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Tim Alan
Tim Alan, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 1241
Experience:  Amana, A&E (Whirlpool) ,and Maytag factory service
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My ice machine is inop on my Kenmore side by side refrig/freez,

Resolved Question:

My ice machine is inop on my Kenmore side by side refrig/freez, model 106.56249400. To keep the family happy I have been filling the bin with crushed ice I bought at the store, but that seems like a short term fix. The initial symptoms showed ice in the try but it would not harvest. It just stayed there. I have installed a new ice maker and still no ice. The little red indicator light is indicating OK ( two short flashes, a pause, then repeat ). In the mean time I have measured the test points and have the following results:
BTWN RESULTS PURPOSE
L & N 0 vac Pwr to ice maker
L & H 0 vac Htr
L & M 0 vac Mtr pwr
T & H 0 vac Thermostat
N & V 0 vac Wtr vlv

It seems that I have a power problem. I believe there is an IR safety light on one side of the freezer cabinet with a sensor on the other side. Once something blocks the light, the ice machine will shut down. I don’t know how to test that light either and to just replace the ckt boards is a might expensive. Shouldn’t there be 110 vac to the ice machine at L & N? If so, where does that power come from? I tried to start a harvest cycle by jumping between T & H with nothing happening. The water solenoid valve appears OK visually although I have not yet tested it electrically. Where do I go next?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Appliance
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.

Tim Alan :

Hi my name IsXXXXX can help you with your issue.

Tim Alan :

Jumping T and H won't work if the actual control is bad, the sensor is the ice maker control and the ice maker is powered through that.

Customer:

Isn't the ice maker control located inside the module on the side of the ice maker?

Tim Alan :

The way to test the control is to cut power to the refrigerator for 5 minutes, then return the power. Wait 3 minutes and 30 seconds then open the freezer door and see if the ice maker has started the cycle.

Tim Alan :

No the sensor or the blinking light on the inside of the freezer and oposite are what controls the ice maker

Customer:

OK, I will go unplug the frig and then wait. Will you still be here after I run this test

Tim Alan :

Yes and let me know what the light does and if the ice maker is doing anything ok.

Customer:

So the sensor on the side is the one with the IR light?

Tim Alan :

Yes that is correct

Customer:

What can I use to test the IR light?

Tim Alan :

I don't know what you mean by what to test it with. the control itself tells us its bad by what it does. When you open the freezer door the light will blink, on the opposite side of the freezer is a flapper, with the door open close the flapper and have nothing obstructing the beam and the light should glow steady.

Tim Alan :

The reset is unplugging it and seeing what it does.

Customer:

It has been 5 min so I am going to plug it in and also look at the light .

Tim Alan :

wait 3 and a half minutes before opening the freezer door

Customer:

Done. The ice maker cycled and water filled the tray.

Tim Alan :

Ok good, if it happens again then replace the control but it just may have needed to be reset.

Customer:

The light is a steady flashing on and off noe. Before it was two flashes, pause and then repeat

Customer:

I understand that the two flashes is the 'normal' indication. What is the indication now

Tim Alan : Microcomputer

PART NUMBER:(NNN) NNN-NNNNthis is the part number for the control, it contains both reciever and sending unit, replace them both if it fails to cycle the ice maker again.

Tim Alan :

No the 2 flashes means there is an obstruction of the light beam that is not normal on

Customer:

'So an off and on at a steady rate is the normal indication

Tim Alan :

It will steady flash when the ice maker is cycling

Tim Alan :

give it a minute

Tim Alan :

then open the door and see what it does

Tim Alan :

then close the flapper and it should be a steady beam

Tim Alan :

if you are getting a steady flash without a pause after it is done cycling the ice maker it's bad

Customer:

OK, it is now doing the 2 flash-pause thing now

Tim Alan :

Ok good

Tim Alan :

that means its sensing an obstruction

Customer:

So I can put it all back together now?

