Kenmore Freezer Not Freezing [How to Fix]

Learn ways to fix a Kenmore freezer that is not freezing, and how to fix other cooling problems in a Kenmore refrigerator, by reading this detailed guide.

Kenmore freezer not freezing

Kenmore Refrigerator Not Cooling or Freezing – Solutions

The following parts should be checked for faults if a Kenmore refrigerator is not cooling or freezing:

1. Condenser Fan Motor

The first thing to do is to check the blades of the fan to see if any object is keeping them from spinning. Remove such an object if there is any and dust the blades.

Then, try to turn the blades manually to see if they turn well. This will tell you if the fan motor is working fine. If the blades don’t turn well, then you know that the motor is bad and should be replaced.

But if the blades turn well, test the motor with a multimeter to check it for continuity. If there is no continuity, replace the motor.

Without a properly functioning condenser fan motor, the refrigerator will carry the heat from the refrigerant and will be unable to cool.

2. Condenser Coils

Clean the condenser coils if they are dirty. They will be unable to release heat from the refrigerator if they are dirty. Consequently, the refrigerator’s capacity to cool will reduce significantly.

3. Evaporator Fan Motor

Move the blades of the fan with your hand to see if they turn. If they don’t turn smoothly, it is an indication that the motor is defective and should be replaced. Also, listen for extra noise from the motor. It is a pointer to the fact that it is faulty.

However, if the motor of the fan is not running at all, test its windings for continuity using a multimeter. If there is no continuity, replace the motor of the evaporator fan.

Without the evaporator fan, there will be no cold air circulating in the refrigerator so it will not get cold.

4. Thermistor

Test the thermistor with a multimeter. While testing it, its resistance should change as the temperature of the refrigerator changes. This is because it senses the temperature of the unit. But if the resistance does not change and there is no continuity on the multimeter, replace the thermistor because it is bad.

A defective thermistor will not be able to send temperature readings to the control board. Consequently, the control board will not be able to regulate power to the evaporator fan and compressor so that they can run as needed.

5. Start Capacitor

To know if the capacitor is faulty, test it using a multimeter. If you don’t see any reading on the multimeter, the capacitor is faulty and should be replaced.

When the compressor is about to start, it is the start capacitor that provides a power boost. Without it, the compressor is likely not to start. And the refrigerator cannot get cold if the compressor doesn’t start.

6. Start Relay

Run a test on the start relay between the start and run terminals using a multimeter. If there is no continuity between the terminals, then the relay is faulty and cannot function anymore. Replace it. Additionally, if the relay has a burnt smell, put a new one in its place.

The start relay enables the compressor to run by working together with the start winding. If the relay is faulty, it is possible the compressor won’t run.

7. Temperature Control Thermostat

Turn the thermostat to the highest temperature setting. A sound like a click will come from it, indicating that the thermostat is not faulty. But if you don’t hear the sound, check for continuity in the thermostat using a multimeter. If, at any temperature setting, the thermostat has no continuity, replace it.

The refrigerant system is likely not to run if the temperature control thermostat is faulty. And the refrigerator will not cool if the refrigerant does not run.

While it is rare to find that any of them is the cause of the problem, you can run a test on the temperature control board, the compressor or the main control board. However, you have to be sure there is a fault with any of them before you replace it.

No matter the type of Kenmore refrigerator you have – fridge freezer, side-by-side, top-freezer, bottom-freezer and so on – you can follow these steps to accurately diagnose and fix the problem.

Contact a qualified refrigerator technician to take a look at your Kenmore refrigerator, find the cause of the cooling and freezing problem and fix it permanently.

Here is a video showing what to do if the compressor is the cause of a cooling problem in a Kenmore refrigerator…

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Kenmore Freezer Not Freezing – What to Do

Do the following if your Kenmore freezer is not freezing:

1. Check the Air Circulation

Poor circulation of air within the freezer will affect its ability to freeze food. Do not pack the freezer too full that even air finds it hard to move around freely. Create some space so that the cold air from the air vents can circulate and freeze food. Otherwise, you will find food and other items defrosting even though the freezer is in perfect condition.

