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Keep Refrigerator Coils Clean


Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts

A thermometer inside a refrigerator.In 2021, we used more electric (kWh) than we did the year before, causing our electric bill to be over $200.00 more for the year. I have been trying to figure out why. Recently, I noticed that our 1994 refrigerator was not cooling like it should and when the milk soured way before the expiration date, I knew something was wrong. I started searching the internet to see how much it was going to cost to get a new refrigerator.

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Our daughter, who has gotten to be a real handywoman, wanted to see if she could fix it so she pulled up "YouTube" on the computer and found instructions on how to repair a refrigerator that is not cooling. First instruction is to clean the coils.

I had been keeping the coils clean by running a coil brush between them ever so often and pulling the refrigerator out and keeping the floor and back of it clean.

After cleaning what she could from the front and the back openings, she and her dad tilted the refrigerator on the side so she could reach underneath while he held it up. I wish I had taken a picture.

Using the coil brush, she removed wads of caked on dust (28 years' worth) from the back side of the coils, and in the same area, the grate in front of the fan. After she removed as much as she could, I swept up the debris and she used the Electrolux vacuum cleaner to blow out the little bit of dust that was remaining.

Looks like all it needed was a good cleaning so it could breathe. It has been over a week and it's still cooling like new, and it does not run all the time like it did. We don't need a new refrigerator, not yet anyway.

To extend the life of your refrigerator, keep the coils clean. Search YouTube to find out how. I'm hoping this is what was causing our high electric bill. Time will tell. I'll let you know if this was the culprit.

A refrigerator repair video.
 
A refrigerator repair video.
 
A refrigerator repair video.
 
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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 254 Posts
January 18, 20221 found this helpful

Thanks for the reminder.

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts
January 18, 20220 found this helpful

I'm glad we didn't have to buy a new refrigerator. They don't make them like the use to. I hope this tip will help someone.

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 267 Posts
January 19, 20220 found this helpful

Thanks for sharing! I have a refrigerator that isn't cooling well. We replaced the seals and it didn't seem to make a difference. We decided to move it to our garage to store beverages and get a new one.

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I'm going to pull it out and check the coils as our new fridge is always too full and I could really use another place to store food. Hope this works!

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts
January 19, 20220 found this helpful

I hope that cleaning the coils is all it needs. Let us know. Ours is working like new.

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts
January 21, 20220 found this helpful

Jess, since the refrigerator is in the garage, you may want to try this quick and easy way to clean the coils. I'm going to try it next time. I have an electric blower like this one.

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www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDTImEOsR3g

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 267 Posts
January 21, 20220 found this helpful

Thanks! I'll let you know if it helps. It might be that the refrigerator gets too cold in the garage (or hot in the summer) and that is part of the issue.

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts
February 16, 20220 found this helpful

It has been over a month now and our refrigerator is still cooling just like new. I do believe we will see a difference in our electric bill as well but only time will tell us that.

 
 
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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 267 Posts
February 17, 20221 found this helpful

Oops, I haven't cleaned my coils yet. Thanks for another reminder. :)

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts
February 17, 20220 found this helpful

I have been looking to see if it fixed yours. Sure hope it does!!

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts
August 31, 20220 found this helpful

I noticed our refrigerator was running all the time and I took a look at the grates underneath. They were caked with dust. With me being so busy, I had not thought to use the brush to sweep them and they had not been cleaned since January when I posted this tip.

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Wanting to use the leaf blower like in this video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDTImEOsR3g, I thought this was a good time to give it a try. I got out my blower, pulled the refrigerator out, unplugged it, laid down the towel and got to work.

I did not blow directly on the motor and wires but put the blower on the floor at the base of the refrigerator and turned it on high. It blew the dust out. It worked great and I got out some dust that had been caked on for longer than 7 months. Other than wads of dust scattered all over the kitchen and dining room floor, there was very little dust to clean up.

I did have a scare though. It took an hour for me to give the refrigerator a good cleaning. When I turned it back on, it ran for about 45 minutes and cut off. It stayed off for what seemed forever which was over an hour and I did not think it was going to come back on. Best I can remember, it did the same thing in January when we cleaned it.

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I jumped for joy when it did and it ran until it got to the right temperature. I guess it had to do something with the thermostat and defrosting. That was over a week ago and the refrigerator is cooling perfectly and not running all the time.

I love this method of cleaning the dust out.

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Home and Garden Cleaning AppliancesJanuary 14, 2022
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