Whirlpool Refrigerator Running…[Problems Solved]

Several reasons can cause refrigerator cooling problems. So, if you find a Whirlpool refrigerator running but with cooling issues, read this article for possible solutions.

Whirlpool refrigerator running

Whirlpool Refrigerator Running But Not Cooling – Solved

If you find that your Whirlpool refrigerator is running without cooling, the condenser coils may be significantly dirty. Also, the internal temperature may be higher than usual, or you just loaded the refrigerator with warm or room-temperature foods and drinks. Another possibility is that the door gasket is weak and in need of a replacement.

1. Temperature Setting

Start by checking the temperature setting. It should be between 337 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit for the refrigerator and 0 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit for the freezer. If the settings are higher than this range, the refrigerator will constantly run without cooling. 

It is a danger to the appliance as it strains the compressor if it has to run all the time to maintain the right temperature. Your refrigerator may have analog temperature control. So, check to see if it is set at mid-point; the lower the number, the warmer the refrigerator. And the higher you go, the colder the refrigerator. 

Adjust the settings for both control types and allow the refrigerator to run for 24 hours for adjustment before making further adjustments. However, if the temperature adjustment does not fix the cooling problem, check the condenser coils.

2. Condenser Coils

The coils cool the refrigerant after it absorbs heat from the indoor air by condensing it into high-pressure gas. After condensing the refrigerant, the coils transfer or dissipate the heat out of the system to prevent overheating and damage. However, they become ineffective if there is a significant amount of dirt on them.

Disconnect the refrigerator from electric power and move it. The coils may be at the bottom back or behind the front base grille. Locate the coils and clean them with a vacuum or a condenser coil cleaning brush. Also, clean the area around them to keep the dirt from sticking to them again. Ensure you clean the coils at least once a year, depending on the foot traffic or air quality in your home.

3. Door Gasket

A weak or loose door gasket allows warm air to enter the refrigerator while the cold air escapes. This causes the refrigerator to stop cooling as it should, even if it runs all the time. Inspect the gasket for signs of looseness and fix it if it applies. 

Also, check to see if the gasket is dirty, and clean it with warm soapy water if necessary. Otherwise, test the gasket with a dollar bill to see if it is weak. Close the refrigerator door on a dollar bill and try pulling it out without opening the door. Replace the gasket if you successfully pull it out.

4. Content

Loading the refrigerator with too many things to the point of overflowing restricts cold air circulation. This is especially true if the items are room temperature or warm. The air vents may be obstructed, restricting the free flow of air. Keep the refrigerator only ¾ full and allow hot food to cool before storing it in the unit. Leave the vents as free as possible to encourage cooling and prevent freezing on the refrigerator’s internal back wall.

5. Defective Components

The refrigerator may have one or more defective components if none of the above works. Check the thermistor, which is a sensor that monitors the air temperature and alerts the control board to run the cooling system. If the thermistor is damaged, you should replace it. 

Also, check the condenser fan motor for faults. The fan needs to cool the compressor and condenser coils and, if faulty, leaves them overheated and compromises the refrigerator’s cooling capacity. Test the fan motor with a multimeter and replace it if there is no continuity. 

The start relay may also be defective, which means the compressor has difficulty running and keeps the unit from cooling. Remove and shake it; if there is a rattle, replace the relay. Otherwise, test it for continuity using a multimeter and replace it if there is none.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Running Loud – Quick Fix

The drain at the bottom back of the refrigerator may be loose, or the water inlet valve may be faulty if the noise is loudest at the back of the unit.  Also, the evaporator fan motor may be defective, or the condenser fan needs a replacement. 

The last component to check is the compressor because it hardly fails. This article on a Whirlpool refrigerator that is making noise guides you on steps to take to fix the noise problem.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Running Constantly – Solutions

The temperature control thermostat must be functioning, and the temperature must be set correctly. The refrigerator must not exceed 40 degrees Fahrenheit, and the freezer must not exceed 5 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Adjust the thermostat accordingly, but if the temperature remains the same, test the thermostat. Turn it from low to high and wait for a clock. If the thermostat does not click, check to see if it has continuity using a multimeter. Replace the thermostat if there is no continuity.

