GE Refrigerator Keeps Turning Off [How to Fix]

If you are wondering why your GE refrigerator keeps turning off, wonder no more. This article will show you why and give you possible solutions.

GE GME04GGKBB Compact Refrigerator, Black

GE Refrigerator Keeps Turning Off – Solution

Here are things to do to fix your GE refrigerator that is constantly turning off:

1. Replace Bad Start Relay

To change a bad start relay, locate the compressor. The start relay is attached to its side. Use your hand to unplug it from the compressor, then shake it gently. If it rattles, it is most certainly bad so change it.

The compressor is located behind the rear panel at the bottom of the refrigerator.

But you can only blame the start relay if the fan is still functioning well. Therefore, check the condenser fan for proper functionality.

Here is what a start relay does:

It triggers the compressor to act by turning it on and off. This depends on the reading the thermostat sends to the compressor. So, a bad start relay could be the reason your refrigerator keeps turning off.

Bear in mind that you can install a replacement part yourself, depending on the model of your appliance. Otherwise, get an authorized service agent to do the job.

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2. Change Malfunctioning Condenser Fan

Follow the steps below to install a new condenser fan motor:

Step One

Move your refrigerator away from the wall. Then, use a socket wrench to unscrew the rear access panel at the bottom of the refrigerator. The condenser fan is located to the right, next to the compressor.

Step Two

Press on the locking tabs of the wire harnesses to disconnect them.

Step Three

Reach the fan blades from behind, push the fan off the motor shaft, and pull it out from the side.

Step Four

Use a Hex head nut driver to unscrew the fan motor from the mounting brackets.

Step Five

Remove the two rubber motor mounts; one at the front and the other at the rear.

Step Six

Install the new fan motor. Start by reinstalling the rubber motor mounts to the new motor, and mounting the motor back to the mounting brackets.

With the motor secured, reconnect the harnesses and the fan into place. Spin the fan to ensure it turns freely without obstructions.

Finally, screw back the rear panel into position.

Condenser fans create a cooling effect. The condenser fan circulates air through the condenser coils and keeps the compressor cool. So, a malfunctioning fan motor will cause the compressor to overheat, hence, the refrigerator will keep turning off.

Here is a video guide on how to replace a malfunctioning condenser fan motor…

3. Replace Damaged Compressor

If you are sure the compressor of your GE refrigerator is damaged, replace it. To do this, pull the refrigerator away from the wall, and remove the rear access panel.

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Next, carefully disconnect the wire connections, taking note of where each wire is removed to avoid confusion during reconnection. To make things easier, take pictures of the connections before removing any wire.

Also, note that some wires have clips and may require special care to remove.

Now, reconnect the new compressor, and replace the access panel. Test the refrigerator to see if the problem continues.

Wait about 30−40 minutes to see if the new compressor is working well. You will know this if your refrigerator is cooling normally, and the power is steady.

If the compressor is working fine, return the unit to its former position.

A failed compressor could be the reason your appliance keeps turning off. However, note that a compressor failure isn’t the main cause of the refrigerator turning off constantly. So, investigate other possibilities first before carrying out this repair.

Note: Most times, a compressor is replaced by a certified technician, according to the law. Therefore, find out if this is a repair you can do yourself or if you need to hire a technician.

Before working on the compressor, allow the refrigerator to cool for at least thirty minutes. This is to avoid getting scalded by hot metal.

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Other Solutions

Apart from replacing defective parts, here are other things you should do to keep your refrigerator from always turning off:

Clean Dirty Condenser Coils

Use a clean paintbrush to dust the dirt off the condenser coils. You can find the coils behind the rear access panel at the bottom of the refrigerator.

Since the condenser coils are outside the unit, they can easily trap dirt and dust. And when this happens, the coils cannot dissipate the heat from the refrigerant, leading to thermal overload. As a result, the compressor shuts down causing the refrigerator to cycle on and off.

Therefore, it is essential to always clean the condenser coils to avoid this problem.

Ensure Steady Voltage Supply

Check the power cord, circuit breaker/fuses, and outlet to ensure the appliance gets the proper amount of voltage. Fluctuating voltage can make the refrigerator randomly come on and go off.

Important Note

When carrying out repairs on your appliance, do not forget to disconnect it from the power source. This will ensure your safety from electrocution.

Furthermore, be sure of your DIY skills before carrying out any repairs on your appliance. Otherwise, contact GE Cares to report the issue and request service.

You also have the option of going independent. Chat with any of our appliance technicians using the chatbox to your right. You don’t need to book an appointment, wait or spend on an expensive in-house call.


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