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Upright freezer, only freezing on bottom shelf

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I setup my upright freezer which was off for a while. A few hours later, i filled it with food.

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Old 05-28-2013, 09:03 AM
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Default Upright freezer, only freezing on bottom shelf
Model Number: 2539244411   Brand: Kenmore   Age: 5 - 10 years   

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I setup my upright freezer which was off for a while. A few hours later, i filled it with food. When I returned 24 hours later, only the stuff all the way at the bottom was frozen solid. Everything else was cold but defrosted. I could not feel any air coming out of the vents on the top back wall. I turned it off, emptied it, and removed the back panel. The coils were mostly iced over. After they defrosted, I turned it back on. The fan spins and there is now cold air circulating. The coils are staring to freeze over again. What is the most likely cause? Should I be replacing the defrost timer as the first repair to see if that does it? If so, for my kenmore 2539244411, is the part # 5308037967 or 297318010 ? Is this something I could replace on my own with very little skill working on appliances?


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 05-28-2013, 12:04 PM
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Here are your parts
Parts for Kenmore Freezer 2539244411 - AppliancePartsPros.com

Since the evaporator coils were iced up to the point where the fan could not pull air through them you are on the right track about it being a defrost proble.

I would not just replace parts a little trouble shooting will save youself some money.

There are 3 parts in the defrost circuit, the timer, the defrost heater and the defrost thermostat.

Let the freezer get cold again
Then remove the evaporator cover in the freezer so you can see the coils.
Do not let them de-ice.

Manually force a defrost cycle by turning the defrost timer cam till the fans and compressor turn off.
Your timer looks like it is at the back of the unit near the floor. You may not be able to see the timer itself as it is probably mounted behind a bracket but there is usually a hole in the bracket to let you turn the timer cam.
The cam can only turn in one direction, actually a screw driver can only engage the cam in one direction.

Now check the defrost heater to see if it is on.
Be careful you do not want to burn your fingers.
If the heater is on then the timer needs replacing, re: it is probably stalling during it's rotation so is never getting into a defrost cycle.

If not on.
Unplug the unit.
Remove the wire for one side of the heating element (under the evaporator/freezer coils) from the wiring and measure it for continuity, usually around 20 ohms or so.

If the heater is OK
Remove one wire to the defrost thermostat (clipped to the top of the evaporator coils) and measure it, should be 0 ohms when frozen. Note that it opens just above freezing so must be frozen to check it. Also inspect it, if it is bulged at all replace it even if it measures OK.

If both the above are OK then odds are the defrost timer contacts are toast.
Click on the below picture for more info/views of the timer.

Part number: 216744400

Part number: 216744400
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Old 05-28-2013, 02:20 PM
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Thanks will do step one, once the coils free over again. In the meantime, to test for continuity, I will follow the steps listed on the sticky for this forum. Will any "digital multimeter" work for that?
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Old 05-28-2013, 05:28 PM
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Okay, I let the coils freezup. I then manually turned the timer until the condenser and fan turned off. The heating rod immediately got very hot. Is it same to assume that my next step should be to replace the timer?
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Old 05-28-2013, 05:41 PM
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Yes.
Since it turned on you know that the defrost heater and defrost thermostat are OK.
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Old 06-03-2013, 02:52 PM
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hey just wanted to report back, I replaced the defrost time and the issue is resolved! the problem now is that the freezer is always on, except when the defrost timer kicks in. When i lower the temp setting, it clicks and turns off, but whatever # i have it set to, it never turns off. What are my next steps?
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Old 06-04-2013, 02:06 AM
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Check your compartment temperatures.
The freezer should be 0 to 5 degrees F.
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by denman View Post
Check your compartment temperatures.
The freezer should be 0 to 5 degrees F.
It's measuring around 6 degrees F
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Old 06-04-2013, 10:38 AM
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Is the freezer fan runnig?
If not check across it for 120 volts.
If you have 120 volts then the fan need replacing.

Remove the cover in the freezer so that you can inspect the evaporator coils.
If they are only partially frosted over (usually where the freon enters the coils) then you probably have a sealed system problem.
This will be an expensive repair as you need a pro. Often it makes more sense to put those dollars towards a new unit.
Be sure that the compressor has run for at least an hour because if you do this check during or shortly after a defrost cycle you could end up with the wrong conclusion.
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