Refrigerator Not Cold Enough: 8 Possible Causes
A refrigerator not staying cold enough is a hassle, as you are at risk of spoiling the foods inside. Most often, this problem is caused by something easy to fix.
1. Faulty Door Gaskets
The door gaskets in a refrigerator ensure a sealed closure every time you shut the door. Torn or loose gaskets on the door can result in leaking cold air, and as a result, the refrigerator is left warm. Repetitive and frequent opening and closing of the refrigerator is also a possible cause because the warm air from outside replaces the cold air in the refrigerator every time you open it.
2. Dirty Condenser Coils
Dirty condenser coils can result in improper functioning of the fridge. These coils are located on the back or the underside. If you find this to be the cause of the problem, unplug the refrigerator before you attempt any cleaning, then pass the vacuum cleaner over the coil area.
3. Frost-free Feature Not Working
If the frost-free feature fails, it will cause a buildup of frost around the evaporator coils in the freezer. This causes a malfunctioning of the evaporator fan that blows cold air around. The fan can also be damaged if it hits the frost. You can tell when a fan blade gets damaged by the loud noise coming from the now unbalanced fan.
4. Faulty or Incorrect Temperature Control
A faulty thermostat can lead to a refrigerator that is not maintaining the desired coldness. Check for this problem and also ensure that the temperature is set to the correct level. Normally, refrigerators are set to a temperature of about 0°C (32°F), whereas the freezer sections are around -17°C (1.4°F).
5. Inadequate Air Flow Inside Refrigerator
A refrigerator that is loaded with too many food items can fail to maintain an adequate level of coolness across all the items kept in it. The surface items tend to be colder, and the items underneath do not become as cold. A refrigerator that has very few items in it can also fail to function efficiently. Try to ensure that your refrigerator has enough food in it at all times, but is not so loaded that the air flow gets constricted.
6. Vents Between Freezer and Refrigerator are Clogged
The vents between the freezer and refrigerating section permit the flow of cold air from the freezer across to the refrigerator. These vents should never get clogged with ice, but if for some reason it does, the impaired air circulation will keep the refrigerator section from cooling down. If this is the case, you can unplug the refrigerator, wait for the ice to melt or remove the impairement, then plug it back in.
7. Faulty Door Switch
The door switch is found around the perimeter of the refrigerator door opening, where it can activate this switch. It turns off the light in the refrigerator and resumes cooling action when you close the door. If this switch is not functioning properly, the refrigerator will not resume cooling as normal and may also be affected by the heat of the interior light not switching off.
8. Refrigerant Leak
A refrigerant leak is very unlikely but can obviously cause malfunctioning of your refrigerator. If you suspect this to be the cause, contact a service technician.