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Maytag refrigerator not cooling model MTB2156BEW

althis

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I have a Maytag refrigerator model MTB2156BEW. It does not cool either freezer or food compartment. The fan is working but it blows only warm air. I'm an old tv serviceman so I can make voltage and resistance checks if I knew where to look. Thanks in advance for any help. Al
 

jeff1

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Hi,

**It does not cool either freezer or food compartment. The fan is working but it blows only warm air.**

Is the compressor running? Is the condnesor fan motor ( beside the compressor ) running? Any frost on the freezer back wall?

jeff.
 

althis

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Hi Jeff
No the compressor is not running
Yes the condenser fan motor is running
Al
 

jeff1

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Hi,

Evaporator fan motor running, condensor fan motor running should = cold control and defrost timer are sending power ok....problem in the compressor or the overload/start relay.

Have seen a couple of "open" ( no continuity ) overloads. The relay, overload and compressor can be ohmed for continuity.

Some stuff that may help...

http://www.applianceaid.com/refrigerator.html#clicking

Wire diagram if needed

jeff.
 

althis

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Hi Jeff
How do you guys do it,working on these things every day.laying on the floor, working in a cramped area, I'm starting to appreciate appliance repairmen more now.Anyhow I took off a cover that is on the compressor and found what looks like relay switches, after removing the connectors I measured ohms across 3 terminals and found very low ohms,about 4 ohms, seems low for a compressor. By now I figured let somebody that knows what they are doing look at it,so I put everything back together and closed it up. Just to check I plugged it in and turned it on. There was an arcing noise momentarily and the unit started working normally,even made icecubes. After it was cold enough it shut off,then when it came back on again-you guessed it- just warm air again.Does this sound like bad or intermittent relays or bad winding in the compressor? I won't bother you with this problem again- It might be time to call my sears service co. Thanks for your time
Al
 

Dan O.

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althis wrote:
After it was cold enough it shut off, then when it came back on again -you guessed it- just warm air again.
Which "came back on again"? The fans, the compressor??


Does this sound like bad or intermittent relays or bad winding in the compressor?
If the compressor did not come back on again when the fans, etc. did, it could just be a problem in the compressor's relay or overload protector or in the compressor itself.

If in the compressor, the part itself should be covered by a warranty for 5-years from date of purchase although the labour to replace it ($$$+) would not usually be (see the following link).

LINK > Appliance411 : Limited Warranties

JFYI

Dan O.
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The Appliance Information Site
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jeff1

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**After it was cold enough it shut off,then when it came back on again-you guessed it- just warm air again**

Possible both :(

Compressor will likely be amp meter tested to make sure it is not drawing too much current which in turn can/could damage the relay and overload.

jeff.
 

mills

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Our 18 mo Maytag MTB2156GES just blew on Sunday. A repairperson diagnosed the problem this afternoon as bad relay on compressor. Googled and hit on this thread.

Is this a common problem for this refrigerator? It's going to put us back $175 in labor and parts (not to mention what $$ wasted on spoilt food); should we order a couple of spare so we can repair it ourselves in the future?? Does this put undue strain on compressor?

Repair person did some hand waving about not vaccuming coils and not enough clearance around the unit. However, manual specifically states *not* to clean the coils and the space around unit meets specs in manual. Any suggestions to prevent future failures?



Much obliged for your advice!
 

Jake

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mills wrote:
Our 18 mo Maytag MTB2156GES just blew on Sunday. A repairperson diagnosed the problem this afternoon as bad relay on compressor. Googled and hit on this thread.

Is this a common problem for this refrigerator? It's going to put us back $175 in labor and parts (not to mention what $$ wasted on spoilt food); should we order a couple of spare so we can repair it ourselves in the future?? Does this put undue strain on compressor?

Repair person did some hand waving about not vaccuming coils and not enough clearance around the unit. However, manual specifically states *not* to clean the coils and the space around unit meets specs in manual. Any suggestions to prevent future failures?



Much obliged for your advice!

Hi,

Its kinda rare to see a relay on the compressor to go out on these maytags.

The compressor is not running at all?

All the fans working?

Frost build up on the freezer back panel?

The most i see go wrong with these are the defrost board.

As far as cleaning the condenser, you are right, all maytags have a self-cleaning condenser from 1999-present. I myself own a 1999 freezer on top maytag refrigerator, and i have never cleaned the condenser since it was brand new in 1999.

Jake
 

mills

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Thanks for speedy reply!

