Question about Refrigerators

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The unit compressor will not run, wondering if it's a component that supports the compressor or the compressor it'self. how do I tell? there is some clicking within a white component mounted on the compressor. any easy checks before I chuck the thing and buy a new one?

Posted by adam_elkin on


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D. Floyd Kolb

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Many times a freezer and/or refrigeratordo not work right because of a dirty condenser coil...there are also many otherthings that can go wrong. If you are hearing a clicking or buzzing thencheck out the last two tips.

If your refrigerator is running but warm, then...

Check out these tips that I wrote about that... it is a great place to starttrouble shooting your unit...and something that you can do rather then callinga repair person to do a simple thing for you...

Refrigerator Condenser Coil Cleaning Refrigerator Repair

Refrigerator Troubleshooting Refrigerator Compressor

Refrigerator Compressor Start Capacitor and Start Relay
Refrigerator or Freezer not Cooling or Getting Cold

= =-

Posted on Sep 14, 2011


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Fan won't run / won't cool

It may have a faulty compressor relay or overload, best to change both at the same time. It's either that or a bad compressor.

I’m happy to assist further over the phone at


Dehumidifier is running but no water is in bucket

If you have a dehumidifier that is not producing any water then you are wondering what you need to do to get this thing to work for you. In some cases you may be able to do something and in other situations there may be nothing that you can do.

If you do not hear the compressor running and the unit says that the humidity in the room is higher then the setting, then you have a problem with your dehumidifier.

A few things that can cause this are:

The circuit board relay has gone bad…replacement of this board will often cost more then a new unit. This also is a very common problem with many dehumidification units.

The compressor has failed…if you hear a buzz for a few seconds, every few minutes, then you have a bad compressor or at least bad start components on the compressor. Either way it again is a costly repair.

If the compressor is running and the coils are not getting cold then you have a refrigeration system leak. Recharging or fixing these units is very difficult and is another costly venture compared to the price of a new dehumidifier.

If the compressor is running but the fan is not, this also will cause low water production and continual freezing of the coil.

If the compressor and the fan are running but the coil is totally blocked then you will get no water production. Air needs to be continually moved over the cold coil to get the water out of the air.

If nothing is running, then you may also have a control board failure. Or the humidity sensor or humidistat has gone bad which tells the machine to run. If the sensor says that the humidity is low enough then it will never run.

Also if nothing is running check the float switch or the bucket switch. Many of these switches are very touchy and if you do not have the bucket in place just exactly right it will not trip the switch to allow the unit to run. These switches often are more fragile then they should be and break easily. The good thing is that when available they are easy to replace and relatively inexpensive.

There are some parts available for a few brands, but with the prices for most of the parts that you can replace running anywhere from 40.00 – 80.00 dollars, replacement parts with labor to install them, makes a repair more then the few hundred dollar cost of many of these dehumidifiers.

As you can see there are quite a few things that can cause your dehumidifier not to work. Systematically go through the list and eliminate things to get to the bottom of the issue causing your problem and then decide if it is worth spending the money to try to fix the old unit. Only you can make that decision.

on Apr 30, 2010 • Dehumidifiers

Hello, I'm wondering if you might have an idea on what might be going on with my Trane xl 13i. When it runs, it runs perfectly fine and cools according to the 'stat setting and for several hours....

Good day!!!

that problem is commonly cause of bad defrost thermostat but you said the tech is already replaced the thermostat so you have other problem..

please check the ac cord on your unit because it possibly loose wire or break..

try to check it by touching it and gently shake it and look at the unit if have power malfunction when you shake the ac wire..

When we turn on our Duo Therm AC unit it comes on then within seconds it sounds quieter, like it has cycled down, then it flips the breaker off

My guess is that the compressor it stuck or the start components are not working, without a amp clamp its hard to tell. If the start components are bad than the compressor may be trying to start on the run winding, that it can't do, For less than the price of a service call you can buy the start comp. and change them out and back to working again. Of course the compressor could be bad, and now you have new good start components, still cheaper than a service call. You would need the make and model of the compressor usually on the top of it or the side on a plate of metal get all the info because what you think might be the model number might not and back you go looking again for the right info.
If your game you will need a current relay, start cap and the overload. You may have trouble getting them due do the fact the your a home owner but go to a appliance repair shop and they can get them for you. All these are on the compressor, and or in the controls panel, small window units they are on or near the comp. larger units the parts are in the control panel. Not knowing what unit you have. It could just be the run cap and have not current relay or start cap. Good luck

I have a Trane unit 2 Ton that was washed down with the unit running. Was told unit compressor changed tunes while doing so. i suspect the compressor is shorted since it will not come back on , fan is...

A 'short' would be indicated by a breaker tripping or a fuse blowing at the time you turn on the unit, so I don't think you are dealing with a short. Since the compressor is a 'sealed unit' it's doubtful if you harmed it. However, washing down an AC with it running is not advisable and in fact is very dangerous. Electricity and water do not mix and a person can easily electrocute himself/herself doing this. That being said I would make sure the entire unit has dried out and with all power off - then 'inspect' all the electrical components - i.e. wire connections and 'starter relay' to make sure everything is in good condition. The fact that the fan is running indicates the 'starter relay' is ok - again - I would check all the electrical components, especially where the wires connect to the compressor. My guess is you have a wire burnt off of the compressor which probably happened while the unit was being washed.

