Question about GE PTC22MFM Top Freezer Refrigerator

2 Answers

Freezer and refrigerator are not cooling well. Both are set on maximum. The refrigerator can only cool to 42 deg F. The freezer can cool to 0 deg F. The fan is running. No frost is visible. The supply air passage from freezer to refrigerator is open. How do I check the defrost timer, defrost thermostat and defrost heater? Where is the return air vent from the re frigetator to freezer.

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  • knowolive200 Aug 01, 2010

    GE Problem. Model PTC22MFMARBB Freezer and refrigerator are not cooling well. Both are set on maximum. The refrigerator can only cool to 42 deg F. The freezer can cool to 0 deg F. The fan is running. No frost is visible. The supply air passage from freezer to refrigerator is open. How do I check the defrost timer, defrost thermostat and defrost heater? Where is the return air vent from the re frigetator to freezer. I looked at the obvious. I need to know how to check if the defrost thermostat or defrost timer is malfunctioning. Where are they located and how do I check the item with a multimeter?
    The freezer to refrigerator plenum is fully open. Is there a return air plenum from refrigerator to freezer? Where is it located? I took the entire feed plenum apart and did not see a return path.
    If a return plenum is obstructed the feed plenum may not let air into the refrigerator box from above because of the back air pressure. I want to check that it is not blocked.

  • knowolive200 Aug 01, 2010

    Excellent advise and fully complete. That is exactly the step by step procedure that I was looking for. Even if none of this advice fixes the refrigerator I will be recommending this site. Thanks for the advise.

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  • Master
  • 1,197 Answers

First we ll see how u need to check the defrost timer....
Before testing the defrost timer, unplug the freezer to avoid an electrical shock hazard.
A mechanical defrost timer controls the defrost cycle of the appliance. In older models, the timer runs continuously and roughly every six hours, shuts off power to the cooling system and sends power to the defrost heater. In newer models the timer advances only when the compressor or defrost cycle is running - an improvement for efficiency. As the timer advances, power to the heating element shuts off and power is restored to the cooling system. If the timer does not advance, the appliance will be stuck either in defrost or refrigerate mode, resulting in, respectively, no cooling or frost build-up.
The defrost timer is usually found behind the front grill of the freezer. It may also be found behind a cover plate inside the freezer, in the temperature control console, or behind the freezer near the compressor.
To test whether the defrost timer is simply failing to advance, locate the advance screw and turn it clockwise until you hear it click. This advances it to the next mode. If it was cooling before, it is now in defrost mode. Simply wait about 35 minutes and check whether it has left defrost mode and has resumed cooling (listen for the compressor). If it does not advance, the timer motor is probably bad and the entire timer needs to be replaced. If it advances as it should, then you can follow the steps below to test the switch electrically.
The timer is usually held in place with one or more screws. Remove the screws and gently pull the timer out far enough to disconnect the wiring connector. The connector can be removed by firmly pulling and rocking it left and right. It is not necessary to note the position of the wires because the connector plug is keyed so that it can be replaced in only one way.

Freezer and refrigerator are not - 6a51d74.jpg

Test the timer for continuity using a multitester. Set the multitester to the ohms setting X1. The timer has four terminals. Locate the common terminal, it should be labeled "3" or "C". If the terminals are not labeled, determine which terminal coincides with the common wire in the connector plug; it is usually the white wire.
Once you have located the common terminal, touch one probe to it. Touch the other probe to each of the three remaining terminals. The multitester should display a reading of zero or near to zero ohms (which indicates continuity) for one pair of the terminals and possibly two pairs. The third pair of terminals should show no continuity (infinity).
Locate the timer switch and turn it clockwise until you hear it click. Now retest the timer as you did above. One pair of terminals should indicate continuity (possibly two pairs). At least one pair should give a reading of infinity. Note however, one of the pairs that showed continuity in the first test should now read infinity and one pair that read infinity should now show continuity. If the defrost timer does not pass these tests, it is likely that it should be replaced.
* We have received two reports of cases in which only one pair of terminals shows continuity and when the timer is advanced, the same pair still shows continuity. For these isolated cases, this was reported to be the correct operation of the timer. At this time we have not been able verify this case. This may indicate a specific model or models that use a different wiring configuration than discussed in this article. Also, note that this article applies to mechanical defrost timer controls and not electronic or adaptive defrost controls.


now we ll see how we need to check the defrost heater.....

Before testing the defrost heater, again make sure u unplug the freezer to avoid an electrical shock hazard.
The defrost heater is located at the back of the freezer. It may be necessary to remove obstructions such as the contents of the freezer, freezer shelves, ice maker and the rear or bottom inside panel of the freezer.
The rear panel may be held in place by retainer clips or screws. Remove the screws or depress the retainer clips with a small screwdriver.
There are three primary types of defrost heater elements; exposed metal rod, metal rod covered with aluminum tape or a wire coil inside a glass tube. All three elements are tested in the same way.


