Freezer cold, Refrigerator warm; Defroster not working?


Old 01-23-17, 02:01 PM
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Freezer cold, Refrigerator warm; Defroster not working?

As stated in the title, my fridge is no longer getting cold. I think the frost-free function is broken, as judged by this photo:

Frost in rear:
Name:  frost.jpg
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The defrost timer clicks and the fan shuts off. During the defrost cycle, I captured this video:

Frost video:

Sounds like sizzling which implies that maybe the defroster is doing something, but I don't see anything "hot". Maybe it's behind the panel? Also, it isn't actually working, as evidenced by the amount of frost visible.

I also tried spraying hot water to defrost manually but it still frosts back up quickly (probably freezes that hot water right back into ice).

The model is Frigidaire frs26zsh. Parts diagram: (defroster is #14 on page 12).

Any idea what's wrong, or what I should check next?

Last edited by PJmax; 01-23-17 at 05:26 PM. Reason: added pic from link
Old 01-23-17, 05:31 PM
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I didn't notice anything in the video but if you hear sizzling then the defrost heater sounds like it's working. The heater is just a hot wire element. Nothing will glow. It's thermostat controlled so that the inside of the freezer won't melt.

That coil looks fairly normal. A little bit heavy of heavy frost on the one end where the lines connect could suggest a refrigerant leak problem.

A more likely problem is that the fan inside there is not running. The fan is required to draw air across the coil and into the fridge.

In your link.... the fan shown is the one under the fridge by the compressor.
Old 01-23-17, 07:41 PM
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Your missing some info in the model # you listed.
Old 01-25-17, 03:16 AM
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The full model is frs26zshb0. I opened up the back, here's what it looks like:

Completely frosted over. There is both a bottom and top cold-air inlet to the fridge. The bottom one is plugged up with ice:

I'm not easily able to get a picture of the top one, but I suspect it looks similar as the fan is definitely spinning but not a lot of cold air is getting through.

So, what's wrong, or what should I check next?
Old 01-25-17, 06:07 AM
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If your fan is running it looks like you got a photo of the problem. Ice is blocking the plenum that leads down to the fridge. Defrost/remove that ice and as long as your fan is working you'll probably have a cold fridge. Be mindful that the melted ice water will end up in a catch pan under the fridge. If you melt a lot of ice the pan may overflow and need emptying.

If you are having a frost problem check all the way around both doors with a dollar bill for gaps or areas where the seal is not sticking to the fridge body. Even a slight gap can constantly let moisture in and create more frost than the defrost cycle can handle.

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