Freezer Does Not Freeze [Issues Solved]

If your freezer does not freeze, it is crucial to find out what is causing the problem. Fortunately, this article discusses issues and solutions.

Freezer Does Not Freeze

Freezer Does Not Freeze – How to Fix

Check the following if your freezer does not freeze:

1. Evaporator Coils

Disconnect the refrigerator from electric power and open the freezer door. Unmount the inside back panel after emptying the freezer of foods and shelves. Next, check the coils to see if there is a buildup of frost on them. That will explain the freezer’s inability to freeze. You may have to defrost the freezer manually by leaving the door open, or use a hairdryer if you want a quicker job.

When the coils thaw, clean the excess water before putting the evaporator cover back into position. Then, check the defrost system and door seal. The evaporator coils should not have a heavy load of ice on them during normal operations. Only a light coating which the defrost heater melts during the defrost cycle.

The defrost timer may be malfunctioning and unable to move the system into the defrost cycle. If that is the case, it would explain the frost buildup because it has the job of turning the cycle on and off. So, run a continuity test on the timer and if you find no continuity, replace the timer.

But if the timer is working, check the defrost heater and thermostat. The timer should notify the thermostat, which closes its contacts so that power can flow to the heater. However, if the timer is working, but the heater or thermostat is not, the cycle will not work. As a result, the coils will freeze. Frozen coils cannot release cold air for the freezer, hence the issue of no freezing, even when the evaporator fan is working.

2. Evaporator Fan

Open the door of the freezer and press the freezer door switch. The fan motor stops running when you open the door but it resumes running when you activate it. However, if the fan does not run with the switch activated, you can test it for continuity using a multimeter. Replace the fan motor if there is no continuity.

Before doing that, ensure the fan’s blades are not clogged with ice or dirt. Otherwise, the fan cannot run even if the motor is in good working condition. So, clean the blades to remove dirt, or use a hairdryer to melt ice. Then, ensure the blades are not bent and are in good working condition. Otherwise, replace them.

The evaporator fan is responsible for circulating the cold air from the evaporator or cooling coils. Without it, the freezer cannot cool and the refrigerator will become warm. So, it is crucial to have a functioning evaporator fan if the freezer must freeze.

3. Start Relay

Unplug the freezer from the wall outlet and move it. Unmount the screws holding the bottom back access panel and remove the panel. You will find the start relay mounted to the compressor’s side; it is a small device. Detach and shake it to check for a rattle. Replace the relay if it rattles or smells burnt.

If that does not prove the functionality of the relay, run a continuity test on it using a multimeter. Place the probes of the meter between the start and run terminals and check the resistance. If it does not align with what you see on the refrigerator’s tech sheet, replace the relay.

The relay enables the compressor to start and run by providing the power it needs. That way, the refrigerator can run smoothly. If the start relay fails, the compressor will not work and the freezer will not cool or freeze.

4. Condenser Coils

While checking the start relay, take a look at the condenser coils. Their location means they easily get dirty, especially if you have pets or live in a dusty environment. Use a vacuum cleaner to blow all the dirt away, and finish it up with a small brush or a condenser cleaning brush. Ensure you get all the dirt so that the coils do not quickly get dirty. Also, clean the area around the coils to remove the dust and debris that can easily stick to the coils.

The condenser coils have the important job of releasing heat from the freezer. As the compressor operates and the freezer runs, the heat builds. And as the refrigerant flows with the heat down to the condenser from the evaporator, the coils dissipate the heat into the atmosphere. 

But dirt blankets the coils, preventing them from releasing the heat. As a result, the heat builds and stops the freezer from cooling and freezing. Therefore, clean the coils as often as twice a year. Do it more often if you live in a dusty area or have hairy pets. But do it less often if you do not have this concern.

5. Condenser Fan

Inspect the fan; it is located close to the condenser coils and compressor. It should be working while the freezer runs, which means you must inspect it as the freezer operates. But if it is not working, check the blades to ensure they are not stuck. Dirt can clog them and keep them from spinning. Wear and tear may also loosen the grommet and shaft, keeping the fan from working.