  • Fans are working.
  • Can hear compressor come on, but then clicks off again. Tested it w voltmeter and seems fine.
  • Affirmative frost on panel (according to repairperson). Water dripping all night,running down refrig door gasket and pooling on floor.
Repairperson commented that compressor was 'hot' so I'm worried that there's something wrong wunit or installcausing relay to fail. Any thoughts? Just a bad part?
 

Dan O.

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mills wrote:
Repair person did some hand waving about not vaccuming coils and not enough clearance around the unit. However, manual specifically states *not* to clean the coils
That's not actually what it says.

Maytag MTB2156GES owner's manual states:
Refrigerator Cleaning Chart"

Condenser: No need for cleaning unless environment is particularly greasy, dusty or there is significant pet traffic in the home (see page 13).

...page 13 says:

No Clean™ commercial-duty Condenser
[ Manufacturers really have a way of making things sound terrific don't they? :? ]
...

"Some operating environments may be particularly dusty or greasy. In these situations, the condenser can be periodically cleaned to insure maximum efficiency.
I have no idea of the condition the condenser was in but if the technician thinks it should have been cleaned, you might want to consider periodically cleaning it from here on in?


Repair person commented that compressor was 'hot' so I'm worried that there's something wrong w unit
If it was allowed to continue to click on and off for long before the technician arrived, that would definitely account for the compressor temperature.

BTW. Was the technician you had out a Maytag factory authorized service depot? If they were they might be aware of frequent failures of the particular compressor used on your model and would probably suggest replacing it if they thought necessary.

JMO

Dan O.
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Jake

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Dan O. is correct about condenser cleaning.

I don't have pets that live in my house, but people with cats and dogs in the home, the pet hair can collect in the condenser even on the self-cleaning condensers, so checking and cleaning it at least once a year is a good idea if you have pets in the home,as well if the inside home environment is particularly greasy, dusty.

If the compressor is clicking on the overload, i always put my test relay and overload on it when the compressor cools to see if it starts running normal, if it still clicks, then the compressor would need to be changed.

You can Ohm out the relay and overload switch as well, and ohm the compressor terminals with each other, i also check continuity with each of the 3 compressor terminals to the compressor shell housing to check for a grounded compressor, A grounded compressor will at times kick the circuit breaker in your home.

If you refrigerator is less than 5 yrs. old, the sealed system warranty will cover the whole cost.

Jake
 

mills

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So you think build up of pet hair was the culprit?

I'm just really desperate to know what made it fail in the first place. I cannot express what a blood-vessel-bursting experience it has been to deal with Maytag. There is nomeasure we wouldn't consider to avoid another repair call.

BTW: unit is <2yrs. Certified Maytag repairperson (actually a Sears repairperson moonlighting for Maytag) who laughed in our face when we asked why it failed. "Hey, these things are man made."
 

Jake

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Its hard to say what caused it, but if its only 2 years old, then you will get a new compressor installed for free.

Jake
 

Dan O.

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mills wrote:
So you think build up of pet hair was the culprit?
Is that what was found to be blocking the condenser so much so that cleaning was recommended?

A blockage of the condenser will reduce appliance efficiency increasing energy consumption and put added strain on the compressor that would increase its operating temperature which could lead to premature failure of the relay, overload protector and/or compressor itself.


I'm just really desperate to know what made it fail in the first place.
Short of being a forensic scientist, having the testing facilities to do the necessary tests and being there when the failure occurred, all a technician can do is look for the obvious signs. If none are found and what tests can be preformed turn up negative, the problem would usually just be chalked it up to component failure (for whatever reason - flaw in material, electrical surge, power drop, sun spot, alignment of the planets, etc.). Often a definitive answer can not be found for many component failures.

The only things in the fridge itself which would likely contribute to a failure of the starting relay (besides a problem in the relay itself) is a loose wire connection on it or a problem in the compressor itself and if it wasn't acting up at the time the technician was there so it could be detected, would be impossible to pinpoint as the cause. But in the case of the compressor, it is warranted for at least 5-years so if it did fail totally within that time, it would be replaced under its warranty.

BTW. I don't know any manufacturers which will replace a compressor on the chance it is defective. Only if it can be determined for certain it is bad (or within a high probability) will it usually be replaced.

JMO

Dan O.
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althis

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Hi Jeff
Well this is day 4 of my refrigerator running normally-nice and cold- What I did was remove the overload and ptc relays from the compressor and cleaned the contacts as well as possible. when I reinstalled them and turned it on the compressor started right up and has been normal ever since.Maybe I just got lucky and fixed a connection on the start or run winding. Thanks for all your help.
Al
 

jeff1

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Thankx for the update Al,

**Maybe I just got lucky and fixed a connection on the start or run winding.**

Hope you got lucky!!

jeff.
 
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