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DWC512BLS Danby wine fridge has power but not cooling

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TryToDIMfirst

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
5
Location
Seattle
Model Number
DWC512BLS
Brand
Age
1-5 years
Hi,

I have a Danby Silhouette 51 bottle wine fridge that no longer cools. Actually it stopped cooling after about 3.5-4 years so I put it in the garage as a "project", but only recently started working on it. Sheesh. While I'd love to get it running, I also like to tinker and am curious to learn about this works as I test various elements. I think my unit is 5 years old, maybe 6.

The unit has power, the fan spins, and the digital temp display works (i.e. it displays correct temps: set point = 55F, actual = 72F or whatever is ambient). Based on some inexpensive repairs I learned from YouTube vids, I replaced the start device ($20) and overload protector ($4). The ceramic disc in the new start device didn't look much different from the ceramic device in the old part. Unfortunately, installing these parts made no difference to temps.

Now I'm wondering if the thermostat could be faulty, even though it displays the correct temps. Is there a way to test this without purchasing a replacement thermostat? If so, maybe this is the project that requires me to buy a multimeter (and learn how to use it :encouragement:).

Also, I'm pretty sure the compressor runs, but it's hard to tell with the fan running as well. The unit has always been pretty quiet. Is there a way to force the compressor on? If so, this would allow to determine whether it can cool. Also, I've seen some folks testing a compressor with a multimeter to determine if it is ok electrically (mechanical integrity is a different issue, I'm sure). And lastly, if everything is running but not cooling - why is that? Can the unit be recharged with refrigerant? Seems this is never suggested. Although recharging it may not be a permanent fix, if it gave the unit 2-4 more years of life it might be worth to have done, depending on cost to recharge.

Thanks for reading and for any advice from experts and other DIYers who like to learn things the hard way.:very_drunk:

Alex
 

rickgburton

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See if the compressor is running by placing your hand on top and feel for vibration. If it's not running, check for 110 VAC between the two wires on the relay and overload. If the compressor is running and working correctly, the condenser coils and the tube from the compressor to the condensor coils should be hot. If the compressor is running and there is no heat in the condenser coils, there's probably a sealed system problem.
Digital Multimeter DM10T
Digital-Multimeter-DM10T-01128791.jpg
 

TryToDIMfirst

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
5
Location
Seattle
UPDATE 12/4:
Ok, I've confirmed that the compressor is indeed running. It is quiet, but I can feel the vibration. I also got a multimeter and tested the windings and PTC (just to see). The values on the windings were: 3.7 ohm, 9.5 ohm, and 13.3 ohm - which is good agreement. And the PTC measured 5.1 ohm between the two posts (also, the side of the PTC was marked 4.7, so if that meant ohms, that would also support the PTC is fine - as expected since the compressor runs). However, the condenser coils did not warm up. I let it run for about 40 min.

Since everything else seems to be fine (fan runs, thermostat reports correct temps), it would be about $900 to replace with equivalent winofridge, and it only ran for 3.5 years before it quit cooling, what is next step - have someone look for a leak and recharge it? Is there something else I should look into? Or is still not worth it to repair?

Thanks again!
 

rickgburton

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OK, if the compressor is running but there is no heat on the condensor coils and no frost on the evaporator coils, it could be a refrigerant leak or the compressor has stopped pumping or inefficient. There could be a system restriction but there would be some heat on the condensor coils. Either way, it's a sealed system repair. It depends on your area but in my area that would be a $500-$700 repair
 

TryToDIMfirst

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
5
Location
Seattle
Thank you, Rick. It's hard to justify a repair that is half the cost the cost of a new unit but it's also a shame to just toss a fridge that is in otherwise good shape. It's like a decent car without a motor and transmission. Too bad these are basically "single-use" items.

Thanks again!
Alex
 

billwarm

Premium Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2014
Messages
2
Location
United States
Hello,

I have a Danby undercounter fridge that is cooling but not like it should. I always kept it set at 40 and it would achieve that for 6 years. No change to the setting but the act temp is about 55. I went to clean the coils but they looked good. There is a fan in front of the coils which is not running, should this always be on if the compressor is on. Also compressor feels hot.

thanks in advance for any help,
Bill W
 

rickgburton

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There is a fan in front of the coils which is not running, should this always be on if the compressor is on. Also compressor feels hot.

Yes! That would be the problem and the reason for the hot compressor. I need your model number to link you to the part.
 

rickgburton

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Bonedoggie

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Joined
May 11, 2015
Messages
1
Location
Montclair, NJ
I have this same model and the same issue. It frustrated the hell out of me, but I have resolved it. The problem is the primary fan - the large one which is positioned under the sealed styrofoam box. It is closer to the rear of the unit. When I removed this fan, I saw that it was physically stuck and hard to turn. You can pull the fan off and put a little lubricant in the bearing and the fan will spin fine. Alternatively, you could replace that fan. I have done this and the unit now cools fine.
 

