I have a Sears Kenmore Elite, approximately 2001 model, side by side,
refrigerator that stopped cooling. I'm a common consumer that is
fairly handy, but I called a sears repair man to come fix it because I
just didn't want to deal with it.
I noticed a puddle of water about 3 feet in diameter on the floor in
the front of my fridge. I could hear the freezer running but there was
no cool air blowing in the freezer or fridge. I think the water on the
floor was the food melting, but I'm not completely sure. Anyway, the
freezer and fridge were no longer working.
When I first brought my refrigerator home a few years ago, I had to
take the molding off of the cabinets and ram it in its spot against the
wall. It was a very tight fit. I figured I'd never get it out of
there in one piece and feared the day I had to paint the wall or have
to fix a broken fridge. Besides, I've wrecked a floor at my last house
pulling a fridge out from the wall. For this reason alone I justified
calling a repairman.
The sears repair man was in his 50s and kind of grumpy. He had my
fridge out in the middle of the floor by himself in less than a minute
by just grabbing the front of the fridge low and pulling. I was
impressed. Within 2 minutes he diagnosed the problem as being the
relay switch part#(2204307) and gave me an estimate of $215 for part
and Labor. As always, I asked if its any cheaper if I pay cash to see
if I could get a break. The repair man said, "Sears doesn't care how
After he closed the work order and packed everything up I asked him if
the defrosting coil should be as hot as it is? If you don't know what
this is, its the heating coil that warms the casing of the freezer
where the door meets. It heats up to prevent frost from forming. The
wall that separates the fridge from the freezer was getting so hot that
you couldn't touch it for more than 2 seconds without having to pull
your hand away. This has been happening for last 6 months or so.
Everything I read on the subject said either this is normal or that I
should keep my coils clean. The repair man, Jim, said "it's probably
the fan". He pulled my refrigerator out again and saw that the fan
wasn't running. He said the fans don't run constantly but if the unit
is running the fan should be running too. He checked to see if there
was any obstruction in the fan blade, but here wasn't. It turned out
to be a bad fan motor part2206036. The fridge ran great after that.
He said the relay switch probably died because it got too hot from the
fan not working. He charged me another $96 for the part and said there
won't be an extra charge for the labor. It took him 10 minutes to
change the relay and at most 20 to change the fan motor. Total bill
was about $310. The relay looked very easy to replace, just a matter
of unplugging wires from the old and putting on the new. You'd have to
remove the access panel from the back of the fridge, of course. Same
with the fan motor only you have to swap the fan blade from the old to
the new motor.
I must say, I'm very pleased with the service Sear's gave me. The man
was very knowledgeable and fast.
Thinking back, I do remember an occasional faint burning smell in the
kitchen for about a week or two before this all happen.
Three weeks later I get a call from Sears asking if I want to purchase
a warrantee for my fridge. 3 years $250, 2 years $175 and 1 year $96.
Anyway, I'm hoping someone will learn from this post just as I have
from many other post. Please take the time after your next repair on
anything to post what you've learned. Its a small price to pay for
such a great benefit to someone else.