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FIXED Electrolux EW23BC71IS0 warm refrigerator; cold freezer

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NjM

Premium Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Washington
Model Number
EW23BC71IS0
Brand
Electrolux
Age
More than 10 years
While I wait on a new defrost thermostat, I figured I would make sure I've got all my troubleshooting bases covered. I think its starting to sound more like a control board but here goes...

I got a high temp alarm on the refrigerator portion of my fridge. The freezer was fine though. Throughout troubleshooting though, the freezer was not able to maintain 0*F.
Unplugging the unit for 5-minutes and factory defaulting it one night, did allow it to get to 0*F in the freezer and maintain 37*F in the fridge but this lasted at most 24-36 hours so...
  1. Took the freezer apart and the coils/components were frosted over evenly.
  2. Evap fan doesn't spin as freely as the YouTube videos I watched but its definitely moving air no problem.
  3. I tried to manually turn on the heater through the diagnostics but never felt any warmth. It could have been that it was frosted up that bad and I didn't give it enough time? I did see some moisture on the heater tube, as though it was working.
  4. I manually defrosted everything enough to checked for continuity:
    1. defrost thermostat; passed
    2. defrost heater (the defrost thermostat plugs into this); passed.
  5. There was nothing else to check in this compartment so I continued to defrost the unit.
  6. I took the defrost thermostat out, which is very warm at this point and tested it for continuity; failed (obviously)
  7. I put the defrost thermostat into a cold cup of ice water for well over 5-minutes and it still failed. I didn't check the temp of the ice water though.
  8. Everything works great after manually defrosting everything. I wonder how long this will last?
→ What else is there to troubleshoot? Any other advice? Is my defrost thermostat finicky or does this sound like a control board issue?

I read a couple of other threads:
 

NjM

Premium Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Washington
I've since then put everything back together. When it frosts over again though, I'll be sure to check it. Assuming it and the heater check out fine again, the only other thing to replace is the main board? If so, is this the correct one (taken from the previously mentioned thread) 5303918507 Board-Switch?
 

rickgburton

Appliance Tech - Moderator
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Messages
44,790
Location
Murray, Utah 84107, United States
If so, is this the correct one
This one is:
frigidaire-board-switch-241891601-ap4374724_01_l.jpg
 

NjM

Premium Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Washington
Not that I'm a procrastinator or anything but I haven't replaced the board yet in fear of it being something else and being stuck with a $250 part on a 10-year old fridge.

About 90 days passed and the issue came back (October). I took everything apart again, put the thermostat defrost switch in another freezer and tested it for continuity. It checked out fine. I also visually inspected it per a YouTube video and looks good to me.

Took the heat gun, thawed everything out, put it all back together and were back to where we started. However, the issue came back much quicker this time... under 6-weeks. Did I put something back together wrong or is the board just getting less reliable and still the culprit?

I learned about the manual defrost mode (DF) and if I run that a 4-5 times a day, the fridge seems to operate fine. I'm having to run it more and more though. I'm starting to wonder if I didn't plug the thermostat defrost switch back in lol (would it have even lasted 4-5 weeks this way?)

Is it worth just putting a new thermostat defrost switch on it because they are cheap?

I sense a "just buy the board already" reply but thought I'd update the thread first.

Thanks in advance! It's very much appreciated!
 

rickgburton

Appliance Tech - Moderator
Staff member
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Messages
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Location
Murray, Utah 84107, United States
There's only three components that make up the defrost system, heater, thermostat, and control. The heater is like a light bulb, either good or bad. If you can manually get the defrost heater to turn on, that would eliminate the heater and thermostat as being faulty.
 

NjM

Premium Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Washington
There's only three components that make up the defrost system, heater, thermostat, and control. The heater is like a light bulb, either good or bad. If you can manually get the defrost heater to turn on, that would eliminate the heater and thermostat as being faulty.
I finally replaced the board a few weeks back. Prior to replacing the board though, we turned off the ice maker because it was getting too warm inside the fridge. We've since turned the ice maker back on and its no longer making ice. I don't even hear any motors moving the assemblies around when turning the ice maker on/off. Did the control board replacement have anything to do with the ice maker? What are my next troubleshooting steps, Rick? Thank you...!
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
Staff member
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
131,380
Location
Redmond, Oregon
Rick has been out sick since Jan.12th with a serious illness, we are hoping and praying for a speedy recovery!

Jake
 

NjM

Premium Member
Joined
Jul 18, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Washington
For those following or finding this post after the fact, I did replace the board and have had success. I did panic though about 45-60 days in. I looked in my freezer and the back wall was frozen over. Usually a sign that the defrost setting/cycle was not going to complete. I noticed the temp on the fridge start to rise one night, about 45*. Frustrated, I went to bed and woke up the next morning and the temp was stable at 35* again. I checked on the frost on the back wall and it wasn't getting better. Finally after about 72 hours, it started to defrost. 72 hours later all the frost was gone. It had finally worked. Thanks Appliance Blog. Wishing Rick a speedy recovery!
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
Staff member
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
131,380
Location
Redmond, Oregon
Glad to hear its working good after you replaced the board.(y)

Wishing Rick a speedy recovery!
Thanks, we all are too!

Jake
 
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