Dirty condenser coils are one of the many reasons why your Frigidaire freezer isn’t freezing.
It could be your start relay.
Your evaporator fan motor.
Or your main control board.
What now, then?
Don’t worry. Sit back and relax.
I have 9 practical solutions for you below.
Read on to find out:
- What’s causing your Frigidaire freezer to play hard-to-get and not freeze.
- 9 practical solutions to fix the cause of your Frigidaire freezer not freezing.
- Magic coin trick: How to tell if your Frigidaire freezer is working as it should.
- When to do the fix yourself or call a professional to help solve your problem.
- Why cleaning your condenser coils can help unfreeze your Frigidaire freezer.
- How to maintain your Frigidaire freezer so you can have Taco Tuesdays again.
- And so much more…
Why is my Frigidaire freezer not freezing?
Your Frigidaire freezer isn’t freezing because your condenser coils need cleaning. Another possible reason is that you have a defective start relay. Sometimes, your thermostat control or evaporator fan motor could have stopped working. Finally, it could be a broken compressor or main control board issue.
Frigidaire freezer not freezing: 9 ways to fix it
#1: Check your start relay
Your start relay is the problem if:
- Your start relay smells burnt.
- You hear a rattling noise after shaking your start relay.
- Your multimeter reads “0” when you test the start relay.
If you have a broken start relay, the best solution is to replace it with a new start relay.
So far, so good, but…
What’s a start relay?
It’s about the same size as a golf ball, and it supplies power to your fridge’s compressor.
A defective start relay means there’s no power supplied to your compressor.
If your compressor has no power, your freezer function will stop working too.
The solution is simple. Buy a new start relay.
But here’s the problem.
Detaching your starter relay from the back panel of your fridge can be…unsettling.
You might accidentally trip a wire which can lead to more problems and higher service costs.
So, what should you do?
Should you call a professional or DIY your start relay?
It’s better to call a professional to replace your start relay.
Why? Let’s put it this way:
Say you open the back panel of your Frigidaire fridge.
And then you find out your start relay is actually fine.
Or, it’s not fine and you have to drive to the hardware store. Then, you’ll have to buy the start relay, install it yourself, and pray to God it works.
But what if…it doesn’t? You spent a good 3 hours doing all the work yourself.
Only to find out something – a small piece – is missing.
The point is, sometimes, it’s better to trust a professional to help you out. There’s no harm in doing so anyway.
#2: Clean your condenser coils
Your condenser coils are the problem if:
- You haven’t cleaned your condenser coils…EVER.
- It’s been 6 months to a year since you last cleaned your condenser coils.
Cleaning your condenser coils can be done under 10 minutes. And all you need is a coil brush.
Pretty simple, right?
The slightly challenging part is accessing your condenser coils. Here’s how it’s done:
- Unplug your Frigidaire fridge first. Make sure the power is off.
- If your Frigidaire fridge is pinned against a wall, I suggest moving it out.
- At the lower back bottom of your fridge, you’ll notice an access panel.
- Remove the access panel using a nut driver to loosen the screws.
- Be careful when removing the access panel. It’s a thin sheet of metal.
- Grab your coil brush and clean all the dust you see.
- In some cases, you might need a vacuum cleaner to remove larger debris.
- After it’s clean, screw your access panel back.
- Plug your Frigidaire fridge back in and voila! You’re done!
Do you need a professional to clean your condenser coils?
You don’t need to hire a professional to clean your condenser coils.
If your condenser coils are dirty AF, it might be slightly embarrassing too, wouldn’t it?
If it’s your first time cleaning your condenser coils, don’t worry. This video from Jake Porter on YouTube shows how it’s done:
#3: Replace your defrost system
Your defrost system is the problem if:
- Your evaporator coils look like frozen chunks of ice.
- Your defrost system/heater has stopped functioning.
- The multimeter reads “0” when you tested your defrost system.
A broken defrost system is a complicated fix.
And the irony is that it only has one job: to defrost your freezer evaporator coils and prevent ice build-up.
The complicated part happens depending on two things:
- Your Frigidaire freezer model.
- The specific issue/cause that led to a broken defrost system.
Some Frigidaire models don’t have a defrost heater or system installed. Instead, it might be a defrost control board.
In other cases, the defrost thermostat, which is connected to your defrost heater is the issue.
So what’s the best way to fix a broken defrost system? Replace it.
Then again, it might not be your defrost system. Alternative causes and solutions include the following:
|Your defrost thermostat is faulty.||Needs immediate replacement.|
|You have a worn-out door gasket.||Buy a new door gasket and replace the old door gasket.|
|Your defrost timer is broken.||Replace defrost timer.|
|Defrost control board is burnt; sometimes it’s due to a short-circuit.||Replace with a new control board.|
Should you call a professional or DIY your defrost system replacement?
