1950’s GE combination refrigerator

JaredScott

Premium Member
Joined
May 1, 2022
Messages
2
Location
Minnesota
Model Number
No idea
I picked up a beautiful GE combination fridge. Plugged in and thought it was working. However, it doesn’t get cold. I hear the hum of the compressor. The unit is in really good shape. I don’t think it has to do with wiring. This is the same fridge my grandparents had. So it is sentimental. Is there a troubleshooting step I could take. After plugged in for 10 hours, inside was garage temp. Maybe a little below. Compressor was pretty warm. Does it need to be charged? Finding someone to charge R-12 has proven to be quite difficult. Plus they weren’t willing to warranty any work. If it needed a charge, it must have a leak right? Please help
 

Old Fridge Guy

Premium Member
Joined
May 5, 2021
Messages
110
Location
67748
Definitely sounds like the refrigerant has leaked out. Can you post a couple of pictures of your refrigerator? Some GE Combinations used a complicated dual refrigeration system that will, unfortunately, be impossible to fix without the expertise of a vintage appliance restoration facility.
 

JaredScott

Premium Member
Joined
May 1, 2022
Messages
2
Location
Minnesota
Here are some photos. Thanks
 

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Old Fridge Guy

Premium Member
Joined
May 5, 2021
Messages
110
Location
67748
Very nice GE Combination! Looks like a 1949, 50, or 51 model. Notice on the data plate it says "Primary System Charge" and "Secondary System Charge"? Unfortunately that means it has the dual refrigeration system. The primary system is connected to the compressor and cools the freezer only. The secondary system isn't hooked up to the compressor but runs parallel to the primary system so it will give up its heat to the primary system. The secondary system cools the bottom refrigerator section only. The cold control thumbwheel in the refrigerator section is actually a valve that controls the flow of refrigerant through the secondary system to maintain the correct temperature of the refrigerator compartment only. That valve is prone to leakage. It looks like your refrigerator has a condenser fan (behind the coils in the bottom compartment). Does it and is it working? If it has a fan that's not working you will have very little or no cooling in the refrigerator or freezer. If the fan is working and you have no cooling the problem is going to be a lost charge in the refrigeration system, assuming, of course, the compressor is running continuously.
 
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