Next, check the evaporator coils. Frost on the coils prevents the circulation of cold air, causing the refrigerator to run constantly. Turn off the refrigerator, open the freezer, and remove the access panel at the rear. Inspect the evaporator coils and if there is frost on them, manually defrost them by leaving the unit unplugged for some hours. Then, troubleshoot the automatic defrost system if the refrigerator has one. 

Troubleshooting the Defrost System

Start with the defrost timer. It is the component that advances the refrigerator in and out of a defrost cycle. Turn it with a screwdriver once you locate it with the help of the user manual. The screwdriver advances it into a defrost cycle. Wait for the unit to begin defrosting and if the timer cannot advance it out of the cycle after thirty minutes or the cycle does not work at all, replace the timer.

Next, test the defrost heater. The heater is fixed to the bottom of the evaporator coils, where it turns on and warms them to prevent freezing. Use a multimeter to see if it is getting power or has continuity. Replace the defrost heater if you find no continuity. However, test the defrost thermostat if you find that the timer and heater are in good operating condition. 

It should close contacts so voltage can flow to the heater. If the heater does not work yet has continuity, it may be that the thermostat is unable to close contacts. Get a multimeter and check its continuity; replace the thermostat if it registers no continuity.

Finally, check the defrost control board. Some technicians may check this part first because it governs the functions of the entire defrost system. However, the control board hardly fails, so it should not be the first stop. Check other components of the system that are more likely to fail before testing the control board. If all else is in good working condition, replace the board. You can also check the main control if you find that the defrost control board is working.

1. Condenser Coils

Dirt on the condenser coils insulates them and makes it difficult to dissipate heat effectively. The coils usually remove the heat from the refrigerant after the gas absorbs it from the air. The efficient running of the cooling system depends on how well the coils remove heat. And if the refrigerator overheats, the compressor and fans never cycle off, causing the refrigerator to run all the time. 

This prematurely wears the unit out, especially the compressor, and it is expensive to replace. So, disconnect the refrigerator from electric power and find access to the condenser coils. Next, clean the coils using a vacuum cleaner and ensure you repeat the process once or twice a year, depending on usage. Get professional help if you find it difficult to fix the refrigerator yourself.

2. Door Gasket

A loose or weak door gasket causes the refrigerator to run all the time because of the loss of cold air. The same applies if the gasket is dirty. When the refrigerator loses cold air, warm air replaces it and compromises the cold temperature in the unit. Therefore, inspect the gasket to see if it is loose. 

Use a small screwdriver to push it back into place or simply adjust it on the gasket retainer. Clean it with warm soapy water and a soft sponge if dirty. However, if the gasket is weak, replacing it is crucial to ensure the refrigerator does not overwork itself. 

3. Refrigerator Content

Keep the refrigerator only half or ¾ full for proper air circulation. If the unit is too full, it may block the air vents and restrict airflow. The arrangement also discourages cold air from flowing around the unit, causing it to have cold and warm air pockets. As a result, the refrigerator constantly runs to produce cool air because of the warm air pockets. Reduce the contents of the refrigerator and if you have warm food, allow it to cool to room temperature before storing it.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Running Water Noise

Running water noise from your Whirlpool refrigerator is usually a normal noise. When the refrigerator runs through a defrost cycle, the water or condensate flows out of the drain into the durian pan under the refrigerator.  It may make an audible gurgling or dripping noise. Other times, the water line or ice maker may be filling with water. 

It typically is not an audible sound, but it does not mean the refrigerator has a problem. You should not worry about it unless the noise is constant or the refrigerator begins to leak. In such a case, you need to inspect the drain pan, and the defrost drain. Also, troubleshoot the components of the defrost system. You may need professional assistance to check and replace faulty parts.

Check out these other articles…

Whirlpool Refrigerator Not Making Ice [Problems & Solutions]

Whirlpool Refrigerator Making Ice [Guide & Issues Solved]

Whirlpool Refrigerator Not Dispensing [Problems Solved]

Whirlpool Refrigerator Dispensing [Issues & Solutions]

Whirlpool Refrigerator Dispenser [Issues, Solutions & Guide]

How to Turn Off a Whirlpool Refrigerator…[Detailed Guide]

How to Turn On a Whirlpool Refrigerator…[In-depth Guide]

Whirlpool Fridge Running Too Cold – Solved

If a Whirlpool fridge is too cold to the point of freezing, check the temperature setting. It may be too low, whether it is a digital or analog type. Setting the fridge’s temperature too low causes it to freeze. But if that is not the case, check the ice maker. Ensure it is connected to the water supply if it is operating. 

