Everyone hates a broken freezer. Most food must be kept at a specific temperature to remain safe for consumption, and when the appliance breaks, it almost always results in spoiled food and wasted money. If your Frigidaire freezer has suddenly stopped working, there may be quite a few reasons for this.
Your Frigidaire freezer isn’t working because the condenser coils have become overwhelmed with frost or sometimes with dust. This happens when water vapor builds up on freezing coils. There may also be a problem with the thermostat or condenser fan.
Read on to learn the most common reasons your Frigidaire freezer will stop working. We’ll also talk about how you can fix it — ideally without professional assistance. Let’s get started with our first reason.
1. The Condenser Coils Are Frozen or Dirty
The condenser coils play a massive role in the operation of your Frigidaire freezer. Even though these coils are a critical part of all cooling machines, including freezers and air conditioners, they aren’t often thought about when a problem presents itself. However, this should be the first place your mind goes!
The condenser coils are part of the larger condenser machine. They act as the main cooling mechanism for the freezer. Let’s talk about how this works for a moment.
Coolant cycles through the condenser system and cools down the condenser coils to dangerously low temperatures. This is essential for the cooling process to happen. When the air gets pushed through these coils, it becomes so cold that the water vapor within it instantly releases from the air. This water vapor typically pools on the condenser coils.
In general, this isn’t a big deal — until the water begins to freeze on the coils. When ice builds up on the coils, it can cause major damage to your freezer. As a result, the coils can’t continue to cool the air moving through them, and the freezer won’t cool properly, if at all.
The condenser coils may also become overloaded with dust and other dirt particles. This can happen even when it seems like there’s no way for dust to get in the machine. It’s important to remember, however, that dust is very small and exists everywhere.
When dust clogs up the unit, it will stop working. However, you may not notice at first since it takes a lot of dust for damage to become apparent.
How To Fix?
You’ll need to clean the condenser coils to fix this problem. Cleaning your freezer coils takes some time, especially if the coils are heavily frozen over. In this case, all the ice will need to melt first to allow you to clean it properly.
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Of course, this creates a huge problem with food storage. That said, your best option is to purchase a heavy-duty ice chest ahead of time and store your food in this throughout the thawing process. A better suggestion is to store all your food at a neighbor’s house. In any case, ensure you don’t continue storing your food in the freezer as you thaw the ice.
Once you’ve emptied the freezer, follow the steps below to clean your condenser coils:
- To get your freezer set up to check the condenser coils, you’ll need to unplug the freezer and remove the back cover. Removing the back cover lets you get plenty of warm air flow through the machine to help remove the excess ice buildup.
- Lay down some towels on the floor below the freezer. This will help you collect excess water melting from the appliance, and you may need to change them frequently.
- Perform a careful inspection of the machine. If ice has covered the coils, you’ll need to let it completely thaw. This may take as little as a few hours or a few days, depending on how much frost has built up.
- After all the ice has melted, clean the coils with a damp cloth. You can then put the back cover on and plug the freezer in.
2. The Thermostat Is Broken
Freezers operate much like central air conditioners. You set the temperature to a specific setting, and the device uses a thermostat to ensure that the machine cools down efficiently.
Sometimes, however, this thermostat can become damaged. This may be because an item has been pushed against it or an internal component came loose. When this happens, the machine has no idea what the freezer’s temperature should be. As a result, the freezer either becomes too cold or too hot.
On some occasions, the freezer may also completely stop working while it has a damaged thermostat. This is part of the defense mechanism of the freezer to ensure that it doesn’t endure further damage.
How To Fix?
Fixing a broken thermostat is a little more complicated than defrosting condenser coils. You’ll need a couple of special instruments to test it yourself.
Before taking additional steps, ensure that you first test whether the thermostat is actually the problem. There’s a pretty simple way to go about doing this:
- You’ll need to turn the thermostat and listen for a clicking sound. The clicking sound indicates that the thermostat is working correctly and switching properly from setting to setting.
- If you don’t hear this sound, it’s time to test further. You can either hire a professional for this or handle it yourself. If you choose to handle it yourself, you’ll need a tool called a multimeter. A
multimetermeasures the electrical charges in various devices, such as outlets, and is a common tool among electricians.
- You can test the thermostat with your
multimeterby removing the front cover and following your multimeterinstructions. Usually, this involves inserting one positive and one negative source into the thermostat to test the charges being produced.
- If no signal is identified by the
multimeter, you’ll need to replace your thermostat altogether. This job is best done by a professional.
3. The Condenser Fan Motor Is Broken
The condenser fan, similar to the coils, is a major part of the condenser system. The fan is the part of the machine that switches on to cycle air through the condenser coils. No air equals no cooling.
One way to tell whether the condenser fan is on is to listen to your Frigidaire freezer. The fan is likely working fine if it’s “kicking on” every fifteen or twenty minutes. However, if you have a silent fridge, you probably have an issue with the condenser fan.
How To Fix?
The condenser fan can be challenging to repair on your own, so we would recommend hiring a professional for this job. However, there are a few tests that you can run to see if the condenser fan is the primary issue.
Follow the instructions below to identify a broken condenser fan motor:
- Access the condenser fan by first finding the evaporator fan. The evaporator fan helps to pull air from the freezer. This is the big fan at the back of the freezer. The condenser fan will be located behind the evaporator fan.
- Closely examine the fan. Look for signs of frost buildup or damage and ensure that the fan turns easily without resistance.
- Assuming the fan isn’t covered in frost, you can test the fan with a
multimeter. This should tell you whether or not the fan is receiving power.
When a Frigidaire freezer isn’t working properly, it’s most commonly because the condenser coils have become blocked with ice or dust. Other problems may include a broken condenser fan or a damaged thermostat.
Fixing your condenser coils is as easy as allowing the machine to thaw. The other two require additional instruments, such as a
If your freezer is experiencing other problems, check out my other article, which covers some common problems Frigidaire freezers face.