It’s a fact of life that appliances, like a refrigerator, require a certain amount of running to do their job effectively. However, if you notice that your refrigerator won’t stop running, it’s likely a sign that something’s off. Understanding the possible issues that may be causing this can not only help you diagnose the problem but also potentially resolve it yourself, saving valuable time and money.
Understanding Why Your Refrigerator Won’t Stop Running: Common Causes and Fixes
Should you hear your fridge running all the time? Not in most cases! Let’s look into some of the most common reasons why your refrigerator won’t stop running, and how you can fix or prevent each one.
Refrigerator Door Isn’t Closing Fully
A seemingly minor issue like a refrigerator door that isn’t closing properly can lead to major energy inefficiency. If the door isn’t fully closing, warm air can enter, causing the refrigerator to run constantly to compensate for the rise in temperature, and can make it so your fridge isn’t cooling enough.
- Check for any obstructions that may prevent the door from closing, like a dislodged refrigerator bin or bulky food items.
- Organize the refrigerator and clean it, making sure everything fits and the refrigerator isn’t overstuffed.
- If the doors seem clear and still aren’t closing fully, you might need to inspect the door gaskets (the rubber seals lining the edges of the door). Over time, gaskets can become damaged or lose their seal, allowing warm air to enter the refrigerator, causing it to run constantly.
- Try cleaning the gasket to see if that fixes the seal, if not you may need to replace the gasket
The Internal Temperature is Too High
One of the most common reasons why a refrigerator runs constantly is because the internal temperature of the freezer is too high. If the freezer is too warm, the air going to the fridge won’t be cold enough. Both the freezer and refrigerator sections need to be within a specific temperature range to cool properly.
- The generally recommended temperature for the freezer compartment is between 0-5℉, while the refrigerator should be between 35-38℉.
- Adjust the thermostat in your fridge, and use a thermometer to verify your settings are accurate.
- If you’re having any issues, consult your user manual for guidance.
Faulty Defrost Thermostat
The defrost thermostat plays a crucial role in maintaining the temperature balance in your refrigerator. This device monitors the temperature of the evaporator coils, signaling the defrost heater to melt any frost when the coils get too cold. However, if the thermostat is faulty and fails to signal the heater, frost on the coils will accumulate, restricting the flow of cold air.
When this happens, your refrigerator may run continuously in an attempt to maintain its cool. A faulty defrost thermostat typically shows no continuity during multimeter testing, a task best left to a professional. If you suspect a thermostat issue, consider seeking professional help, such as the services offered by Appliance Repair Specialists.
Dirty Condenser Coils
How to stop a refrigerator from running constantly? Believe it or not, dirt can be a major culprit when your refrigerator won’t stop running. The condenser coils are vital to the cooling process of your refrigerator. These coils remove heat from the refrigerant, enabling it to cool the refrigerator. If the coils become clogged with dust and dirt, the refrigerant may not cool properly, causing the refrigerator’s temperature to rise.
In response, your refrigerator’s compressor may run constantly in an effort to cool down the interior. Fortunately, cleaning your refrigerator’s condenser coils is a straightforward process that can help maintain your refrigerator’s efficiency. Just remember to unplug your fridge first, and then use an appliance brush and vacuum to remove dust and dirt from the coils.
Malfunctioning Condenser Fan Motor
A critical part of your refrigerator’s cooling system is the condenser fan motor. It cools the refrigerant by blowing air over the condenser coils. If the fan malfunctions, the refrigerant might not cool sufficiently, leading to your refrigerator running more than necessary.
To troubleshoot, ensure that the fan blades aren’t obstructed by any debris and spin freely. If the blades are difficult to turn or the fan motor is noisy, it’s a good indication that it needs replacement.
Overly Warm Room Temperature
The environment your refrigerator is in can also impact its cooling efficiency. Refrigerators operate best in room temperatures between 60 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit. In higher temperatures, your refrigerator has to work harder to maintain its interior cool, causing it to run more frequently. If the room temperature is consistently high, try to reduce it if possible.
While some of these troubleshooting steps can be performed by a handy homeowner, it’s crucial to remember that refrigerators are complex appliances. If you’ve tried the above fixes and your refrigerator continues to run constantly, it might be time to call in the pros. At Appliance Repair Specialists, we offer expert diagnosis and repair services to ensure your refrigerator runs at its best, saving you from inflated energy bills and potential damage to your appliance. Reach out to us today for any refrigerator or freezer repair big or small!