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KTRS21KDWH05 Refrigerator shudders when compressor turns off


Premium Member
Mar 27, 2023
Los Angeles
Model Number
More than 10 years
I've got an older Kitchenaid refrigerator, model KTRS21KDWH05. It still works quite well, gets cold, doesn't run the compressor constantly, and is clean. But when the compressor stops there's a shudder and a noise.

I took off the panel on the back that covers the compressor and let the thing run and shut off. A bit of a shudder but no noise. The compressor seems stable, doesn't move much when it stops and the compressor mounting feet are intact and seems strong. So I cleaned out all the dusk (yikes!) and put the cover back on. Noise reappears.

From this, I deduce that something is pressing into the panel. I think it's the thing that I've circled in red in the attached picture. You can see an impression of the thermostat sensor wire in the insulation attached to the back cover. So I know it's pressing against the cover. I think what's happening is that the pipe behind the object I circled vibrates when the compressor stops. And when the cover is on the vertical thermostat thing rattles against the pipe and generates the noise.

I'm afraid to bend anything for fear of creating a coolant leak, but I don't think I would need to bend anything very far.

Does anybody have any suggestions? Am on on the right track or am missing something?

Thanks very much for any light you can shed.

Understood. The question is whether I can bend the horizontal pipe that is banging into that thick vertical object so they don't bang into each other. Or put a piece of rubber between them to reduce the vibration.

Thanks much
A couple of followup questions if you're still listening:
Do you know what that vertical object is? Is it the "filter dryer tube" (and what does that do)? Do you know how hot it gets? I'm asking because I've got some 1/4" thick black foam padding that I could put between it and the horizontal tube and thus avoid bending anything. But it's cloth covered so might not be good around something very hot.
Also, do you think I will soon need to replace this thing? I would have to get something the same size and there isn't much choice. Kitchenaid makes what appears to be essentially the same model, but online reviews indicate that it's not as well made as it used to be. So maybe I should bite the bullet and repair this one, even if it means replacing the compressor.
Any thoughts about any of that? I don't want to wait till the bitter end and discover a lot of spoiled food.

Thanks much

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