The Location of the Defrost Timer on an Admiral Refrigerator

Megan Mattingly-Arthur

Admiral appliances are manufactured by the Whirlpool Corporation and distributed by Maytag. Whirlpool and Maytag offer a line of energy efficient, side-by-side and freezer-on-top refrigerators under the Admiral brand name. In residential refrigerators, the defrost timer is a component that regulates when the defrost heater switches on and off. If the defrost timer malfunctions and gets stuck in defrost mode, it can prevent the refrigerator from cooling properly. Locating the defrost timer in an Admiral refrigerator is a simple task that requires no tools or previous experience.

Refrigerator Warranty

If your Admiral refrigerator is still covered by a manufacturer's warranty, consult the terms of the warranty agreement before attempting to troubleshoot or repair your appliance. In many cases, unauthorized, do-it-yourself repairs may violate the terms of your warranty, rendering it null and void. If the warranty on your refrigerator is voided, you will be responsible for paying for any future appliance parts or repair service appointments.


The disassembly process to access the defrost timer in an Admiral refrigerator is so simple that it requires no previous experience or specialized tools. Open the refrigerator door and remove all of the food from the top shelf so that you can easily access the light bulb housing; in many Admiral models, this is where the temperature control panel is located. Pull gently on the edges of the light bulb housing to remove it; set the removed housing aside.

Locate Defrost Timer

Examine the refrigerator components that were exposed when you removed the light bulb housing. Locate the defrost timer on either side of the refrigerator light bulb. Look for a black squarish plastic component that is about the size of a deck of cards; this is the defrost timer.

Troubleshoot Defrost Timer

There is a small slot on the defrost timer that is just large enough to fit the tip of a flat-head screwdriver. Insert a screwdriver into this slot and turn it to the right to advance the timer. Listen for a distinct clicking sound that indicates that the refrigerator's compressor and fan are turning on. Replace the defrost timer if you hear the compressor and fan components turn on after advancing the timer with your screwdriver.