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Tyler Z.
Tyler Z., Appliance Doc
Category: Appliance
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Experience:  9+ years being an appliance technician with factory training.
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I have a GE Profile Arctica refrigerator, Model PS123NGTC CV,

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I have a GE Profile Arctica refrigerator, Model PS123NGTC CV, that is no longer maintaining 37 F on the refrigerator side and 0 F on the freezer side. Lately, it's been cycling between 37 F and 43 F, and about 5 F and 14 F. It's been out of control for a few months, getting worse all the time. It may take half a day to start back down after slowly going up in temperature. A repair guy cleaned it and confirmed that the compressor is OK. Would this have something to do with the electronics, a thermostat, or what?


Hello, and thank you for using this service. I'll be helping you with your problem today.

So the first thing you need to do is pull everything out of the freezer and remove the lower back panel inside the freezer. Look at the silver coils behind this panel and what does the frost on the coils look like? Are the coils packed with frost? Are the coils lightly frosted from top to bottom? Some frost on top but not on bottom? etc...
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

This may take a little while. There does appear to be a back panel, but not necessarily a lower one. I'll let you know about the coils once I get to them.

Ok sounds good.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Removed 4 screws, all shelving and slides, and the two light bulbs, but that panel is being blocked by the light fixtures and other features on the inside. I'm not sure how to get it off without major disassembly.


Assuming the coils are frosted up, what should be done? This problem began sometime after the refrigerator started up following several days shutdown (power outage following snow storm). Can I just turn off the freezer side, if that's possible, or the whole refrigerator, if necessary, and let it defrost?

Aye, you can turn the unit off, but most likely the frost will come back if you have a bad defrost component. Perhaps a diagram will help, but you need to remove part 214 in the diagram in the link below.


You'll need to either unplug the unit for 24 hours or remove everything of the freezer and remove the lower back panel inside the freezer to defrost it with a hair dryer. Once all the frost is thawed out, the unit will start working again. To make sure the problem doesn't come back, you'll want to replace the defrost heater. GE's defrost heaters fail often because they are nothing more than a long glass light bulb. Order and replace the defrost heater at the bottom of all the frost and you should be good to go. Below is a link to the defrost heater you'll want to order and replace.


Now I did want to point out that there are a few other possibilities like the defrost timer/control board or the defrost sensor, but these rarely fail on this model and there is no way to test the heater for certain to know if it's good or not. The reason is because that the heater is glass and can get water inside of it when it fails so it will show good continuity even when it's bad sometimes. That's why the best course of action is to replace the heater since it's by far the most common problem. Also, if you happen to remove the back panel and the coils aren't packed with frost, then that would mean the fan above the coils is likely not running which will generate the same symptoms. You'll need to order and replace the evaporator fan motor if this is the case.

If you really wanted to test the the sensor, look for the white plastic bullet at the top of the silver evaporator coils with 2 small wires going to it. You'd need to cut the wires going to the sensor and then put the sensor in ice water for 5 minutes. The resistance should be right around 16.3 kΩ. If not then the sensor would need to be replaced. I don't advise doing this test because you must cut the wires just to test it so I'd reserve this option in case the problem persists after you replace the heater.
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