2. Check the Door

Avoid opening the door of the freezer too often and for long periods. Otherwise, the humid air outside will get into the freezer and the cold air inside will escape. This will reduce the freezing capacity of the freezer.

In addition to the above, if your Kenmore freezer is not freezing, check the door seal to be sure it is still sealing tightly. If it is loose, worn or torn, you will get the same result as when you leave the door open for too long. Replace the door seal as soon as possible so that the freezer doesn’t have to work extra hard to cool.

3. Check the Hoses

One or more of the refrigerator hoses could have sprung leaks, resulting in the loss of cold air. Instead of the air to circulate in the freezer, it is lost, leaving the freezer warm.

If you cannot run this check yourself, have a repair technician run the check and determine what is to be done if there are leaks.

4. Check the Defrost Drain

A clogged drain will cause water to just back up and freeze up again in the drain and tubes. Over time, the cie will build up and freeze the fan, too. Consequently, there will be no cold air coming from the fan into the freezer.

Thaw the drain and clean any debris from it. That is if the freezer has an automatic defrost system.

Here are other things to check if your Kenmore freezer is not freezing:

5. Start Relay

The start relay helps to power the compressor. So, the compressor is unlikely to run if the relay is defective.

Since your Kenmore freezer is not freezing, detach the relay from the side of the compressor and run a test on it to check for continuity between its start and run terminals. If you don’t find continuity or the start relay has a burnt smell, replace it.

6. Evaporator Fan Motor

If the door of the freezer is open, the evaporator fan motor cannot run; the door has to be closed before it can run. But if you activate the switch of the door of the freezer, the fan motor can run even if the door is open. Therefore, open the door of the freezer and press the door switch to activate it manually. If the fan motor doesn’t run, replace it as soon as possible.

The fan has the duty to circulate cold air in the freezer after passing it over the cooling coils. If the motor of the fan is faulty or dead, the fan cannot run so the freezer will not cool.

7. Condenser Coils

Take a look under or behind the freezer to see the condenser coils if your Kenmore freezer is not freezing. One look at them will tell you if they are dirty. Clean them thoroughly, especially if you have never cleaned them. Leaving them dirty will significantly reduce their ability to release the heat from the refrigerant. As a result, the refrigerant will carry the heat into the freezer and reduce its capacity to cool.

8. Evaporator Coils

If the evaporator coils have frost on them, they will not be able to release cold for the fan to blow into the freezer. And if your Kenmore freezer defrosts automatically, it means something is wrong with either the defrost thermostat, the defrost heater or the defrost timer.

If you cannot find the defective defrost component, have a technician find it and replace it. More times than not, though, it is the defrost heater that is defective.

You will have to defrost the freezer manually to remove the frost on the cooling coils. Clear out the freezer and unplug it from the wall socket. Leave it unplugged for about 24 hours, depending on the ice in it. Lay towels or rags around the edge of the freezer to catch dripping water from the melting ice. When all the ice defrosts, the frost on the coils will completely defrost, too.

9. Temperature Control Thermostat

The thermostat controls the voltage that goes to the evaporator fan motor, compressor and condenser fan motor. These 3 parts, in turn, determine if the refrigerant system runs or not. So if the thermostat is defective, the refrigerant won’t run and the freezer will not get cold as a result.

Turn the thermostat from low to high and listen to hear a click. If you don’t hear the click, the thermostat is likely to be faulty. To be sure, test it with a multimeter to check for continuity. If there is no continuity, replace the thermostat.

10. Condenser Fan Motor

This part is not usually considered if afreezer is not freezing. But it could contribute to the freezing problem. If the motor is bad, the fan won’t be able to draw air through the condenser into the unit.

So, try to spin the blades with your hand. If they are stiff, then it is likely the bearings of the motor have worn out. This means that you have to replace the motor.

