Ice build-up in the freezer of a Kenmore 19 (Top Freezer) refrigerator, and only 60 degrees in the fridge.
Local "repairman" replaced the burned-out Freezer fan last week, but frost/ice continues to build on the Freezer abck wall and in the vertical cold air conduit leading down to the fridge compartment. I'm scraping off the ice near the fan every day to try and stop the new fan burning out as well. This 20-yr old model (2538359202 Top Freezer) has the optional ice-maker NOT installed; it has no obvious DEFROST manual switch; the water pan at back on top of the compressor motor is bone dry; No removable access panels in Fridge section, only in Freezer; Evaporator coils on back appear quite dust-free; Power Miser set to ON; Fridge set to COLDEST and the freezer set to WARMEST. It's in a vacation home in Florida, and is turned off 9 months of the year, but badly needed now. Seems in too good a condition to just toss it. I'm fairly handy (electrics & mechanicals, but no multimeter or heavy workshop) Please help!
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As far as your freezer frosting up, sounds like a door seal problem, run your fingers along the seam of the door seal, there should be no splits/holes in the seal. As far as the refrigerator either there is a secondary fan motor, or there is a obstruction blocking the air movement, if the freezer has a bad seal, its suspect ice is still building up.
Sounds like the defrost circuit of your fridge has failed. If you remove the back panel of the freezer compartment, you will see the evap coil encased with ice. Normally the defrost circuit will turn off the compressor and turn on a heater to warm the coil to about 45 degrees to melt any frost build up. After about 40 minutes the compressor will kick back in to keep your fridge cool again.
The typical failures are that the defrost heater burns out. If you have an older fridge, the defrost timer fails to advance, causing the fridge to stay in cooling or defrost mode.
Is this a French door unit? Do you see excessive build up of frost in the freezer on the back panel? Is that evaporator fan motor running? That is what circulates the air from the freezer to the refrigerator.
Check to see if there is any ice built up on the back wall of the freezer. If so thaw the ice and take the back wall out of the freezer. next check to see if the fan is running in the freezer (evaporator fan) This fan is what circulates the air from the freezer to the fridge. If it does run then you have a defrost problem (if ice is on the coils and back wall). Then replace defrost timer, heater, and thermostat.
This is a problem that the factory has released a bulletin on.They have released new hinges, and insulation for inside the door. So far I've only seen the bulletin for Kenmore upright freezers made by Frigidaire. Since it is a Kenmore the bulletin is a Sears Service Flash but the units are identical. For sears its SF46-517. They may extend the service to Frigidaire units but you'll have to contact Frigidaire about that.