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Troubleshooting Guide: If your Freezer is Cold, but Refrigerator is Warm


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Written by TechVill Appliance Repair Ltd. Editorial Contributors

If you find yourself grappling with the predicament of a cold freezer paired with a warm refrigerator, several factors could be contributing to this issue.

This comprehensive troubleshooting guide is designed to assist you in identifying and resolving the common causes, ensuring optimal performance from your appliance. 

Possible Causes for a Warm Refrigerator Despite a Cold Freezer:

The most frequent causes for a warm refrigerator despite a cold freezer include:

  • an overpacked freezer restricting proper airflow,
  • a faulty evaporator fan preventing the circulation of cool air,
  • a malfunctioning defrost system leading to excessive frost buildup that acts as an insulator.

In addition, inadequate air circulation due to obstructions blocking vents between the freezer and refrigerator can contribute to the issue. Ensuring these components are functioning correctly and addressing any obstructions can help resolve the problem.

Tips for Troubleshooting the Most Frequent Causes

Overpacked Freezer: A Common Culprit

One common cause for a warm refrigerator despite a cold freezer is an overpacked freezer. When the freezer is packed with food items, the air circulation within the freezer can be restricted.

This can lead to inadequate cooling in the refrigerator compartment, as the cool air from the freezer cannot circulate properly.

To resolve this issue, it is recommended to remove some items from the freezer and ensure that there is enough space for proper air circulation. 

Faulty Refrigerator Evaporator Fan

Another possible cause for a warm refrigerator is a faulty evaporator fan. The evaporator fan is responsible for circulating cool air from the freezer to the refrigerator compartment.

If the fan is not functioning properly, the cool air will not reach the refrigerator, resulting in a warm temperature.

To check, you can manually spin it and observe if it rotates freely. If it is not running or running at a slower speed, it may need to be replaced. 

Dirty Condenser Coils

When the condenser coils are dirty, their ability to expel heat is compromised. To address this issue, clean the coils using a vacuum cleaner attachment or a coil cleaning brush. Always remember to unplug your refrigerator before performing this maintenance task. 

Time for a Defrost?

A malfunctioning defrost system can also lead to a warm refrigerator. When the defrost system fails, frost can build up on the evaporator coils in the freezer.

This frost acts as an insulator, preventing the transfer of cold air to the refrigerator compartment. As a result, the refrigerator may become warm. If you notice excessive frost build-up in the freezer, it may be time to defrost the freezer.

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to defrost the freezer and ensure the proper functioning of the defrost system. 

Incorrect Thermostat Setting

The thermostat setting could be the culprit. Check if it’s accidentally set to “off” or turned down too low.

Adjust it to the appropriate setting, aiming for around 37 degrees Fahrenheit, and observe if the issue persists. 

Inadequate Air Circulation

Inadequate air circulation can also be a reason for this problem. This can occur if there are obstructions blocking the vents between the freezer and the refrigerator.

Check for any items, such as packaging or containers, that may be blocking the vents. Remove these obstructions to improve the airflow between the two compartments. 

A Problem With The Compressor

If after all this steps, the problem still exists, it’s possible that there’s an issue with your compressor. This is a more critical issue that necessitates professional assistance. If you suspect the compressor is the culprit, it’s advisable to promptly contact a repair specialist for assistance.

In conclusion, a freezer that is cold but a refrigerator that is warm can be caused by various factors. By understanding these possible causes and following the troubleshooting steps mentioned, you can resolve the issue.

If the problem persists, it is advisable to seek professional appliance repair services from TechVill, a trusted and reliable company known for its excellent customer service and expertise in appliance repair. 

How Can TechVill Help You Resolve These Issues?

As an authorized appliance service provider, TechVill offers appliance repair services in Calgary for various appliance types, including washers, fridges, ovens, dryers, and stoves. Customer satisfaction, transparency, and clear communication are our priorities.

Our certified technicians have extensive experience in handling major brands such as Maytag, Whirlpool, Frigidaire, Samsung, LG, and more. With a focus on personal service, quick and reliable repairs, we have received positive customer reviews and have many repeat clients.

We specialize in repair solutions for various appliance types, including washers, dryers, dishwashers, fridges, ovens, cooktops, and more. Our professional refrigerator repair services are available in various locations around Calgary, such as Airdrie, Chestermere, Cochrane, Canmore, and Okotoks. TechVill is known for its expertise in repairing different major brands like Amana, Bosch, LG, Samsung, and more.

Contact us by the phone number provided in the contacts section on the website or fill out the online form, and we will help you solve any problem! 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Inadequate Cooling: If the refrigerator fails to maintain the desired temperature, it indicates a problem with the cooling system.
  • Uneven Cooling: Temperature variations across different sections of the refrigerator, such as warm spots, suggest cooling system issues.
  • Excessive Frost Buildup
  • Loud or Unusual Noises: Such as grinding or squealing.
    Warm Fridge, Cold Freezer
  • Leaking Water: Water pooling inside the refrigerator or under the appliance may point to issues with the defrost system, drain line, or other cooling-related components.
  • Constantly Running Compressor: If the compressor runs continuously without cycling off, it may indicate a malfunction, leading to inefficient cooling.

Regularly. If you notice any signs of frost build-up or if the freezer is not defrosting properly, it may indicate a problem with the defrost system. In such cases, it is recommended to consult a professional appliance repair technician to diagnose and resolve the issue. 

  • Temperature Fluctuations: If you notice inconsistent temperature levels in your refrigerator, ranging from too warm to too cold, it could be a sign of compressor problems.
  • Unusual Noises: Strange noises like clicking, buzzing, or knocking, particularly coming from the back of the fridge, may suggest compressor issues.
  • Excessive Heat: If the sides or back of your refrigerator feel excessively hot, it could indicate a struggling compressor.
  • Frequent Cycling: The compressor should run in cycles. If it runs continuously without turning off, or if it frequently starts and stops, there might be a problem.
  • Spoiled Food: Ineffectiveness of the compressor can lead to inadequate cooling, resulting in food spoilage.
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