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Frigidaire side by side evaporator frozen

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Fridge and freezer quit cooling, found evap coils encased in ice block. The defrost fan was running non- stop. Checked

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Old 06-15-2013, 09:12 AM
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Default Frigidaire side by side evaporator frozen
Model Number: FRS20ZRG   Brand: Frigidaire   Age: 5 - 10 years   

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Fridge and freezer quit cooling, found evap coils encased in ice block. The defrost fan was running non- stop. Checked the thermostat sensor was around 1 ohm, the heater coil showed infinite resistance. I thawed out ice with hair dryer, at first it was icing back up and defrost fan running constantly. Let run overnight and is cooling well on both sides, now defrost fan is cycling where as before it never shut off. I have ordered the heater coil as it checked bad but also the thermostat sensor. I am wondering why working now and if I should have concern with the defrost timer, I could not locate. Where is defrost timer located and how can it be checked?

Also, how can I determine age of this unit, it came with house, I am guessing it to be around 8-10 years old.

Thank you.


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 06-16-2013, 05:54 AM
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Here are your parts. Your model number was missing a couple digits at the end so I used a FRS20ZRGB2. The parts are likely the smae for most of this series.
Parts for Frigidaire FRS20ZRGB2 Refrigerator - AppliancePartsPros.com

The defrost timer (item 23 in the Controls Parts section) is at the front/bottom/left side. You may not be able to see the actual timer as often they are behind a mounting bracket. There is usually a hole in the bracket to allow you to turn the timer cam.

now defrost fan is cycling where as before it never shut off.
This in not really a defrost fan. It is an evaporator fan and it's function is to pull air through the evaporator coils to cool it. It also distributes this cold air throughout the unit.
During normal operation it should be on whenever the compressor is on, so it cycles once set point temperature is reached.
During defrost it is shut off so that the warm air from the defrost heater is not circulated into the freezer compartment.

I am wondering why working now and if I should have concern with the defrost timer, I could not locate.
When you had an iced up evaporator coil the fan could not pull air through the coil. So the air did not cool properly and therefore the freezer was not cold enough. The fan ran all the time because the compressor was on all the time trying to get the temperature down to set point.
Now that you have defrosted the unit it will run properly untill the evaporator coils ice over again, This could be a couple days or even up to a week.

Where is defrost timer located and how can it be checked?
Odds are very high the the timer is OF. You really cannot check it until after you replace the defrost heater.

Also, how can I determine age of this unit, it came with house, I am guessing it to be around 8-10 years old.

Not sure. below is info on how to read the unit's serial number.
Electrolux / Frigidaire / ICON
Serial Number breakdown:
1st Numeric Character = Last Digit of Year Manufactured
2nd and 3rd Numeric Characters = Week of Year Manufactured

Example, LA81503430 was manufactured in the 15th week (April) of 1998.
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:18 AM
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Default Frozen evaporator information very helpful

Thank you DenMan,

It would take about 3 days before cooling performance dropped off as evap iced up again.

I replaced burned out heater coil, it was actually almost burned in two near one of bends at bottom ( new heater coil measured around 25 ohms whereas old was open/infinity). I also replaced temp sensor at same time. I am going to check it over next few days before I consider done and start loading up with food again.

From your serial number breakdown my fridge is from May 2000, is this pretty much life of heater coil or could something else contribute to failure?

Thank you for the excellent information, it helped me understand defrost function and increased my confidence in succefully making repair.
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Old 06-19-2013, 11:21 AM
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From your serial number breakdown my fridge is from May 2000, is this pretty much life of heater coil or could something else contribute to failure?
Some last forever, some do not but it is not uncommon for them to burn out.
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