Kenmore Refrigerator Light [Issues & Solutions]

A Kenmore refrigerator light does no more than illuminating the interior parts of the refrigerator. But if the light has issues, it could become a fire hazard.

Kenmore Refrigerator Light

How to Replace a Kenmore Refrigerator Light – Quick Guide

To replace a Kenmore refrigerator light, take the following steps:

Step 1

Disconnect the refrigerator from electric power. It does not matter that it is just the light bulb; if you are working around electricity, tread cautiously.

Step 2

Find the light inside the refrigerator. Twist the cover of the light counterclockwise to remove it. If the light cover in your Kenmore refrigerator is screwed in place, use a screwdriver to remove it.

Step 3

Unthread the bulb from the socket by turning it counterclockwise. It may help to wear work gloves to make the removal easier. But the gloves also help protect your hands if the bulb is still hot.

Step 4

Take the new bulb and thread it gently into the light socket, turning it clockwise. Don’t overtighten the bulb or it may get damaged.

Replace the cover of the light and reconnect the refrigerator to electric power to check whether or not the light is working.

Note: The same steps apply to fixing the lights in all models of Kenmore refrigerators. But if there are differences, consult the user guide for further instructions.

Kenmore Refrigerator Light Bulb Not Working – Quick Fix

If you find that the light bulb in your Kenmore refrigerator is not working, replace it with the right part. Simply turn the old bulb counterclockwise to remove it and fix the new one by turning it clockwise in the socket.

But if the new bulb does not work, then test the light socket, door switch, and light switch with a multimeter to check whether or not they have continuity. Replace any of them that fails the continuity test.

Kenmore Refrigerator Light Not Coming On – How to Fix

Do the following of the light in your Kenmore refrigerator is not coming on:

1. Check the Light Bulb

The fix may be as simple as replacing the light bulb in the refrigerator. However, use the right type of bulb for the refrigerator model as well as the correct wattage. Otherwise, you may find the bulb not working.

2. Check the Light Socket

If the bulb is working fine yet the refrigerator light is not coming on, then the socket may be defective. With a multimeter, check to see whether or not the socket is receiving electric power. If the socket is receiving power and the bulb is working yet the light won’t come on, replace the light socket.

3. Check the Light Switch

With a multimeter, test the light switch to check for continuity. If there is no continuity in the light switch, replace it so the refrigerator light can work.

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4. Check the Door Switch

First, activate the switch on top of the door. It turns the light on or off whenever you open or close the door of the refrigerator. Second, take a multimeter to check the switch for continuity. If the switch shows no continuity even while activated, replace it.

5. Check the Light Assembly

The entire assembly may be faulty, and not just individual components. But before replacing the assembly, make sure to check every component and certify them to be in good working condition.

However, if you find a single component that is defective inside the assembly, you may still have to replace the entire assembly. It is difficult to find individual replacement parts, especially for older models.

6. Check the Light Board

If all the other parts mentioned above are in good working condition yet the light is not coming on, check to see if the light board is getting the right voltage amount. If the board is getting enough voltage supply but the light won’t come on, replace the board.

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Kenmore Refrigerator Light Dim – What to Do

Replace the light bulb and see if it brightens. Something may be wrong with the light fixture or some other part of the light assembly if the bulb replacement does not solve the problem.

If the light in the freezer compartment is out while the refrigerator compartment light is dim, then replace the light on the ceiling of the freezer or under the ice maker to fix the dim light. The lights are designed to run in a series so when one goes out, the other begins to develop issues.

Kenmore Refrigerator Door Light Switch Not Working – What to Do

Activate the door switch and check the light. If the light does not come on, test the switch using a multimeter to check for continuity in its activated state. If you find no continuity, replace the door switch.

Kenmore Refrigerator Light Flashing – Quick Fix

Replace the light board because it has failed if you find the light in your Kenmore refrigerator flashing.

Kenmore Refrigerator Filter Light Reset

To reset the filter light on a Kenmore refrigerator, press the Lock and Light buttons on the control panel at the same time. Hold them for about 3 seconds or until you see the filter light blink. That tells you the light is reset.

