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Dead beer fridge: no hum, no noise, no click, no cooling. Light ON!

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Crap brand HAIER Afficonado M121. Couple years old. Worked A-OK til death. Quiet, cool, no noise/odor. SYMPTOMS: Tripped the GFI

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Old 09-24-2011, 01:27 AM
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Default Dead beer fridge: no hum, no noise, no click, no cooling. Light ON!
Model Number: m121   Brand: -other-   Age: 1 - 5 years   

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Crap brand HAIER Afficonado M121. Couple years old. Worked A-OK til death. Quiet, cool, no noise/odor. SYMPTOMS: Tripped the GFI it is plugged into randomly. Always worked normally after resetting GFI...til THIS time. I found it warm, GFI tripped. Reset GFI, light now on, dialed all dials to Max Cold. Nothing. No noises, no fans, no clicks, no hums, nada. Just the light. Lived nice and quietly, died the same way apparently. Never heard a peep from it.
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I do know my way around a V/O meter and tearing things apart, etc, indeed!
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(and as an aside: I know that if you value your cold/frozen items...get them off a GFI). Thanks, dudes! Where to start? I'm ready willing and able. Pls advise.


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 09-24-2011, 03:34 AM
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I could not find any info on the given model number.

Could be the unit is stuck in a defrost cycle, it shuts off the fans and the compressor.
It will have either an adaptive defrost board or a defrost timer.
Timers are usually in the control module or under the unit (often behind the kick plate. There is usually a hole to let you rotate the timer cam. Try rotating the cam,. If it fires up I would replace the timer.
If it is an adaptive defrost board it is probably in the control module. You need a make and model so you can find out how to force a defrost cycle. Usually though unplugging the unit will reset the board.

If the above does nothing, then unplug the unit and if the thermostat is a 2 wire short those wires together. Then plug it in and give it a try. If it fires up replace the thermostat.Some units shut everything off when the thermostat is open.

Here are a couple good sites with troubleshooting info.
http://www.applianceaid.com/frig.html
Appliance Repair Guide: How To Fix a Refrigerator - ACME HOW TO.com
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Old 09-24-2011, 04:52 AM
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I also found no info on the model...except that it was a haier, which is junk sold by W-mart, Lowes, or H-depot, AFAIK. So I can only imagine that the design/engineering/ parts/technology of the lowest common denoninator regarding price and fail-safes. haier wasted no money on these, so whatever the most shi**y models of fridge would or wouldn't have...I feel sure this one is exactly one of those. "Least sophisticated, cheap, and a money-grab". haier makes junk. Does this help your prelim diagnosis at all? Eiter way, thx...and I'll get on it asap!
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Old 09-24-2011, 06:07 AM
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Does this help your prelim diagnosis at all?
No, still could be either set up.
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Old 09-26-2011, 12:27 AM
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Few follow-up tidbits:
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4-pronged, 3-wire Tstat. BK, BN, GN wires. HOW TO TEST?
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Plugging/unplugging does nothing.
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No kickplate/grill on front lower. This is a midsize fridge, btw.
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CONTROL MODULE??? Probably the 5x5 inch plastic box in back near compressor attached to sidewall?
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--2nd edit: I just opened Tstat. Temp probe connects through back to what appears to be a "thermo-elastic copper doodad" (my words). Definitely elastic/malleable. This expands/contracts to hit the 'switch'. Switch moves fine and crisp when pressed manually. Switch requires more pressure for low temp setting. Less pressure to activate it for max cold setting.
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3RD EDIT:....and....while twisting away at the Tstat immediately after failure, and now during removal/inspection...I've never heard "THAT tell-tale CLICK" that I can get pressing on it manually. Hope this helps narrow it down.

Last edited by funkykev : 09-26-2011 at 01:33 AM. Reason: additional information
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Old 09-26-2011, 11:31 AM
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Without any tech info I am at a loss.

4-pronged, 3-wire Tstat. BK, BN, GN wires. HOW TO TEST?
I would unplug the unit and use ohms.
To see what happens when you manually activate the thermostat. Normal color codes are
BK power (line)
GN earth ground the unit's frame
BN a switched line.

If the above holds true then when you activate the thermostat BK to BN should go to 0 ohms.
GN should not do anything and should be open to BK and BN whether the switch is open or closed.

But then it is a Harier so who knows if the follow normal color codes.

Another thing to try is put your meter across the power connectors with it unplugged. It should read open. Then manually activate the thermostat it should give you a resistance reading. I'd use a 2K or 20 K scale. This would be the compressor windings and/or the compressor start relay winding.
Not sure if the unit has an interior light so make sure the door is closed or the door/light switch is closed or you will read the light bulb resistance.
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Old 09-27-2011, 01:05 AM
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HA-ha! Winner-winner chicken dinner! Found timer unit. Had slot for small screwdriver. The slightest twist, and BOOM, running fine. Twisted timer cam a full 360 and it worked all at all other points.
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Obviously hanging on the defrost. So, if it fails once, it's always going to fail?
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AND...any way to defeat the defrost cycle by noodling around inside the timer? I'm more than happy to do a power/off old-fashioned defrost as this thing is randomly used.
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Hmm...never-mind. Timer is either getting replaced or cracked open either way, right? Think I'll crack it open NOW!

Last edited by funkykev : 09-27-2011 at 01:12 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 09-27-2011, 02:25 AM
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So much for that! I murdered the timer unit!
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Old 09-28-2011, 01:11 AM
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Any replacement defrost timer should be acceptable so long as the wiring schematic is compatible, right? (nevermind if its 8-12-24 hour) As well as the thermostat? I ask from the angle of function, NOT fitment. Thx.
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Old 09-28-2011, 01:25 AM
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Yes most defrost timers are basically the same other than time between cycles.

If you mean the defrost thermostat then they also are close in specs.

If you mean the main control thermostat then they are different and you have to get a replacement that matches the original. They can vary in temperature range and where the capillary tube should be placed to measure the correct temperature.
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