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FIXED Kenmore Freezer Problem - Not Cold Enough

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rtmorris00

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Joined
Jun 9, 2010
Messages
11
Location
Milwaukee, WI
Model Number
79577243601
Brand
Sears Kenmore
Age
1-5 years
We have a Kenmore Elite 79577243601 bottom-freezer model made by LG. A few days ago, we started noticing that our freezer was not cold enough, as things were beginning to defrost/melt. The refrigerator temp seems to be OK, but I don't have a thermometer to measure this. I have posted a photo of the evaporator coil in the back of the freezer; the spot where this comes into the freezer seems to be very frosted up.

Any suggestions are greatly appreciated! Thank you.


4684730067_a3fda968f6_b.jpg
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
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Redmond, Oregon
Ok, that photo indicates your sealed system/compressor is the problem.

You have a 5 yr. parts and labor warranty on it from Sears, Contact Sears and have them come out to verify.

Jake
 

rtmorris00

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Location
Milwaukee, WI
That's not want I wanted to hear! ;) I called Sears yesterday and they told me that I only had a one year factory warranty; I've had this unit for almost 2 years. I bought it at a Sears Outlet store; perhaps this is why I only have the 1 year warranty??
 

rtmorris00

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Update... I called Sears and was able to confirm that the sealed system has a 5 year warranty. I have someone coming out tomorrow to take a look at it and I'll post the results! Thanks for your help, Jake!
 

Jake

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Yup, 5 years.:)

Let us know what they say.

Jake
 

rtmorris00

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Milwaukee, WI
The technician was out this morning and diagnosed the problem as a leak in the evaporator coil. They need to order a new evaporator coil and could't schedule the repair until next Thursday. I'll post once the freezer is back up to normal temps!! Thanks again for all of your help.
 
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Jake

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Ok, sounds good.:)

Jake
 

rtmorris00

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Location
Milwaukee, WI
Sooo.... The evaporator coil was replaced yesterday. Since the technician was out the first time to diagnose our problem, we've been receiving an er ff code. I have been unplugging the unit and plugging it back in to keep it running. I was hoping the problem was all related to the bad evaporator coil, but I woke up today with an err ff on the display again!

From looking around on your wonderful site, I see that this is most likely an evaporator fan and/or controller problem. Could this problem have been caused by the bad evaporator coil, and if so, is it worth it to try getting sears to cover this, or am I better off just ordering the parts?

Thanks again for all of your help!
 

Jake

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Since it wasn't showing the er ff code before the evaporator was changed, I'd say either the tech. didn't plug in the controller or it came loose, I'd check that first.

Is the evaporator fan running?

Jake
 

rtmorris00

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Location
Milwaukee, WI
Yes, the evaporator fan does run for a short time before the code comes up and the fan turns off. In the past week, it seems like the code only came up a couple of times per day. This morning, the code would come up within minutes of plugging it back in.
 

Jake

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Oh so that error code was happening before he changed the evaporator?

Ok, I did some searching for others that had this er ff code and 3 members said changing the control board and evaporator fan motor fixed it on theirs:


Now on your model it shows 2 different control boards, I have no clue why or what the difference is, but the best way to see which one yours uses is to remove the control board and post the part number thats stamped on the control board.

Here's the 2 control boards for your model:
Manufacturer part number 6871JK1011G


Manufacturer part number 6871JB1375H


Here's the evaporator fan motor for your model you can order:
Manufacturer part number 4681JB1029H


Jake
 

rtmorris00

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Location
Milwaukee, WI
So I just stopped home for lunch and, as expected, there was an err ff. I unplugged and plugged back in and now I can hear the fan turn on for about 20 seconds and then turn off for about 20 seconds and repeat; this is new...

Yes, the err ff started to occur after the technician was out for the first time. I assumed that this was due to the bad evaporator coil, but it looks like i have 2 separate problems within a week!

I'll take a look at the control board when I get home and i guess order some parts! Thanks again for all of your help.
 

Jake

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Yes, likely you had 2 issues.

Keep us posted.

Jake
 

rtmorris00

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Milwaukee, WI
Update... So we didn't see the err ff for a while so we thought everything was OK, but then we started getting it again. Sears came out and ordered a new fan and control board. Both of these were replaced yesterday, but it still doesn't seem that freezer is staying cold enough.. Guess I'm calling Sears again on Monday! I'll post an update!
 

Jake

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Thats interesting, yes call Sears back, thanks for the update.:)

Keep us posted.

Jake
 

rtmorris00

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The technician was just out and determined that there was a leak in the system, but he wasn't able to find it. He said that a "dye dryer" (sp?) was installed when they replaced the evaporator coil, but he still wasn't able to find a leak. He recharged it and said that someone from Sears will be following up with me to talk about a replacement. I'll post a (hopefully final) update once I hear from them!
 

Jake

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Ok Sounds good, thanks for the update.:)

Dye dryer is just a color that would show when it was leaking freon.

Jake
 

tdu2000

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Aug 8, 2010
Messages
3
Location
California
We have a similar problem with our Kenmore Elite Trio 795.77563600 (2007). It started out with the refrigerator light staying on after the doors are close. This caused the light casing to melt. So I disconnected the light and continued to use the refrigerator.

After a week, I started to get the ER FF error, which went away after we turned off the ice maker (on the refrigerator top door.)

Another week went by, the ER FF error returned for good. The error would disappear briefly after each recycle of power. I opened the freezer inside panel and observed the evaporator fan started, and stopped 3 times (10-15 seconds each) before the ER FF error appears. This sequence was controlled because I could verify 15 volts (I believe the spec. for the motor is 13 volts) when the the fan started, and no volts when the fan stopped.

The technician came out 2 days ago to replace the control board(Manufacturer Number EBR34917104) and the light unit as part of the service flash SR46-515R4. He fixed the light staying on problem, but the ER FF problem remained. He claimed the ER FF error is a separate issue and I would have to put in another service call.

Today, I took both the ice maker fan and the evaporator fan out to test with external power source. They seemed to work OK. At least they turned at reasonable speed. (I had zero experience with refrigerator, reading this blog gave me courage)

A few recommendations here involve replacing the controller board and the evaporator fan motor. However, my board has just been replaced a few days ago, and the evaporator fan motor still seems to work. Is it possible that the evaporator is only working marginally and some how provides bad status signal to the control board? Seem unlikely, but I don't know.

It is also possible that both the old and new control boards are bad. Also unlikely, but possible.

Any advice before I put in an order for an evaporator fan motor as a last resort?

Thanks in advance.
 

Jake

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tdu2000

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Aug 8, 2010
Messages
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Location
California
Thanks, Jake.

Just ordered the evaporator fan motor with overnight delivery. I really hope this will fix the problem because we are going on week 2 without a refrigerator. As a backup, I have a Sears service scheduled for Wednesday.

Regards,.
 
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