Question about Refrigerators

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Hi, The Earth Leakage Breaker (ELCB) in our home starting tripping occasionally on the switchboard, then more frequently until the wife hassled me to fix it. I did some isolating, and it turned out to be the fridge causing the problem. When you turn the fridge beeps at you like it does whenever you turn it back on after you have moved it or something, and then after 30-40Sec...there's a relay click in the back of the fridge, and then "ching".....the ELCB trips. Our fridge is a Fisher and Paykel(E442B Australian 240V model). It has a Active Smart Module controlling the Compressor, Defrost, Lights...bla bla...etc. It's the brains of the Fridge, and the source of the relay/switch sound that I hear about 1 fempto second before the ELCB trips on the Switchboard. At first I thought.....ahhh the compressor for sure. Every time you reset the breaker and turn the fridge on, it probably has a delaye start of 30-40sec, before the relay clicks on to start the compressor....and then "ching".....ELCB trips because the compressor is toasted. So to prove my theory........I disconnected the cable from the Active Smart Module going to the Compressor(and there's only one cable going to the compressor that supplies power and the control signals/feedback). I then turned the fridge on......30-40 seconds later, the relay/switch clicking sound and ...."ching" the ELCB trips again. I'm now thinking "Active Switch Module" ???? My 3 questions to you guys if I may please ..... 1. Have you heard of the Fisher Paykel (New Zealand) brand ? :-) 2. Have you come across this fault before in a Fisher and Paykel Fridge ? 3. Do you know if these Active Switch Modules are fixabale, or is it a replacement module only ? Regards Jeff Electronics Tech No Experience with Fridges though :-)

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  • Anonymous Mar 29, 2014

    When we on ElCB, its Trips Immediately, How Can i do Remedy Action?


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My guess is the defrost heater. Corrosion would cause a small current leakage to the earth circuit, thereby tripping the ELCB safety circuit (Earth Leakage Circuit Breaker). Call serviceman to replace defrost heater.

Posted on Feb 28, 2010

  • chrizzie Feb 28, 2010

    ELCB also known as an RCD (Residual current device).


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What is elcb

Posted on Nov 16, 2008

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You should have an appliance service person come out for a service call since there may be a dangerous shock hazard present on the machine.


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The washing machine is obviously drawing too much current for the breaker to handle. This could be due to the washing machine drawing more that it should or because the breaker cannot handle the current the machine needs, coupled with the other machines on the ring main. If the fuse on the plug of the washing machine does not blow, then it could be that there are too many appliances on the ring main. The fuse on the machine may not blow however, if the breaker has a faster blow time than the fuse in the plug. Try plugging the washing machine into another ring main. Or try plugging out all the other appliances on the same ring main and test it out.

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One common problem is the heating element. Over time they tend to crack and when the water gets in, the ELCB will trip out. This can be problematic to diagnose as offten the element will only trip after a period of heating. Bottom line, if it is tripping the ELCB then it is dangerous and should be fixed before any further use.

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