the evaporator coils or a condenser that is clogged with dust, lint, and dirt.

Evaporator coils Poor cooling is often the result of a heavy frost build-up on the evaporator coils. You can't see these coils without removing a panel on the inside of your freezer. A sure sign that there is a build-up is the presence of any frost or ice build-up on the inside walls, floor, or ceiling of the freezer. Such a frost build-up usually indicates a problem in the self-defrosting system or damaged door gaskets.

The refrigerator is supposed to self-defrost approximately four times in every 24 hour period. If one of the components in the self-defrosting system fails, the refrigerator continues to try to cool. Eventually, though, so much frost builds up on the evaporator coils that the circulating fan can't draw air over the coils. There may still be a small amount of cooling because the coils are icy, but with no air flow over the coils, cooling in the refrigerator compartment is quite limited.

Here's an inexpensive, though inconvenient, way to determine if the problem is with the self-defrosting system. Remove all of the perishable food from the refrigerator and freezer, turn the thermostat in the refrigerator to Off, and leave the doors open for 24 to 48 hours. (Be sure to have several towels ready in case the melting frost and ice causes the drip pan to overflow). This allows the refrigerator to defrost "manually." When the frost and ice build-up has completely melted away, turn the thermostat back to a normal setting. If the refrigerator then cools properly, it indicates a problem with one of three components in the self-defrosting system:

  • The defrost timer


  • The defrost thermostat (also called the bi-metal switch)


  • The defrost heater


If it still does not cool properly, there may be a problem with the refrigerant level or the compressor. You may need to consult with a qualified appliance repair technician to further diagnose the problem

Condenser Self-defrosting refrigerators all have a set of coils and a cooling fan, usually under the refrigerator, that need to be cleaned regularly. If these coils get coated with dust, dirt or lint, the refrigerator may not cool properly. The coils may appear to be a thin, black, wide radiator-like device behind the lower kick-panel. To clean them, disconnect the refrigerator from the power source, use a refrigerator condenser brush (see the Appliance Accessories section) and your vacuum cleaner to clean the coils of any lint, pet hair, etc. You may not be able to get to all of the condenser from the front, it may be necessary to clean the remainder of the condenser from the rear of the refrigerator.


Note - Also check all the fans and make sure they are in working condition.

Hope i helped you.

Thanks for using ' Fixya ' and have a nice day!!

Posted on Sep 06, 2009

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  • Master
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Hi

Start out with the easy stuff first...make sure the lights go out when you close the door(s), make sure the doors are closing properly and the gaskets are closing fully and not torn. Check to make sure the evaporator fan in the freezer is working; this fan blows the cold air around. If the fan is not working, possible bad fan motor - check for power to the fan motor and also check the fan switches around the door openings, ( if your fridge has these switches, not all do ). A common problem cropping up in the last several years has been the air damper not opening up and allowing the cold air from the freezer to be blown into the fresh food section ( mostly on SxS refrigerators ). For many years the air damper was manually operated and now we have motorized controlled or temperature controlled or thermister and electronic boards controlling air dampers, and if this device sticks closed the FF section will normally warm up. An example picture of "one" style and an air damper ( called a diffuser by Whirlpool ). Next would be to check the condenser tubing, a good place to start is to make sure the condenser coils are not built up with dust!! Make sure the condenser fan motor is also working properly. Check for any "clicking on and off" noises from the compressor, is the compressor running.

The most common fridge "not cooling" problem is a frost free failure. Remove the access panel in the freezer section to expose the evaporator coils. If the coils in the freezer section get plugged up with frost, this frost will block the evaporator fan motor from blowing the cold air around. The fan blade can also hit this frost and either becomes noisy or stop altogether. Locating the defrost timer can be tricky....they are often hidden behind the back bottom corners of the fridge at the bottom, in the last few years the timers have been located in the ceiling of the fresh food section, and some behind the cold control cover. Once you locate the defrost timer, slowly turn the screw like wheel in the middle of the defrost timer with a straight screwdriver until the fridge shuts off. You are now in defrosting. If the defrost heater(s) comes on now, replace the defrost timer and defrost thermostat. If the heater(s) does not come on, you can ohm test the defrost heater for continuity or volt test for 120 volts to the heater(s). If you have no power to the defrost heater(s) you can also bypass the defrost thermostat to see if the defrost heater will come on, join the 2 wires together to bypass the defrost thermostat. If the heater now comes on, replace the defrost timer and defrost thermostat. If the heater itself is bad, defrost the fridge with a hair dryer, replace the defrost heater* and defrost thermostat. If the defrost timer seems "hot" to the touch or is noisy (like a ticking or screeching noise)...replace it.

Please do accept the solution if the issue is resolved or else revert for further assistance.


Thanks
Rylee

Posted on Sep 05, 2009

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If you unplug the refrigerator let it defrost then plug it back in. it will work properly about 3 days before it frosts back up.
hope this helped. Good luck

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