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Whirlpool Top Mount Refrigerator  Rating:  Rating
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 Posted: Sat Apr 16th, 2005 12:02 pm
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cdelsig
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The freezer hasn't been working for some time now.  I took off the inside back panel, cleared the drain hole and de-iced the coils.  Amazing it wouldn't work, eh?  The drain was clogged with pieces of paint that are flaking off the steel back panel.  After everything dried out - and all the popsicle sludge had been cleaned up - I pluggeed her back in and set it for 'normal.'  As of this writing, it's been almost 21 hours since the restart and ice making is going fine, but my ice cream is more like a milkshake and the popsicles are mushy (I don't want anymore sludge, ya know).

Do I give it more time or do I set the freezer for a lower temp (I haven't purchased a freezer thermometer yet, but my remote digital meat probe I hung inside prior to putting any goods in did read 'low' and it does read down to 32°F)?

Chris

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 Posted: Sat Apr 16th, 2005 12:24 pm
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man
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Wait: you're saying your automatic icemaker is working but your ice cream is mushy?  That's odd because the icemaker won't make unless the freezer temp is below 17F.  Here's whatcha do:

1. Use a thermometer to measure the freezer temp.  Post that temperature.

2. post your model number.



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 Posted: Sat Apr 16th, 2005 10:56 pm
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cdelsig
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Model# ET20DKXSN01

It's a 19.9 ft3 fridge that is guaranteed to be 9½ years old (inherited with the house and the previous owners hadn't bought any appliances, so they inherited it, too).  It is almond and not bisque (or biscuit for those KitchenAid lovers), so that makes it 12-15 years old anyway.

I'll have to get back to you on the freezer temperature.  I don't have a thermometer capable of lower than 32°F as yet.  My wife has an automatic ice maker, but I don't.  Well, I am the icemaker, so it's automatic for her!  The cold air is introduced to the freezer compartment by vents along the entire top of the back wall.  The ice area is 'walled off' and the top section has cold air vented right onto it.  No surprise it freezes first.  We keep the ice cream directly under the ice making area (could this be why it doesn't freeze (there is less cold air circulating because of the ice area)?  That would explain the ice cream, but not the cans of concentrated juice in the door.  I don't even have the freezer section ½-full because I wanted it to reach temperature faster and all.

I will be moving the ice cream to see if this is more of a location problem.  Additionally, the ice cream is softer now than before I de-iced the coils.

Chris

p.s.  This is the first place I've seen (except on my Office Suite of products) with a superscript and subscript buttons!  Bravó!

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 Posted: Sat Apr 16th, 2005 11:01 pm
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man
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cdelsig wrote: Model# ET20DKXSN01


 

Couldn't get that model number to pull up, re-check it.



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 Posted: Sat Apr 16th, 2005 11:18 pm
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cdelsig
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Rechecked.  Posted model# is accurate.  I tried to pull up a manual online at whirlpool.  The item came up with no manuals online.

Chris

 

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 Posted: Sun Apr 17th, 2005 11:39 am
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man
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I found a ET20DKXSW01 which is probably close enough to yours.

Hows that freezer temp?

 



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 Posted: Sun Apr 17th, 2005 03:13 pm
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Mad Mac
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I've run into this sort of issue before. That little section under the ice shelf is intended only for storage of cubes. As you correctly state, it gets little airflow. Take a look at this picture which shows it in its "original" layout:



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 Posted: Sun Apr 17th, 2005 07:34 pm
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cdelsig
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Mad Mac,

Thanks for the exploded view.  The wall (item#26) connects to the bottom rack (#17)and also holds a smaller rack outside the ice area.  Inside the ice area, I have 2 shelves (#27) and the bottom wire rack the wall is connected to.  Item #30 is a 'door' that covers the front of the ice area.  I have 4 cube trays that I keep on the shelves and then there is the cube hopper (#35) which sits on the rack.  Under the rack (outside the ice area) is where we have traditionally kept the ice cream. 

I only spell this all out because I wasn't sure what you meant when you were refering to the area designed for storage of the cubes. 

The ice cream is still soft, both under the ice area as spelled out above and on the bottom level opposite side.  The freezer compartment is not loaded much so I am not concerned about poor airflow causing this issue.  It also seems like it is always on now, too.

Chris

 

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 Posted: Tue Apr 19th, 2005 01:54 am
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cdelsig
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Okay, now I'm but a itty bitty grasshoppa here.  I do know that the damn thing shouldn't be iced up.  Again! 

Yeah, the temp. is under 32°F but things aren't freezing.  So, I remove the back panel again.  Lo and behold, the thing is iced up again!  Do I assume it wasn't dry from the first time and that is what caused this?

I am going to take a hair dryer to it this time and make sure it is dry.  Is this typical?

Chris

Xtreme Grasshoppa

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 Posted: Tue Apr 19th, 2005 02:35 am
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man
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cdelsig wrote:
Is this typical?

Not at all! You have a defrost system failure. Replace the defrost timer and the defrost thermostat.



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 Posted: Tue Apr 19th, 2005 03:51 am
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cdelsig
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Degree of difficulty for this repair?

