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Tyler Z.
Tyler Z., Appliance Doc
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 74301
Experience:  9+ years being an appliance technician with factory training.
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My 12 year old kenmore refrigerator will be at 43 degrees to

Customer Question

My 12 year old kenmore refrigerator will be at 43 degrees to the highest of 49 degrees for about a day and than drop down to 32 degrees the next day. what could be the problem ? Freezer side work fine.
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Appliance
Expert:  Tyler Z. replied 8 months ago.

So if the freezer side is working fine, you have two possible items that can cause your problem. Either your refrigerator thermostat is bad or your damper assembly is bad. Both parts are located in the upper back left corner inside the refrigerator section. To determine which one is the problem, just listen to the refrigerator and see if the refrigerator continues to run and try to cool even when the temperature is raising up to 49 degrees. If the refrigerator keeps running, then replace the damper assembly because it's not opening up to allow air from the freezer to get into the refrigerator so it can cool down properly. If the refrigerator just shuts off and nothing is running when it warms up, order and replace the thermistor sensor (refrigerator thermostat) because it thinks it's at the right temperature inside the refrigerator even though it's not. Below is a link to both parts.

CLICK HERE for damper

CLICK HERE for thermistor

We are on the honor system here. Please remember to rate my service by selecting a star at the top of the screen before you leave today. If you need anything else, just let me know. You can continue asking follow-up questions at no additional charge after rating my service if you still need assistance.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Tyler I got your answer just a follow up question when I got home today at 7pm the fridge was on the 7 setting and the temp was 32 degrees. I moved it down to setting 4. I looked at the temp about fifteen minutes later and it was at 37 degrees. I did hear something shut down but it didn't sound like the compressor it was more suddle. I have coffee cups on top of the fridge and they usually jiggle whan the compressor goes on and off this time nothing. Again last night it was at 45-49 degrees. Is it this the damper or the thermistor ?
Expert:  Tyler Z. replied 8 months ago.

So I really couldn't say and neither can you until you actually see what it's doing when it's 45-49 degrees. It has to be failing for you to know which one is causing your problem. Then you just need to determine if it's 100% silent or if it's running. If it's silent, then you need a new thermistor. If it's running, then you need a new damper.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Do I pick up both parts. Why wouldn't it be the defrost timer ? It seems like it is staying way to long in the defrost cylce /
Expert:  Tyler Z. replied 8 months ago.

If you had a defrost issue, the freezer would thaw out. You said the temperature is fine in the freezer. There also is no defrost timer on this unit. The defrost timer is built into the display board at the top of your refrigerator compartment.

And if you don't want to wait for the unit to fail again so you can listen and see which part is bad---then just order both parts and replace them both to make sure the problem is fixed.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
The second time that the fridge acted up getting warmer, I had unplugged the fridge on Sunday to clean under it. Thinking it was the dust that was the problem. After I had plugged it in on Sunday afternoon it was showing 48- 49 degrees. Today at 7pm is when the fridge got down to that 32 degrees. Does that tell you anything ?
Expert:  Tyler Z. replied 8 months ago.

It does not. I have already told you what needs to be done. If you don't know the answer to whether it's running when it's too warm (48-49 degrees) then you either have to wait for it to happen again or replace both parts. I'm not sure I can be any clearer about this.

We are on the honor system here. Please remember to rate my service by selecting a star at the top of the screen before you leave today. If you need anything else, just let me know. You can continue asking follow-up questions at no additional charge after rating my service if you still need assistance.

Expert:  Tyler Z. replied 8 months ago.

Hello again. I'm just following up because I haven't heard back from you and I see this question is still open. Is there anything else I can help you with?