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Barry G.
Barry G., Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 6823
Experience:  27 years in home appliance repair. EPA refrigerant transition and recovery certification type I & II.
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I have a GE Monogram side by side refrigerator, model # XXXXX

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I have a GE Monogram side by side refrigerator, model # XXXXX The refrigerator lights are not working, blubs are all good. My freezer lights work fine. The door switches all work fine, so I replaced the motherboard.
After replacing the motherboard, the refrigerator lights still don't work.
I checked the circuit breakers for the lights at the bottom of the unit, and noticed the breaker for the fridge lights was tripped. I reset the breaker, but when I open the fridge door, the breaker trips.
What should I do now?
Hello my name is XXXXX XXXXX you for choosing our service.

I am looking at the wiring diagram for your model now. Please be patient, I want to see if there is anything between the transformer and the door switch.


Hi Derek,


At the bottom of the light tower is a disk shaped part with 2 wires. Could you take a look at that part and see if it is swollen please? Some of these parts are epoxy filled around the 2 wires. With the power off give those wires a very light tug. Does that pull the epoxy out of the metal housing?


Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I'll check on this now

Take your time Derek, there is a cover that comes off at the very bottom of the light tower. It is behind that cover.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.


At the bottom of the light tower is a mount for two Halogen blubs facing up. Under the blubs is a housing that is riveted shut with several wires going into the unit. Is this the unit you are talking about? If so, it's riveted shut.


Okay let me figure out another way, do you have a volt meter or a test light?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Give me just a couple of minutes.

Okay we do not need the meter yet. There is a wire connector that connects to the larger transformer. Disconnect that wire connector. That will leave the switch and the part you tried to access still in the circuit. Turn the lights on and open the door. Does the breaker trip then? The larger transformer in the box with the breaker is circular and on the right side.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

After doing the last step, the breaker does NOT trip

Thanks Derek, the last thing you can do is switch the wires on the breaker to be sure the breaker is not weak. If after you switch breakers the breaker trips then the transformer is bad and you will need to replace that. I have it linked below for you.

If the breaker does not trip and the lights work then the breaker is weak and that will be the bad part. I have that linked just below.

That is the best way I could think of to test the breaker's and separate the parts to determine which is faulty.

That will get you on the right path. If you have any questions at all please ask me. If not please leave a rating.

Thank you,
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I tried switching the fridge wires to freezer breaker and it still tripped. So I assume I need a new fridge light transformer?

Yes that is the only thing it can be. When you disconnected the transformer you left the light switch and the device I asked you to try to access earlier in the circuit. Those carry 120 volts AC to the transformer. Then out from the transformer is 12 volts DC which goes directly to the lights. Unless there is a broken wire somewhere after the transformer which is extremely unlikely the transformer is bad.

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