The How Zone

Fix A Fridge

When a good fridge goes bad

There are a few things that can go bad on a refrigerator, including the previously mentioned Dust Bunnies. Rather than wait for the bad things to happen you can be proactive and clean out the vents and coils at the bottom of your fridge.

Fridge Coils

At the bottom of most refrigerators you will find a plastic or metal vent panel. This snaps on/off (read the instructions if it is being stubborn) allowing access to the coils. Sometimes the vent will have a filter: vacuum that as well. As for the coils a long, skinny duster will work along with a vacuum. If it is really convoluted you might need to blow high pressure air through the coils. Don't bang on the coils, even though they are metal and look tough you really don't want to ding or break them...that leads to an expensive repair or new fridge.

Another thing you might notice down there is a little plastic dish. When the fridge goes through a defrost cycle (most of them do this automatically) the excess water is collected in this dish. Clean it out: dust and water and airborne cooties might start a whole sub-colony. You don't want to be the one who is responsible for unleashing an attack fungus on the world, now do you?

As I mentioned earlier our fridge was acting funny: freezer was fine, fridge section too warm. If both sides aren't getting cold enough then you'd start suspecting dirty coils or even a bad compressor. But since the freezer is fine that rules out a whole (expensive!) subsection.

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