Chris

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 Posted: Tue Apr 19th, 2005 04:07 am
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cdelsig
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Any way to test the thermometer and timer? 

What is the time estimate on the repair?

Any special tools necessary?  I have the basics...hammer, bigger hammer, even bigger hammer, etc. 

I could typify myself as all-thumbs, but I have a table saw, so I have no more thumbs (why do you think ice is as important to me as it is?).

Chris

 

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 Posted: Tue Apr 19th, 2005 11:23 am
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Budget Appliance Repair
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man wrote:
cdelsig wrote:
Is this typical?

Not at all! You have a defrost system failure. Replace the defrost timer and the defrost thermostat.



Question for Samurai: Are you a phyic??? You already know somehow that the "Defrost Heater" is ok??? or are we just ASS U Ming that the heater is ok????

Chris you need to check the "Defrost Heater" for continuity first to make sure it's not the problem, if it ohms out ok then do as Samuria says "Replace the DEFROST TIMER & DEFROST T-STAT"




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 Posted: Tue Apr 19th, 2005 12:35 pm
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man
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Budget Appliance Repair wrote: Question for Samurai: Are you a phyic??? You already know somehow that the "Defrost Heater" is ok??? or are we just ASS U Ming that the heater is ok????




 

This is a Whirlpool refrigerator with a calrod defrost heater.  How many of these have you ever replaced in your lifetime?  For my part, I've replaced exactly zero. 

The problem is either the defrost thermostat or the defrost timer.  Both are inexpensive parts and easy to replace.  Good service practice recommends replacing both parts when one goes bad to prevent a problem down the road. 

I'm not a psychic, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Exress last night.:moondance:

Last edited on Tue Apr 19th, 2005 12:52 pm by Samurai Appliance Repair Man



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 Posted: Wed Apr 20th, 2005 12:24 pm
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Budget Appliance Repair
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Are you telling me that you've never seen the end burn off one of those calrod heaters in a Whirlpool.

Can't say I can remember ever having one burn out with no signs of being bad, but can't even remember how many I've seen that the end complete shorts out somehow and burns up causing much black sot and smoke all around the area of the black rubber end of the calrod wiring.



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 Posted: Wed Apr 20th, 2005 01:18 pm
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man
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Budget Appliance Repair wrote: Are you telling me that you've never seen the end burn off one of those calrod heaters in a Whirlpool.


 

No, I told you I never replaced one.  Since cal rod heaters fail in such spectacular fashion, leaving black soot and smoke all over the freezer, it's obvious when they fail-- no meter required... unless you rode the short bus to school and have lots of spare time on your hands.  The one case of a failed cal rod defrost heater I saw was on a 20 year old Whirlpool fridge.  The customer wisely opted to throw it out and buy a newer, more energy efficient unit. 

Last edited on Wed Apr 20th, 2005 01:21 pm by Samurai Appliance Repair Man



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 Posted: Wed Apr 20th, 2005 01:30 pm
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cdelsig
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Based on recent posts, I do believe I can rule out a failed calrod heater.  I surely would have noticed the soot when I opened the freezer up and certainly black smoke prior to that.  The lower element in my oven burned out once.  I was pre-heating the oven for dinner and saw flickering light from the window.  Imagine my surprise when I saw a flame candystriping the element.  Neat.  Also called for immediate shutoff and replacement two days later (Thanksgiving at the in-laws came first).  I can only assume the lower elements in a GE range are calrod like the burner coils.

I will be replacing the timer and thermo in the near future.  Until then I will enjoy my ice cream mousse.  Blech.

Chris

 

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 Posted: Wed Apr 20th, 2005 03:22 pm
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FatMan
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Hi C,

          It seems to me that your unit is Frosting up too quick(frost not ice) right. If it's frost covering the whole evaporator also check your refrigerator door gasket and the freezer door gasket, also because you say your ice cream is mousse check the condensor coil underneath or behind and next to the compressor and make sure that the condensor fan is running.

                                          GoodLuck, FatMan:banana:

Ken'sApplianceService

Ken Jones

Rootstown,Ohio

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 Posted: Thu Apr 21st, 2005 02:20 am
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cdelsig
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FatMan,

Icing up is the problem.  I thawed it out Friday and it was iced up again Monday.  I would have to imagine that's too fast.  I have checked the gasket.  While it looks almost moldy in some areas, it seems to seal all around.  I have not checked the fresh food area since I haven't really had much of a problem (though it isn't as cold as it was prior to Friday).

All the fans I have seen in the unit (behind the back wall in the freezer, under the fresh food section) all seem to work just fine.  Once I thawed out the freezer coils and unclogged the drain, the excess water drained down into the pan beneath the unit which is now dry.  That seems to be working as it should.

Chris

p.s.  Glad to see a fellow Ohioan.

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 Posted: Thu Apr 21st, 2005 03:37 am
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The Seven
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cdelsig wrote:
I will be replacing the timer and thermo in the near future. 

Icing up is the problem.


NOW is "the near future". Take action NOW!;)



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