It’s better to call a professional and not take chances.
What if the reason your Frigidaire freezer isn’t freezing is because of two issues? Say it’s your door gasket and defrost thermostat that’s causing the problem.
Trust me, it’s not as easy to fix as cleaning your condenser coils.
#4: Manually activate your evaporator fan motor
Your evaporator fan motor is the problem if:
- Your fan motor doesn’t run after you manually activated the switch.
There are two ways to fix a faulty evaporator fan motor:
- Manually activate the switch to turn it back on.
- Replace your fan motor.
Here’s how to manually activate the switch for your evaporator fan motor:
- Look for the switch in your freezer. It’s usually in the far left corner of your freezer.
- If it’s not in the far left corner, check the right corner of your freezer.
- Activate the switch manually.
- If you don’t hear your fan motor running, your motor needs to be replaced.
More often than not, if you have a faulty evaporator fan motor, it needs a replacement.
Should you call a professional or DIY the replacement?
You can do the replacement yourself or you can call a professional. Any approach is fine.
Warning: Some of the parts are heavy and sharp. Make sure you’re cautious if you do the replacement yourself.
Otherwise, call a professional to help you perform an accurate replacement.
#5: Test your temperature control thermostat
Your temperature control thermostat is the problem if:
- Your multimeter reads “0” after you tested it.
- You don’t hear a clicking noise after testing your thermostat.
If your temperature control thermostat isn’t working, well…
Just kidding. It’s not that bad.
But what it does mean is your freezer can’t perform its cooling functions. This includes your refrigerant system as well.
Fortunately, checking whether your temperature control thermostat is fine or not is easy. Simply turn the knob from the lowest setting to the highest setting.
Listen for a “click” sound.
If you hear a “click” sound, your temperature control thermostat isn’t defective. If you don’t hear any click, use a multimeter to check if it’s working.
If your multimeter reads “0”, you need to buy a new temperature control thermostat.
Do you need a professional?
Go with a professional to install your new thermostat. The installation can be tricky.
Note: This process is meticulous, so follow the steps thoroughly.
#6: Check your condenser fan motor
Your condenser fan motor is the problem if:
- The fan blades don’t spin freely or the fan motor doesn’t work.
Much like your condenser coils, your condenser fan motor is located at the back of your fridge.
You’ll notice an access panel at the bottom back part of your Frigidaire fridge. Once you’ve opened the access panel, the condenser fan motor is at the center.
It’s honestly hard to miss because you’ll notice the fan blades right away.
If the fan blades on your fan motor are obstructed, try removing the debris first. If that doesn’t solve your problem, replace your condenser fan motor.
Should you hire a professional to do the installation?
You don’t need a professional if you plan on replacing your fan motor yourself. However, make sure you don’t forget to:
- Unplug your fridge first before opening the access panel.
- Turn off the water supply if your Frigidaire model is an ice water model.
#7: Replace your compressor
Your compressor is the problem if:
- You’ve checked all the parts mentioned above and they’re all fine.
First, let me tell you:
Compressors last a looong time. In other words, compressors don’t break down easily.
Expect at least 8+ years before your compressor needs replacing.
The quickest way to tell you to have a faulty compressor is if you hear a humming sound. This humming sound ranges from a faint sound to a loud humming repeatedly.
However, when it’s as serious as a compressor issue, don’t take chances.
Call a licensed technician to help you out and diagnose your compressor’s condition. If your compressor is the problem, you need to have it replaced ASAP.
#8: Buy a new main control board
Your main control board is the problem if:
- Your compressor is not the problem.
- All the parts mentioned above are working properly.
So you passed the compressor test! Phew!
Close call, right?
What next? If it’s not your compressor, it’s your main control board.
Note: Don’t jump to the assumption your main control board is the problem. It’s rare for main control boards to be the problem. First, make sure you’ve checked all the components. If none of those is the problem, it’s either your compressor or main control board.
If your main control board is the problem, talk to a licensed technician. Ask him what your available options are.
If he says you have to replace it, then you know what to do. However, always ask for alternative solutions.
Even better, don’t be afraid to ask for a second opinion from another professional in your area.
#9: Replace your Frigidaire freezer
You should replace your Frigidaire freezer if:
- You have a sealed system leak.
- Your compressor is working fine.
- Your main control board is not the issue.
- All the parts/components mentioned above are working fine.
A sealed system leak is like getting the worst possible hand in a poker game.
It’s the worst that can happen if your Frigidaire freezer isn’t freezing.
Now, you’re probably wondering, if it’s a sealed system leak, why can’t I replace it?
If only it were that simple.
Sealed system leaks cost a lot to repair. Insane costs.
Repairing your system leak is about the same cost as buying a new freezer.
