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Amana side by side fridge not cold  Rating:  Rating
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 Posted: Sun Jul 9th, 2006 03:30 am
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machineguy200
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Yesterday our Amana Model SXD26VW Side by Side Refrigerator Freezer with water and ice through the door stopped working correctly. Ice cream, ice cubes, etc all melted. The refrigerator side was not as cold as it should be. Also, water would not come out of the door dispenser.

Overnight it seemed to miraculously fix itself. Both side were appropriately cold, there was ice in the icemaker,  the water flowed from the door dispenser, the beer can in the fridge felt cold. As the day wore on it it went back to not working.(As I think about it now, several days ago, maybe a week or so, the water dispenser was not working and the freezer seemed to stop being cold. It started working again within several hours.)

I knew that a timer of some sort could be adjusted so I looked around and found a knob behind the toe plate. I turned it clockwise until it clicked to a stop. At this point it seems that it gets somewhat colder but certainly not as cold as it should. The fan in the back bottom runs continuously. I'm tempted to unplug it. I have vacuumed the coil behind the toe plate.

Please let me know what I need to do to repair this.

Thanks in advance.

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 Posted: Sun Jul 9th, 2006 04:31 am
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Trying to help
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Knowing this design unit we will want to know when the unit is having it's problems, is the fan in the freezer running? The fan is controlled through the defrost t-stat and it has a tendency to be a little glitchy at best some times. If the defrost limiter is stuck open, your fan won't run, FF and FZ sides will warm, and the water tank will freeze stopping the flow of water out the door.   



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 Posted: Sun Jul 9th, 2006 05:07 am
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trouser chili
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Trying to help wrote:
Knowing this design unit we will want to know when the unit is having it's problems, is the fan in the freezer running? The fan is controlled through the defrost t-stat and it has a tendency to be a little glitchy at best some times. If the defrost limiter is stuck open, your fan won't run, FF and FZ sides will warm, and the water tank will freeze stopping the flow of water out the door.   


Thanks, I think this is the exact problem I'm having with my Amana SQD26VL. The water tank froze up, and the evaporator fan won't run because it's not getting any voltage. I take it the best course of action is to simply replace the defrost thermostat? Is that the same thing as when you refer to a defrost limiter?

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 Posted: Sun Jul 9th, 2006 04:19 pm
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machineguy200
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I guess I can't really answer your question about the fan. There seems to be 2 basic noises I hear. One is the usual "hum" that seems that it makes when running normally. Right now it its making that noise. It "seems" like it is running correctly right this second and water is flowing through the door dispenser. Although, when I first opened the freezer this morning there was ice in the ice maker but the ice was wet and there were frozen drips including a sort of cool "stalagtite" hanging off one of the sliding trays.

The other of the 2 sounds it makes is the constant whirring of a fan. This fan seemed to be going when the fridge was not keeping cold. That fan is on the backside of the unit at the bottom, sort of centered left to right.

Even though it is keeping cold right now I have no confidence that it is actually fixed and that I coud start using it normally again. Is there a component or components that need replacing?

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 Posted: Sun Jul 9th, 2006 06:16 pm
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trouser chili
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machineguy200 wrote:
I guess I can't really answer your question about the fan. There seems to be 2 basic noises I hear. One is the usual "hum" that seems that it makes when running normally. Right now it its making that noise. It "seems" like it is running correctly right this second and water is flowing through the door dispenser. Although, when I first opened the freezer this morning there was ice in the ice maker but the ice was wet and there were frozen drips including a sort of cool "stalagtite" hanging off one of the sliding trays.

The other of the 2 sounds it makes is the constant whirring of a fan. This fan seemed to be going when the fridge was not keeping cold. That fan is on the backside of the unit at the bottom, sort of centered left to right.

Even though it is keeping cold right now I have no confidence that it is actually fixed and that I coud start using it normally again. Is there a component or components that need replacing?


The fan "Trying to help" is speaking of is the evaporator fan. It is inside the unit, on the freezer side. It blows air over the evaporator, which is cold and then forces that newly chilled air to circulate inside the fridge and freezer. This fan is not spinning at all in my fridge, and I suspect that means I need to replace the defroster thermostat. Although I'm hoping to get confirmation of that. My fan does spin if the correct voltage is applied to it. Anyway, you need to check if your fan is spinning. The way to get to it is to remove everything from the freezer, including the shelves and ice bucket (unless you want water dripping on you). You can leave the icemaker and the motor assembly. Then remove the lower back panel in the back of the freezer section. Here's some pictures. You can click on them for larger versions.

