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Drcool
Drcool, Home Appliance Technician
Category: UK Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 2077
Experience:  i am an expert in the Home Appliance category in the US. been in the field for more than 12 years.
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My Maytag freezer (part of s/s fridge-freezer) periodically

Customer Question

My Maytag freezer (part of s/s fridge-freezer) periodically stops working. It restarts fine when switched off at the plug then back on again but is cutting out more and more frequently.
Engineer of local repair company originally said it could be thermostat but the office people are now saying it's the control board and will cost £370 in parts plus the parts are supposedly unreliable so they would recommend just getting a new freezer... I'm reluctant to replace as it was £2k or so and is only just over 2 years old.
The repair people don't seem confident as to what the problem is - does it sound like a control board issue? Is it worth getting a new thermostat first to see if that would fix the problem? Thanks.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: UK Appliance
Expert:  Drcool replied 2 years ago.

Drcool :

Hello, Can we have the complete model number please? When you say cutting out? Would the compressor stops and then nothing? It will not run anymore ? What about if you unplug the unit , then plug it back after 5 minutes. would the compressor run again?

Customer:

Hi, the model number is XXXXX

Customer:

It is not apparent that anything has stopped working, we have only realised when food has defrosted and gone bad (the first time it happened we were away and came back to a house reeking of rotten meat). Since we realised there was a problem and that we hadn't just accidentally left the door open, we check the ice-cube trays to see if the temperature has dropped.

Customer:

The light remains on when the freezing bit fails.

Customer:

If we unplug and plug it back in, the freezer starts working again so that anything in it re-freezes but then the problem recurs.

Drcool :

Hello, Thank you for those info. Can you please check the time, after you plug it back again , and the compressor did run again, how long would it stop running? I am sure, but please verify , if the compressor ( black steel ball ), at the back of the unit is running or not while the unit is not cooling? You can unplug and plug it back and timed how long it would take before it would fail? This is a little bit hard to do but please bear with me so I can established which could be the faulty part.

Customer:

I'm afraid it is very unpredictable about how often it fails - there were nearly 2 months between the first and second failures, then it worked for a couple of weeks and now it seems to work for a couple of days at a time before it fails. It is cooling at the moment so I am unable to check if the compressor is working.

Customer:

The engineer of the repair company did not check anything at the back of the unit, only behind a panel in the freezer itself. Does this mean he could not have checked the compressor?

Drcool :

Hello, He should have checked if the compressor is running or not while the unit is not cooling. This would differentiate if the unit is just clogging up and would need a re-processing of the system, or it could be electrical or electronics in nature if the compressor is not running.

Drcool :

If the compressor is running but not cooling, then the capillary tube could have clogged with dirt and the solution would be a re-processing of the system.

Drcool :

If the compressor is not running, then the troubleshooting would start with the most least expensive part which is the temperature sensing device or thermistor. If the thermistor would not send the right signal, the main electronic control board would not let the compressor run even though there is already a requirement fro cooling.

Drcool :

If after replacing the thermistor, then it could be the main electronic control board. On your first post, the thermostat that they could be talking about would be the thermistors.

Customer:

Thanks - this is all incredibly helpful. Just one final question which is - would an engineer be able to test whether the capillary tube is clogged when the unit is cooling? It would obviously be easier for me to ask someone to do this than to wait until the unit fails and have no freezer until I am able to get someone out to look at it (I couldn't get the back off the unit myself).

Drcool :

Hello, When the unit is cooling, then the capillary tube is not clogged because it would mean that the refrigerant is passing through the capillary, going to the evaporator coil ,freezing it, hence makes the unit cold. If the compressor is running and the evaporator coil is not freezing up, then I would say, you could have a clogged capillary tube.

Customer:

Since the unit starts cooling again after being switched off then back on again, does this mean that it cannot be a problem with a clogged capillary tube? Or is it possible that the tube is partially clogged or can clear itself before becoming clogged again?

Drcool :

Yes, that is why we need to know if the compressor is running when ever the problem is happening. We need to know that while it is not cooling, is the compressor at the back still running or has stop running as well?

Customer:

So am I right in understanding that the problem cannot be diagnosed while the unit is cooling? If not, I will wait til it next fails and not restart it until an engineer has been. Thanks.

Drcool :

But it should have not been unplug so the engineer can actually see if the compressor is running or not.

Customer:

Ok, so I just leave it not working but still plugged in, and get the compressor checked.

Drcool :

Yes.

Customer:

That is really helpful - thank you very much.

Drcool, Home Appliance Technician
Category: UK Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 2077
Experience: i am an expert in the Home Appliance category in the US. been in the field for more than 12 years.
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