Leaving the ice maker running without water lowers the temperature and encourages freezing. It is also likely to damage the machine because it constantly cycles on and off without water. Follow the instructions in the user manual to turn off the ice maker. You may also want to check the air damper control in the fridge, as this article explains, to find out if it is stuck or broken.

A leaky door seal can also cause the fridge to become too cold. As cold air escapes and warm air replaces it, the compressor and fans run to maintain a cool temperature. Not only does this put a strain on the refrigerator, but it leads to freezing due to constant running. Test the door seal and, if necessary, replace it. But if the problem persists, get professional help.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Compressor Running But Not Cooling – What to Do

The compressor may be faulty if it runs without cooling the refrigerator. But before determining that, check the refrigerator’s temperature. It should be at 37 degrees Fahrenheit to maintain a cool temperature. For refrigerators with temperature control knobs, set it at mid-point; lower numbers mean warmer temperatures while higher numbers mean colder temperatures. 

If the setting is correct yet, the refrigerator is not cooling, put a thermometer in it and wait 12 to 24 hours. Check the temperature, and if it is above 40 degrees, the compressor may need repairs or a replacement. You may want to consider replacing the compressor or refrigerator, especially if the unit is older than 15 years and has other issues.

What to Check First

Before replacing the compressor, check the fan motors. The refrigerator has two fans; the evaporator fan and the condenser fan. If the fans malfunction, the compressor may run without cooling the refrigerator. First, ensure nothing is wrong with the fan blades and clean them to make room for proper operation. Next, test the motors using a multimeter to check for continuity. Replace the motor without continuity.

You can also check the evaporator coils to see if they are frozen. They cannot release cold air if ice is accumulated on them, and the coils should not freeze if the defrost system is working well. So, turn off the refrigerator for a few hours to allow the coils to thaw. Afterward, test the defrost system components to find the faulty ones, and inspect the door gasket for signs of leakages.

Important Note 

If a Whirlpool refrigerator fan is running, but the unit is not cooling, check the condenser fan. It may be damaged or faulty; the fan should sit on the housing, and the blade must not be bent. These can keep the fan from working. The same applies if the evaporator fan is not working. 

The compressor may run without cooling the refrigerator if the condenser coils overheat or the evaporator coils may accumulate frost and stop cooling the unit. Follow the instructions in this article on a Whirlpool refrigerator fan that keeps running to fix the problem.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Compressor Running Hot – Quick Fix

If the compressor on a Whirlpool refrigerator is running hot, check the evaporator fan and the temperature control thermostat. If these parts are faulty, the compressor picks the slack and runs continuously. Eventually, it becomes too hot and may fail. 

It also helps to check the condenser coils; dirty coils restrict proper airflow, which builds heat in the refrigerator and causes the compressor to run until it becomes hot. Clean the condenser coils if necessary. In addition, check the refrigerant level and get professional assistance if the gas is low. Check out this article for steps to fix these issues.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Run Capacitor Test

Disconnect the refrigerator from electric power; unplug it from electric power or turn off the circuit breaker that controls it. After disconnection, wait about thirty minutes or more before touching the capacitor. The reason is that a run capacitor typically holds a high electrical charge, and touching it before it fully discharges can be lethal.

So, after the capacitor discharges, remove it from the refrigerator. Ensure you do not touch the leads or any part of the capacitor; it may mean using a long stick or plastic item. Another point to consider is whether or not the capacitor is fully discharged. If you are not sure, you should get a qualified technician to remove the capacitor safely. Otherwise, you can try performing the discharge yourself.

Once the capacitor is out, get a multimeter and set it to Ohms; ensure it is set somewhere above 10k and 1m Ohms or even a higher setting. This setting works for digital and analog multimeters. After correctly setting the multimeter, set its probes on the capacitor’s terminals; the red probe goes to the positive side, while the black probe goes to the negative side.

Next, check the reading on the multimeter. If it shows 0 and slowly moves to infinite, it means the capacitor is in good working condition, and you do not need to replace it. But if the reading shows 0 and does not move, the capacitor has an open circuit and should be replaced. The same applies if the reading shows low resistance because it means the capacitor is shorted out. Contact the Whirlpool Center for a replacement part or purchase from an authorized dealer.

