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Hello! This site looks great, I hope someone out there can help me out: Short version: * Fridge/Freezer side-by-side turns

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Old 07-28-2011, 07:59 PM
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Default Refrigerator turns itself off, needs manual restart
Model Number: 10659217990   Brand: Kenmore   Age: 5 - 10 years   

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Hello! This site looks great, I hope someone out there can help me out:

Short version:
* Fridge/Freezer side-by-side turns itself off and doesn't turn back on by itself
* Turning the thermostat off then back on brings everything back to life for a while
* The thermostat trick just stopped working today and I fear for the life of my last beer

Detailed version:
One day I noticed water dripping inside my Freezer (due to ice melting and condensation), which is when I realized that my side-by-side unit was completely silent and no longer cooling anything. On a whim, I turned the Thermostat knob counterclockwise to the Off position, then slowly started turning the knob back toward our preferred setting (4.5ish out of 6), and I heard everything come back to life at around the '3' mark. Everything seemed great, and it worked like a champ for a few hours. Then we noticed it was off again. Turning the knob to 'Off' then back on continued to work.

At one point, I unplugged the fridge and left it unplugged for a while, while I gave the rear of the unit a quick vacuuming to see if there was just some dust or whatever causing the issue. Also, someone on this forum mentioned leaving it unplugged might help a control board reset itself. When I plugged it back in, and started to turn the Thermostat back on, it kicked back on immediately (instead of at the '3' mark).

After about a week of bringing my fridge back to life every few hours in this matter, it seems to have stopped working completely. From some other threads on this forum, it sounds like people with a similar problem have possibly had a bad Thermostat/Cold Control. Some of the pros recommended tapping on it to see if it brought things back to life. When I turn the Thermostat off, then begin to turn it back on, I hear a clicking/whirring sound that sounds like it is coming from the Thermostat itself. Also, the light in the fridge dims slightly, making it seem like something is trying to start, but failing.

Please help! I'll be happy to provide pictures if needed, and I will definitely follow up on this post in hopes of helping out other people who find this thread.

Thanks in advance!


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 07-29-2011, 02:16 AM
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Here are your parts
Replacement parts for KENMORE 10659217990 | AppliancePartsPros.com

It does sound like the control thermostat is shot.
I cannot say what the whirring sound is, could be the evaporator/freezer fan starting up.
The clicking could be the compressor trying to start but the noise would come from the machine compartment not the control console.

Part number: AP3037004

Part number: AP3037004

I could not find a wiring diagram for this unit but the control thermostat looks like a two connector unit.

You could unplug the unit and at least one wire to the thermostat and then measure the thermostat contacts. They should be closed (0 ohms).
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Old 08-01-2011, 03:27 PM
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Thanks for the advice Denman, that will definitely be the first thing I'll attempt to replace if it dies on me completely. An hour or so after my original post, I realized I had forgotten to vacuum out the vent at the front-bottom of the fridge. So I went and did that while the fridge was still dead, then I went upstairs to put the vacuum away. When I came back downstairs, the fridge had come back to life on its own!

However, it still seems to be turning itself off occasionally (but it has been quicker/easier to revive with my original thermostat-twist technique I mentioned earlier). I'm still not entirely sure if it is turning itself off correctly (like a heater in your house turns off when it gets to a certain temperature), or if it is turning off incorrectly (like a dying fridge that needs a new part or two)?

I noticed it was off again last night, so I opened it up to inspect the food/ice to see how cold things were. Everything still seemed quite cold, but there was a bit of moisture on the outside of the ice cubes, which is making me think it was off for longer than it should be. Then my fiance opened the fridge door, grabbed something and closed it a bit harder than I had just done, and it kicked back on. So I'm not sure if it came back to life because it detected warmth, or if the closing door gave the thermostat enough of a jolt to wake back up temporarily.

I will keep monitoring and report back if anything changes.
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Old 08-02-2011, 02:49 AM
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I would temporarily short the two wires to the cold control, if that fixes the problem, that would confirm a bad control.
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