Therefore, thoroughly clean the blades and ensure nothing is sticking to them. Then turn them; if they are stiff, the motor bearings may be worn. That means the motor needs a replacement. If you are unsure, run a continuity test on the motor using a multimeter. Replace the fan motor if there is no continuity.

6. Compressor

The compressor does not easily fail, but age and improper use may damage it. So, check the compressor if none of the other parts seem to be faulty. Checking a compressor is not an easy task, but there are ways to test it with a multimeter. There may be an open circuit, causing the compressor to fail. Hire a professional appliance technician to do the job.

7. Closed System

The freezer’s closed system may be leaking, which means there is a punctured pipe in the sealed system through which refrigerant is leaking. A lack of refrigerant will cause the freezer to stop freezing, even if it cools somewhat. If the top shelf alone is not cooling or the evaporator coils have only one frost-covered section, the system is leaking. The smell of chemicals or oil leaking from under the freezer are other pointers of a leaking closed system.

Apart from the above, you can also check the main control board for faults. Again, you may need the services of a professional to determine if it is faulty and replace it.

Check out these other articles…

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Refrigerator During a Power Outage [Detailed Survival Guide]

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Refrigerator After Moving [Issues & Proven Solutions]

My Freezer Is Not Freezing and Leaking Water – Solved

When a freezer is not freezing and leaks water, check all the components we mentioned above. But in addition, check the defrost drain to see if it is clogged with dirt and ice. The drain hole is at the center back of the freezer, behind the evaporator cover. That is if it is a fridge freezer. A chest freezer will leak from the drain plug at the bottom front of the unit.

For a fridge freezer, remove the evaporator cover and inspect the hole. Pour warm water over the hole to melt any ice covering it or use a hairdryer to do the same job. Next, run water into the hole and see if it freely flows into the drain pan. If it does not, there is debris clogging the hole.

Find a stiff wire and poke the dirt out of the hole. Pour a solution of bleach and water into the hole to clean and sanitize it. Until the water runs free ad clear, do not stop pouring. When the drain is clean, check the drain pan.

A full drain pan will cause water to overflow and run out from under the freezer. Therefore, see if the pan is the type that pulls out, and empty it if it is. Wash and sanitize the drain pan with vinegar or bleach, clean the water under the freezer, and replace the pan. However, use a stick and wipes to clean the pan in its position if it is not the removable type.

Why Does My Freezer Freeze Everything But Ice Cream?

Frequent door opening, ventilation issues, empty freezer, temperature setting, blocked vents, and location can affect the freezing ability of the freezer so that ice cream goes soft. If you are comparing the frozen meat in your freezer to the soft ice cream, do note that meat needs the freezer to be about 25 degrees Fahrenheit to freeze, while ice cream needs the temperature to be as low as -10 degrees Fahrenheit.

Therefore, determine how often you open the freezer door. Do not open it too often and when you do, do not hold it open for too long. Next, check the freezer’s temperature setting. It must be at 0 degrees Fahrenheit or lower to freeze ice cream. If you are not sure, place a thermometer near the door or on the top shelf and check it after about an hour. Adjust the setting to a lower point if the temperature is not correct.

Also, check the space around the freezer to ensure there is enough for air to circulate. There should be about two inches of space around the appliance for the hot air to dissipate. Otherwise, the heat will store in the freezer and negatively affect its cooling capacity. Move the freezer to make space if there is not enough.

Furthermore, check how full the freezer is. It is crucial to fill the freezer halfway at the least. Ideally, the freezer should be three-quarters of the way full. It works best when it has enough content to retain the cold air and improve cooling and freezing. While at it, check the vents to ensure they are open so that cold air can enter the freezer from the evaporator coils.

In addition, the location and placement of the freezer can affect its freezing capacity. If it is in the path of sun rays or close to a heat source, it may not freeze as it should unless you lower the temperature setting even further. The ambient temperature should not be lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit and no higher than 110 degrees. This helps maintain a functional freezer.


Find a lasting solution if your freezer does not freeze. This is especially true if you have a lot of food stored in it. Apart from the food, you risk losing the entire freezer if you do not find and fix the fault. Speak with the manufacturer or choose an independent technician if the manufacturer is out of business.

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