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FIXED Whirlpool WRF989SDAM ice build-up on fins in freezer, noise from fan hiting ice

sonoman1

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2015
Messages
11
Location
west
Model Number
WRF989SDAM
Brand
Whirlpool
Age
6-10 years
It is a Whirlpool WRF989SDAM00, SN K24422159

I get ice building up in the freezer section, at the top of the cooling fins. The ice builds up to where the fan hits it and makes noise. I melted it off using a hair drying, but it comes back after several months.

A visual inspection shows no obvious problems with the seal. The temp is the factory set 37/0 deg


How do I get this corrected so it does not come back?
 

Jake

Appliance Tech - Admin
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This is it--->Whirlpool Service Pointer W10666205A Dual Evaporator Refrigerators No Ice and Warm Temperatures.

Read post#4 here: FIXED: WRF989SDAE01 Whirlpool Gold French Door Not Making Ice, freezer not cold enough?

Your serial number falls under that service bulletin too: K24422159

So You will need to contact Whirlpool at 1-800-253-1301 Mon-Fri: 8am-8pm (EST) to tell them this issue and they will send a tech to come out and the tech will have the Whirlpool Service Pointer W10666205A handy and he will follow the instructions to Call the Whirlpool Techline from your house to confirm this issue and get you going again.:)

There should be no charge for this.

Jake
 

sonoman1

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Messages
11
Location
west
Hi Jake,
I just got off the phone with Whirlpool and they scheduled a tech visit. I gave them the Service Pointer number you quoted.

You noted in your message there should be no charge for this. Is there any documentation I can cite? After sitting on hold for 30 min waiting for a live operator at Whirlpool, she scheduled a service call and read "the boilerplate" saying "I could be responsible for a service call". She also suggested I call the shop directly to see if they can get me in sooner than Sept 21. The shop said they have to wait on parts and said there is a $90 service call charge PLUS any labor. She said Whirlpool did not give them any work-order number to cover these and scheduled it as a COD.

If it is not covered, this already sounds like an expensive proposition...to pay $90 for a truck roll plus labor and list price for parts. Is this something I can do myself? I don't mind having them come out to fix it if it is covered but I don't want to get whacked for several hundred in labor plus whatever the part costs...which could be hundreds if they say it is an evaporator or control board or something expensive like that. Frankly, I would rather throw some beer money your way for all your help.

Tangentially, the ice maker issue in my earlier post cycled a couple times. I put a thermometer in the freezer section and it now reads 6 deg F...it was 13 an hour ago. I suspect it could be related to the ice maker not working


Thanks
 

sonoman1

Premium Member
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Dec 27, 2015
Messages
11
Location
west
Hi Jake,
I just got home and tested the freezer thermostat/thermistor and the heater element. Lots of ice built up...and it has only been a few weeks since the last time I defrosted it with a hair-dryer.

The heater looked good with just a few ohms resistance.

The thermostat looked odd...about 4k ohms. I put the thermostat in warm water and it dropped to about 2-4k ohms. Is that normal? I was expecting very low resistance. I put it in cold water, even between two blocks of ice, and it went up to 5.5k ohms. That is much higher than I expected. Do i need to replace the thermostat?

Please give me an update on whether Whirlpool will cover this at no cost...
 

Jake

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Ok,

Here's the bulletin: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1dCUtZ-MkMDND2BzThBmJ5igm-I69U5n8

Take everything out of the freezer, then remove your back access panel in the freezer, and look at your evaporator coil, then Look at FIGURE 1 in that bulletin, does it look the same? See all that frost build up on the top of the evaporator that's interfering with your evaporator fan at the top?

Jake
 

sonoman1

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Dec 27, 2015
Messages
11
Location
west
Hi Jake,
Yes, it looks exactly like the top photo in your tech bulletin.

The tech Whirlpool scheduled can't come out until late next week so I melted the ice with a hair dryer....my wife was going crazy from the noise of the evaporator fan hitting the ice build-up. I hope that doesn't make the symptoms go away...I should have taken photos for the tech.

The tech bulletin says to check the temps and run Test 4 and Test 56. Freezer just now is at 15.6 deg using a freezer thermometer in there overnight. That is well above the 0 deg setting and above the 12 deg ice-maker limit. The temp in the refrigerator read 39 deg using an instant-read thermometer in a jar of sauce that had been in the refrigerator . Test 4 cycled through with 01-05 flashing. I saw no error codes and pressed SW 3 after 05 flashed for several minutes. I could feel air coming from the ice-maker vent, suggesting the evaporator fan was operating. Test 56 for the maker came up with E5, for ice-maker time-out.