Important Note

Some older types of run capacitors may not need to be tested with a multimeter to determine whether or not they are faulty. All you have to do is to look at them; they may bulge or leak fluid. Also, they may corrode or rust, indicating that they are damaged. In such a case, replace the capacitors.

Discharging a Run Capacitor

Get a 2-watt 20k Ohm wire-wound resistor, two jumper wires equipped with alligator clips at each end, and two screwdrivers. Clamp one of the clips to one of the resistor’s wires and connect the second clip to the other wire. 

Connect the other end of the clip to a screwdriver and the end of the other free clip to the second screwdriver. Hold the screwdrivers on the padded ends; ensure you do not touch the terminals. Place each screwdriver’s blade on the capacitor’s terminals and hold them there for some seconds for the capacitor to discharge fully. 

Afterward, remove the screwdrivers and touch one of them to each terminal until the discharge is complete. Do not touch the capacitor at this point because it becomes hot during discharge. Also, keep your hands away from the screwdriver blades. A capacitor can store a significant amount of electricity for long periods, even after you disconnect it from electricity. That is why discharging it before removal is crucial.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Run Capacitor Replacement

Turn off the refrigerator by unplugging it from the wall outlet or turning off the breaker. Unmount the single screw securing the water line to release it. Next, unmount the screws on the access panel at the bottom back of the unit and remove the panel. You will find the run capacitor on the start device; use a pair of pliers to release the wire clips and pull the defective capacitor off.

Next, install the new run capacitor in the place of the old one. Align it to the mounting pin before inserting the terminals into the start device. Fix the clip and secure the capacitor with it. Ensure it is stable and correctly fixed before putting the access panel back in place. Align the water line and mount the screw, and reconnect the refrigerator back to electric power.

Note: These steps may not apply to all Whirlpool refrigerator models, but the capacitor is usually in the condenser area. Consult the user manual for your refrigerator model for specific instructions on how to remove and replace the run capacitor.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Compressor Runs for a Few Seconds – Quick Fix

Several issues can cause the compressor on a Whirlpool refrigerator to run for only a few seconds. One of the first parts to check is the refrigerator’s power cord. Other parts to check are the start relay, condenser coils, and the thermostat. Take a look at this article to learn more about how to fix these possible causes of a compressor running for only a few seconds.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Fan Runs Continuously – Solved

If the fan runs continuously, check the evaporator coils for ice accumulation and the thermostat for correct settings. Also, check the door seal, condenser coils, and proper air circulation around the refrigerator. Finally, check the fan motors; this article is a detailed troubleshooting guide for fixing a refrigerator fan that runs continuously.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Water Dispenser Runs Slow – Quick Fix

The water filter may need a replacement, especially if it has been used for a long time. Ensure the water filter is the correct type when replacing it. And follow the installation guide to ensure you install it correctly. Flush the dispenser and water lines after the installation and check the water pressure afterward. You will find all the instructions for fixing these possible issues in this guide on a Whirlpool refrigerator dispensing water slowly, or contact Whirlpool for further instructions.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Water Dispenser Keeps Running – Quick Fix

The dispenser buttons may be stuck, or the control board may be faulty. Before doing anything else, try resetting the unit. You may need professional assistance if the reset does not work and the dispenser keeps running. Check this article for a guide on how to fix the problem.

Whirlpool Refrigerator Not Running – Fixed

Ensure the refrigerator is receiving electric power to run. It also means there are no lights in the unit. Check the circuit breaker, wall outlet, refrigerator’s power cord, and other electrical connections. 

If these do not apply, check the temperature control thermostat, condenser coils, evaporator coils, start relay, thermistor, condenser fan, and compressor. Finally, check for a sealed system leak; this article is a guide on fixing the possible causes of a Whirlpool refrigerator not running.

Whirlpool Freezer Not Running – Solutions

Do the following if a Whirlpool freezer does not run:

  • Check the condenser coils
  • Check the motor of the evaporator fan
  • Check the temperature control thermostat
  • Check the start relay
  • Check the condenser fan motor
  • Check the start capacitor
  • Check the thermistor
  • Check the main control board

Follow this guide to fix any faulty components or hire a professional Whirlpool technician for further assistance.

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