The heater is connected by two wires.Label the wires and connections so that you can properly reconnect them later. The wires are connected with slip on connectors. Firmly pull the connectors off of the terminals (do not pull on the wire itself). You may need to use a pair of needle-nose pliers to remove the connectors. Inspect the connectors and the terminals for corrosion. If either is corroded they should be cleaned or replaced.
Test the heating element for continuity using a multitester. Set the multitester to the ohms setting X1. Place a probe on each terminal. The multitester should display a reading somewhere between zero and infinity. If the reading is not between those two extremes the heating element should be replaced.

Posted on Aug 01, 2010

  • SAM JAYANTH CHANDRASEKAR

    this is how u check the thermostat.....

    again Before testing the defrost thermostat, unplug
    the refrigerator to avoid an electrical shock hazard.
    Some defrost systems use a thermostat (a bi-metal
    switch) to prevent the defrost heater from overheating. The switch
    is normally closed. During a defrost cycle, the defrost heater
    causes the metal alloy in the switch to warm and as it does it
    curls back and breaks the circuit. As the metal cools, it makes
    a circuit again and the defrost heater starts heating again (as
    long as the defrost timer is in the defrost cycle). A defective
    thermostat can prevent the defrost heater from coming on or allow
    it to overheat which could result in heat damage or fire.



    The panel may be held in place by retainer clips
    or screws. Remove the screws or depress the retainer clips with
    a small screwdriver. On some older top freezers it is necessary
    to remove the plastic molding to access the freezer floor. Removal
    of that molding can be tricky -never force it. If you decide to
    remove it, you do so at your own risk - it is prone to breaking.
    Try warming it first with a warm, wet towel.
















    The thermostat is connected by two wires. The
    wires are connected with slip on connectors or a wiring harness.
    Firmly pull the connectors or harness off of the terminals (do
    not pull on the wire). You may need to use a pair of needle-nose
    pliers to remove the connectors. Inspect the connectors and the
    terminals for corrosion. If the connectors are corroded they should
    be replaced.


    Test the thermostat for continuity
    using a multitester.
    Set the multitester to the ohms setting X1. Place a probe on each
    terminal. The multitester should display a reading of zero when
    the thermostat is cold and a reading of infinity when it is warm
    (40 to 90 degrees F depending on the model). If the thermostat
    does not pass this test it should be replaced.


    with regard to the parts incase u need a replacement..... check out the below link....

    http://www.repairclinic.com/GE-Freezer-P...






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  • Master
  • 532 Answers

Hello,

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.

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.
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
Thanks for contacting Fixya.

Posted on Jul 31, 2010

  • knowolive200 Aug 01, 2010

    You just repeated what you found here : http://www.repairclinic.com/Refrigerator...


    I looked at the obvious. I need to know how to check if the defrost thermostat or defrost timer is malfunctioning. Where are they located and how do I check the item with a multimeter?


    The freezer to refrigerator plenum is obvious. Is there a return air plenum from refrigerator to freezer? Where is it located? I took the entire feed plenum apart and did not see a return path.


    If a return plenum is obstructed the feed plenum may not let air into the refrigerator box from above because of the back air pressure. I want to check that it is not blocked.

  • Rahman Rufai Aug 01, 2010

    Hi



    1. Locate your defrost heater. It can be located behind the back panel
      of the freezer section of your refrigerator, or under the floor of your
      refrigerator's freezer section. Defrost heaters are commonly located
      beneath a refrigerator's evaporator coils. You will have to remove any
      objects that are in your way such as the contents of the freezer,
      freezer shelves, icemaker parts, and the inside rear, back, or bottom
      panel.



    2. The panel you need to remove may be held in place with either
      retainer clips or screws. Remove the screws or use a screwdriver to
      release the clips holding the panel in place. Some older refrigerators
      may require that you remove a plastic molding before you can gain access
      to the freezer floor. Exercise caution when removing the molding, as it
      does break fairly easily. You could try warming it with a warm, wet
      towel first.



    3. Defrost heaters are available in one of three primary types: exposed
      metal rod, metal rod covered with aluminum tape, or a wire coil inside a
      glass tube. Each of these three types is tested in exactly the same
      way.



    4. Before you can test your defrost heater, you have to remove it from
      your refrigerator. A defrost heater is connected by two wires, and the
      wires are connected with slip-on connectors. Firmly grasp these
      connectors and pull them off the terminals. You may need a pair of
      needle-nosed pliers to help you. Do not pull on the wires themselves.



    5. Use your multitester to test the heater for continuity. Set your
      multitester to the R X 1 scale. Place the tester's leads on one terminal
      each. This should produce a reading anywhere in between zero and
      infinity. If your multitester produces a reading of zero, or a reading
      of infinity, then your defrost heater should most definitely be
      replaced. There are many different kinds of elements, and so it is
      difficult to say what exactly the reading should be for your defrost
      heater. But it definitely should not be zero or infinity. If it is,
      replace the mechanism.
    Thanks.


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