Tim Alan :

Yes it should be good, did you close the flapper on the opposite side and see a steady beam or steady light?

Customer:

The obstruction it is sensing is the flapper with the door open?

Tim Alan :

Yes

Customer:

So I can open the door and then hold the flapper in and the light will go to a steady flash?

Tim Alan :

No it should not blink at all

Tim Alan :

steady light

Customer:

OK. Thank you. It has been a good learning experience

Tim Alan :

Your welcome, please be sure and leave a comment for me after pressing the accept button, thank you and have a great day.

Tim Alan, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 1241
Experience: Amana, A&E (Whirlpool) ,and Maytag factory service
Tim Alan and 6 other Appliance Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi Tim. I thought we had that ice machine fixed after it cycled and dumped ice into the bin, but that only happened once. The ice maker continues to cycle but no water goes into the tray. I found the supply line frozen and cleared it. I know the solonoid valve works sort of because I used test leads and applied 110 vac directly to the valve. Given all of that, the water still does not go into the tray. What next?
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
Ok we went through the testing procedure and then you left, I have no idea what it did or did not do, you did not inform me as to what was happening with the unit. Tell me exactly what it is doing. From what you tell me it's probably the ice maker that is faulty.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

the ice machine cycled and dumped ice ionto the bin and I thought that we had it whipped. But now the ice maker continues to cycle (it is a brand new ice maker), the fingers rotate and everything appears to operate normally now except water does not bo into the tray. I have applied 110 vac directly to the solonoid valve using test leads and the valve seems to operate. I found the supply line to the ice maker blocked with ice in the freezer compartment (didn't think that was supposed to happen) and cleared the line completely to the solonoid valve, but still no water to the ice maker after that one time we reset the fridge. What do you think?
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
The power supplied to the solenoid comes from the ice maker, there is a switch inside the ice maker that closes and powers the solenoid. Start a cycle of the ice maker and check power to the solenoid, hard to believe a new ice maker would fail but it does happen. In the meantime let me double check the wiring schematic on something.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
OK it will take a few minutes to run that test. I will be back to you after it is done
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
Ok thank you.
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
The control board should not have anything to do with the solenoid fill, once the ice maker starts it's cycle and has power to it then the solenoid is powered directly from the ice maker.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Ya know Tim, I've worked 40+ years as an engineer on ocean going ships and have seen a lot of strange things that I couldn't explain. Mostly to do with electrical stuff. I called it FM, friggin magic. I just did the reset again and I got 105.43 vac at the solonoid and water into the ice maker. I guess it is because you are on line. I took the old ice machine apart and I could see how the power gets to the valve. BTW, the old machine had a kaput drive motor. I will watch this thing for the next several hours and if it stops again, I will be back at ya.
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
Ok let me know how it goes. Check for voltage to ground from the tan wire also at the solenoid. When the ice maker is cycling and when it is not cycling.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
While not cycling (now) on my Fluke meter I get 0.160 vac. What should I see when it turns on?
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
You should get 120 volts or 110 volts.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Is there any way to change the timing of the solonoid valve short of a new valve that will change the amount of water going into the tray? I would like the ice to be a little larger than it is right now. The cubes (half moons or slices?) appear to be a little smaller than they should be, although I really don't know howw big they are supposed to be. I am simply judging by the fact that when I stick my fingers into the tray, the tray doesn't feel like it is really full. I understand that could be a design item, but I would be interested to know if it is possible to slightly increase the size.
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
That is done in the ice maker, there is an adjustment screw on that and you will get some adjustment but not much, there should be a small plastic screw that you turn clockwise to increase the fill time. Also water pressure has a lot to do with the size of the cubes.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
OK, I'll give it a try. Again, Tim, thanks for the assist. You are truly a scholar and a gentleman, and a good judge of fine wines, race horses and society women. Ya know there's damn few of us left.

Bob
Expert:  Tim Alan replied 2 years ago.
Your welcome, and thank you.

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