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FIXED KitchenAid Refrigerator KRMF706ESS01 - water pooling & ice forming under deli & produce drawers

lesterl

Premium Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Sandy Springs, Ga.
Model Number
KRMF706ESS01
Brand
KitchenAid
Age
1-5 years
Hello,

I'm looking for diagnostic & repair guidance regarding a problem with our KitchenAid (KRMF706ESS01) refrigerator (just under 5 years old).

The problem: water pools, and partially freezes, on the internal "shelf", just underneath the "deli" and produce drawers.

(By "deli" drawer, I'm referring to the left-side drawer, which has a selectable temperature, e.g., "meat/fish", "cold drinks", ... We usually keep this set to "meat/fish".)

For reference, these are the drawers:
KRMF706ESS01 - deli & produce drawers.png


Here is pic of water beginning to pool under right (produce) drawer, towards front; I emptied the water yesterday.
Some ice can also be seen at rear (I didn't get all of the ice removed yesterday).

KRMF706ESS01 - water beginning to pool underneath produce drawer.png


This problem has been ongoing for several months.
We first discovered this when the water overflowed into the freezer drawers below.

Our current mitigation is to towel out the water, and gently break free/remove the ice (w/ ice scraper).
The total amount of water removed each time is about 1 quart.
This procedure needs to be performed every 3-4 weeks.

Based on advice in some support posts, I earlier replaced the "refrigerator extension" - Whirlpool part no. W11084807 (see picture of this part), but this didn't affect the operation in any noticeable manner.

I don't see any visible drain for the area where water pools / ice forms.

FWIW: sometimes, when the deli & produce drawers are temporarily removed, in order that I can towel out the water, I do notice air blowing from the rear (inside the 'frige).
(I don't recall whether warm or cold air blows.)
I mention this since it seems to indicate that the fan behind the drawers is operational.

The refrigerator and freezer both work fine, other than this problem.

Any suggestions appreciated.

Regards,
Lester
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
Staff member
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
122,689
Location
McMullen Valley, Arizona
Hi Lester,

There is a service bulletin about this. I'm attaching it below. Look on Page 3 and see if the refrigerator evaporator drain pan is BOWED in the middle.

--->The evaporator drain pan should be seated flat and not bowed upwards in the middle (SeeFigure 4). A bowed drain pan may prevent water from properly draining. Ensure proper alignment of the drain pan. If the pan is cracked or permanently deformed, it must be replaced with one of the pans in the kit.

Here's the refrigerator evaporator drain pan it says to order if yours is BOWED:

And follow the instructions in this service bulletin, it does tell you how to remove it.

Let us know how it goes.

Jake
 

Attachments

  • service-pointer-w11092686-revg.pdf
    1.6 MB · Views: 110

lesterl

Premium Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Sandy Springs, Ga.
Hi Jake,

The doc you sent ("service-pointer-w11092686-revg.pdf") mentions:

1. Check the RC Defrost Thermistor for proper operation and placement.​
a. Check resistance of thermistor per tech sheet resistance table.​

While I've got the refrigerator disassembled, to inspect the evaporator drain pan, I'd like to check the thermistor at the same time.
I've got a volt/ohm-meter.

Can you please possibly advise what measurement(s) I should make on the thermistor, as well as expected results?

Thanks,
Lester
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
Staff member
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
122,689
Location
McMullen Valley, Arizona
Ok Lester,

1. Check the RC Defrost Thermistor for proper operation and placement.
a. Check resistance of thermistor per tech sheet resistance table.
Your tech data sheet is located underneath your top right side refrigerator door hinge cover and it will have the resistance table in it. But if your not having any cooling problems they it should be fine.

The only problem your having is the defrost water not draining properly down the drain tube, likely because its BOWED in the middle.:)

Jake
 

lesterl

Premium Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Sandy Springs, Ga.
Hi Jake,
I got everything out, and the drain pan indeed appeared to be bowed. However, once the ice was melted, the bowing actually disappeared. I have cleaned out the drain hole from inside the refrigerator as much as possible, and have used a hair dryer to try to thaw any ice that may be in the tubing. However, the drain tube still seems clogged.

Do you recommend using the product you mentioned in another thread (https://www.azpartsmaster.com/products/24-evaporative-cooler-flexible-spider-snake_913), and if so, what is the diameter.

I'd like to try to get one today, while everything is disassembled. It looks like the diameter of the tube itself is 1/4".
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
Staff member
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
122,689
Location
McMullen Valley, Arizona
Yes, you can order that Cooler Spider Snake, or use a air compressor to blow through the drain tube, or go to any hardware store and get something to run done that drain tube, like 1/8" or 3/16" tubing to run down it.

Jake
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
Staff member
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
122,689
Location
McMullen Valley, Arizona
Thanks Lester, got it.:)

Jake
 

lesterl

Premium Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Sandy Springs, Ga.
Hi Northside,

Yes, I checked this morning - issue is still resolved.
There was a tiny amount of water on the floors of those panels - perhaps 1 Tbs on each side - 1 month since the last work - at least 100-fold reduction from the original problem.

Even though I replaced the drain pan (since I already had a new one, and I had full accessibility after disassembling), my belief is that the real solution was clearing/unfreezing the drain line.

My wife & I worked together on this "clearing/unfreezing".
She squirted hot water into the drain hole (at the right side of the drain pan),
and I ran a line cleaner (flexible stick) from below, at the back of the refrigerator, with the '"refrigerator extension" - Whirlpool part no. W11084807 (see picture of this part)' (as referenced in earlier post) temporarily removed.
We also directed a hair dryer at the top of the drain line; hard to say whether that helped, but it might have.
Eventually, hot water came out the drain line from below, and since then, so far, so good.

A few comments:
  1. It was of course quite a bit of work to disassemble the refrigerator, but it was straightforward, and all went back together nicely. I followed the procedure here (I believe Jake had posted this in a separate thread): KitchenAid 5 Door Refrigerator Disassembly (Model KRMF706ESS01) - YouTube
  2. However ... if the problem recurs, I plan to first try to inject hot water into the drain line directly, without all of the disassembly. This should be possible using something like a turkey baster to squirt water into the drain pan (it seems like it should be straightforward but I haven't tried it yet).
  3. When trying to clean the drain line from below ... note that there are two drain lines attached to the aforementioned "refrigerator extension". The one for the refrigerator (vs., I presume, the freezer), is the one nearest to the back wall of the refrigerator, towards the left side, when facing the refrigerator from the rear.
  4. I used one of these: FlexiSnake Plastic Drain Stick in the Drain Openers department at Lowes.com and gently inserted it into the lower end of the drain tube. However, this tool is only 18" long - not quite long enough to emerge at the top of the drain line.
  5. I also bought one of these (Jake's recommendation): Dial Steel/Plastic Evaporative Cooler Tube Reamer in the Evaporative Cooler Accessories department at Lowes.com. It's 24" long, and very small/flexible. I would have preferred to use this, but it arrived later than the FlexiSnake.
Hope this helps.

Regards,
Lester
 
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