Refrigerator not cooling


  #1  
Old 07-17-09, 11:27 AM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Refrigerator not cooling

Great Forum! I have some ideas from searching previous posts but hopefully I can get even more specific help from this thread.
I have an older HotPoint fridge/freezer with the freezer on top. The freezer seems to be working perfectly well but the fridge won't get cold. We first noticed when the milk got sour. I realized the seal was sagging at the bottom and I repaired that hoping the problem was resolved. However, after allowing 15 hours, the fridge was still not cold. Items near the control unit in the back were semi-cool but everything else was not. The fan in the bottom, back of the fridge is working. Inside the fridge, where you turn the freezer temp from A-E, there is a vent that apparently blows the cold air into the fridge. I can feel cool air when I hold my hand up to it but it definitely is not blowing out. Also there was lots of water above the control units where you set the temperature. Please advise!
 
  #2  
Old 07-17-09, 12:37 PM
D
Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,021
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Is there frost on the back wall or bottom of the freezer section? Try taking off the back wall to see if the freezer coil is frosted up or if the drain is obstructed. If the box is quite old, the coil might be under the floor of the freezer. Set the controls at the midrange. First thing folks do is set the controls to max cold. If you don't mind, post the model #. Thanks.
 
  #3  
Old 07-17-09, 12:53 PM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by daddyjohn View Post
Is there frost on the back wall or bottom of the freezer section? Try taking off the back wall to see if the freezer coil is frosted up or if the drain is obstructed. If the box is quite old, the coil might be under the floor of the freezer. Set the controls at the midrange. First thing folks do is set the controls to max cold. If you don't mind, post the model #. Thanks.
I'm at work right now but I'll post the model # later. When you reference removing the back wall, do I do that from inside the unit or behind the unit?
 
  #4  
Old 07-17-09, 01:57 PM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
One other factor I failed to mention. We have a child who constantly opens and closes the fridge all day long. Could that have possibly caused the current problem?
 
  #5  
Old 07-17-09, 03:55 PM
E
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 8,627
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by IA_Chiefs_fan View Post
The fan in the bottom, back of the fridge is working. Inside the fridge, where you turn the freezer temp from A-E, there is a vent that apparently blows the cold air into the fridge. I can feel cool air when I hold my hand up to it but it definitely is not blowing out. Also there was lots of water above the control units where you set the temperature. Please advise!
If the compressor is running and that bottom fan is running, so should the freezer fan be, behind that vent. If not, it could be shot, or it is so frozen up with ice in there that it is jammed with ice and/or the blade is loose on the fanmotor shaft.

Yes, you remove the freezer compartment back from the inside of the freezer. Generally just a couple or less than handful of screws. You may want to first remove the vent cover if a couple screws are holding it. Also, by doing this first, you may see what is wrong, why the fanblade is not spinning.

Do not force the back panel when you try to pull it in toward you. Often the easiest way is to get the top to come toward you first, because the bottom edge of the panel may be sort of trapped by a channelway at the bottom and how the vent plugs in down there. The fan, and back panel will pull forward as a unit. But they do not give you much electric wire length to the fan, so don't be forceful about anything.

We can get more specific on what to do, if you find thick ice on the coils and/or need help regarding clearing the defrost drain system or testing your fan.
 
  #6  
Old 07-18-09, 08:51 AM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Model # CTX18GAZARWW
We got it apart with little to no problem due to the wonderful info from you! There was a half inch layer of frost on the back panel and once we removed it we could see frost/ice covering everything! I took some before pictures and after it melted, some after pictures. The fan behind the freezer compartment was working and so was the one at the bottom. Is it possible that the bad seal on the fridge part plus a toddler opening it every hour or so could just cause it to freeze up? The feezer and fridge controls had both been set to one notch colder than the mid level. Keep in mind the freezer still seemed to be working fine but the fridge wasn't. What's my next step??
(Pics in next post)
 
  #7  
Old 07-18-09, 09:01 AM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
FREEZER BEFORE...











FREEZER AFTER...



 
  #8  
Old 07-18-09, 09:11 AM
D
Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,021
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
A little colder than mid range is fine. Was there any snowy builup on the inside of the freezer? Not the coli or drain but the freezer interior surfaces. A snowy build up would be excess mositure from the seal and constant door openings. Is the seal fitting properly now? If just the coil was frosted up, the frost will return in under a week. This would indicate a defrosting problem which could be a bad defrost timer, bad heating element or bad defrost thermostat. The usual culprit on the older style GE/Hotpoints is the timer, about a $10 part.
 
  #9  
Old 07-18-09, 09:42 AM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
The very first picture I posted shows me holding a chunk of ice. That is frost/ice from the inside of the freezer compartment. However, the freezer gasket seems fine so would the fridge gasket cause the moisture in the freezer? Should I just let it thaw and put it back together or should I test some things first? Also, how long does it take for all the internals to thaw? We moved the fridge outside and it is about 75 degrees out.
 
  #10  
Old 07-18-09, 10:57 AM
E
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 8,627
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
You have a severe problem. Your pics show way more than just frost. Frost is only this fine dusting of frost, basically. Your coil is all froze up, en masse. You have something Daddyjohn already said, going on.
 
  #11  
Old 07-18-09, 01:48 PM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
So what tests should I be doing on it to narrow down the problem?
 
  #12  
Old 07-18-09, 02:12 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 14,075
Received 331 Votes on 285 Posts
I have seen this quite a few times. I doubt it is from your kids. Likely the defrost heater is bad. I cant tell from the pictures but you will find it at the bottom of the coil with one wire on each end. Disconnect it and pull it out. Then take an electrical meter set to ohms and see if you get anything. If you get nothing, it is bad. It should look like this based on your model number: Part 305175 from RepairClinic.com
If that is not it then like Daddy said move on to the defrost thermostat or timer.
 
  #13  
Old 07-19-09, 06:15 AM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
The heater checked out okay but the defrost thermostat "CTX18GAZARWW" Defrost Components / Thermostat Parts from RepairClinic.com was messed up I think. The top or cap of the thermostat was half open. The actual cap isn't supposed to open and close on this type of thermostat is it???
 
  #14  
Old 07-19-09, 07:20 AM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 14,075
Received 331 Votes on 285 Posts
Can't really tell from the pictures so I will have to trust you.
 
  #15  
Old 07-19-09, 07:33 AM
D
Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,021
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
No, it's not supposed to be popped open. Does the heating element have a readable resistance?
 
  #16  
Old 07-19-09, 09:57 AM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by daddyjohn View Post
No, it's not supposed to be popped open. Does the heating element have a readable resistance?
Yes it does. I unplugged the wires from both ends to test it.
 
  #17  
Old 07-19-09, 01:11 PM
D
Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,021
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
sounds good. Then try replacing the defrost limit, that will probably fix you up.
 
  #18  
Old 07-19-09, 03:56 PM
I
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 13
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by daddyjohn View Post
sounds good. Then try replacing the defrost limit, that will probably fix you up.
Are you referring to the defrost thermostat?
Thanks so much for all the help!
 
  #19  
Old 07-19-09, 08:43 PM
D
Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 2,021
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
yes defrost thermostat. Let us know how you make out. The feedback helps others. Thanks.
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: