In the freezer portion of my fridge I've started having a problem with
I went on a four day trip, and when I came back everything in the
freezer had a thick coating of frosty ice crystals.
I thought perhaps I had left the door cracked a bit so I cleaned off the
frost, checked the door seals - they seem air tight, and closed it back up.
But the frost continues to build no matter what I do. My first thought
was an air leak letting humidity into the freezer, but the seals seem fine.
It cools fine - i can turn the thermostat down cold enough to freeze
everything in the fridge portion too.
What else can cause this?
Another thing you can do to ensure the seals cling tightly is to
take a little dish soap and smear it on the door seal. It gets and
stays tacky as it dries, and that can often be enough to stop a
small air leak without having to replace the door seal. I got that
tip from a fridge repair guy and it worked for me when the problem
was that the seal was leaking just a little. It wouldn't hurt to
give it a try.
So how do I check them? I inspected them visually, I ran my fingers
along their entire lengths to check for cracks, warping, etc.
I took a damp cloth and cleaned the seals and the frame where it goes.
It all seemed good...
The fridge is less than three years old.
That would be my suspicion too. Door seals don't fail on 3 year old
fridges and with a failing seal, the problem comes about slowly, not
all of a sudden. If the door is closing properly, then the automatic
defrost is likely not working.
But, if it were the defrost cycle, it
would not usually cool properly. I have
had that problem recently with a Kitchen
Aid built in .... well actually, 2
years ago and now again recently. Both
the fridge and freezer stopped
cooling properly. 2 years ago, I shut
it down and called the service
company. They came out, complained that
I shut it off, said I needed
a new compressor (because it was "5
years since last replaced") and left.
After they left (leaving the unit on) I
noticed it was cooling normally. So
I watched it. It worked for 2 years
perfectly. And then about a month
ago it iced up. The coils were nice and
frosty. I disassemble the coil
area in the freezer, checked that the
ice melting heater had continuity and
checked the defrost temperature sensor,
which click at about 32 degrees.
I assumed it must be the 3rd and last
component in the defrost cycle, the
timer. For $20, I replaced the timer
and it has been working since. Also
it now runs much less with this newly
designed timer. I think the old design
timer defrosted much more than necessary.
Anyway, when my defrost cycle was bad, I
really didn't get too much
frost on anything except the coils ...
maybe a little more. But, if it were
really humid in the OP's area and the
door opened a lot, that may account
for the frost, if the defrost was not
well, i had exactly the same problem as the OP, and it was the defrost
relay. it would get cold, but would build up 2" of ice in a couple of days
on the back wall of the freezer (humid part of summer in phoenix). it still
kept good temps in both the freezer and fridge.
Typically, the defrost timer turns on
the heater after an amount of time,
sometimes compressor run time, some just
plain real time. The defrost
thermostat shuts off the heater once the
coils reach a temperature above
freezing .... no sense in adding extra
heat to the freezer. If the thermostat
button is stuck open, the heater won't
go on at all. I guess if the system
was designed to be just barely enough,
some ice would probably cause
a reduction in air flow and reduced
cooling. However, if there's lots of
extra cooling and air path, it might
keep cooling for a while until it gets
completely blocked up with ice and no
air flows ... no cooling.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.