Refrigerators may solve a simple purpose in our lives but they are actually complex machines. Just like any machine, it is common for your refrigerator to stop working. If you have landed on this article after getting frustrated with your fridge not cooling, don’t worry, you’re in the right place. Here’s how you can overcome this issue.
Simple Things You Can Check
Usually, the most obvious answers are the correct ones. Here are the things you should do:
Make Sure Your Fridge Is Getting Power
If the power cord is loose or the breaker is flipped, the fridge may be shut down. A simple way to check this is to open the fridge. If the fridge light is on, it is working. If not, replug your fridge and wait for it to cool. If the fridge is still not cooling, read on for more solutions.
Check the Refrigerator’s Thermostat
If you have just installed a new fridge, it may take some time for it to cool. Usually, the temperature is set between 35 and 37 degrees Fahrenheit. Check your refrigerator thermostat for this temperature. If the thermostat is titled at a higher degree, tilt it back to the optimum temperature and wait for it to cool. Depending on the model of fridge you have, the thermostat can be found inside or outside your refrigerator.
In the case of an older fridge, the accuracy of the thermostat may not be right. You must check using an external temperature.
Test the Seals on Your Fridge Doors
The seals on your refrigerator door create a vacuum for the cooling to stay inside. If your fridge is old, the seals may lose their potency leading to your refrigerator not cooling properly. To check if the seal is working, you can put a thin piece of paper and close the door. If the paper does not pull out while the door is closed, your seals are working. However, if it easily slips out, that means that the fridge seal has gotten brittle and it needs replacement. Ensure that you check the side and the bottom side before decide on whether or not to replace the refrigerator seal.
To ensure a proper replacement job, it is advised that you call a professional. However, if you want to do it yourself, you can buy the seal strip online or from a hardware store and follow the user manual to install it. Ensure that the seal you bought is of the correct size. Smaller or longer seals may not solve the purpose and might accelerate the escape of cool air from your fridge. Replacing seals is an inexpensive project.
Determine Whether the Refrigerator Is Level
Badly leveled refrigerators do not cool as efficiently. There should be a balance of cooling effect in all areas of your fridge which is why your fridge should be leveled. To check if your fridge is placed on a level, you can use a carpenter’s level on top of your fridge. Adjust the legs of your fridge till the bubble is in the center of the glass tube. Use pliers or wrenchers to level the legs.
Clean the Condenser Coils.
Coils in your refrigerator can accumulate dust, pet fur, food splashes, etc. This covers the refrigerant in your coil. This further reduces the cooling efficiency of your ability to keep the air in the fridge cold. Even if your fridge is cooling properly, it is advised to clean the coils to maintain hygiene and keeping your food fresh. You can easily find a condenser brush and use it to clean the coils from time t time. You can also gently vacuum out the dust from the coil. A clean coil solves the problem of the fridge not being cold.
Check to Make Sure Nothing’s Blocking the Air Vents
Just like the coils, the vents are important in maintaining the proper flow of air in your refrigerator. The vents give a passage for the cold air to circulate between the freezer compartment and the refrigerator compartment. Blocked vents can cause temperature inconsistency and result in the fridge not cooling. For this reason, the vents need to be unblocked. Usually, the vents are located under the back wall or the sidewall of your fridge. The owner’s manual will have the exact location. Ensure that no cartons or other items are kept tightly against the vent. This can block the airflow. Sometimes, overcooling may cause frost buildup. This can also block the vent and cause your fridge to not work properly. To solve this, you must take out all the food, unplug your fridge and let it defrost for a day. Clean your fridge thoroughly and plug it back in.
It May Be a Bad Fan or an Air Damper.
If your fridge is old, you may have to remove and replace the fan or an air damper. The fan is an important part of the refrigeration mechanism. Most household refrigerators play the main role in producing cool air that eventually cools the fridge and the food in it. It is important for these gans to work for your fridge to get and remain cold. If the fans make high pitch noise while working, you know the fans have gone bad. When these parts stop working, the condenser gives backup to avoid overheating or the system shut down. The evaporator is responsible for moving the air throughout the fridge is the fan that moves the air you feel when you open your refrigerator door. This fan drags air across your evaporator coil, cooling the air down, and then it moves air through the refrigerator. If it’s not working, you won’t get cold air inside the fridge.
If your fridge is not cold, the problem may also be with the air damper. An air damper is part of every cooling/heating system and is responsible for stopping or regulating the airflow. A refrigerator system regulates the air between the freezer and the refrigerator. An air damper is usually located in the supply trucks of any HVAC appliance. You must replace your air damper in case of any damage.
Issues with Major Components
The fans are a part of your compressor which is a major component of your fridge. The other important component is your condenser coils. If these two components are not operating, that can also lead to your refrigerator not cooling. The compressor is responsible for moving the refrigerant into the compressor coils that create the gas that will be cooled later for the refrigerator to absorb. When you hear the fan running but your refrigerator is still not cold, you should fix the compressor. Even clogged condenser coils should be cleaned for the compressor to function properly.
How to Make Refrigerator Colder
If you have checked all the basic components of your refrigerator and identified what component must be fixed or replaced, the next step is to start the fixing process. Here are the things you can do to get your refrigerator up and running again.
Replace Your Air Damper
If your air damper is damaged, it can obstruct the cold air from moving into your refrigerator. Inspect the air damper properly and if it does not open or close, you must replace it. The air damper is connected to both the fridge as well as the freezer. This is why you should be careful about the motor on the freezer side and the thermostat on the fridge side. Unscrew the old damper carefully and tightly install the new one.
When to Replace Condenser Fan
Just like your air conditioner, your refrigerator also has a condenser fan. As the name suggests, this fan keeps your food chilled and fresh. In most cases when the refrigerator is not getting cold, the condenser fan may be affected. This requires a replacement of the fan. If you have tried all the ways and inspected every part of the fridge, you can try replacing the condenser fan. While carrying out any replacement, ensure that the power is turned off. For this, you need to remove the access panel to remove the old fan, push the new condenser fan blade off the motor shaft, align the fan blade on the motor shaft then push until the blade fits firmly.
Replace the Refrigerator Evaporator Fan
Usually, you will find the evaporator fan at the back of the freezer. You must remove all the food and shelves to properly reach the fan. Once you have cut the power supply, you can expose the rear wall, pull the wire harnesses, and pull the fan out from the shaft. Now, you can insert the replacement motor into and push the replacement evaporator fan into the shaft. After this, reattach the connectors from the freezer onto the motor and the new evaporator fan. You will need a wire crimper for this. Once this is done, you must secure the rear wall with screws and then reattach the shelves and restart your fridge.
If you have tried every guide on the internet and got unnecessary shocks, now is the time to call for professional help. At times, a fridge not cooling can be a bigger problem to tackle and you should trust only professionals for this job. Let the professionals at Alpha Tech Appliance Repair help. We have years of experience in repairing the toughest refrigerator problems and are your one-stop-shop for all your appliance repair needs. Call us now!