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coyote2  
#21 Posted : Sunday, March 2, 2014 7:09:25 AM(UTC)
coyote2

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I replaced the drain heater, and it's been working perfectly for a week!! (Like the original one did for 3 years.)

During replacement, I noticed that the black material coating the defrost heater has a few scratches (showing copper color underneath) where the drain defrosters (copper wire) have been wrapped around it.
denman  
#22 Posted : Sunday, March 2, 2014 8:54:49 AM(UTC)
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The copper color is probably from the wire you had wrapped around the heater.
As everything heats/cools the wire will move a little and could rub off a little onto the heaters calrod coating.
thanks 1 user thanked denman for this useful post.
coyote2 on 4/17/2019(UTC)
coyote2  
#23 Posted : Sunday, March 12, 2017 11:11:05 AM(UTC)
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And now, after ANOTHER 3 years, I've replaced the drain heater again.

Apparently 3 years is how long it takes for the far end of the copper wire to get blackened. (By far end, I mean farthest from the end that goes down the drain. I wrap the wire around the heater about three times, and it gets darkest only after the first [counting from the drain] complete wrap loop; and it's NOT just near where the wire touches the heater on each loop [I haven't wrapped it tight all around to avoid damaging the heater], it's blackened all the way around each loop; my guess is that the coating is from some chemical process taking place from the heat.)

I think I'll mark my calendar to change the drain heater again February 2020!

I shall be forever grateful, denman; thank goodness this thread was still here to remind me of all the details!!
coyote2  
#24 Posted : Thursday, March 23, 2017 11:00:09 AM(UTC)
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Followup: Now 11 days later the drain froze again so I replaced the drain heater again. This time I wrapped the wire close to the heater all the way around. And I then forced a defrost cycle.
coyote2  
#25 Posted : Monday, April 15, 2019 10:37:07 AM(UTC)
coyote2

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Thank you very much denman (and everyone), this drain heater solution continues to work perfectly (simply needing replacement every 3 years; the last time being 2 years ago), but...

This week I noticed that freezer contents aren't freezing. (The drain is perfectly clear/defrosted by the heater.)

The freezer makes the right (?compressor?) sound it always has, it still gets as hot on the places on the outside of the freezer it always has, and it's cold inside...but apparently it's not as cold as it should be. Everything behind the panel looks right to me.

I think it's about 20 years old. I've always had it pretty full; it's no more full than it's ever been.

Time for a new freezer...or a visit from a pro?

Edit: I know this may be a new issue, sorry if I should have created a new thread.

Edited by user Monday, April 15, 2019 10:46:12 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

denman  
#26 Posted : Tuesday, April 16, 2019 2:41:22 AM(UTC)
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I am no longer active on this forum but do check it once in a while for any old posts that I had answered.

Check the evaporator coils in the freezer.

If they are heavily frosted over to the point where the fan cannot pull air through them you have a defrost problem. Could be the defrost heater, the defrost thermostat or the defrost timer.

If they only have frost in one area usually where the freon enters the coils then it is a sealed system problem. This would be an expensive repair so it is probably best to replace the unit.

If they have a fairly even coating of frost then check to be sure the fan is running correctly. It should be on whenever the compressor is on.

Be sure that the compressor has run for 10 minutes or so before checking the coils. If you check them right after a defrost cycle then yo may arrive at the wrong diagnosis.

thanks 1 user thanked denman for this useful post.
coyote2 on 4/16/2019(UTC)
coyote2  
#27 Posted : Tuesday, April 16, 2019 10:45:13 AM(UTC)
coyote2

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First, thank you very much denman, your years of help has changed my life. (I'm on disability so I'm very limited both financially and physically, and really depend upon my freezer.)

When I looked at the coils yesterday (the compressor had been running for quite awhile) I didn't see much frost; there was a little on the fins but it wasn't uniform. Instead of 'going in' again today (because the time is ticking on the food that was frozen, and [!] my back went out a few days ago) I think I'll just go ahead and replace the unit. Great opportunity to get more square feet which will be very welcome.
denman  
#28 Posted : Tuesday, April 16, 2019 12:23:18 PM(UTC)
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You are welcome.

Sorry it did not turn out to be an easy fix but it is better to put the dollars towards a new unit.
thanks 1 user thanked denman for this useful post.
coyote2 on 4/17/2019(UTC)
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