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anyone diagnose freezer issues?

Posted on 2013-01-06
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Last Modified: 2013-01-17
I came home and saw water on the floor. Freezer stopped cooling unknown hours.
The light inside is on.
There is a switch. Middle of the switch is an unknown setting.
When the switch is pressed to either side, an alarm like beep happens.
It's some sort of safety switch etc.
Whirpool model EVL201NXRQ00

This freezer has always made a noise every 12 hours for 30 minutes or more. I've asked people and they always say it is just the refrigeration cycle.

I checked the breaker box and all breakers are fine and I plugged the freezer into another good outlet and it does not seem to be on, though the light inside is on.

I've turned it off, emptied it, unpluged it and will turn it on in 24 hours and hope there is a "reset" event and it starts.
The cartons on milk at the bottom appear to be fully frozen. The foods in the top half were thawed.

Age of the unit is 6 years.

I have posted a photo of the swtich.
i'm not clearly understanding it.

The "legend" shows:
l
o
check mark.

On the switch in the photo, the right side is the check mark.
In the middle is:
 - l o

Can you clarify that?
The switch has 3 settings. Toggle like switch. Left, right, or middle.
File0699.jpg
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Question by:nickg5
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17 Comments
 
LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:Nancy McCullough
ID: 38749727
Ooh la la! this happened to me too! i got a refrigerator repair person in to discover some simplicity....

The alarm went off because it had warmed above 'normal' temps. The reason that it warmed above normal temps can be 1 of 2 good reasons:
1. The motor failed and it is no longer working
2. There is ice on the fan

In your case, it is likely #2: ice on the fan. This stops the fan and prevents it from spinning and thus cooling. The alarm goes off to let you know that your fridge is warm. The water is from the ice on the fan as it melts.

This is how you fix that problem:
1. Leave your fridge plugged in to maintain the cycle (your friends are right about the 12 hr cycle)
2. Place a warm cloth on the back of the inside of the fridge to help melt the ice off the fan.

This should solve your problem! Good luck :)
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Accepted Solution

by:
-Mystique- earned 125 total points
ID: 38750013
Dirty condenser coils can cause such problems.  If the coils are filthy the heat cannot escape efficiently and the freon cannot pick up as much heat in the future thus warming the freezer.

A dirty clogged drain can also cause such problems.  If the drain is clogged, ice can build up on the bottom of the freezer and once the bottom of the freezer is full of ice, water will run out the door onto the floor.
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Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38750651
The water on the floor had come from the near total thawing of the items in the top half of the freezer. Not leakin from the freezer.

I'm not seeing a fan. I unplugged it and turned it off. It's been 12 hours. My plan was to treat it like a new unit, never used, plug it in today, set the temp. control to setting 4, etc.

The alarm may have gone off during the night Saturday and I never heard the alarm. I've had to keep my bedroom door closed because of all the noise this freezer makes during the defrost cycles, which last alot longer than they are supposed to.
Then if the alarm timed out after so many minutes the alarm went off and I never knew the alarm came on.

The photo I have attatched is a 3 way toggle switch.
l = the proper position for the switch for normal use.
o = prevents alarm from coming on during  startup
check mark = test the alarm

I'm not clearly understanding how the small indicators on the switch in the photo match the above 3 switch settings. Before I unplugged it, the middle setting got "nothing."
To the left got the alarm to come on. To the right got the larm to come on.
One way are the other is the ( l ) and the other is the ( check mark) though the actual switch inside the freezer is not marked like it is in the manual.
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LVL 25

Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38751360
I left it unplugged overnight.
I can not see a fan.
It the fan was iced up it should have melted overnight.
I turned it back on, and will wait 8 hours like the manual said, to allow it to cool down.
The thermometer inside says 60 degrees. After 8 hours if it is not down to 0-10 then the freezer may be junk.
It's a nice freezer but it may be cheaper to buy a used one for $50 than to spend unknown $$ to fix this one.
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LVL 25

Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38751845
coil
top right of coil has ice on it.
The plastic fan does not turn.
The square thing which may be the motor for the fan, is warm.
2 hours after hookup inside temp. still over 60
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LVL 25

Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38752070
The local parts house wants $103.00 before tax for that fan motor, which might not fix it.

Does that small plastic fan, cool the unit down to 5-10 degrees?

What parts may not be cooling the coil?
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Expert Comment

by:Nancy McCullough
ID: 38752234
I used to be an apartment manager in my previous life: These fridges are known to not be cool (lol - no pun intended). I have seen the Kenmore, Whirlpool and Fridgidaire versions of these fridges completely warm via the freezing of the unit for which you posted a pic. It's often a compressor or motor failure that is causing the fan to stop turning and for things to overheat. Is it worth the fix-it job? Good question. In my personal case, it was a simple, yet temporary patch fix for $100. In the apartment building, it was a better deal to replace each unit as they broke.
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Expert Comment

by:Nancy McCullough
ID: 38752270
oh - and if you do decide to replace vs. repair - stay clear of Maytag. They are the worst.
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LVL 25

Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38752303
does the plastic fan motor actually create the cooling?

Or does the compressor cause the 5-10 degree inside temp.?

I hate to pay $110 for a new fan motor if the fan does not even cool the unit.
It may have cutoff after some "timed out" once the alarm came on.
The compressor may be fine. The fan motor appears bad.
0
 
LVL 25

Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38768431
Fan blade was bad and replaced. Waiting to see if it cools down to 0-5 degrees. Bought a 2nd hand freezer as a replacement.
0
 
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Expert Comment

by:Nancy McCullough
ID: 38777030
Has this issue been resolved to your satisfaction?
0
 
LVL 25

Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38778260
It only cools down to 40 degrees.
A repairman will be by today to give a positive diagnosis of the problem.

Since the replacement of the fan blade did not solve the problem, anyone want to diagnose the problem before the repairman does?
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Expert Comment

by:Nancy McCullough
ID: 38780298
Compressor.
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Assisted Solution

by:Nancy McCullough
Nancy McCullough earned 125 total points
ID: 38780335
Well, it could be many things from the compressor to the seal; the motor to the pipes. It would be impossible to get a positive diagnosis without physically being there to view and test it.ff
0
 
LVL 25

Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38787672
Oh well, the repairman did not show up 1-3pm Monday or 103pm Tuesday and is not replying to inquiries. It's stuck at 40 degrees and not going lower.
0
 
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Author Closing Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38787693
It's not the fan motor, or ice on the fan. There are no exterior coils, etc.
Only one fan and it is a new one replaced last week and working fine.

Since none of the possible issues from comment #1 are correct, will split points beginning with comment #2.
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Author Comment

by:nickg5
ID: 38787697
ooops, I meant to increase the points before closing it.
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