Troubleshooting a Refrigerator Light

Woman reaching into a refrigerator for an apple

If the refrigerator light is flickering or not turning on, then it is time for a little troubleshooting. A refrigerator light is an important component of the machine because it allows users to see the refrigerator's contents and its interior. To troubleshoot the refrigerator light, it is necessary to check on the current, the switch, and the light bulb itself. Read on for more information.

Check the Current

Often the refrigerator light will not turn on because there is no current running. Check if the electric cord is connected to the power source. If the cord has been tripped over, the cord may be pulled out from the outlet and deprive the refrigerator of needed electrical energy. If this is the case, simply reconnect the plug.

A blown fuse can also cause the refrigerator light to stop working. Check the fuse box or the circuit breaker that controls current running towards the machine. If the fuse is blown, replace it with a new one. If the fuse is not blown, use a voltmeter to check if there is current in the circuit. Have an electrician check the circuit breaker if there is no current running on the circuit.

If the fridge is plugged, there is current, and the fuse is not blown, then the electrical cord may be damaged. Use an ohmmeter to check for wire damage. Touch the two nodes of the ohmmeter on the plug. If there is little resistance then the wire is okay. If there is a very high resistance, then the wire needs to be replaced because it is not continuous and therefore does not provide current to the fridge.

Check the Switch

The switch can also be a potential cause of lighting failure. If the switch is loose, it may fool the user into thinking that the light is connected to the current, but it actually isn’t. Locate where the switch is and make sure it is not stuck. Clean it with a clean cloth to dislodge any debris causing it to stick. If the switch is loose, make sure that the mounting hardware is secured tight.

Check the Bulb

The refrigerator light bulb is usually covered by a shield. Remove the shield from its place to reveal the light bulb. Unscrew the light bulb from the fridge to check if it is working or not. Investigate if the filament on the bulb has turned dark. The filament is the long, thin spring that can be seen inside the bulb. If it is silvery or colorless, then it is still in good condition. If it is dark or discolored, then it has burned out. This means that the bulb has to be replaced with a new one.

Purchase a new bulb from a supply store and make sure it matches the light bulb used in the fridge. To make sure, bring the bulb to the store when purchasing the new one. Install the new bulb to the fridge and put the shield back to cover the bulb. Plug in the refrigerator and test if the bulb works.