Refrigeration Repair – Common Problems That You Shouldn’t Ignore

Refrigerators are designed to stay cold, so when your fridge isn’t chilling things like sodas and beer, you should check it out right away. Often the problem is a simple one that you can fix yourself.

Look for puddles under your refrigerator or a water drip pan on the bottom. If you have a drip pan, empty it and clean it. Click here at to learn how to identify common refrigeration problems.

refrigeration repair

Water Leaks

Refrigerators have the power to make or break our food supply. They also protect the floor and structure of our homes. That’s why it is so important to be vigilant and catch any leaks quickly when they occur. Not only will this prevent costly repairs to your floors and structures, but it will keep your refrigerator running at its optimal level.

Often, a leaking fridge can be attributed to a clogged or frozen water line. These lines connect to your ice maker or water dispenser and are usually made from clear flexible plastic or braided metal. To check, unplug the refrigerator and pull it away from the wall to inspect the line. If you find any leaking or a line that is cracked or broken, shut off the water valve to your home (typically found underneath the sink closest to the fridge or in the basement) and remove the line. You will need to order a replacement and install it following the manufacturer’s instructions.

Another cause of leaking refrigerators is a crack in the drain pan. The pan is housed under the refrigerator and holds a small amount of water that evaporates when the defrost cycle runs. If the pan cracks, however, it will spill over the sides and onto the floor. Check the drain pan regularly for any cracks and replace it if needed.

Finally, the defrost drain on your refrigerator may have become blocked. This happens when food particles and ice chunks obstruct the drain, causing it to freeze and leak water on the floor. Check the drain periodically for blockages and flush it with warm water to clear clogs.

If you notice any of these problems, it is best to call in a professional. A refrigeration repair technician will be able to determine the source of the problem and fix it properly. If you want to avoid expensive repairs in the future, consider getting a comprehensive home warranty from a reputable provider. This will cover many of the major appliances in your home, giving you peace of mind that they will be covered in case of any malfunctions or repairs.

Noisy Refrigerator

Ideally, your kitchen is a quiet, relaxing place to prepare and enjoy meals. When your refrigerator starts making loud noises, it disrupts that sense of peace and can also be a sign that something is wrong with the appliance. In some cases, these noises are simply irritating and should be ignored, but others are a signal that it’s time to call in a fridge repair specialist.

A humming sound from a refrigerator is normal, but it should never be loud enough to hear from another room. This humming sound is created by the compressor running and helps keep items cool for you. If you start hearing a buzzing or rattling noise, this is likely a sign that the compressor is not working properly and needs to be replaced.

Fridges have fans that run in the back to help evaporate ice, but sometimes they can get noisy. This can happen because of dust & dirt getting into the fan & causing it to wear out or because the fan itself is faulty. To fix this, you will need to switch off the power to the fridge, remove the access panel on the back & check the condenser fan motor for debris that might be keeping it from operating.

If the fan is okay & the problem is elsewhere in the appliance, it could be that the evaporator fan is overheating or that the freezer door is not closed properly. This type of noise can be a little more difficult to diagnose, but you will need to try to close the door more firmly and check if anything is caught between the fridge & the wall.

Another common fridge noise is beeping, which can indicate that the doors are not closed correctly or that the refrigerator is overheating. It’s also possible that the beeping is being caused by a faulty sensor, thermostat, or evaporator. If the fridge is overheating, a technician should be called right away to avoid serious damage.

Faulty Compressor

The compressor is the heart of a fridge and does the most work to cool the food in it. But like anything, it has a lifespan and will eventually fail. Luckily, most problems with compressors are easy to diagnose and fix.

If you hear a chattering or ticking sound coming from the compressor, this is a sign that it is struggling to start up and could potentially break. This is often the result of a faulty relay switch or starter capacitor and can be easily fixed by replacing these parts. If left unchecked this issue will only get worse, leading to a broken compressor.

A chattering sound from the compressor can also indicate that it is running without adequate refrigerant. The refrigerant carries an oil mist that keeps the compressor and other internal components lubricated. Without this, the compressor will overheat, and this can damage other components of the refrigerator as well. If this happens, it is vital to replace the compressor with a new one immediately.

Other issues with a refrigerator compressor include air leaking from the inter-stage safety valve while it is pumping, and low receiver pressure. These can both be solved by removing the cylinder head, inspecting for foreign material, cleaning, adding a new gasket, and reassembling it. Insufficient oil in the crankcase can also cause noise and can be resolved by draining, replenishing, and reassembling the compressor. Finally, low receiver pressure may be caused by a bad unloader valve or discharge coupler. Both can be fixed by disassembling and repairing the check valve assembly or replacing it entirely.

A common cause for a compressor not starting is that the low-pressure switch and high-pressure switch are not triggering. This can be easily checked with a multimeter by checking line voltage at the load center with the compressor off and current at the motor terminals with the compressor running. If either is too high or too low, it needs to be corrected as this can lead to premature failure of the compressor.

Faulty Fan

A faulty fan can lead to overheating. The cooling fan is responsible for pulling air through the radiator and removing heat. If your fan is not working or is operating slowly, there may be several reasons why.

A broken thermo coolant fan switch is one reason why a fan may not be functioning properly. The switch is responsible for turning on the fan based on the coolant temperature. When the switch malfunctions, it may not turn on the fan when the coolant temperature rises, which can lead to overheating. You can test the operation of the switch by bypassing it with jumper wires. If the fan turns on when you supply it with voltage, the switch is faulty and needs to be replaced.

Another problem is a faulty fan motor or capacitor. These cylindrical components transfer voltage from the electric system to the fan motors. If they begin to fail due to overstress or age, the fan will have trouble starting. This is typically accompanied by a clicking noise. If you hear this noise, the capacitors likely need to be replaced.

You may also have a blown cooling fan circuit fuse. These fuses are designed to protect the wiring from damage caused by electrical surges. However, they can still get damaged by other causes. For example, rodents chewing on the wires or heat. To check the condition of a fuse, remove it from the fuse box and inspect it. If you see 12V on one contact and 0V on the other, it is a bad fuse that will need to be replaced.

The engine control unit (ECU) can also malfunction, which may cause the radiator fan to run continuously. This issue can be difficult to diagnose because the ECU is responsible for many different functions of the vehicle. This problem is usually diagnosed by checking the sensors and ECU with a multimeter.