Kenmore central air conditioning unit tripping breaker each time we turn it on.

The breaker tripping when you turn the unit on indicates a 'direct short' and 99 out of a 100 times the short will be either the outside fan motor or the compressor itself. Either way - you will need a qualified serviceperson to diagnose this problem correctly and make the needed repairs.
Best solution is to call AC person.
However, here's a good way you can get it down to either the fan motor or the compressor.
(1) With all power OFF - disconnect the wires to the fan motor
(2) turn on AC unit (a) if breaker trips it means the compressor is probably the shorted component. (b) if breaker DOES NOT trip and the compressor runs - it means the fan motor is shorted.
(3) If breaker tripped with the fan motor disconnected meaning the compressor is probably shorted you can then (with ALL POWER OFF) 'disconnect the wires going to the compressor' and re-connect the fan motor wires. Turn on power - and if fan motor runs (with compressor wires off) you know it's the compressor that is shorted.
After all this you will now know which of the two (compressor or fan motor) is shorted.
If it's the fan motor you can with 'limited mechanical experience' change the motor yourself, but if it's the compressor you will need to call a serviceperson because of the expertise needed to replace the compressor.


I have a Coleman roof mounted AC unit on a travel trailer. The unit model is 83338715. The unit just blows cool air not cold air like it should. I was told to replace the "Hard Start Capacitor"...

Blowing 'cool air' could mean - room temperature air or it could be 'cool' because the system is low on refrigerant, and just barely doing any 'cooling' at all.
To determine which is which - you need to know "for sure" if the compressor is running or not.
Sometimes, compressors run really smooth and quiet (especially if they have a low charge) - so you will need to feel the compressor. The safe way to do this is to get a screwdriver and press the tip against the compressor while it's running to see if you can actually feel it running. You should feel a slight/moderate vibration.
If it is running - I would suspect that you have a refrigerant problem (low charge) and the only true way to determine that would be with gauges. Note: if the unit has never been opened (does not have charging ports on it), then you will need a service person to install them/and to recharge unit. Note: there are 'self-tapping' charging ports on the market but I would not go that route as they tend to 'leak,' which will just be a problem down the road. Note: if you have a serviceperson do this BE SURE he/she actually 'welds' the service ports in - instead of using the above mentioned 'self-tapping valves.' The argument for 'self-tapping valves' is you will not have to recharge the unit, but still, I would not want the 'self-tappers' because of their tendency to leak.
Also - if you have a 'low charge' and you have the above mentioned procedure done by a service person or you end up doing it yourself - don't forget that the reason the charge was low to begin with is that you have had a 'leak,' and that the leak "must" be found and fixed or you will have the same problem down the road. All refrigerant leaks should be fixed by welding although they do have a new 'sealer' on the market that supposedly will seal refrigerant leaks. I personally, do not trust these new sealers and would not have anything to do with it. Plus - they cost about $75 which to me is not worth it especially when the results in my opinion are likely to be unsatisfactory.
If it's "not running." I would want to check and make sure the compressor is getting voltage.
At this point - depending on how mechanically/electrically inclined you are - you might want to have a service person look at it - because trouble-shooting with the power (electricity) on - is a somewhat precarious thing and I would never advise someone who is not qualified to be doing this.
As for the run capacitor - they rarely cause trouble and I would not suspect it for the problem you have.

My dehumidifier compressor runs and then shuts off, then runs and shuts off, continuously. The fan continues to run. It seems to be pulling water, though it's hard to tell how much because I have a...

Part of the problem may be that you have the humidity level set to high. The fan runs constantly to move the air around. When the unit senses a humidity level higher than what you have it set for, the compressor turns ON. Once it's ON, if the humidity level is short lived, it turns OFF.

Try setting the humidity level to the lowest possible setting. Usually, that 45%. If the humidity level in you home is higher than that, the compressor should turn ON and run until either the bucket is full or the humidity level reaches 45%. If this doesn't solve the problem, turn the Master ON/OFF Switch to OFF and unplug the unit from the wall outlet for 12-15 minutes. Plug the unit bakc in, turn the Master ON/OFF Switch to ON and set the humidity level at it's lowest setting. Allow the unit to run until it cuts OFF and check the bucket for water. Hopefully that 12-15 minute time out allowed the unit to reset itself.

Hope this helped you to troubleshoot and solve the problem. Please let me know. Thanks.


Susan, I really couldn't tell how long the extension cord you're using is or the gauge wire of the cord. I suspect it was a type-O. In any event, for an A/C unit the gauge wire of the extension cord should be no smaller than a 12 gauge and should have a grounding plug. The length shouldn't be more 10 to 12' . Any longer and you may have some voltage loss, when the compressor kicks in (surges) to start cooling.

Hope this helped to answer your question.

Fridge/Frezer stop working

Can you tell if the compressor (black soccer ball looking thing in the rear of the unit) is running? Is it really hot? Is the little fan running near it? If the compressor isn't running it won't cool. Also check that the coil in the freezer section isn't frozen solid blocking all air flow inside the unit. The other thing is that the defrost cycle may be "stuck" so it thinks it should be defrosting (therefore not running the compressor, etc.) Lots of things to check but that info will help decide which way to go so post what you find please.
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