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REFRIGERATOR

Freezer Not Working, Clicking Sound

Oleg Chudnovski, CEO

Technically Reviewed by Oleg Chudnovski, CEO on Feb 26, 2024 | Written by Fix Appliances CA Editorial Contributors

Authorized repair service for most home appliance manufacturers

A well-functioning refrigerator is a silent guardian of our food. But when that guardian starts making clicking noises, it’s a sign that something’s amiss. A refrigerator compressor that clicks but doesn’t turn on can cause concern, leading to potential food spoilage and increased electricity bills.

This article aims to illuminate the reasons behind these noises and how to address them.

The Role of the Refrigerator Compressor

The compressor is essentially the heart of your refrigerator. It’s responsible for circulating refrigerant, which absorbs and releases heat, cooling the fridge’s inside. Without a functioning compressor, your fridge won’t cool.

Significance of the Compressor

The compressor’s health directly impacts the efficiency and longevity of your refrigerator. A malfunctioning compressor can lead to uneven cooling, increased energy consumption, and, in worst cases, complete fridge breakdown.

Common Causes of Clicking Noises in Refrigerators and Freezers

Freezer Not Working, Clicking Sound

Faulty Compressor

A compressor that’s nearing its end might struggle to start, leading to repeated clicking sounds. This is often a sign that the compressor is overheating or failing.

Start Relay Issues

The start relay acts as a bridge between the compressor and the refrigerator’s power supply. If it’s malfunctioning, the compressor might not receive the necessary power, leading to clicking noises.

Motor Strain

Just like any machine, if the motor of your refrigerator is overloaded or strained, it can make unusual noises. This strain can be due to various reasons, including a power surge or a faulty component.

Refrigerant Disruptions

The flow of refrigerant is crucial for the cooling process. Any disruption, be it a leak or a blockage, can cause the compressor to make clicking sounds as it struggles to maintain the cooling cycle.

Identifying the Source and Nature of the Clicking Noise

Compressor vs. Other Noises

While the compressor is a common culprit, other components like the start relay or even the defrost timer can also cause clicking noises. It’s essential to identify the source to address the issue effectively.

Frequency and Pattern

A continuous series of rapid clicks might indicate a faulty start relay, while sporadic clicks could be due to the compressor trying and failing to kick in.

Cooling Inefficiencies

If your fridge’s interior isn’t as cold as it should be, and you hear clicking noises, it’s a clear sign that the compressor or another crucial component is malfunctioning.

Troubleshooting and Addressing the Clicking Noises

  1. Safety Precautions: Before you start poking around, always unplug the refrigerator. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
  2. Compressor Check: A simple touch can tell you a lot. If the compressor is hot or has visible damage, it’s likely the noise source.
  3. Relay Testing: A multimeter can be a handy tool here. Testing the start relay for continuity can tell you if it’s functioning as it should.
  4. Refrigerant Sounds: If you hear hissing or bubbling noises along with the clicks, it might indicate a refrigerant leak or blockage.
  5. Expert Opinion: Sometimes, it’s best to leave things to the professionals. If you’re unsure, calling in a refrigerator repair service is always a good idea.

Preventive Measures to Avoid Clicking Noises and Cooling Issues

Regular Maintenance

A well-maintained refrigerator is less likely to give you problems. Regularly cleaning the coils, checking the gaskets, and ensuring the fridge is level can prevent many common issues.

Proper Placement

Your fridge needs to breathe. Ensure it’s not crammed against a wall or in a tight spot. Adequate space around the fridge ensures better airflow and reduces strain on the motor.

Avoid Overloading

A packed fridge can strain the compressor, leading to potential malfunctions and pesky clicking noises.

Final Thoughts

A refrigerator is more than just an appliance; it’s an essential part of our daily lives. Addressing unusual noises promptly ensures your fridge’s longevity and saves you from potential food spoilage and increased bills. Regular maintenance and a keen ear can go a long way in ensuring your refrigerator serves you well for years to come.

Date of page creation: September 13, 2023

Page update date: February 26, 2024

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I was extremely happy with the service. The repair person came the morning after I called. He promptly diagnosed the problem - a burned out fan. He had the part in his truck and was able to repair the fridge on the same call.

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drzed, New Tecumseth
August 12, 2019

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April 17, 2019

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FAQ: Top Frequently Asked Questions

Ideally, a yearly check-up by a professional can help catch potential issues early on.
Yes, even if the cooling seems unaffected, clicking noises can indicate an underlying issue that might escalate over time.
While there are diagnostic tools available, for a thorough and accurate diagnosis, it's best to consult the refrigerator's user manual or seek professional advice.

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