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Tyler Z., Appliance Doc
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Experience:  9+ years being an appliance technician with factory training.
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Kenmore refrigerator model: 596.65232401 freezer icing up

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Kenmore refrigerator model: 596.65232401
freezer icing up
Hello, and thank you for using this service. I'll be helping you with your problem today.

Can you explain what you mean by "icing up"? Is the back getting frost build up or is there ice on the floor or?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Yes ice on the back freezer panel and spreading. Freezer going to -17 degrees and refrigerator not cooling.

Three yrs ago I hade the same problem. Google found a thread on your site from '09 led me to replacing the control module.

This time I thought I could skate by without empting the freezer, so I just replaced the control module without trouble shooting. No joy

So the thing is that there is a kit with the new control module and other parts that you'd need to replace, not just the control module. To prevent the frost from coming back in a few weeks, you need to order and replace the Adaptive Defrost Control (ADC) kit which has been completely re-designed because the defrost system on these units has failed often. Below is a link to the kit and it comes with instructions on how to replace the part.

CLICK HERE for kit

Now if you wanted to see if it was just simple, you'd need to remove the back panel inside the freezer and test continuity through the defrost heater and defrost thermostat. If either one is open, it would need to be replaced, otherwise order the kit because you need to replace the kit.

Please remember to rate my service before you leave. If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. You can continue asking follow-up questions until you have all the information you need even after rating my service. Thank you!

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

A little confused. Are you saying my new control module has failed right out of the box?

Is the kit control module a different part number than the one I got from Sears?

The kit control module IS different than the one you just installed. The kit has been modified to fix some issue with the defrost which works in conjunction with the new defrost thermostat, fan blade, and insulation that comes with the new unit. The old board may not be bad, but as time goes on the defrost system on this unit has been found to not work as efficiently as when it was new which is why it has been re-designed.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Here's the part that bothers me.

3 yrs ago I followed test procedures from this site (stole them I guess. didn't know it was a pay for service at the time)

A "Force Defrost" test put voltage on the heater wires 3 yrs ago. Now that same test does not put voltage on the heater wires.

However another of the tests does put 119 volts on the heater wires.

Could the test procedures have changed with out the part number changing?

I would order the kit for the next time it fails, but I am concerned it would not fix my current problem.


So without a doubt, the kit would fix your problem. The question is whether you can fix the problem without the kit or not. That is why I said to test the heater and defrost thermostat for continuity if you wanted to avoid replacing the kit. If either one of those are open, then it needs to be replaced and you don't need the kit. If both parts have continuity, order the kit and that will definitely fix your problem.

As far as your test, the procedures have changed over time since the board was re-designed about 3 times before they came out with this kit---but that really isn't of a concern in determine which one is the problem. It's sort of a false test because it doesn't matter if it sends power down manually when you run a test or not, you still have no idea if it's sending power down when it should automatically or if it's calculating when to turn the heater on properly.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I have tested the heater continuity.

You are talking the thermostat on the freezer back panel correct?


Do you know where I could get documentation for running the tests on this thing?

Thanks for your help by the way.

Unfortunately this is a Kenmore product made by Maytag so they do not have documentation for these tests. But the thermostat I'm talking about is the 1" round device clipped onto the top of the silver coils behind the back panel of the freezer which has 2 wires going to it. Keep in mind that when testing it must be clipped onto the silver coils and the freezer must be running for at least 30 minutes so that the coils have a slight frost build up on them.

Also, below are the instructions on how to put the unit into defrost mode I believe for your unit since it's made by Maytag.

Please remember to rate my service before you leave. If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. You can continue asking follow-up questions until you have all the information you need even after rating my service. Thank you!



Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Found the thermostat. It is clipped to a copper tubing coil that goes to the evaporator on this unit.

56 ohms warm.

0.1 ohms frosty.

Sorry for the delay. wanted to make sure it was good and cold.

I will order the kit.

Thanks for your help

Not a problem. So it sounds like the thermostat isn't a problem and you said you tested the heater before and that also had continuity so that does leave the kit that will need to be replaced unfortunately.

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