Need your help and expertise diagnosing my fridge. I'm at a loss!


Old 09-15-14, 10:15 PM
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Need your help and expertise diagnosing my fridge. I'm at a loss!

Hi, I have a Kirkland Signature ST14CKXHW00 (top/bottom). This is my drink fridge and usually drinks are around 34 degrees. Lately I noticed my drinks have been around 65 degrees while the freezer remains about 0-10 degrees. I researched online and I tried the following:

1. Removed all contents, disconnected power and opened doors for 24 hours to thaw any possible ice chuck blockages.
Result: No change.

2. Removed back panel to view the evaporator coil (however, it was not caked in ice). Used a flat-head screwdriver and manually turned the defrost timer on.
Result: Defroster is working, coil temperature reached 50 degrees within a minute or two and melted any frost appearing on the coils.

3. Waited 30 min to see if defrost mode automatically returns to cooling mode.
Result: After approx 30 min of defrosting, timer automatically triggered the fan back on, therefore I assume the defrost timer is NOT faulty.

4. Checked passageways for airflow.
Result: Evaporator fan is blowing strong. In addition, all passageways are clear (I can even stick my fingers through from the freezer side and they show up on the fridge side). When I close all the rear panels back up and close the freezer, there is very little airflow into the fridge. There are 3 vents (1 center, 2 sides). The center vent is directly below the fan which has ducting that feeds straight into it. This is the vent that has a very faint air flow coming through. Other 2 vents have no airflow.

5. When the back cover is off (which includes the fan housing cover), the evaporator fan is blowing very strong and loud. I noticed when I put the fan back on, it gets quiet again. I wondered if this was an issue such as the fan not getting enough power when the cover is on. So I removed the fan housing and tested with my borrowed multimeter. I set it on the lowest ohms setting and touched the 2 terminals and got a reading of around 50 Ohms. I don't know what this means if this is good or bad.

So that's where I'm at now. The weather here in SoCal is over 100 degrees and our drink fridge (which includes BEER) is out of commission. As you can see, this is a dire situation we are in. :NO NO NO:

I appreciate any help any of you experts can provide, I knew nothing about how fridges worked until this one started crapping out on me.

Thank you and feel free to ask me any questions for more information. I will be checking here often so you should get a reply from me hopefully in a reasonable amount of time!
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Old 09-15-14, 11:35 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

Usually the thermostat monitors the freezer temperature and there is a door that varies to allow more air to flow into the fridge. Since the freezer is holding constant it would appear the thermostat is ok. So now you need to find out what's happening to the cold air.

Have you found the damper that is controlled by the fridge temperature knob ?

KIRKLAND Refrigerator Liner Parts | Model ST14CKXHW00 | Sears Parts Direct
Old 09-16-14, 10:41 AM
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Dear PJMax, thank you for your reply!

Regarding your question:

Have you found the damper that is controlled by the fridge temperature knob ?
I have researched about dampers and I found out there are both manual and electronic dampers. Considering this is was the cheapest fridge available at costco back in the day I am assuming there are manual dampers.

When I inspect the actual fridge, however, I see nothing that resembles anything that would control the amount of air coming into the fridge area.

The openings themselves are 3 rectangles (as you can see in the diagram that you helpfully posted) however inside those rectangle openings are styrofoam made up of a #26 diffuser and 2X hood foils #24 that are fixed and do not move. Even with the styrofoam pieces removed and the freezer door closed there is still a weak movement of air entering the freezer from the center vent coming in from the air tower #23 and 0 movement of air coming from the other 2 vents. With a infrared thermometer the air blowing into the fridge is only about 50 degrees even on the colder setting (+1 notch above normal).

Before I left the house this morning, I inspected the fridge temperature knob as you mentioned and moved it around but did not hear any movement or see what it would control besides a wire running from the control box #12 and ending at the bottom of the #26 diffuser.

Do I need to remove the control box cover for further inspection?

Thanks again for your reply!
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