Still same problem - ice clumps
The defrost timer and defrost thermostat have now both been replaced. The ice bucket was emptied. It filled back up within 24 hours, Then sometime in the next 24 hours, the freezer temp spiked to over 70F which partly melted the ice. During this temp rise, the ice maker was shut off. Over an hour was required after the compressor restarted to drop the temp below 0F. The ice then refroze into clumps.
In light of this, I tried to record temps more carefully. Over the last 24 hours, the compressor cut off approx every 3 hours and stayed off for roughly 25 minutes. In every observed case, this allowed the freezer temp to move up from below 0F to approx 29F before the compressor and fan restarted. Then the freezer temp dropped in minutes to below 0F. The fresh food section temp moved from 31.2F to 37.7F during this same 25 minute period.
THEORY: If the defrost timer just happens to start the defrost cycle beginning at this high temp point, wouldn't the freezer temp spike like I'm seeing? This would explain the randomness of the clumping.
Websites for the timer (WR9X489) indicated this has a 16 hour/35 minute cycle. Is the 30F rise in the freezer in 25 minutes normal? Certainly if you add defrost heaters for 35 minutes on top of an unheated 30F rise, there will be problems. Seems to me either the compressor needs to run longer or the freezer temp rise has to be reduced. Somebody out there has seen this. Is there a solution? Help!