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FIXED Kenmore Refrigerator 106.55616400 lower vent freezing, so freezer is cold but fridge is warm

TheKeeper

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2010
Messages
51
Location
Buffalo, NY
Model Number
106.55616400
Brand
Sears Kenmore
Age
More than 10 years
Hi there!

A few weeks ago, the fridge stopped cooling, and cut to the chase, it was because the lower vent inside the fridge had accumulated enough frost and ice that the vent would not allow any cold air to pass through it.

I was able to remediate it, and the fridge started working properly again. We left a temperature sensor inside, so we could monitor the situation.

I noticed about a week ago that frost was starting to form on the plastic grille that sits in front of that vent, and lo and behold, that vent froze up again at some point yesterday. I'm currently trying to thaw it out again, but the air channel seems to be a little more impacted with ice than the last time. I don't actually know how far that channel goes before there's somewhere for the liquid water to drain out of it, so the fridge side still isn't working at the moment.

I guess the question is, any idea why the vent line might be repeatedly filling with ice, and is there anything I can do to prevent that?

Thanks,
Chris
 

TheKeeper

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2010
Messages
51
Location
Buffalo, NY
Ok, actually, at this point, I've spent the better part of four hours trying to thaw the ice that's in that lower air channel, with a heated butter knife and some napkins to soak up the melted ice, and I've been able to reach a finger down inside and I think it's clear on the fridge side, but I can't reach any further.

I started pulling the drawers out of the freezer side, but I'd like to see a video of disassembly of the freezer side to get to that air channel. I'm not sure what to even search for... Could someone point me in the direction of a disassembly video?

Thanks,
Chris
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
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Messages
125,325
Location
McMullen Valley, Arizona
Are you referring to the louver #4 below?
(click to enlarge)
K0510004-00002.jpg

Louver#4 is your return air duct louver that unsnaps, you may have frost/ice build-up in that.

Its on the left side wall in your refrigerator section, so you will likely need to remove the middle shelves and lower drawers to access it.

Check and see if you have frost/ice build-up in it, if so then clear all the frost/ice out and see if that solves it. You can also run hot water down it and see if it flows out from the bottom vent inside the freezer.

Jake
 

TheKeeper

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Joined
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Messages
51
Location
Buffalo, NY
Thank you very much for the reply! Yes, I have that grilled removed, and I've been trying to melt the ice that's filled that entire bottom vent, but I didn't know where it ultimately went.

I was able to clear out enough of the ice so that there's somewhere for hot water to go, and will get a couple towels ready in the inside bottom of the freezer to catch it...

The last time this happened a month ago, I didn't have to work this hard to clear a path for the air, but what I think happened was I didn't clear all the ice, so it just closed back up the rest of the way.

Thanks,
Chris
 

Jake

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Ok Chris, yes the HOT water runs down the RETURN AIR channel and inside the freezer drain trough, then into your drain pan underneath the refrigerator.

Jake
 

TheKeeper

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Messages
51
Location
Buffalo, NY
Thanks for that tip, I was able to finally get that air channel thawed and cleared out.

The agreement with the wife is that if it freezes up one more time, and the fridge heats up to the 50's again, it's out to the curb and a new four-door Samsung will take its place.

Chris
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
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LOL, NOOOOOOOOO NOT Samsung.:)

Samsung makes good TV's and smartphones, but Whirlpool, Maytag, KitchenAid, and Amana make better major home appliances.:)

Jake
 

TheKeeper

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Messages
51
Location
Buffalo, NY
I hear you on that, we have a Samsung split oven that misbehaves fairly often... We like that 4-door configuration, and it did have good reviews, but I'm guessing that means that those reviews are when it was still the "honeymoon" phase...

Ok, we'll definitely take that under advisement, thanks. And in the meantime, hopefully the Frigidaire won't clog up again. ;-)

Chris
 

Jake

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Ok Chris, sounds good.

Jake
 

TheKeeper

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Messages
51
Location
Buffalo, NY
Hi again. So, the fridge side is behaving properly still, so this part can be marked as fixed.

Unfortunately, the freezer side seems like it's building up ice in the bottom of the compartment. I guess I need to pull everything out of the freezer, power off the unit, prop the freezer side open, and let the freezer side thaw? I think I might be able to wait another couple weeks for a ~30 degree day in Western NY so I can just take the frozen stuff outside.

Thanks,
Chris
 

Jake

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Hi again. So, the fridge side is behaving properly still, so this part can be marked as fixed.
That's good to hear.(y)

Unfortunately, the freezer side seems like it's building up ice in the bottom of the compartment. I guess I need to pull everything out of the freezer, power off the unit, prop the freezer side open, and let the freezer side thaw?
That sounds like your defrost drain hole/drain line to the defrost drain pan is clogged up.

You will need to remove the back panel in the freezer and use hot water and a hair dryer to de-ice the drain trough/drain hole.

Jake
 

TheKeeper

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Messages
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Location
Buffalo, NY
That sounds like your defrost drain hole/drain line to the defrost drain pan is clogged up.

You will need to remove the back panel in the freezer and use hot water and a hair dryer to de-ice the drain trough/drain hole.

That's what it sounded like -- I guess the water from flushing the vent between the freezer and fridge ended up freezing in the defrost drain. Thanks, I should be able to clear it out soon.

Chris
 

Jake

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Ok Chris, sounds good.

Jake
 
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