GE Refrigerator Making a Knocking Sound [How to Fix]

If your GE Refrigerator is making a knocking sound, this article will help you find out why and guide you on how to fix it.

GE refrigerator making a knocking sound

Knocking Sound from a GE Refrigerator – Quick Fix

The following are possible reasons why a GE Refrigerator makes a knocking sound and how to fix them:

1. Contact with a Surface

The refrigerator could be very close to or in contact with a wall, cabinet or furniture. Refrigerators naturally vibrate when they function. and when they do, they could hit whatever object is too close to them, generating the knocking sound.

To solve this, just pull the refrigerator a few inches away from the surface or object. and if you cannot move the refrigerator, see if the object can be moved away from it.

2. Dirty Condenser Coils

If the condenser coils are not readily visible to you, consult the refrigerator’s manual to know their location. Usually, they are at the back of the unit.

You may have to loosen the thin cover plate behind the refrigerator to locate the coils. That is if your refrigerator model has one.

When you find them, it is more likely than not that they would have dirt and dust on them. Therefore, clean them thoroughly with a cloth, leaf blower, vacuum brush head or a condenser brush. Replace the thin cover plate if your model has one.

The condenser coils of your refrigerator usually pick up loads of dust and debris. This is due to their location on the refrigerator.

3. Obstructed Condenser Fan Blades

Take a look at the condenser fan, usually located at the back of the fridge and next to the compressor.

The blades of the condenser fan may have a lot of debris, dirt or lint stuck to them. This is especially true if you have hairy pets. The dirt easily causes the fan to make a knocking sound because it reduces the flow of air.

If this is the case, disconnect the refrigerator from power and remove the thin cover plate. Clean the fan and blades with a brush or cloth, making sure to remove every dirt or lint. Then replace the thin cover plate.

4. Faulty Evaporator Fan Motor

Open the inside back wall of the freezer section of the refrigerator. That is where the evaporator fan is found. Next, spin the blades of the fan to see if they spin freely.

If they don’t, the motor of the fan is likely faulty. Sometimes, the defect causes the motor to make an unusually loud noise.

To be sure, test the windings of the motor with a multimeter to check for continuity. And if there is no continuity, replace the motor.

How to Replace a Faulty Evaporator Fan Motor

The following are steps to replace a faulty evaporator fan motor in a double-door refrigerator;

Step 1

Open the doors of the refrigerator and remove all the glass shelves in the freezer compartment.

Step 2

Use a quarter-inch screwdriver to unscrew the last two shelf holders on the left side of the freezer.

Step 3

Detach the transparent light cover on the back panel of the freezer and remove it. Also, unscrew the white-colored light cover. Then, lift and pull it out. At the back of it are two wires which you can detach with a pair of needle-nose pliers.

Step 4

Unscrew the last shelf holder on the right side of the freezer.

Step 5

Using a screwdriver, unmount the four screws holding the inside back panel of the freezer in place.

Carefully detach the lower part of the panel from the body of the freezer. While detaching it, note that there is a plastic tab attached to it.

Detach the tab from the lower part of the panel with a thumb or finger push. You’ll notice two wires that run through the tab.

Carefully slide them through the slot that runs from the centre of the tab to its edge. Then run the wires through the hole created by the detached tab on the lower part of the panel. Now you can totally take it out of the freezer.

Step 6

Carefully pull out the fan assembly from underneath the upper part of the panel and unclip it from its wire harness.

Step 7

Grip the fan blades and carefully separate them from the assembly. Turn the assembly over and slightly pinch in the bracket to detach it from the assembly.

From the fan motor, you gently slip off the rubber washer from the thin and protruding rotor. Then, detach the fan motor from the bracket.

Step 8

Grab your new fan motor and insert the rubber washer through its protruding rotor. Place the fan back into the assembly and adjust it into place, then snap the bracket into place also. Turn the assembly back over and place the fan blades back on top.

Step 9

Go back to the freezer compartment, clip it to the wire harness and place it back underneath the panel.

Step 10

Put the two wires through the tab hole at the lower part of the back panel. Be sure to put the wires through the slot on the tab and clip the tab back to the panel. Screw the panel back into position.

Step 11

Grab the white-colored light cover and re-attach the two wires that were detached from it. Position it well into its sockets, making sure that the wires do not stick out, and screw it to the panel.

Step 12

Screw the shelf holders back into position and attach the transparent light cover to its place. Finally, put back the shelves into position.

5. Failed Compressor

When the compressor on an older model GE refrigerator ages, it usually makes knocking sounds when the unit just is switched on or off. If you find this happening, it may be time to buy a new compressor.

Legally, a non-certified person cannot test or replace a refrigerator compressor. This is because it involves the use of a lot of voltage so is potentially dangerous.

Therefore, contact GE Cares to report the issue and request service.

6. Circulation of Refrigerant

As the refrigerant circulates within the refrigerator, it could make a knocking sound. But this is natural with GE refrigerators.

The knocking sound comes when the refrigerant condenses into liquid from a gaseous state in order to absorb the warm air inside the freezer.

It goes on to transform back to the gaseous state and subsequently flows into the compressor. The compressor, in turn, pressurises it before distributing it to the condenser coils where it is converted into liquid form again.

This is a continuous cycle to keep the temperature inside the refrigerator stable.

Check out these other articles…

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Why Does My GE Ice Maker Make a Knocking Sound?

Your GE ice maker makes a knocking sound primarily because there is no water going into it. As it tries to make ice without water, it makes that sound.

Another reason why the ice maker makes a knocking sound is that the pressure of water flowing into the refrigerator is too high.

To stop the knocking sound, do any of the following:

  • Check to see if water is turned on at the source so the ice maker can get water. If it is not, turn it on.
  • Reduce the pressure of water from the source with the help of a qualified plumber. You can also close the water valve a bit to reduce the force of the water flowing in.
  • Turn off the ice maker until there is a supply of water to go into the refrigerator.

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In the event your GE refrigerator is making a knocking sound, check the compressor, fan motors and even the ice maker. You are likely to find the reason for the sound from one or more of these parts.

However, if none of the above parts is responsible for the sound, the refrigerator may require service. Therefore, contact GE Cares to report the problem and request professional service.

If you would rather go independent, use the chat box on the right side of this page to speak with a verified appliance technician right away. No need for expensive in-home service calls, no appointments and no waiting.

Always turn off your refrigerator or disconnect from the power source before carrying out any repairs or servicing. Failure to do so may lead to electric shock.

Ensure that your refrigerator has a few inches of space between it and the wall or object closest to it. This allows for proper air circulation within the various compartments of the refrigerator.

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