Make sure to replace the water filter before resetting the change filter light. If the filter is due for a replacement and you fail to change it but reset the light, it will begin to blink again after a short period. The only permanent fix is to replace the filter and rest the light.

Kenmore Refrigerator LED Lights Not Working – Solved

If the LED lights in your Kenmore refrigerator are not working, you have to replace them. To do this, unplug the unit from electric power and locate the light inside the refrigerator. Loosen the single screw holding the cover of the light in position with a Phillips set screwdriver and pull the light cover down so you can remove it.

Release the locking tabs at the side of the faulty LED light and disconnect the wire connector. Take the new LED light and connect it to the wire connector. Insert the light’s right side first before pushing the left side in and snapping it into place.

Replace the cover of the LED light, plug the refrigerator back into the wall outlet, and check to see if the LED light is now working.

Kenmore Refrigerator Light Not Turning Off – Quick Fix

Check the door switch. It is the switch that controls the light in the refrigerator, turning it off and open when you close and open the door.

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Activate it and check it for continuity using a multimeter while it is still activated. If you find no continuity, replace the door switch.

A faulty door switch can keep the internal light of the refrigerator from turning off. It can also keep it from turning on.

Here is a video with steps on how to replace the door switch…

It is crucial to find a quick solution to the problem of the refrigerator light not turning off. If the light remains on for a considerable amount of time, it will reduce cooling and affect the quality of the stored food.

Then, it will begin to heat up the plastic parts inside the refrigerator and burn them. The spoilt food and burning parts create a fire hazard and endanger lives.

Kenmore Refrigerator Light On But Not Running – How to Fix

The following are possible fixes to the problem of a Kenmore refrigerator not running but the light is on:

1. Change the Start Relay

Go to the back of the refrigerator and locate the compressor. On one side of the compressor, you will see a small device mounted there. That is the start relay; detach it. Next, shake it a little and if it rattles, the relay is likely faulty.

To be sure, test between the terminals of the relay with a multimeter to check for continuity. If there isn’t any continuity, replace the relay.

The relay helps the compressor run smoothly by energizing the start windings of the motor of the compressor. If the relay becomes faulty, the compressor won’t get the needed voltage to run properly. So, you find the light on but the refrigerator not running.

2. Replace the Thermostat

Turn the dial of the temperature control thermostat to its highest point and listen for an audible click. The click tells you the thermostat is in good working condition. But if you hear no click, test the thermostat to check whether or not it has continuity. And if you don’t find continuity, replace the component.

The thermostat has the job of monitoring the refrigerator’s temperature and turning the compressor off or on so the temperature remains cool. If it fails, the refrigerator won’t run to cool even with the light on.

3. Test the Thermistor

Take a multimeter, locate the thermistor, and run a resistance check on it. If it is in good working condition, you should find its resistance changing as the refrigerator’s temperature changes. But if the resistance remains the same while the temperature changes, no matter how little, replace the thermistor.

The component sends temperature readings to the control board so that the board can power the cooling system when necessary with the right amount of voltage. If the thermistor malfunctions, the refrigerator will stop running even though the light remains on.

4. Check the Defrost Timer

Rotate the timer with a small screwdriver to advance it into a defrost cycle. Wait for it to advance itself out of the cycle within thirty minutes. If it does not advance out of the cycle automatically and shows no sign of being functional, then replace it.

The timer turns the compressor off briefly and turns the defrost heater on within that brief period. If the timer fails, the heater may stay on or not come on at all. Either way, it will cause the refrigerator to stop cooling.

5. Test the Temperature Control Board

Perform a diagnostic test on the board to determine whether or not it is working. You will find it beside the compressor at the back of the unit. Use the tech sheet to run the test or hire a technician to perform it.

The board partly controls some of the refrigerator’s main components, including the compressor. So a defective one can stop the refrigerator from running without turning the light off.

