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WRF989SDAF02 Whirlpool Gold Refrigerator 10 Degrees Too Warm, Freezer Correct


Nov 4, 2021
Model Number
More than 10 years

I'm hoping someone will have some ideas here, because I'm out (despite getting a million good ideas from these forums). I own a Whirlpool Gold WRF989SDAF02 French Door Refrigerator. About a month ago, I realized that it wasn't cooling well. Items in the freezer had thawed (about 20 degrees) and the fridge portion was warm (40 or so). The "Whirlpool Official" repair company came out, found that it wasn't defrosting (which is an embarrassing miss on my part, as the back wall of the freezer was covered with ice), and diagnosed the issue as a broken internal wire between the control board and the thermostat, which they couldn't fix. This seemed ... not right.

So, I took it out to the garage and decided to start problem solving. First, I took everything apart to test the component parts. The heating element was fine, so I cut the thermostat/bi-metal out to test it. It was bad, so I replaced it and wired in the new one. Still wasn't defrosting, and the diagnostic mode showed that it was showing open when I knew it was cold enough (and that the thermostat was good) that it should show closed. So, I assumed it was the control board and replaced that. That actually fixed that issue, and it's now defrosting as it should. No issues there. But ...

It's still not cooling properly. The freezer is working correctly (fluctuating between a few degrees below zero and a few above), but the refrigerator was hovering around 45 degrees. I ran through all of the diagnostics and everything passed the checks. Specifically, all of the fans/motors are working, it says that every thermistor is good, and it's blowing cold air into the refrigerator compartment and the ice maker portion. On the back end, the compressor isn't making any funny noises or anything and it was warm, but not hot, to the touch (I held my hand to it for, say, 10 seconds and my hand got warm, but I didn't have to remove it), and the fan is running. So, I *think* it's doing everything it should be.

I turned the temperature setting down from the factory 37 degrees to 34 degrees to see if that would make a difference. It didn't. And, as an additional data point: the compressor cuts off from time to time and doesn't go into a defrost cycle, so I'm assuming that means the unit thinks it's at the correct operating temperature. At this point, I'm out of ideas.

So, I called the "Whirlpool Official" repair company back out again. Their diagnosis was "probably" that the compressor was going bad. But this seems ... not right. The compressor wasn't hot to the touch and it is kicking on and off, so it seems like it "thinks" it's getting to the right temperature and not just running continuously and failing, and it wasn't low on/leaking refrigerant.

Any ideas? I feel like I'm on the cusp of getting this thing up and running again, and I'd hate to throw in the towel now. Thanks, all.