Shannon Jones

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Joined
Sep 7, 2017
Messages
1
Location
Arizona
I have a Danby Silhouette DWC513BLS I can't get the lower portion to cool below 54 degrees. The compressor appears to be running and it is cool but not like it used to be. It did start cooling last week randomly and then stopped again. Any suggestions?
 

rickgburton

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Make sure the condensor fan motor is running and the condensor coils are clean. make sure the evaporator fan motor is also working.
 

Phil R

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Joined
Jul 2, 2019
Messages
1
Location
Phoenix
I also have a Danby Silhouette DWC513BLS that won't run. The interior lights are on, the thermostat display is on, and the interior evaporator fan runs. However, the compressor does not run and the cooling fan for the condenser coils does not run. Periodically I can hear a relay click on and then about 10 seconds later it clicks off. However, the top of the compressor does get pretty warm. I have no idea where to start figuring this out.
 

rickgburton

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Sounds like a bad compressor. The click you hear is the overload opening. The overload only opens when it gets too hot or too much current going through it. Measure the resistance of the compressor windings. Here's how:
43901
 

Jay Que

Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2019
Messages
1
Location
Canada
Old thread, but my Silhouette Counter Fridge ( DBC047D1BSSPR) is failing to cool.

May 2 year old son broke off the plasticretrain I had on the handle and left the fridge open. I gather something stressed and broke.

It no longer cools, but gets power — LEDs are on, menu works to control temp settings.

I suppose I should look at the Evaporator Fan as a possible easy fix. I remember seeing online that some owners had swapped out the noisy OEM fan(s) with a fan meant for a PC tower computer.
Any thoughts on what to buy for a whisper “-quiet experience? When the fridge is working it’s super loud... louder than my full sized LG fridge.
 

rickgburton

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Messages
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Start by checking if the compressor is running. If not, check for 120 VAC across the two wires on the compressor.
 

Sylvurfox

Premium Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2020
Messages
2
Location
North Vancouver, BC
Hi All,

I have a Danby Silhouette DWC93BLSST wine fridge which no longer cools. The interior lights work, the thermostat display is on, and the interior evaporator fan runs and the cooling fan for the condenser coils runs. The condenser coils are clean. I can hear the compressor relay click on and feel the vibrations so assume the compressor does run. After about 15 minutes the compressor gets hot enough that you can't leave your hand on it for more than a second or two. Is there anything else I can check? Is this a coolant leak issue or lack of coolant? Is it possible to repair or recharge?
 

domtor

Premium Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2020
Messages
4
Location
Montreal
Hi,

I have a Danby Silhouette 51 bottle wine fridge that no longer cools. Actually it stopped cooling after about 3.5-4 years so I put it in the garage as a "project", but only recently started working on it. Sheesh. While I'd love to get it running, I also like to tinker and am curious to learn about this works as I test various elements. I think my unit is 5 years old, maybe 6.

The unit has power, the fan spins, and the digital temp display works (i.e. it displays correct temps: set point = 55F, actual = 72F or whatever is ambient). Based on some inexpensive repairs I learned from YouTube vids, I replaced the start device ($20) and overload protector ($4). The ceramic disc in the new start device didn't look much different from the ceramic device in the old part. Unfortunately, installing these parts made no difference to temps.

Now I'm wondering if the thermostat could be faulty, even though it displays the correct temps. Is there a way to test this without purchasing a replacement thermostat? If so, maybe this is the project that requires me to buy a multimeter (and learn how to use it :encouragement:).

Also, I'm pretty sure the compressor runs, but it's hard to tell with the fan running as well. The unit has always been pretty quiet. Is there a way to force the compressor on? If so, this would allow to determine whether it can cool. Also, I've seen some folks testing a compressor with a multimeter to determine if it is ok electrically (mechanical integrity is a different issue, I'm sure). And lastly, if everything is running but not cooling - why is that? Can the unit be recharged with refrigerant? Seems this is never suggested. Although recharging it may not be a permanent fix, if it gave the unit 2-4 more years of life it might be worth to have done, depending on cost to recharge.

Thanks for reading and for any advice from experts and other DIYers who like to learn things the hard way.:very_drunk:

Alex
Hi,
I have the DWC513BLS, seems similar to your model, can you let me know the part numbers you used for start relay and overload protector. and where to buy them.
Regards,
 

Dan O.

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Oct 9, 2004
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