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What Are the Causes of Popping Noises in Chest Type Freezers?

Michelle Labbe

Few sounds are more ominous than strange noises emanating from your fridge or freezer, signaling the potential for spoiled food, costly repairs and a lot of hassle. If you have a chest freezer that starts making a popping sound, identify the sound and try to figure out the cause. Fortunately, in most cases, popping sounds coming from a chest freezer are considered normal and are not signs of malfunction.

Expansion and Contraction

Freezers are essential for long-term food storage, and it is important to check that it is operating normally.

Chest freezers may make a popping sound when the compressor comes on. If this occurs, it is considered a normal part of the freezer's operation. The sound is caused by the metal parts inside the freezer undergoing expansion and contraction as the unit operates, much like how hot water pipes operate. Popping noises of this kind are nothing to worry about, and the sound should go away as the freezer continues to run.

The plastic liner around the freezer may also cause a popping sound due to expansion as the internal temperature changes.

Refrigerant Boiling

Popping noises in chest freezers may also be caused by refrigerant, the substance used to cool the freezer, boiling off as it is being circulated through the evaporator coil. This is also a part of normal freezer operation and is a sign of the freezer unit working properly to cool itself.

Automatic Defrost

Popping, crackling noises may also occur in chest freezers with an automatic defrost feature. If the automatic defrost feature is turned on, it is normal for freezers to make a popping, crackling noise as they defrost themselves. The automatic defrost feature is common among newer freezer models.