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GE Refrigerator GTE18CTHMRCC - warm fridge during defrost

DangerZoneBlues

Premium Member
Joined
May 13, 2021
Messages
2
Location
Texas
Model Number
GTE18CTHMRCC
Brand
GE
Age
1-5 years
Moved into apt with this fridge 6 months ago. I noticed that ice cream was soft a lot of the time and fridge seemed warm, so I bought two thermometers. The fridge thermometer records current temp and max temp since last reset.

Currently it's defrosting, always at the most inopportune times since I just got home with some raw chicken. Of course. Last night my boyfriend said the brand new milk went bad, it was expanded and smelled off.

The freezer gets to about 30 degrees F before defrost cycle ends. Fridge gets into the 50s if it had been opened at all. More usually the 40s. Otherwise it's at 37ish in fridge, and 5ish in freezer on the coldest setting.

I told my management many times that I think something is off. They would send out a maintenance guy, who would check the current temps, tell me it's working fine and leave.

Correct me if I'm wrong, because I know very little about appliances, but my fridge shouldn't be getting so warm during the defrost cycle, should it?

If not, what is likely to need replacing... Defrost timer? Or is it a matter of the temp being monitored incorrectly?
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
Staff member
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
122,630
Location
McMullen Valley, Arizona
Here's the parts diagram for your model:
You can force your refrigerator into a defrost cycle by turning the defrost timer #257.(You'll see a small hole underneath your control console #432, get a screwdriver and turn it clockwise slowly till it shuts your refrigerator off).

Then time with a stopwatch how long it stays in the defrost cycle, the normal defrost cycle is about 30 minutes.

Here's the defrost timer for your model:
ge-defrost-timer-wr9x502-ap2061708_01_l.jpg


Let us know what you find.

Jake
 

DangerZoneBlues

Premium Member
Joined
May 13, 2021
Messages
2
Location
Texas
My apartment manager advised me not to do any self maintenance or testing on the fridge. I contacted them regarding the problems with it regularly going into 50s during defrost. I noticed the other night that butter went soft.

This is maybe the 4th work order I submitted regarding this fridge and they just informed me they were going to replace the whole unit.

I feel rather guilty because I can't tell if it's actually malfunctioning, or if I just bring home new groceries at inopportune times (during defrost cycles). Usually I notice it's warm if I come home and put groceries away, and the fridge will be like 46 when I first open it, then it will hang out around 50 for 20-30 minutes, then I hear the cooling turn on again, usually when the freezer hits 30 or so degrees.

Not sure if the fridge should be even getting to 45/46 if it's closed up during defrost. So maybe there is something wrong after all. I wish I could test it myself but I can't. I guess I shouldn't feel bad, but I think I might be a pain in the ass for them. I'm just phobic about food safety, and from what I understand the food temps should remain mostly constant with normal fridge operation, with air temps fluctuating by maybe 5 degrees due to defrosting and opening/closing the door.
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
Staff member
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
122,630
Location
McMullen Valley, Arizona
It would be extremely ironic that it would be in a defrost cycle every time you come back from the store to put groceries in it, you know what I mean? If that's the only time it does it.:)

Normal refrigerator temperature on ALL refrigerators should be between 36-40 degrees.

Jake
 
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