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Keeping it cool when your fridge is on the fritz
Appliances

Keeping it cool when your fridge is on the fritz

Dr.Gaurav Sood

Refrigerator is an important appliance of your home which prevents food spoilage, saving you from getting sick! So, saying this appliance is important is clearly an understatement. Therefore keeping your fridge in proper working condition is part of your well-being. Just like any electronic machine, it may break down unexpectedly, so it is important to make sure your fridge is working properly to avoid food spoilage and possible foodborne illnesses. Here are some things that you might be able to fix on your own when your refrigerator malfunctions without calling in the professionals.

Ice maker issues

Image: Ytimg

What’s the problem: My ice maker has stopped making ice.

What to do: The first things to do is to check the water supply. If the waterline is blocked, water can’t get into the ice maker module to make ice. If you have verified that water is getting into the module, check the water filter. If the water filter needs to be changed it could keep the ice maker from producing ice.
Some other quick checks to see if they are the culprits to the lack of ice: the ice maker switch could be off or could be defective. Also, the ice maker thermostat could be bad, and it could also be a water pressure issue.

When it comes to these complex issues, it’s better to call in the professional.

What not to do: Don’t start replacing all the parts of your ice maker until you know which part isn’t working properly. It can be a pain to replace parts and then not have them fix the problem. So, while some parts might be easier to replace, you should make sure you know what is causing the problem before replacing any of the components.

What’s the problem: Ice maker is not working at all.

What to do: First check the temperature of the freezer, and it must be below 10° for the water in the ice maker to actually freeze. If the temperature is not below 10° then the issue might be that the freezer is too stuffed and blocking the condenser fan. If the fan is blocked it can’t cool the water properly to make ice.

If the fan is not blocked and your freezer isn’t below the 10° mark, then it might be time to call in a professional. If you prefer to try and tackle things yourself you can try to defrost your freezer to see if that will help.

After defrosting your freezer and clearing the condenser fan, if your ice maker still isn’t cool enough to make ice, you should probably call in a professional.

What not to do: Do not ignore this problem at all. If your ice maker isn’t working it could be sign of a bigger issue down the road. If your freezer isn’t getting cool enough it could cause items to thaw and go bad.

Fridge not cool

Image: Fix

What’s the problem: I’ve noticed that my fridge isn’t as cool as it should be, and I have already tried adjusting the thermostat to a cooler setting.

What to do: One of the most common reasons a refrigerator has poor cooling is because of a defrost system failure. What you should look for to see if the defrost system isn’t working properly is to look for frost build up on the inside bottom of the freezer, if the fridge’s freezer is above the main section. If there is a frost build up, that’s clear indicator that the defrost system is not working properly.

Another possibility that one can easily fix is if the door seal on the fridge is bad. You can check this by looking at the seal and it can easily be removed and a new one put on. This fix is so easy, anyone can actually do it!

What not to do: Do not ignore this problem, while it might not be an easy fix like adjusting the thermostat or changing the door seal, making sure your fridge stays at a cool temp is important to ensure that your food doesn’t spoil or get anyone sick.

Freezer frosting

Image: Fab Grandma

What’s the problem: There is frost everywhere on the inside of my freezer.

What to do: One of the first things to do is check the temperature of your fridge to see if your freezer is over frosting from an issue with your fridge, as discussed above. If the fridge is maintaining its cool temperature, the next issue could be the freezer door. Much like the fridge door, if the seal on the freezer is worn down or damaged it can allow air flow into the freezer. This would cause moisture to enter the freezer and freeze causing the frost. The door seal on the freezer is a simple $5 fix apparently.

Also Read: 15 ways to recycle old refrigerator

Make sure the air vents are not blocked. If an air vent is blocked it can also create frost in the freezer. This is an easy fix that costs nothing! Then there is a simple fix if the freezer door gets left open a lot, let’s say if you have a small child who forgets to shut the freezer door. If this happens this can also cause frost to appear in your freezer. Anything involving moving the appliance away from the wall or taking something apart should be only done by professionals. Sometimes saving a few bucks by trying to do it yourself can lead to more complex issues.

What not to do: If your freezer is having frost build up on the inside that is an indicator that something is wrong with your freezer or fridge. Do not ignore this problem and think, well, of course, there might be frost in there, after all, it’s a freezer! Well, in-depth knowledge about how refrigerators work is not so common in fact.

A few simple ways to try and keep your fridge working properly:

Check the door seals on the fridge and freezers, ensure that the vents are not blocked, and maintain a constant temperature in both your freezer and fridge.

Try and keep your fridge and freezer full. If your fridge or freezer is constantly empty there is nothing to keep cool and the unit will have to work harder to maintain a cool temperature.

The items in the freezer and fridge help maintain the cool temperature. The less you have in there the harder it is for the freezer or fridge to keep the items cool. A packed fridge is a happy fridge!

DIY vs. professional assistance

Image: Scats Flowers

The rule of thumb is that if one can’t easily reach the part of the unit that needs repair or disassembling, call a qualified professional. Also, if the refrigerator is covered under warranty at the point when a problem occurs, always call a professional. Otherwise for issues that have a quick fix should be solved on your own.

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