6. Check the Compressor

Replace the start relay and wait for the compressor to kick into action. If it does not run, remove the relay and test the terminals of the compressor with a multimeter to check for continuity. If there is no continuity or resistance, replace the compressor. Only a licensed technician can replace the part.

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The compressor is responsible for circulating refrigerant in the refrigerator’s system. So if it fails, the refrigerator won’t function.

7. Test the Electronic Control Board

Much like the temperature control board, run a diagnostic check on the electronic control board. It is the same as the main control board. Use the tech sheet to see how to perform the test.

Kenmore Refrigerator Red Light by Ice Maker – What to Do

Take the following troubleshooting steps to determine how to fix the ice maker problem, according to models…

Models Made in 2001 or Earlier

Step 1

Ensure the ice maker is on and if it is, you dump out some of the ice in the ice bucket so that it drops below the cutouts you see at the top of the bucket. Afterward, close the door of the freezer and leave it closed for about 10 seconds.

Step 2

Open the door of the freezer again and activate the light switch immediately by pressing it with your finger. Hold it for about a second, release it, and press it again 2 more times.

Close the door of the freezer immediately after this and give it about 5 seconds before you open it again.

Step 3

When you open the door, check the red light right above the icemaker power switch. If you find it flashing twice, pausing, and flashing twice again, take the ice bucket out. While doing so, ensure the switch of the ice maker is still on.

Step 4

Find the emitter switch on the wall facing the control of the ice maker and press it. While pressing it, tape the switch down so it does not rise.

Close the door of the freezer, wait about 10 seconds, and open it. Go to the light switch and press it 3 times, each time holding the switch down for about a second. Afterward, close the door of the freezer again.

Step 5

Give it about 5 seconds, open the door again, and check the red light. If the flashing continues, wipe the infrared receiver and infrared emitter with a damp cloth and dry them using a lint-free rag. Then, repeat the test until the light stops flashing. However, if it continues flashing, replace the emitter switch and ice maker control.

Models Made after 2001

Step 1

Open the door of the freezer and check the red light. If it flashes twice, pauses, and flashes twice again, press the light switch in the freezer.

Step 2

Check the red light again. This time, it should flash only once, pause, and flash once again.

If the light flashes in this manner, press the emitter switch. Make sure the power switch of the ice maker is on before pressing the switch.

But if the light keeps flashing twice, pauses, and flashes twice, clean the infrared emitter surface and infrared receiver surface with a damp swab. Dry them using a lint-free rag.

Step 3

Run the test again after cleaning the receiver and emitter and repeat it until the light stops flashing. However, if it continues fashing, replace the emitter switch and ice maker control.

How to Replace a Kenmore Refrigerator Light Socket – Quick Guide

The following are steps to follow in order to replace the light socket in a Kenmore refrigerator:

Step 1

Disconnect the refrigerator from the wall outlet. If you cannot reach it easily, turn off the circuit breaker that powers the refrigerator.

Step 2

Remove the light bulb to be able to remove the socket. Then, look to the front of the socket and you will see a small tab. Using a flat-head screwdriver, release the tab so that it drops. Then, release the wires from the terminals using the same screwdriver so you can remove the old socket completely.

Step 3

Take the new light socket and attach the wires to the terminals. Then, carefully and gently feed the socket wires back into place and fix the socket so that the small tab locks into position.

Replace the light bulb and reconnect the refrigerator to the wall outlet or turn on the circuit breaker.

Here is a video demonstrating the easy steps to replace the light socket in a Kenmore refrigerator…

What Size of Lightbulb Goes in a Kenmore Refrigerator?

A 40-watt light bulb goes in a Kenmore refrigerator. You may see some people using bulbs of fewer wattage but that depends on your choice. However, the ideal type is 40 watts for the best results.


A Kenmore refrigerator light can develop issues but they are usually easy to fix. It is when you fix them and the issues continue that you contact Kenmore to report the issue and request assistance.

You can also choose one of our appliance technicians by chatting with us. They are available and ready to assist you without an appointment.

Remember: Always unplug the refrigerator from the wall outlet or trip the circuit breaker whenever you have to work on the light. It prevents accidental electrocution.

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