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Fridge Not Defrosting

Oleg Chudnovski, CEO

Technically Reviewed by Oleg Chudnovski, CEO on Mar 19, 2024 | Written by Fix Appliances CA Editorial Contributors

Authorized repair service for most home appliance manufacturers

With today’s modern refrigerators, we often take for granted that they will defrost themselves. While that is how it works in theory, some users can open their refrigerator door and be shocked to find ice and frost indicative of a refrigerator not defrosting. The issue of a refrigerator failing to defrost could stem from problems with the defrost timer, defrost heater, or defrost thermostat. Resolutions may involve replacing the defrost timer, assessing and replacing the defrost heater, or inspecting and replacing the defrost thermostat as necessary. Detailed explanations of the causes behind the refrigerator’s defrosting issues and potential solutions can be found below.

What To Do If a Fridge Is Not Defrosting?

If you’ve stumbled upon a frosty spectacle inside your refrigerator, courtesy of a defroster malfunction, fear not. There are straightforward reasons for this predicament and equally uncomplicated remedies.

Much like various refrigerator issues, these are precisely the sort of challenges that FIX Appliances CA excels at resolving. Our adept team, honed expertise, and years of hands-on experience ensure that no refrigeration issue is beyond our capability to swiftly diagnose and effortlessly repair, regardless of its magnitude.

The Refrigerator Does Not Defrost

While the result of a properly defrosted fridge seems simple enough, the parts and processes of defrosting your fridge can be rather complex. Here are three reasons why your refrigerator won’t defrost.

Defrost Control Board Issue

This electronic board in your fridge directs the fridge on how often to run the automatic defrost cycle. The fridge will not go into a defrost cycle when this board has issues or fails altogether.

If your refrigerator and freezer never go through a defrost cycle, the result will be that you will find your refrigerator and freezer not defrosting.

Defrost Sensor and Thermal Fuse Issues

Your defrost sensor system monitors the temperature of your evaporator. This part has a fuse that acts as a backup in case the sensor fails.

Should the sensor neglect to deactivate the defrost heater, the thermal fuse will blow, compelling the heater to shut down. Consequently, your defrost heater becomes non-operational, leading to the undesirable outcome of your refrigerator failing to defrost.

Defrost Timer Issue

The defrost timer orchestrates the activation of the defrost heater multiple times each day, eradicating any frost buildup on the evaporator. A defective timer may fail to progress into the defrost cycle or transmit power to the defrost heater during said cycle.

To assess the timer’s functionality, manually advance it into the defrost cycle. At this juncture, the compressor should cease operation, and the heater should commence.

If the timer fails to supply power to the heater or shift out of the defrost cycle within 30 minutes, a malfunction in the timer becomes evident, potentially causing your refrigerator’s defrost failure.

The Fridge Is Not Defrosting. What To Do?

While it’s uncommon for a refrigerator to cease defrosting, the causes are typically straightforward. Fortunately, troubleshooting these issues is just as uncomplicated.

Now that you understand the reasons behind your refrigerator’s defrost system malfunction, let us guide you through the steps to rectify these problems and have your refrigerator defrosting efficiently again.

Defrost Control Board Repair

When dealing with a possible issue with your defrost control board, it is best to eliminate the simple issues first before jumping to the control board. The first steps are to check the function of both the defrost heater and the defrost thermostat.

If these components are in good working order, the likely culprit is a defective defrost control board. In such instances, the best course of action is to replace the board.

Locating and installing a replacement for your unit is usually a straightforward process. If you feel this may surpass your abilities, entrust the delicate task to the professionals at FIX Appliances CA.

Defrost Sensor and Thermal Fuse Repair

A thermal fuse of the defrost sensor cannot be reset. If the thermal fuse blows, you must replace the defrost sensor. To determine which part is faulty, you must use a multimeter to test both parts. If either of the parts lacks continuity, it is time to replace the defrost sensor.

Defrost Timer Repair

A faulty timer is one of the most common reasons your fridge may not defrost. Issues with these parts are easy to diagnose, but the timer itself cannot easily be repaired. The best solution is to replace the timer. Timers for modern refrigerators are quite easy to find online, yet their replacement can be a bit tedious and time-consuming for do-it-yourselfers.

FIX Appliances CA Can Get Your Fridge Defrosted In No Time

The solutions to issues with a refrigerator not defrosting are pretty easy to diagnose, but the solutions can be challenging, especially for those with no experience in these matters.

That is where the pros at FIX Appliances CA can come to your rescue. Our technicians are expertly trained. They carry the parts and have the know-how to diagnose and quickly fix any of the issues listed here.

So if you are ready to let our experts tackle your refrigerator problems, check our refrigerator repair page to learn about our services or call us at 888-242-0777 to get started today.

Date of page creation: September 30, 2019

Page update date: March 19, 2024


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FAQ: Top Frequently Asked Questions

This article mentions several possible causes for a refrigerator not defrosting, including issues with the defrost control board, defrost sensor, thermal fuse, and defrost timer. It provides details about each of these problems and how to diagnose them.
The article provides steps for troubleshooting and fixing issues related to the defrost control board. It advises checking the defrost heater and thermostat first and, if they're functioning properly, suggests replacing the control board. It also mentions the option of seeking professional help for this repair.
The article mentions that if the thermal fuse of the defrost sensor blows, it cannot be reset and needs to be replaced. It provides guidance on using a multimeter to test the defrost sensor and thermal fuse and advises replacing the defrost sensor if either lacks continuity. It also suggests that replacing the timer is the best solution for a faulty timer, though it may be a bit tedious for DIY enthusiasts.

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