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Thread: Viking VCSB483SS troubles ... can't pinpont the problem!

  1. #1
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    Question Viking VCSB483SS troubles ... can't pinpont the problem!

    Model Number: VCSB483SS
    Brand: other
    Age: More than 10 years

    Hi all,

    So a little over a month ago I noticed non-LED lights inside our Viking VCSB483SS side-by-side fridge flickering a little as if the power was fluctuating. I didn't really give it much thought as everything else was working okay. That was until a few weeks back I heard the fridge making clicking noises and, upon coming over to investigate, I realized that in addition to the lights flickering the fan between the compartments was having a hard time spinning up, the compressor was trying to start, and all this was happening as if it was being caused by a poor electrical connection. Kind of like someone rubbing two cables together not getting a solid electrical connection.

    After doing a little bit of reading, I went ahead and replaced the primary control board hoping that the problem would be fixed. But, after turning the fridge back on and waiting maybe 30 seconds, all the same symptoms returned.

    Next step was to start digging deeper. I noticed that the gray housing of the inverter was a little yellowed and after opening that up I noticed both of the larger capacitors bulging. At that point I decided to get a new inverter, yet another new primary control board, and a secondary control board. Basically decided to replace all the boards. I also decided to do this after measuring between 6.6 and 7.0 ohms across all three of the compressor leads.

    Side-note about the compressor, upon spinning down, it does make a clunk-clunk-clunk sound as it comes to stop. It's been doing for the past 3 years (which is when we moved into this house) and possibly even longer. It does not make any other noise and seems to start and spin perfectly well.

    So after I replaced all three boards I was really hopeful, but unfortunately that didn't help. After flipping the switch, everything seemed fine for about 3-5 minutes. The fan between the compartments spun up, the lights came on strong and steady, and maybe about a minute or two after the condenser and the evaporator fans spun up as usual and I heard the condenser turn on. That was the case for another few minutes until I again heard the relays trying to click, the condenser dying, the lights flickering, and the fans fluctuating.

    Might be worth mentioning that activating the showroom switch makes no difference.

    So at this point I am hitting the wall. What could the problem be? Is there a short in one of the fans? Is it the compressor? I cleaned everything and the cables looks in great shape. So I am not sure where else to go from here. If anyone has any suggestions, I'd love to hear them.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Understand we're dealing with a Viking machine. Viking has made it almost impossible to get any service information for any of their appliances. The basics are the same as other brand refrigerators with an inverter compressor so unfortunately I won't be able to give you any pinouts to measure voltage but I can try to tell you where to look. It sounds like a low voltage issue and because it affects more than one component I suspect a wiring or board problem. Even though you replaced all the boards don't assume they are all good. It's not uncommon to get a bad new board in the appliance world.

    The first thing you should check is the wires where they go into the freezer doors lower hinge. Check for any twisted or pinched or almost broken wires. Check all the connectors that you needed to remove when you replaced the boards and see if the pins in the connectors are starting to back out of the connectors.

    I believe Viking uses a power board to supply the main board so you should have a constant 120 VAC and a constant 25 VDC at the power board.

    There's four wires going to the inverter. There should be 120 VAC across the two larger wires and 3-6 VDC signal voltage across the two smaller wires. Check the signal voltage at the inverter and at the board without disconnecting any of the connectors.

    Do you have your tech sheet? Can you post a copy here?
    Last edited by rickgburton; November 4th, 2018 at 06:31 PM. Reason: spelling
    OWNER RICK'S APPLIANCE REPAIR
    APPLIANCE TECHNICIAN FOR 31 YEARS
    REFRIGERATION SPECIALIST
    ONLINE SERV TECH: ApplianceBlog.com
    CERTIFIED TYPE 1; TYPE 2.....REFRIGERATION SERVICE E.S.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for taking a crack at this, Rick. I've attached the complete manual for your reference. I believe it includes some of the voltage values that you are looking for.

    Interestingly enough I've been able to find a few other manuals online for seemingly same model fridge https://drive.google.com/open?id=1TC...U6nBboB5pZ0lYc, but the wiring diagram is slightly different (the PC board only goes up to E11 instead of E13 like mine does). Still, maybe they can prove to be a bit useful since I can't imagine parts being substantially different really.

    By the way, this is a non-dispenser unit, so no wires going into the freezer door. Basically all wires sit still without any movement. Also, all the wires that I've connected/disconnected look to be in good shape, but I will re-check them again.

    I will see if I can get some of these measurements later this evening. If not, I will tackle this after I get home tomorrow evening.

    Thanks again!
    Attached Files Attached Files

  4. #4
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    That's awesome! I appreciate the manual. Give me a few minutes to look it over and I'll post back.
    OWNER RICK'S APPLIANCE REPAIR
    APPLIANCE TECHNICIAN FOR 31 YEARS
    REFRIGERATION SPECIALIST
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    CERTIFIED TYPE 1; TYPE 2.....REFRIGERATION SERVICE E.S.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by ascari_2
    ..after measuring between 6.6 and 7.0 ohms across all three of the compressor leads.
    Well, the first thing I saw was, the manual says 9.84Ω 2.5% variance. That could be your problem. Recheck the measurements.
    OWNER RICK'S APPLIANCE REPAIR
    APPLIANCE TECHNICIAN FOR 31 YEARS
    REFRIGERATION SPECIALIST
    ONLINE SERV TECH: ApplianceBlog.com
    CERTIFIED TYPE 1; TYPE 2.....REFRIGERATION SERVICE E.S.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickgburton View Post
    Well, the first thing I saw was, the manual says 9.84Ω 2.5% variance. That could be your problem. Recheck the measurements.
    I must be going blind, but can you let me know where you found that number? I've looked over that manual tens of times (and looked specifically for this figure too) and couldn't find it.

    And I'm pretty sure that I wasn't getting anything over 7.0 ohms between any of the leads with multiple checks on multiple days.

    By the way, if it is the compressor (1) could that cause damage to any of the control boards and (2) assuming that the control boards are okay, could I disconnect the line from the inverter to the compressor to see if the flickering/fan speed issues would go away.

  7. #7
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    It appears the manual in your file is the same model as the manual in your link, only without the dispenser. The compressor information is in the manual in the link. The machines with a dispenser.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I don't think that would damage a board but I'm not positive. Same with disconnecting the connector on the compressor, I think it will work without an error code but not positive.
    OWNER RICK'S APPLIANCE REPAIR
    APPLIANCE TECHNICIAN FOR 31 YEARS
    REFRIGERATION SPECIALIST
    ONLINE SERV TECH: ApplianceBlog.com
    CERTIFIED TYPE 1; TYPE 2.....REFRIGERATION SERVICE E.S.

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