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Kitchenaid KRSC500ESS00 - "weak" cooling - concerned about sealed system problem


Premium Member
Feb 14, 2022
Model Number
6-10 years
Hi Everyone,

I have a almost 6 year old Kitchenaid side by side with dual evaporators and the FC and RC being completely separated from each other (no air exchange). This the system covered by Service and Wiring sheet W10751694 A (which I have downloaded and used for some troubleshooting. I've also watched this video a few time to understand how this system works. Dual Evap Concept of Operation

The last several weeks we've had multiple episodes of the refrigerator getting up to 48-52F and not cooling back down when set at 35F. We moved all the perishable stuff to garage fridge as we try to figure things out. The freezer was holding at around 4F when set on 0F. Never reached setpoint, at least when compared to my wireless sensors and my instant read thermometer.

A little history on the unit - about 3 years ago (early 2019) - we had a sealed system failure on the unit and after about 3-4 weeks of back and forth with Whirlpool warranty service and the local factory authorized servicer, they ended up replacing and recharging the sealed system. Unfortunately I don't have any more details on the specific components that were replaced. After that, the fridge worked OK, but never seemed to cool as well as it did early on. We also started noticing a lot of condensation on the inside of the RC, and pooling water from time to time at the bottom of the RC (assuming from a defrosting RC evap coil).

But it generally worked until the last several weeks, when RC temps started spiking up to the low 50's, and then they'd go back down to low 40's, then back up again. Because the compressor appeared to be working, decided to check the RC evap coil - when the valve sent refrigerant into the RC evaporator, it got cold all over and the fan came on. while it was blowing on the RC side it quickly dropped the temperature from 50ish to the low 40's. I eventually figured out that if I raised the FC target temp to 5F and put the RC at 33F, the unit would settle out at 37-39 in the RC and 8-12F in the FC, but obviously both of these temps are 5-10F higher than they should be given the setpoints. During use during the dinner hour, the opening and closing would increase the RC to 42-43 and it seemed to take a long time to recover from the this use (overnight). It seemed the system was slow to switch back over to cooling the RC back to 37-39F.

So basically the unit is marginally usable if I set the FC at the highest temperature possible (5F) and set the RC at the lowest possible (33F), knowing that neither compartment will cool to more than 5 degrees of these targets.

I then checked the evap coils in the FC and took pictures (attached). On the FC coil photo from 2/12, you can see the large ice ball near where the cap tube comes into the FC evaporator inlet, and the evap tube on the right side is heavily frosted, and the bottom of the coil is frosted, but at least the top 1/2 of the coil doesn't seem to have much if any frost. The evap fan wires were were encased in that ice ball, so I took a hair dryer and melted it off. I took another picture at the 48 hour mark today and there is some new ice in that position but not near as bad as it was.

Troubleshooting already performed:

Tests 1 and 2 - All diagnostic tests on thermistors passed
Test 3 - Both Evap fans are blowing normally
Test 4 - all steps completed successfully - drove the dual evap valve from home position to RC position and then back to FC position.
Test 5 - Ran compressor variable speed tests (test #5 on service sheet) and they passed. This should show that there is not an issue with the inverter.
Test 6 - Bimetal defrost passed
Step 7 - Just to make sure it wasn't a defrost issue, set defrost timer for 8 hours rather than the automated system.

My questions for the forum:

-Does this appear this another sealed system leak and/or the system is low on Freon?
-Is it possible that the techs who fixed the sealed system in 2019 didn't charge it with enough new Freon?
-Would adding a small amount (5-10% of the recommended charge, then waiting) help?
-If the system is leaking freon, how long would it take until it would not cool at all? This tells me we don't have a severe leak.

The unit is still in warranty for parts and not labor, but factory authorized labor on sealed system could run $500-$1000, which I don't want to do. What I'd like to do is get another 6 months of performance out of the unit as we are planning on moving soon. I didn't want to buy another unit and then move it...I think moving this unit back in 2017 from its original house to my current one may have contributed to the failure in 2019.

Appreciate any help or advice you may have.



  • 2-12-2022 - Freezer Evap Before Defrosting.JPG
    2-12-2022 - Freezer Evap Before Defrosting.JPG
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  • 2-14-2022 Freezer Evap 48 hours after defrosting.JPG
    2-14-2022 Freezer Evap 48 hours after defrosting.JPG
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  • 2-10-2022 - Refrigerator Evap - Frost on Inbound line.JPG
    2-10-2022 - Refrigerator Evap - Frost on Inbound line.JPG
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Attached the W10751694A service and wiring sheet.


  • Service and Wiring Sheet - W10751694 - Rev A.pdf
    789 KB · Views: 123
Yes, you have a sealed system problem, without me being there to put my manifold gauges on it, its impossible to tell you if its low on Freon, or a restriction is present, you will need to have KitchenAid come back and then you will know.

Thanks Jake. I'm going through the typical decision you see on here - repair or replace? To get the local Kitchenaid repair company back in here, its $110 just for the diagnosis. I don't want to get deep into a repair that will be 50-75% of the cost of a new fridge.
I completely understand.


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