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Kitchen Refrigerator Info & Repair
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Long gone are the days of the old iceboxes. Today, we depend on our refrigerators without giving much thought to the hard work they perform to keep food fresh! Interestingly, refrigerators do not actually cool food. Instead, they work to remove the heat so the food can be maintained at a safe temperature. To understand how this works, refrigerators are designed with a compressor and a system of tubing that contains a gas known as the refrigerant. When gas is taken from a state of high pressure to a state of low pressure, the temperature of that gas is lowered. With your refrigerator, this refrigerant flows through the coils that are located at the back of the refrigerator and then through a valve inside the freezer. As the refrigerant passes through this expansion valve, gas pressure drops, causing the temperature to drop.

Located in the freezer portion of your refrigerator is a fan that circulates the air over this cooled tubing. The refrigerant works by absorbing any heat from the refrigerator and is pumped out rather than cold air forced in as most people think. In fact, if you were to place your hand near the back of the refrigerator, you would feel warm air, which is what is being pumped out. The thermostat is what activates the compressor if the temperature goes above a certain level. The door switch closes a circuit whenever you open the refrigerator door, turning on the interior light. Once the door is opened, many refrigerators will disengage the fan.

If you have problems with your refrigerator, you can check some things to help. The following are just a few of the common problems that can occur and the things you might try to resolve the problem:
  • The refrigerator will not run and the light does not come on when the door is opened
  • Check the plug to make sure it has not become loose
  • Make sure a breaker has not been tripped or that a fuse has not blown
  • Make sure the circuit is working properly.
  • Check the electrical cord to ensure it is not damaged
  • If you are using an extension cord, try plugging the refrigerator directly into the outlet
  • The light comes on but the refrigerator is not working
  • Make sure the temperature setting is working
  • Make sure there is a three-inch space between the refrigerator and the wall for proper air flow
  • Clean off the condenser coils
  • Trying unplugging the refrigerator for one to two hours and then plug it back in � it is possible the compressor overheated and needs to cool down
  • Make sure the temperature control is working properly
  • Check the evaporator fan, compressor relay, overload protector, compressor motor, and defrost timer
  • The refrigerator is working but the light will not come on
  • Replace the light bulb
  • Make sure the door switch is working
  • The freezer is not getting cold enough
  • Make sure the temperature setting is high enough
  • Check the refrigerator to make sure it is positioned three inches from the wall for proper air flow
  • Check the vents to make sure they are clean and have good air flow
  • Test the temperature control
  • Check the door seal, condenser coils, defrost heater, defrost timer, door switch, and evaporator fan
  • Make sure there is not a refrigerant leak
  • The freezer is too cold
  • Adjust the temperature setting
  • Test the temperature control
  • The refrigerator is very noisy
  • Make sure the refrigerator is level
  • Check the drain pan, condenser fan, and evaporator fan
  • Check the mounts for the compressor
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