But if the blades are not stiff and no external object is keeping them from spinning, test the motor using a multimeter to check for continuity. If you don’t find continuity, replace the motor.

Also, consider checking the user control and display board, the compressor or the main control board if everything else is working fine. However, you may need to get a qualified refrigerator technician to check them out to accurately determine if they are faulty.

In very rare cases, the sealed system of the freezer could spring a leak. This can cause only one of the freezer shelves to freeze or a part of the cooling coils to frost up. In this case, you will need a new freezer because there is no other solution for a sealed system leak.

We want to note here that these possible solutions work for every model and type of Kenmore freezers. So if you have a bottom-drawer freezer, a deep freezer, a chest freezer, an upright freezer and any other type, these steps cover you.

Watch this video to learn how to fix a fan issue when your Kenmore freezer is not freezing…

Kenmore Ice Maker Not Freezing – Quick Fix

If the ice maker in your Kenmore ice maker is not freezing, here are things to check:

1. Water Inlet Valve

A malfunctioning water inlet valve will not let water flow through it to the ice and water dispenser.

Check the pressure of the water flowing to the valve. If it is below 20psi, the inlet valve won’t work optimally. Also, test the valve with a multimeter to check if it is receiving adequate power to operate. If it is and the water pressure is just right, then the problem could be with the valve itself. Replace it as soon as possible.

2. Water Filter

Check the water filter to see if it is clogged with dirt or debris. If it is due for a change, change it as soon as possible. A clogged filter can keep the water from flowing to the ice and water dispenser. It can also affect how well the ice maker functions.

Ensure you replace the water filter of your refrigerator regularly, at least once every 6 months.

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3. Freezer Temperature

Ideally, the temperature of the freezer should be between 0 degrees and 5 degrees Fahrenheit (about -18 degrees to -15 degrees Celsius). The absolute highest it can go is 10 degrees Fahrenheit or -12 degrees Celsius. Any temperature higher than that will affect the freezer’s as well as the ice maker’s ability to freeze.

Therefore, check the temperature setting of the freezer and adjust it accordingly if it is off course. But if it is set at the right setting, readjust it to a lower setting and give the freezer time to adjust.

4. Pressure of Water

The pressure of water from your house should be just right if the ice maker is going to work properly. 20psi is the least point of water pressure that can make ice.

So if you suspect the pressure is lower or insufficient, let a plumber fix the problem. This way, the water inlet valve can allow enough water to flow through it.

5. Ice Maker

The cause of the problem could be that the ice maker is faulty. If you are not sure about correctly diagnosing a defective ice maker, contact a refrigerator technician to inspect it and advise you on what to do.

More times than not, the ice maker parts are not sold as single items. You have to buy the whole ice maker assembly if there is a defective part. However, you can only determine this when a technician inspects it.

6. Water Supply Line

Water could be frozen in the water supply line, causing water coming from the tap to back up and not get to the ice maker. As a result, the ice maker will not have any water to freeze.

Defrost the water frozen in the water supply line by pouring hot water in a turkey baster and pouring it on the supply line. You could also leave the refrigerator unplugged for about 2 hours so that the ice can defrost fully or use a hair dryer.

7. Power Supply

Ensure that the ice maker is switched on. You could accidentally press the power button and turn the ice maker off. This happens more than is imaginable.

If none of the above works in getting your Kenmore refrigerator ice maker to freeze water again, a maintenance agent can help you. You can also contact Kenmore service center to request service.

Important Note

Stop! Before you begin diagnosing or repairing a Kenmore freezer that is not freezing or a Kenmore refrigerator that is not cooling or freezing, unplug the unit. This is to prevent electric shock and to keep the unit from damage. This is especially true if your unit is till under warranty.

In addition to the above, if any repair or diagnostic work proves too difficult, consult or contact an experienced refrigerator technician to advise you accordingly. Doing this saves you time and money.