Self Check: Freezer Not Cold
Is your freezer not cold or not cold enough? If your ice isn’t freezing completely or your frozen goods keep frosting over, you have a serious food storage problem that could introduce bacteria to your frozen foods. Fortunately, there are some easy DIY options that may be able to fix the problem before calling a refrigerator repair professional.
Clear the freezer vents.
Along the interior walls of your freezer are a set of vents designed to regulate temperature in your freezer. If your freezer is packed to the brim, you could have airflow issues that are impacting freezer performance. Try rearranging your freezer until there is at least an inch of space around every vent. If the vents are dirty or frozen, give them a thorough cleaning.
Clean the condenser coils.
This should be a standard practice every six months (more if you have a lot of dust or pet dander in your kitchen). The condenser coil is located on the back or bottom of the unit and can be cleaned using a vacuum or long brush (available at most hardware stores).
Check the condenser fan.
Near the condenser coils in the back rear of the unit is the condenser fan. This fan is designed to force air over the condenser coils, which aids in removing heat from the compressor and coil. Without this air circulation, the refrigerator compressor may overheat. Unplug the fridge then remove the access panel to examine the fan. Clean as needed. Check for debris or damage, and manually rotate the fan to identify any problems.
Check the thermostat.
Note the current position, then move the dial all the way in one direction then the other. You should hear a click when the compressor is engaged and the refrigerator should become slightly louder. If there is no reaction, the thermostat may be defective. If you have two freezer or outdoor thermometers, you can put one in the freezer and one in the fridge to monitor relative temperature. The fridge should be below 40 degrees Fahrenheit while the freezer should be below 0 degrees Fahrenheit. If the difference between the two makes this balance impossible, the issue is specific to the freezer and is probably related to the evaporator.
Check the evaporator fan and coils.
These are located either in the back or under the floor plate of the freezer. You will need to unplug your refrigerator and remove your frozen goods to access this area. If the evaporator is not functioning correctly, you may find ice buildup on the evaporator coils and/or fan. Try melting the ice using warm water in a turkey baster or spray bottle then use towels to dry up any excess water. Inspect the evaporator fan for any damage and see if the fan can turn manually. If you can see any damage, you may need to replace the component. If you do not see any damage, try running the freezer normally and monitor the issue to see if it returns.
Check the circuit boards.
If the previous methods produce no results, you can check the circuit boards for any type of damage. Damage to the control board is rare, so be sure to contact a professional refrigerator repair technician for proper diagnosis.
For fast, reliable refrigerator repair assistance, contact DeserTech Appliance Service.