The tech bulletin says to check temps, diagnostic 4 and 56, then call the number. What do they tell the tech when he calls? Is that when they authorize a repair?

The white temp sensor that sits under the plastic cover on the back access panel read several K ohms when I tested it with ice and with warm water (4-6 k ohms). I expected a couple ohms when cold. It is an expensive part and it looks like it is attached to the wiring harness...I am not sure how to get the wires out without breaking the harness connector that plugs into the top of the freezer connector. Does it come as an assembly? Looking at the parts sites, it appears there may be another metallic temp sensor as well.


Thanks
 

Jake

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The tech bulletin says to check temps, diagnostic 4 and 56, then call the number. What do they tell the tech when he calls? Is that when they authorize a repair?
I don't know, When I left Sears in 2005 to start my own appliance repair company I no longer do warranty work, only out of warranty work.

I'd say the problem with that frost/ice build up on the top of the evaporator coil is also causing the ice maker to malfunction, so I'd wait till the tech. comes out per that service bulletin and fixes your machine, then that should fix the ice maker too.:)

Because right now your freezer temp is too high for the ice maker to work properly. Normal freezer temps should always be between 0 to 10 degrees at all times.

Jake
 

Chart09

Premium Member
Joined
May 17, 2017
Messages
3
Location
Louisiana
my refrigerator freezer does this same thing and i have had to thaw it out twice already after reading on here i saw the technical service pointer. i got on chat with whirlpool this morning and pretty much she girl on the other end said that the has never been a recall or issue with the model number of product the i own. so of course i can schedule service. im just kind of stuck on what to do at this point.
 

Jake

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Hi Chart,

Whats the serial number of your refrigerator? We can see if it matches that service bulletin.

The serial number will be on the model number tag located inside the refrigerator section on the upper walls or ceiling.

Jake
 

Chart09

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May 17, 2017
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Location
Louisiana
s/n K23405973, yesterday when i got home from work there was water in front of the refrigerator on the floor and looking around, we have the water and ice dispenser on the door, the ice was melting in the bin and running down the front of the door. i dumped out the bin and replaced, well this morning there is no ice deposited back in the bin, so im pretty sure that its not making ice now.
 

Jake

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Your serial number falls under that service bulletin too: K23405973

Jake
 

m3chris

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Seattle
Hi Jake,
I see your name in multiple threads on this. Thanks for your expert help on this issue.
Bought mine in 2013. Ice maker started leaking water so we emptied and found no ice anymore. About 4 days later had warm temps in the freezer, but also in the top fridge. Most complaints just say freezer. Can this be my issue being that the fridge and freezer lost temps after the ice loss do you think?
 

Jake

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Yes Chris, if your compressor and fans are running and its not cooling, then that indicates a sealed system problem, because you have a dual evaporator in this model, if the compressor is bad, then neither side will get cold at all.

Does your serial number match the ones above?

Jake
 

m3chris

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Seattle
Called yesterday. Had no idea what service pointer was. Provided them the number and my SN. Came back on the line and said my serial number was not in there under that. I asked here to google the service pointer and pull it up on her screen and for her to see that my number is clearly within that range.

She said they will send a tech and for him to determine if that really is the problem after I had to prove to her I am covered.

For any other signs I open the freezer and remove a panel to look for something?
 

Jake

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All you should do is pull the refrigerator out from the wall and remove the lower back access panel and get a flashlight and see if the condenser fan motor is running, it sits next to the compressor, and put your hand on the top of the compressor and see if that warm to hot and vibrating.

Jake
 

m3chris

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Sealed system problem vs. Compressor failure, are they both part of this common issue that might be covered? Would they both result in no ice?

I have the unit in the garage unplugged for a couple days now.
 

Jake

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Sealed system problem vs. Compressor failure, are they both part of this common issue that might be covered? Would they both result in no ice?
Yes and Yes.

Plug it back in and let it run, the tech will need it to be plugged in anyways when he arrives to diagnose it properly.

Jake
 

m3chris

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Service tech is coming out today. With this would I be expected to pay the $86 service charge if it fell under this repair? Also day just the compressor failed only. Would that have had the no ice and no chill symptoms perhaps not covered by this? Wondering with those symptoms do you see a possibility of another cause not covered?
 

Jake

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I have no clue to answer those questions Chris.

Did the tech come out? What did he/she say?

Jake
 

m3chris

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I waited to show the service pointer until he diagnosed. Said that this was a common problem and he was surprised it lasted this long. I then showed him the pointer and he said no problem done deal. Ordered parts, no charge. Thank you. Told him I was worried as I caught the customer service rep that didn't even know what a service pointer was.
 
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