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Cold freezer, warm refrigerator

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I need help fixing my refrigerator. The freezer section is nice and cold, but the refrigerator refuses to get cold.

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Old 07-26-2010, 12:16 PM
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Default Cold freezer, warm refrigerator
Model Number: 59672842101   Brand: Kenmore   Age: 5 - 10 years   

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I need help fixing my refrigerator. The freezer section is nice and cold, but the refrigerator refuses to get cold. The temp in the refrigerator is typically around 54 F, but it has dropped to 49 F if I leave it shut for 48 hours.
After reading lots of posts on this topic, I checked the coils and they were covered in frost and ice. So, I thought it was a problem with the defrost system. I checked the defrost heater, and it is working fine. So I replaced the defrost thermostat and the defrost timer thinking it had to be one of these items.
After replacing them, the problem persists.
Other information: When the compressor runs, the fan in the back of the freezer turns and blows air into the refrigerator compartment.
One last piece of info: It seems like the problem started after my son left the refrigerator door open. It was open for a few hours and there was a lot of condensation in the fridge when I finally shut it. Not sure if this is related or not.
What should I check next? Could the temperature sensor in the refrigerator section be bad?


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 07-26-2010, 03:44 PM
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Remove the damper control (#2 on the diagram) and check if the gate inside is not broken or dislodged. Check the air channels for any ice inside.

- The damper control Part number: AP4247995

Part number: AP4247995



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Old 07-26-2010, 05:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gene View Post
Remove the damper control (#2 on the diagram) and check if the gate inside is not broken or dislodged. Check the air channels for any ice inside.

- The damper control Part number: AP4247995

Part number: AP4247995



Gene.
Gene,
I got the damper out, and it seems to be working fine. When the refrigerator was running, the damper was all the way open, as I assume it should be when the refrigerator is too warm. Is the thermostat in the metal box on top of the plastic damper?

-Dave
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Old 07-26-2010, 05:17 PM
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Default one more question

I noticed that the fan that drives cold air into the refrigerator only works when the freezer needs to be cooled. That is, when I leave the freezer door open, the compressor starts and the fan for the refrigerator starts as well. When the freezer is at the right temperature, it seems like the fan doesn't deliver any cold air to the refrigerator. Should this fan run independent of the freezer, or does it have to run in conjunction with the freezer?
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Old 07-26-2010, 05:49 PM
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Default Air channel check

Gene,
I also checked the air channel and it seemed to be clear. I ran a wire through the channel and it came out the other end without any obstacles. I also unplugged the refrigerator for about 6 hours and there wasn't any water dripping out of the bottom of the air channel. So, I think the air channel is clear.

How much air should be coming out of the air channel into the refrigerator?
-Dave
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Old 07-27-2010, 02:44 PM
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Dave,

What is the exact temperature in the freezer?

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Old 07-28-2010, 07:09 AM
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Hi Gene,
The freezer control is set to the middle of the range (4 on a scale up to 7) and the freezer temperature is 4 F. The refrigerator is at about 54 F.

-Dave
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Old 07-28-2010, 07:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgandt View Post
Hi Gene,
The freezer control is set to the middle of the range (4 on a scale up to 7) and the freezer temperature is 4 F. The refrigerator is at about 54 F.

-Dave
Actually, the temp is about -2 F. I was more careful about getting the reading quickly after opening the door.
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Old 07-28-2010, 07:30 PM
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Dave,

Which control you call "freezer control"? The one which operates the thermostat or the one which operates the damper control?

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Old 07-29-2010, 04:12 AM
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The "freezer control" that I was talking about is located in the top right of the freezer compartment. It is a horizontal wheel that can be turned to the left or the right. In the manuals I have it is called the freezer temperature control. I have it set to 4 because that is what is the "factory recommended setting" (higher is colder, lower is warmer).

The refrigerator is set to 6 on a scale of 7.

I know how the cold air gets from the freezer to the refrigerator. Is there a return path for air to get from the refrigerator to the freezer? If so, could this be clogged?
If that return was clogged, pressure would build in the refrigerator to the point that the fan would not be able to blow cold air into the refrigerator. But, when I opened the door, the pressure would be be released and the fan would be able to blow the air. This is all theoretical since I don't even know if there is an air return path. If it has one, can you tell me where to look? It is not obvious to me.
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