Question about Kenmore 73892 / 73894 Top Freezer Refrigerator

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Coils icing up?

How do I get at the coils to melt the ice?

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Sounds like a defrost problem. Check to see if there is any frost buildup in the back wall of the freezer. If so, it is not defrosting as it should.

  • possible causes:
  1. bad defrost timer
  2. bad defrost heater (in freezer)
  3. bad thermo switch in freezer
If you don’t know what these are then unplug the machine and let the ice melt in the freezer overnight with the door open. Then try it the next day, if is cooling fine then you need to have a service person replace one of the above items. 

Posted on Jun 29, 2008

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Unplug 2 hours which helps melt ice impacted coils. Some ice makers have a reset button that essentially does the same thing. Never open door for long period or store liquids in fridge without a lid as condensation freezes on coils giving erratic operation. Also make sure drain clear at bottom of coil to allow drainage.

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The ice maker makes ice and fills the ice bin but every few days the ice melts and creates a frozen ice scicle path to the lower tray and all the ice has melted and frozen again below the ice maker.


The problem with the ice melting points toward a cooling problem in the freezer. This could be caused by several different problems. Dirty condenser coils below the refrigerator could be contributing to this problem. I recommend checking and cleaning these coils if necessary.

Check the door seal on your freezer. A leak through the freezer door seal may be allowing warm air to enter the freezer and melt the ice.

Make sure that your temperature control is set properly.

If these tips do not help resolve the problem, it is likely that you have a component failure or a sealed system problem. The thermostat could be bad. You could have a condenser or evaporator fan problem. You could also have a defrost system failure that is causing your cooling problem. A weak compressor would also cause this symptom.

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The ice build up on the cooling coils prevents you fridge from cooling properly. You need to unplug it and allow the ice to melt. When the coils are free of ice, the fridge should work better. Hope this helps you.

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Your defrost timer or heating coil for auto defrost may be out. To determine, turn off until all ice melts, restart. It will take about a month for ice to reform.

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Sounds like your auto defrost is not running long enough to melt the ice that develops on the coils. You can easily fix this problem by using a hair dryer and removing the back panel in the freezing unit to reveal the coils. Once this panel is out use the hair dryer to melt the ice. Once the ice is cleared this should restore air flow across the coils. Hope this helps. Good luck.

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You can test defrost element with an ohm meter(located inside freezer coils-will have two wires going to a plug connection), if OK replace defrost timer (located in various places depending on make and model of fridge)

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Freezer Coils icing over


Drain clogged.

Directly below the coils is the drain. You may have to use a hair dryer to remove the Ice so you can see the drain hole but it's there. Once you unclog the drain all that water should go down and into a plastic pan under the Ref. Heat from the compressor will evaporate the water so, you should never have to empty this pan.

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