There it is. That's the freezer side with the evaporator panel removed.


Closer up shot. The defrost thermostat has already been removed in the this shot. But I found mine clipped on to the top of the coil on the right side.


The defrost thermostat (removed).

Last edited on Sun Jul 9th, 2006 06:17 pm by trouser chili

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 Posted: Sun Jul 9th, 2006 06:16 pm
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The fan I am talking about is the Evaporator Fan. It is in your freezer compartment. It should be blowing any time your compressor and fan in the back is on. The only time it wouldn't be blowing if your compressor is on would be the first 3-5 minutes after a defrost.

 

*** I replied as you were sending yours Mr. Trouser Chili. Great pictures and explanation! Yes a defrost bi-metal, defrost limiter, defrost terminator, defrost t-stat and that metal thing with the wires coming off it are all the same part. The t-stat is open at room temp and will close once it gets cold. It does this to let frost build on the evap so when the fan comes on we are not blowing moisture and hot air all over the unit. The will become sticky at times. IF your fan worked when you benched checked it, and the evap was frosted up when you found the fan not running, that is your ticket. Another sign on these is the top of the limiter will look like someone pulled it off and stuck it back down. This is caused by moisture getting in it and freezing. It will create a intermittent problem. 

Last edited on Sun Jul 9th, 2006 06:23 pm by Trying to help



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 Posted: Sun Jul 9th, 2006 08:30 pm
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trouser chili
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Ok, here is something interesting. Of course there are no appliance parts shops open today, because it's Sunday. But Sears parts centers are open. Mine was open from 11:00AM to 6PM or so. Of course, Sears doesn't really stock parts for appliances that are not Kenmore, but Machineguy200 and I are in luck, because at some point in the past, Amana manufactured a fridge similar to ours for Sears and it was slapped with a Kenmore badge, which means they stock parts for it. Amana part number R0161088 is the same as sears part number 12017823. This is the defrost thermostat. I just got back from my local Sears parts store and installed my new one. The old one did look as if someone tried to take it apart in the past, so I guess moisture got in and froze in there, blowing it apart. My wife is now scrubbing the fridge top to bottom and then we're going to close it up and see how cold it gets. I caught the fan running once, but it's not currently. I think the little timer box may have something to do with it, because I took it apart in hopes I could find the problem in there (before I found this forum and thread) and I'm not sure I got it back together properly. Here's hoping.

Also, if you are interested in other parts for your Amana fridge, Sears part number 59650699000 should come up as KENMORE SXS REFRIGERATOR, this fridge appears to be very close to both the Amana SQD26VL and SXD26VW.

Last edited on Sun Jul 9th, 2006 08:33 pm by trouser chili

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 02:33 am
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machineguy200
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First of all, thanks so much for the info so far and Trouserchili's posts were great too!!

I took off the cover in the freezer and saw the coil etc except that it was covered in frost. I wiped off some of it but the defroster limiter is still covered in ice/frost and I think it better to let it thaw than pick at the ice/frost. I heard a noice that I think is the compressor, that noise has stopped. The only fan noise is still the same fan that I talked about in an earlier post. I don't think it is the evaporator fan that you are referring to. By the way, how may fans are there in this machine??

The very bottom portion of the coils froze up and any residual wetness on the bottom floor of the freezer is frozen.

I await your reply.

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 02:39 am
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machineguy200
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Your photos and advice were great!, Thanks!

I have also replied to Trying to help.

I am still not sure what is wrong but we are getting there.

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 03:10 am
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Was the fan below the defrost limiter turning?? IF it was not, there probably is a defrost limiter in your future if the fan was not getting 120VAC across the two terminals 



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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 04:47 am
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Part link for defrost limiter w/ harness: http://www.repairclinic.com/referral.asp?R=154&N=992



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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 12:11 pm
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machineguy200
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There is a fan mounted at the top just behind the defrost limiter...at least I think it's the defrost limiter, since it's covered in frost and ice. That fan is NOT turning. Another fan that can be accessed from the backside of the entire unit is turning and never seems to stop turning.

By the way, how many total fans does the entire machine have?


