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refrigerator not cooling

6 Reasons Why Your Refrigerator Isn’t Cooling

When your refrigerator won’t stay cold, you need to address the problem immediately to keep your perishables from going bad. Some problems can be solved with some simple maintenance while others require professional intervention, so to help you out, we’ve compiled a list of the 6 reasons your fridge isn’t cooling.

Why Your Refrigerator Isn’t Cooling

Figuring out exactly what is wrong is very important to diagnosing and dealing with the problem properly. This is why we have provided a thorough list that includes many of the most probable reasons why your refrigerator isn’t cooling.

1) Thermostat Setting Is Off

Are you wondering why your refrigerator not cooling? It seems like an obvious thing, but sometimes the thermostat dial gets set too low causing your refrigerator temperature to rise. This may happen if you have children or inconsiderate house guests messing around with the thermostat.

Often people find the thermostat numbers confusing and consequently go the wrong direction when making adjustments. Just remember that the numbers indicate power level, so higher numbers will make your fridge colder.

2) Blocked Vents

Air temperature within your refrigerator is maintained through a series of internal and external vents. In order to keep a consistent temperature, it is important that these vents remain open. Often people will unknowingly block the vents either when storing food internally or storing other objects around the refrigerator (i.e. grocery bags).

These vents may be partially blocked by debris such as dirt or spilled food. Any blocked vent can impact internal temperature, so it is important to keep them as clear as possible.

refrigerator isn't cooling
Photo Credit: Jazmine Kellogg

3) Dirty Condenser Coils

Wondering why your refrigerator won’t cool but light is on? The condenser coil releases the heat from inside the refrigerator. If the coils are dirty, the refrigerator will have to work harder to release the heat.

The condenser coil should be cleaned once per year and can be cleaned even more if you have a lot of dust or pet hair in your kitchen. A dirty coil may affect performance, but you can easily clean it using a vacuum or long brush. Cleaning it should allow it effectively go back to releasing heat from inside.

4) Condenser Fan Motor Is Broken

If the refrigerator isn’t cool enough, there might be a problem with the condenser fan motor. The condenser fan motor works by drawing air over the condenser coils to cool them.  Without a functional fan, your refrigerator could easily overheat and not cool properly.

You can locate your condenser fan motor behind or underneath your refrigerator. If the fan motor is not working, it will most likely require professional repair.

5) Evaporator Fan Motor Not Working 

Depending on your model, your refrigerator will have one or more evaporator fan motors. If your unit only has one fan, it will be located in the freezer compartment. The evaporator fan motor circulates the cold air from the evaporator coils throughout the compartment. If the fan motor isn’t working, you may have a cold freezer, but no cool in the refrigerator compartment.

refrigerator not cooling
Photo Credit: Bill Newberry via YouTube

6) Control Boards are Damaged

A modern refrigerator uses at least two circuit boards: the main control board and the temperature control board. Damage to either of these control boards could be responsible for temperature issues. These issues are not easy for a novice to diagnose or repair, so we recommend contacting a service professional if you suspect a control board failure.

From all of us here at Aviv Service Today we wish you the best and hope you remember us for all of your refrigerator repair needs.