But here’s the good news.
This is hardly the case unless your Frigidaire freezer is old. Like Darth Sidius old.
The only way to tell if your Frigidaire freezer has a sealed system leak? Ask a licensed technician to inspect your freezer.
Although, you could also try and do a hard reset.
Did you know? It only takes 7 steps to reset your Firigidaire refrigerator in 27 secs!
If a hard reset doesn’t work, call a licensed technician.
How do I know if my Frigidaire freezer is working?
How can you tell if your Frigidaire freezer is working without getting your hands dirty? Or without fiddling around with all the freezer components?
All you need is a coin. And a container with water.
Then, follow these steps:
- Put the container with water in your freezer.
- After it’s turned frozen, drop your coin on top of the ice.
- If the coin stays on top of the ice, your freezer is working fine.
- If the coin drops to the bottom, there’s something wrong.
- Obviously, if the water didnt turn frozen, your freezer isn’t working.
Note: This simple coin trick won’t tell you if other components in your freezer are faulty.
All hail the magic coin trick!
Nevertheless, you’ll still want to run a full diagnostic. This way, you can make sure your Frigidaire freezer is working fine.
All it takes is 3 steps to fully diagnose your Frigidaire freezer.
Step 1: Listen to any sounds your freezer is making
It’s normal for any freezer to make noise.
But when you’re looking for troubling noises like a loud humming or whirring noise, it’s a bad sign.
A humming or whirring noise could mean either of the following:
- Your compressor might have an issue.
- Your evaporator or condenser fan motor is damaged.
Step 2: Check for leaking water
Coming home to a puddle of water below your fridge is never a good sign.
It usually means there’s frost buildup in your coils. Sometimes, it might even be as simple as someone forgetting to close the freezer door.
However, leaking water isn’t an issue you should ignore. This could mean any of the following:
- Damaged evaporator coils.
- Your defrost system is acting up.
- Your defrost heater or defrost timer isn’t working.
- The thermostat control temperature is due for a check-up.
Since you’ll most likely check your coils, it’s best to clean your condenser coils too.
When was the last time you had them cleaned, anyway?
If you can’t remember, well…
That’s a clear sign you should at least clean all the accumulated dust and debris in your coils.
Step 3: Ask yourself these questions
If you don’t hear any troubling noises and all your components are fine, great job!
But wait…why is my freezer still acting up?
It could be your start relay that’s causing the issue. Or… it’s worth asking yourself the following questions:
|Questions to ask||Explanation|
|1. Do you notice your food turning spoiled faster than it should?||Then your freezer’s thermostat needs repairing.|
|2. Is the back of your freezer or fridge hotter than usual?||Your motor is overheating. Excessive heat is dangerous. Have it repaired ASAP.|
|3. Is there any frost buildup in your freezer? At the back of your freezer?||This is mostly due to a damaged defrost cycle. It could be your defrost system, defrost time, or defrost control board.|
|4. Did you set the right temperature?||Sometimes, you might have accidentally set your freezer temperature a little high. Make sure your freezer is set at 32°F (0°C) always.|
|5. How old is your freezer?||Freezers last for about 12 to 20 years. If you’ve had it for at least a decade, call a professional for a general check-up.|
At the end of the day, sometimes, the real culprit is age. And sometimes, poor care.
Yes – old age. Grey skin. White hair. Dentures.
Except when a freezer gets old, it cuts deeper into your savings bank account.
Now, if your freezer is getting old, the last thing you want to do is shove more food inside.
That’s just poor freezer care.
It’s a big NO if you want to prevent your freezer from causing more problems. Of course, you wouldn’t want that, right?
7 easy practices to maintain your freezer
Hey, you want some salted caramel ice cream?
How about a piece of the brownie ice cream sandwiches I made yesterday? It’s uber fresh!
*Opens the freezer door*
Salted caramel slushie? Brownie ice cream mess?
Do you really want to neglect your freezer? Who could throw away a brownie ice cream sandwich and not be heartbroken. Right?!
And this is the lesson of the story. Your freezer could fail unexpectedly. It might leak.
Or, it might lose its freeze powers and turn your dessert into a puddle of nothingness.
So…here are 7 practices to keep your freezer happy and cooool:
- Deep clean your freezer every 6 to 8 months with regular dish soap and water.
- Choose the right location to install your fridge/freezer.
- Don’t use harsh chemicals or bleaching agents to clean your freezer.
- Call a professional to inspect your freezer’s components every year.
- Always keep your freezer’s temperature between 32F (0C) to (5C).
- Don’t fill your freezer past 85% of its capacity. Also, it should be at least 70% full.
- Use a cold storage chart to help you with how long food should be kept in the freezer.
You’ll also like: 15 Best Ways to Maintain Your Refrigerator