It's 6:50 AM. I opened the freezer to find:

1. Coils and various components just above coils frosted or iced.

2. Fan not running.

3. No ice in the ice bin.

4. Water IS flowing through door dispenser.

5. 1/2 full 2 liter bottle of coke left overnight on the bottom floor of freezer is frozen solid. (All the trays are out so I could remove access panel to coils.)

I obviously don't want to buy the wrong part. A few years ago I had to have this thing repaired, also in the summertime. I think, but am not sure, that the repair guy replaced something in the aluminum box just behind the removeable front toe kick.

I appreciate your help. Can you tell for certain which part(s) will fix this thing for sure. The wife is getting antsy and just wants me to call the local repir guy so the she can have her fridge back. I would prefer to do it myself.

Last edited on Mon Jul 10th, 2006 12:14 pm by machineguy200

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 01:19 pm
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man
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The stalled fan in the freezer is the problem. If the defrost limiter is open, this fan will not run. If it looks like this, it's bad. If it does not look like that, this doesn't mean it's good, though; you need to test continuity with your meter.



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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 02:59 pm
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machineguy200
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trouser chili,

Did that part fix your problem? The limiter in my freezer is NOT busted open. But it could still be the problem. Unfortunately, I don't have a meter to check it.

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 03:03 pm
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machineguy200
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Samurai Appliance Repair Man,

The limiter in my freezer is NOT busted open. Unfortunately, I don't have a meter to check it.

If I order that part from you and it doesn't fix the problem, what then?

How much is the part and how quickly would I get it from you?

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 03:18 pm
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992

(Click to enlarge)
Grid is 1 inch square






Defrost thermostat with wire harness, clip-on, L48-33 degrees



$27.80
Yes
Qty [url=javascript:AddtoBasket(992,document.PartFound.qty_4.value,0, 'SXD26VW', 0)][/url]
Order now and this item will ship today. Guaranteed


We've led you to water, held your head under and you're still not drinking! Without a meter to properly check the limiter all we can do is eliminate what we know is not it. The part behind the toe plate was your timer. The fact that your unit is running rules it out. The only thing that would keep your fan from running on this unit if your compressor is running would be a broken wire, bad fan, or bad defrost limiter. Trouser chili pulled his fan and benched tested it and it ran fine. That is how he eliminated it from the equation. You can have the part overnighted to you from the link above. A meter will cost you about $15.



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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 03:48 pm
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trouser chili
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machineguy200 wrote:
Samurai Appliance Repair Man,

The limiter in my freezer is NOT busted open. Unfortunately, I don't have a meter to check it.

If I order that part from you and it doesn't fix the problem, what then?

How much is the part and how quickly would I get it from you?


Yeah, I'm running now. My evaporator fan tested good when given the appropriate ammount of power, but wasn't spinning when wired into the fridge like it's supposed to, so that pretty much only leaves the defrost thermostat thingy that I also posted a picture of.


By the way, these things appear to only have two fans. The one in the back, and the one inside (evaporator fan). The evaporator fan is the one visable in my pictures. You can test it by giving it 120 volts of AC power. Basically, you can plug it directly into the power of a regular wall outlet. There is a high chance of electrocuting yourself setting this up, so be careful. I'm not sure how smart it is to test it this way, but I found (by accident) that you can also test the fan by removing the brown wire from the terminal on the fan and then touching that terminal to a ground source with the fridge plugged in. Basically you remove the brown wire from the fan and plug in a green one. Then plug the fridge in and see if the fan spins. I also accidentally touched the exposed end of the brown wire to a ground source as well, which produced a shower of sparks, a blown fuse and a very scared wife and dog. You can actually see in that close up picture were I did it, it's left a nice little burn pattern on the exposed metal of the evaporator fan bracket. Don't do that, I don't recommend it.

Last edited on Mon Jul 10th, 2006 03:54 pm by trouser chili

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 04:45 pm
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machineguy200
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trouser chili

Did you blow a fuse in the fridge or a house fuse?

Are there any fuses in the fridge??

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 04:45 pm
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trouser chili
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I blew a house fuse. I don't think the fridge has any fuses. I didn't see any.

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 Posted: Mon Jul 10th, 2006 04:51 pm
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Just be careful in there, unplug the unit when taking off wires!!!! You can arc out a nice little hole in the evaporator and there goes your fridge. I saw a defrost heater that did this once. You're lucky you just hit the fan bracket.



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