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FIXED KRFC300ESS KitchenAid Refrigerator makes loud buzzing noise

RustyShackleford

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2018
Messages
23
Location
NC
Model Number
KRFC300ESS
Brand
KitchenAid
Age
1-5 years
Our 2yr-old Kitchenaid KRFC300ESS refrigerator makes an intolerably loud buzzing noise. It seems to happen when the compressor comes on. Unfortunately, it goes away for months at a time and then comes back with a vengeance.

A tech came out when it was under warranty, and I wasn't home, and apparently he just adjusted the feet a little and problem went away. Warranty year had passed next time it happened, and now it's been a little over 2 years.

The oddest thing: it's extremely easy to get the noise to go away, by opening either door, or even by just pressing on the side of the cabinet (at one point, wedging a paperback between the side and the neighboring cabinet solved the problem for months.

We are at wits' end and would appreciate any guidance. FWIW, I am pretty "handy", if I knew what to try. I can also upload a video if that would help. Thanks.
 

rickgburton

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Where is the noise coming from? Can you pinpoint the noise or the general area where it's coming from?
 

RustyShackleford

Premium Member
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Dec 5, 2018
Messages
23
Location
NC
Hard to tell. I think probably from the back. The thing is tucked very tightly into a gap in the kitchen cabinets. It seems loudest if I put my ear up to the gap between the sides of the fridge and the neighboring cabinetry, and is a bit louder on the right-side gap. I'm afraid if I pull it out, the noise will just stop, because it takes so little to make it stop - but I can do that if you think I should.

I should've said too, the noise starts when the compressor kicks in, sometimes remains til the compressor cuts off, but sometimes goes away after a few seconds.
 

rickgburton

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probably from the back....... and is a bit louder on the right-side gap. ....... the noise starts when the compressor kicks in,
I'm sure we're dealing with a vibration and it doesn't surprise me it starts when the compressor starts. It's the compressor vibration that is being transferred to the source of the noise. I've seen a few stubborn ones before but I've always found them. On the back right side as you're facing the refrigerator, is the control board and cover and the compressor and fan motor. I don't know how much space you have but if you can, pull it away from the wall and cabinets. Remove the cover over the machine compartment and remove the cover over the control board. The suction line and capillary tube are married until it reaches the machine compartment. The capillary tube splits off towards the condensor and the suction line goes into the compressor. The capillary is about the size of a toothpick. Make sure it's not touching anything. Check the copper refrigeration lines are not touching anything like another copper line. Here's a diagram to show you where to look:
Refrigerator french door.jpg
 

RustyShackleford

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2018
Messages
23
Location
NC
Thanks much for the detailed plan of attack. I kinda figured it was something like that. Yeah, I can pull it out where the inside and the rear are both accessible; shouldn't be too bad for a day or two to track this down. Any ideas about how to make it act up if it gets quiet after I roll it out ?
 

rickgburton

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Try the same thing that makes it go away. If it won't make the noise, I use a pencil and start lightly pressing on things with the eraser end, compressor, fan, copper lines brackets etc;etc. I had one like that. It made a buzzing noise until I pulled it away from the wall then nothing. As soon as I pushed it back the noise returned. Turned out to be a rear roller. Pulled forward it was on the floor. Pushed back in place the roller was above the floor about the width of a piece of paper. Enough it would vibrate and slowly turn on it's shaft when the compressor was running. Another good place to look at is the rubber grommets the compressor rests on. Things that fall off the refrigerator and roll under the machine against the coils can make that noise.
 

RustyShackleford

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Messages
23
Location
NC
I'll keep my fingers crossed. Actually, I think this online discussion may have made the noise stop all by itself :) Seriously.
 

rickgburton

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Most appliances are afraid of me. I can't tell you how many times I showed up only to find the machine that hasn't worked for months started working....lol
 

Tim Holmes

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Joined
Apr 14, 2019
Messages
7
Location
Columbus, ohio
I know this is a old thread, but were you able to fix this problem? Mine buzzes on the side, on the left side as you look at it. It is in the section where the freezer slides in on the side. If I press on that side of stops. But I’m not sure how to make it stay stopping. How do I get the casing off the outside of the refrigerator so that I can see what is buzzing over there?
 

rickgburton

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Hi Tim, The casing doesn't come off of a refrigerator. What's your model number? Read it from the tag on the machine. Click here: Appliance Parts follow the link “How to find a model number”
 

Tim Holmes

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Messages
7
Location
Columbus, ohio
After some investigation today, I am starting to think that it is just the drawer inside of the freezer on the bottom rattling. I moved the drawer around a little bit and started rattling the same way on the other side. Any suggestions on how to stop the plastic inside the freezer from rattling? Foam insulation strips?
 

rickgburton

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OK, manufactured by LG. Maybe check the drawer bumpers/caps. You can use a white lithium grease on the rollers and rails. Vibration noises like that can also be caused by one of the feet or rollers out of adjustment.
 

RustyShackleford

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Messages
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Location
NC
Hi @rickgburton recall you gave me instructions for how to troubleshoot my loudly buzzing KA refrigerator (post #4 above). I finally got up the gumption to try to do it and I think I have made some progress. I rolled the thing out into the kitchen and removed the back cover (note to others: you have to unplug two connectors to the solenoids that control water flow, and also disengage the power cord from the cover, then carefully set the cover aside with various water hoses still connected). See the attached picture.

Luckily the buzz came back after I did all this. Simply putting my palm on the top of the compressor (black bulbous thing) makes the buzz go away; probably/hopefully not inside there. See the horizontal copper line that runs between the left-hand side (from back view) of the condenser coils and then runs behind the compressor ? Pushing on that slightly makes the buzz go away. Also, see the white plastic tray (that seems to be covered with mouse droppings or something), that's just a tiny fraction fo an inch above the aluminum floor of the fridge ? Pushing that down against the floor makes the buzz go away; I think it's simply because it's moving that same copper line a little - out of view in this photo, but just behind the white electrical connector on the side of the compressor, is a bracket & bushing that support the line. I was hopeful the line touches the back of the compressor, but there seems to be a foam tube around it back there, so I'm afraid that's not it. Sometimes the buzzing goes away on its own, but pushing down on the aluminum floor makes it come back.

Getting pretty convinced ain't nothing touching with the freon lines. Thinking something with the compressor mounts, or something stuck down under there - you'd think rolling the thing in and out would make that go away though. Gotta lift it up a little to see what's going on under there, with something stuck or the bottom of the mounts. Thinking to hammer a wooden wedge in under the two rear corners.

Ideas on where to go from here ? Thanks.

P.S. I found the capillary tube on the right side of the compressor and it doesn't seem to have anything to do with it.
 

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RustyShackleford

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Dec 5, 2018
Messages
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Location
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So I did that - jacked up the two rear corners with wedges. The sound is gone and I can't make it come back - I think we have a winner !! Doesn't look like there's anything stuck under there, and it's just the floor of the fridge dragging on my kitchen floor. I'm going to try shimming up a few inches along the left- and right-hand edges of the floor, so the wheels sit up about 1/4" above everything else. See if it lasts ...
 
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