Samsung Refrigerator Error Code 88 8a – Troubleshooting Guide

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Suppose you find that the freezer compartment is a little warm in your Samsung refrigerator, and it’s showing you the 88 8a error code. If that’s the case, then you’ve come to the right place.

The 88 8a error code on a Samsung refrigerator means that the appliance can’t detect any movement from the evaporator fan in the freezer compartment. That is most likely due to an ice buildup that’s stopping the fan blades from turning. However, it’s also possible the fan motor is faulty or that the main control board has a problem.

As you continue reading, you’ll discover more about this error code and how you can fix it.

Why Is My Samsung Fridge Showing The 88 8a Error Code?

When you see the 88 8a error code (sometimes seen as 8a 88 instead), it means that your Samsung refrigerator doesn’t sense the freezer fan turning. 

This error code could mean that there’s a problem with the fan itself. However, it could also mean that other components are faulty and fail to communicate with the fan, as they should.

Read: Samsung Refrigerator Error Code 40 E

What Are The Fans Inside A Fridge?

There are several fans inside your Samsung refrigerator. In the case of the 88 8a error code, we’re focusing on the evaporator fan located inside the freezer compartment.

When that fan works correctly, it forces cold air to distribute evenly throughout the freezer compartment. As a result, all of your food items inside can cool down to the temperature that you’ve set for the freezer.

Unfortunately, when that fan fails, some parts of the freezer will become warmer than others. That is because the items inside will not freeze evenly without that fan working, even if all the other refrigerator components are working correctly. 

Causes And How To Fix Them?

The most likely triggers for the 88 8a error code are an ice buildup, a faulty fan motor, or a problem with the main control board.

Here’s more information on each part and what you can do to fix them.

Ice Buildup In Fan Blades

What it is: Any evaporator fan, including the one inside the freezer compartment, consists of a motor and fan blades. Those blades will force air to move whenever they turn, ensuring that cold air is equally distributed and reaches all compartment parts.

Kenmore evaporator fan frosted over

How it fails: Unfortunately, moving air can sometimes carry moisture along with it. That’s especially true if the compartment door has been left open for too long or if warm air is somehow leaking in through a damaged door seal.

When that happens, ice and frost will gradually build up around the evaporator fan. As the buildup becomes more and more severe, the ice will block the movement of the fan blades, stopping them from turning at all.

In worse cases, the fan blades could also get damaged as they turn and hit the ice buildup repeatedly.

How to fix it: The only safe way to get rid of an ice buildup is to defrost the freezer and let the ice melt by itself. To do that, you must turn the refrigerator off and leave the freezer door open. This process can take many hours as the ice melts slowly but thoroughly.

Warning: Do not use any equipment like hair dryers or heat guns. There are plenty of plastic parts inside your freezer, such as the compartment walls and the fan blades themselves. Using a focused blast of heat could warp or melt them, causing more damage.

Read: 5 Reasons Why Samsung Fridge Not Cooling + Service Manual

Faulty Freezer Fan Motor

What it is: As mentioned before, fan blades turn to force cold air throughout the freezer compartment. Turning those fan blades is a motor connected to the fridge’s main control board.

When the freezer isn’t cold enough, the fan motor will receive power and signals to turn on.

The motor will turn off once the freezer is cold enough.

How it fails: The freezer fan motor can overheat and burn out with extended use. That’s especially true if there was an ice buildup around the fan blades, as described in the previous section.

For example, those ice build-ups will prevent the fan blades from turning smoothly. As a result, the fan motor works extra hard to turn the blades. At some point, the motor will work too hard and burn itself out, preventing it from working at all.

How to fix it: A faulty freezer fan motor must be replaced. To start, disconnect all power from the Samsung refrigerator to prevent injury and electrocution.

Next, you must empty your freezer. That means you’ll have to take out all of the food items and remove the shelves inside.

With all of those items removed, you can then reach the back panel. Next, unthread the screws holding the panel in place and gently remove the panel as wires are attached.

Next, disconnect the electrical connectors and take the panel out. The freezer evaporator fan is attached to that panel, so you’ll need to unthread the mounting screws attached to it.

Then, set the new fan in the same place and replace the mounting screws.

Lastly, mount the panel into the back of the freezer while reconnecting the electrical wires you removed earlier. Then, you can load the freezer racks and your food items back into the freezer.

Main Control Board Malfunction

What it is: This is a critical part of your Samsung refrigerator acting as the ‘brain’ of appliance. It’s a printed circuit board (PCB) with plenty of tiny components attached to it. Each of those components controls a different function or component of the fridge as a whole.

Some of those components are designed to send power and signals to the freezer evaporator fan, particularly ensuring that it turns on and off when needed.

How it fails: The components on the main control board can experience electrical damage. For example, a short circuit could damage some parts of the control board, such as the ones responsible for controlling the freezer evaporator fan.

When that happens, your Samsung refrigerator won’t be able to send or receive any signals from the fan, triggering the 88 8a error code.

How to fix it: Even though only a section of the main control board might have failed, you can’t repair it. Instead, you’ll have to replace the entire control board. Thankfully, that’s easy to do on Samsung refrigerators.

As usual, start by disconnecting the fridge from its power source.

The board is located on the back of the fridge, concealed behind an access panel. Unthread the screws for that panel, and you’ll be able to see the board with a lot wiring attached to it.

Before removing anything, take a photo to use as a reference later. Then, remove the connectors and free the board from the clips holding it in place.

Mount the new board in place and reconnect the wire harnesses the same way as the old one.

Lastly, replace the access panel that conceals the main control board.

How To Clear The 88 8a Code?

Once you’ve found the trigger for the 88 8a error code, you can perform a reset to clear the code from your fridge.

How To Reset Your Samsung Fridge?

Resetting your Samsung fridge will only take you five minutes. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. First, take your fridge’s power plug out of the wall socket.
  2. Next, leave the fridge alone for at least five minutes to clear its memory.
  3. Finally, turn the fridge on again.

This on-and-off process is called ‘power cycling’, and it’s used to reset many kinds of appliances, including your Samsung refrigerator.

How To Test Your Samsung Fridge After Repairs?

After you’ve repaired your refrigerator and cleared the 88 8a error code, you must give your fridge at least 24 hours to stabilize its temperature. So, don’t worry if the freezer is still a little warm after the repair.

You can consider these 24 hours as your test period as well. If no other error codes appear during this time, that means the repairs were successful.

How To Check Error Codes On Your Samsung Fridge?

Alternatively, you can test your fridge for any additional error codes by running its auto diagnostic mode. You can do so by pressing two buttons simultaneously, namely the Energy Saver and Lighting key for 8 seconds.

You’ll hear a ‘ding-dong’ noise which means that the fridge is diagnosing itself. Then, for the next 30 seconds, the fridge will show you any error codes that might be active.

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