How to Know When Your Refrigerator Is Bad

A faulty refrigerator is an inconvenient and expensive nuisance. Not only is repairing or replacing the machine a costly undertaking, the added cost of spoiled food makes a bad refrigerator a big problem. If you are concerned that your refrigerator is losing its cool, there are some symptoms to check for.

If your refrigerator is malfunctioning, check for signs that it needs repair.
  1. Assess the state of the foods in your machine. If food is expiring too quickly in the fresh food section, your machine may not be cooling properly. Similarly, if food is developing freezer burn in the freezer section of the machine, there may be a defrosting issue.

  2. Check for leaks or puddles of water. If water is dripping or pooling outside of your machine, the insulating material of your refrigerator may be damaged. This is not only a sign that your refrigerator is not properly cooling, it also means the machine is requiring excess power to run and costing you money.

  3. Be sure the fans are operational. There is a fan located inside the freezer and under the machine. If the fans are not running or are blocked in any way, you will not hear them in motion. Check for any blockage to the fans and replace them as needed.

  4. Check the evaporator cover of the refrigerator for ice buildup. This cover is located towards the back or bottom of most standard freezers. Evidence of ice buildup is a symptom that your refrigerator is not properly defrosting, which causes the refrigerator to stop cooling. Defrost by emptying the machine completely. Turn off power and collect the melted water with towels.

  5. Listen to the condenser for signs of overheating. The temperature regulating system of the condenser causes it to stop working if it begins to overheat, and then start up again to cool itself down. In this case, you'll hear the clicking sound of the condenser thermostat and the motor running. Often, this is a sign of dirt clogging the condenser and blocking the cooling of the machine.