Freezer has "hot element" smell

This morning I finally traced down the source of an odd smell in the kitchen: The feezer above the fridge. The smell is a lot like the inside of an oven that hasn't been cleaned in a long time. It was hard to trace because it's not very strong unless the freezer is on a cooling cycle and you happen to have the freezer door open, at which point you get a face full of the odor.
Possibly related is a strange thing that happened on the circuit the fridge is plugged in to. The whole circuit was dead, but the breaker wasn't flipped. After the wiggling the plug of the fridge the whole circuit came back on. It's fluttered just a bit since then.
The fridge is unplugged presently.
Any ideas?
Cheers, -Ed Evans
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Defrost and clean the freezer and refridgerator with vinigar, giving special attention to the tubes connecting the two, and other hard-to reach places, and replace that outlet.
The refridgerator really should be on it's own circut, not least because everything ELSE in the kitchen ought to be GFCI.
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Larry Caldwell wrote in message ...

I agree!
Dan O. - Appliance411.com http://ng.Appliance411.com/?ref411=+fridge
=~~~~~~
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(Ed Evans) writes:

Bingo. The receptacle was in fact nicely melted, though not in the place the fridge was plugged into. A kitchen hood was plugged into the melty one. It wasn't a stab-in receptacle. What other problems could have caused it? I have a picture or two of the fried outlet, if that would help.
I did trim the wires back and replace the outlet, and I'll be sure to screw those terminals down tight.
Cheers, -Ed Evans
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