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Refrigerator Repair: Is Something Wrong With The Compressor?

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If your refrigerator feels too warm inside, you may set the thermostat to the highest temperature possible to keep your food cold. But if your fridge still feels too warm to you, check the compressor. The compressor may be broken or overheated. Learn more about your refrigerator's compressor and how to repair the part below.

What Does the Compressor Do?

The compressor is one of the most important parts of your refrigerator. The compressor is a part of the appliance's HVAC, or heating, ventilation, and air conditioning, system. Like other types of compressors, the compressor inside your refrigerator helps expel heat from the appliance. If the compressor fails to expel heat out of your fridge, the cabinet inside the appliance will become too warm to keep food safe. 

When the compressor works great, it should switch off and on throughout the day. You may hear a gentle or barely audible humming sound coming from the back of your refrigerator as the compressor switches off and on. When something goes wrong with the compressor, it will remain in the on position. The humming sound will become louder and more persistent throughout the day. 

The compressor will eventually build up with hot gas and overheat. The heat inside the compressor will gradually spread into the evaporator coil sitting at the back of your refrigerator. The evaporator coil's main job is to send hot gas to the compressor. The coil will fail if it builds up too much heat.

If you think the compressor in your fridge is bad, contact an appliance repair contractor right away.

How Do You Repair Your Fridge's Compressor?

An appliance repair contractor will need to test your fridge's compressor during the visit. If something's wrong with the compressor, it will:

  • feel very hot to the touch
  • remain in the "on" mode
  • sound loud and obnoxious

If a contractor's test reveals the symptoms above, they'll remove the part from your refrigerator and clean it. Dust can prevent the compressor from removing heat from the appliance. You'll need to clean the back of your refrigerator regularly to keep the compressor free of dust in the future. 

If cleaning the compressor doesn't quiet it down or make it work properly, a contractor will need to replace it. The old compressor may no longer be strong enough to expel heat out of your refrigerator.

If you need to repair your broken refrigerator, contact a refrigerator repair contractor today.