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Barry G.
Barry G., Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 6417
Experience:  27 years in home appliance repair. EPA refrigerant transition and recovery certification type I & II.
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I have a hotpoint HSS25GFTA BB side by side fridge/freezer.

Customer Question

I have a hotpoint HSS25GFTA BB side by side fridge/freezer. It doesn't get cold enough to freeze a water bottle in the freezer side with the setting on the 9. I have checked and cleaned the condenser coil and verified that the evaporator fan works. Any ideas?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Appliance
Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
Hello,

I can help you I am very familiar with this model.

Please could you tell me if there is frost on the lower rear wall of the freezer?

And did you notice when you cleaned the condenser coil if the fan was running to cool the condenser?

Thanks,
Barry
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
There was some frost on the lower part of the evaporator coil, and yes the condensor coil fan runs. I think that I may have a defrost thermostat issue because I notice that the defrost heater has come on several times. Also the panel that covers the evaporator coil has one seal that was melted.
Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
The main board has the defrost timer built on it. Thats the culprit. If its coming on more than every eight hours it needs to be replaced.

It is a very common part and you should be able to find it locally. GE part number WR55X10942. Two places that have it online are HERE and HERE.

There are special instructions for certain units. Take a look at step 2 in the picture below. It asks for the prefix of the serial number. If you do not have one of those prefixes then all you need do is remove the old board and install the new board. The wire connectors will only fit where they go. If you find that you have one of those prefixes you may need further help. In that case do not close the thread yet and we will continue through until you are sure that you understand. Ignore the handwritten notes.

Barry

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Barry G., Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 6417
Experience: 27 years in home appliance repair. EPA refrigerant transition and recovery certification type I & II.
Barry G. and 4 other Appliance Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Barry, I replaced the thermistor and the defrost sensor and it was no help. So I replaced the mother board, still no help. Sitting overnight the freezer does not freeze a 12 oz bottle of water. Both settings on 9. Just to review what I have done so far.....

Freezer does not freeze the bottle of water

cleaned the condensor coil (located on the outside lower left corner next to the compressor)

verified that the condensor fan runs

verified that the evaporator fan runs (inside the freezer section located at the back)

seemed like the defrost heater was coming on several times during the day, so

replaced the defrost sensor

replaced the thermistor

replaced the mother board

Even though the fridge side feels cold the freezer side does not freeze the 12 oz bottle of water overnight

Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
Hello,

Could you look in the fresh food side and post the first 3 letters of the serial number please.
Do not cut the wire just let me know what they are.

Thanks,
Barry

Edited by Barry G on 10/19/2010 at 4:41 PM EST
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

TL2

Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
Got it,
Unplug the unit.
In the instruction sheet. I can see that your prefix is not on the list. So do this. Take a paper clip or a stick pin and UNLOCK the holder that holds the wire in the connector and gently pull that wire out. The lock is inside the connecter where the wire goes in. Tape it and let it run for a few hours. Does it get cold then?

This is a thermister wire. That section of the board reads ohms and does not have a load on it. I have a picture below of the wire.

The red arrow is the wire and connector.

Thanks,
Barry

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Edited by Barry G on 10/19/2010 at 5:24 PM EST
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Barry, just to make sure, I removed the white/yellow wire from the J1 connector it was in the 2nd position. There is not a wire in the first position.
Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
Ok, that is correct. Thats perfect.

Let me know,

Barry
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Still no help, no change overnight, water bottle still not freezing
Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
Hello,

Are there times you notice the unit is not operating, without the defrost unit being on? Or does it run all the time nonstop?

Barry
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
runs all the time, nonstop
Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
You must have a freon leak. There is nothing else left. How old is it? And have you ever had to have freon installed?

Barry
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
It is 3 years old. No we haven't , How expensive is it to have freon installed?
Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
Its expensive. However that part of your refrigerator may be in warranty. You need to find your receipt or if you used a credit card you should be able to track it back.

1-800-626-2000 option number 3 will get you a live person. This is the GE phone number you need to call. You will need the model and serial number. These also contain the manufactorers date.

In the recent couple of years the warranty for a sealed system repair has changed. It used to be 5 years and has been changed to 1 year. Yours may have the 5 year warranty. Your purchase date is very close.

Let me know as there is more to add according to which way it goes.

Barry

Edited by Barry G on 10/21/2010 at 3:41 PM EST
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Barry, thanks for your help. Turns out the fridge is out of warranty. It does have a small refridgant leak. Oh well.
Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
Have you decided if you are going to get it repaired?

Thanks,
Barry
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

To much money, the estimate is $412 so I did a bandaid, put a piercing valve on it and added a little freon, hope it lasts a while.....the fridge sat unplugged for a couple of months, I think with the system unpressurized the freon escaped, I am hoping that under pressure it will be okay. Never could find evidence of a leak (oil deposits).

Expert:  Barry G. replied 4 years ago.
Right, thats exactly what you look for. Here is a little tip. If the larger line on the compressor gets moisture or ice on it you have added too much freon. This will not hurt the compressor, actually it cools the motor a bit. But if the floor that it is sitting on is wood that would not be good.

Usually the leak is where the copper attaches to the aluminum coil in the freezer and being mineral oil it washes off with the defrost and is very difficult to see.

What you have to do is get a bottle of high pressure nitrogen and pressure the system, then add a little liquid soap to the lines and look for bubbles.

Would you like to do that?

Also I would like to add, if the unit has not been moved it is very likely that the leak you have will or should continue to leak at the same rate. If it took 4 years for example, it should take 4 years before the problem occurs again.

Barry

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Barry G.
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27 years in home appliance repair. EPA refrigerant transition and recovery certification type I & II.