Kitchen | | | | |
Replacing Damaged Kitchen Tile
Microwave Oven Buyer's Guide
A New Kitchen with a New Kitchen Island
Installing a New Garbage Disposal
Creating Kitchen Storage Space
A New Floor for Your New Kitchen
Changing Your Kitchen Counters
Dishwasher Repair and Information
Guide to Buying a New Kitchen Range
Replacing Your Ceramic Tile
Maintenance & Repair of Your Refrigerator
A Guide to Kitchen Ranges
Freezer Tips

Maintenance & Repair of Your Refrigerator

The days of our Grandmother's icebox are gone, replaced by the modern, much more efficient refrigerator. Today, refrigerators are engineered to keep food fresh for much longer.

However, the average person does not give much thought onto how these modern-day "iceboxes" keep our foods preserved. For instance, refrigerators do not cool food, they extract heat from around the food so that the inside is maintained at a safe temperature. The process is simple: a gas known as a "refrigerant" moves from an area of high pressure to an area of low pressure though a system of tubing located at the back of the refrigerator. The gas then passes through an expansion valve located inside the freezer, causing the gas pressure and temperature to drop. A fan located in your refrigerator's freezer circulates frigid air over the tubing system containing the refrigerant. The cold refrigerant then absorbs any heat from the area inside the refrigerator and pumps it out.

Contrary to popular belief, you will feel warm air near the back of the refrigerator rather than cold air. If the temperature escalates beyond a certain level, the compressor is activated by the thermostat. Also, a circuit is closed when the refrigerator door is open, which turns the light inside on.

If your refrigerator has a problem, there are many ways to troubleshoot the issue. Here are a few common problems that may be easily resolved with the following list:

* If the refrigerator will not activate and the light does not turn on upon opening the door:

  • Ensure that the refrigerator is not unplugged, or tighten plug.
  • Ensure that a fuse or breaker has not been broken.
  • Ensure that the circuit is not blown.
  • Check all electrical cords for damage, including extension cords.
  • Ensure thermostat is working correctly.

* If the light comes on and the refrigerator is not working:

  • Ensure that the thermostat is working correctly.
  • Ensure that a three-inch space between the wall and the refrigerator is maintained for proper ventilation.
  • Ensure that the condenser coils are clean.
  • Unplug refrigerator for one or two hours. The compressor may be overheated.
  • Check the compressor relay and motor, defrost timer, and evaporator fan.

* If the refrigerator is running but the light is not working:

  • Change the light bulb.
  • Ensure that the door switch works correctly.

* If the freezer is not cold enough:

  • Set the temperature setting higher.
  • Ensure that refrigerator is three inches from the wall for proper ventilation.
  • Check the vents for cleanliness and proper ventilation.
  • Test to see if the temperature control is working correctly.
  • Check the evaporator fan, defrost heater and timer, condenser coils, and door seal.
  • Ensure that the refrigerant is not leaking.

* If the freezer is too cold:

  • Try adjusting the temperature setting.
  • Test to see if the temperature control is working correctly.

* If the refrigerator is too noisy:

  • Ensure that the refrigerator is level.
  • Check the both the condenser and evaporator fan, and drain pan.
  • Check the compressor.
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