my self-defrosting (Fridgedair - upright and side by side)
fridge is freezing up on a weekly cycle. If i defrost the
**cooling coils** in the freezer manually on Monday the coils are
frozen/frosted up by the following Monday... essentially blocking
the cold air from going to the refridgerator side.
When i manually defrosted i measured the resistance of the heater
element going around the cooling coils at 19.2 Ohms ?
What could be possible conditions to cause such a problem ?
what sort of components or actions should i be doing to repair ?
helpful advice greatly appreciated.
there is also usually a defrost thermostat that turns off the heater
when the temp at the thermostat reaches a point above freezing. If the
thermostat is open, the heater never gets power, and it ices up.
There should be a defrost timer which turns the compressor off at
scheduled times & maybe even turns heasting coils on to speed up
defrost. They are prone to failure, but cheap to replace. Mine is a
black rectangle maybe 2" X 3" with a small knob sticking out to
advance it manually. There may be other styles, but refrigeration
places have them as does Ebay.
My guess would be a bad defrost timer. As I understand it, these are
typically little timing motor bits, not all that unlike dryer timers,
that operate a defrost cycle every now and again, shutting off the
compressor and turning on the defrost elements for a spell.
If it's the timer, replacing it would be the obvious correct repair (and
stands a good chance of being economical, to boot). Of course, if it's
an old fridge, you may be money ahead in the long term to get a new,
more efficient model instead, simply based upon electricity savings.
"He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot
As others have suggested, check the defrost timer. You will likely find it
at the bottom of the fridge, maybe even behind the little (mostly)
decorative "vent panel". While you're at it, test the door seals. The test
I've used is a dollar bill wedged between the metal and the door seal with
the door shut. There should be tension when you pull on the bill. If not,
you have a leaky spot in the seal.
The timer runs all the time, and you can advance it with a knob or by using
a screwdriver as a test. You should be able to cycle the compressor on and
off, as well as the heater. However, it's the compressor you will notice the
The FAQ for this group suggests failures can occur if the timer gets cold or
the power goes out. Grease in the timer might harden to the point where the
timer can't run or parts break.
I had this happen to our fairly new Frigidaire. Element tested
ok, timer motor worked. It turns out a mouse? chewed through the
wire between timer motor and element. 6 or 8 wires in the bundle,
only chewed through the one.
Too bad the timer didn't activate the wire while he was chewing.
Keep the whole world singing . . . .
If it's the old style design, you may have a bad termination
thermostat, or a bad defrost timer. What I do, is to wait
till the fridge is badly frosted. Advance the timer into
defrost mode, and check the amp draw of the fridge. Defrost
heaters run about 5 amps. That helps you decide what parts
Thanks to all the responses, I appreciate your time and help.
I found the Defrost Timer under a panel inside the refridgerator
and there was a manual advance access hole to advance the timer
to the defrost mode.
I tried advancing the timer to defrost, the refridgerator
shutdown but the defroster did not appear to turn on as you can
just see it (feel it) through a vent in the back of the freezer
section. It never got warm/hot and the refridgerator would turn
back on after about 10-15 minutes.
I removed the timer and tested the contacts and it seemed to be
functioning as expected. That is, it shift a common contact from
one pole to another pole as you manually cycle the timer.
I removed the evaporator coil cover to check for power to the
defroster/heater. I cycled the timer and no power.
I pulled and tested the defrost thermostat and it was not giving
very good resistance readings it was bouncing all over from 300 K
to 3.4 M-Ohms. ? it never really settled and that was when it was
cold at 14 F or warm at 90 F
So, i guess it is a Defrost Thermostat problem.
I will order one and replace , hopefully that is the trouble.
Thanks to all for the help.
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