A refrigerator is responsible for keeping your food fresh, whereas the freezer section of the unit keeps things frozen. If the refrigerator starts freezing food, it means trouble. But don’t worry; the refrigerator freezing food problem can be fixed without taking external help.
Today we will discuss the probable reasons behind why your refrigerator is freezing foods and what you can do to avoid it.
Why is my Refrigerator Freezing Food? – Reasons & Solutions
Reason #1: Wrong Temperature Settings
The recommended temperature for the refrigerator section is 40° F (4° C). You can go below it, but FDA suggests. What happens is that when you accidentally set the temperature too low for your fridge section, the food inside starts to freeze. This is the most common reason why your fridge starts to freeze food.
Solution: Adjust the Temperature
If only the refrigerator section is freezing the food, you need to check the temperature before checking anything else.
Adjust the temperature by increasing it by 1-2 points and then see the difference. Please remember that patience is the key to self-diagnosis.
If it is fixed, great. If not, proceed to the next step.
Reason #2: Improper Food Storage
You may be surprised to know that improper food storage can lead to freezing in the fridge compartment. This happens due to two things. If you keep food items right next to the air vents, too much cold air can freeze those items. This can also lead to other items not getting enough share of cold air.
If your fridge doesn’t have enough items inside, things can get chilly and frosty. An empty fridge may lead to your items getting frozen because of excess cold air. A fully stocked fridge does a better job at absorbing cool air. However, you must not overload the machine as well.
Solution: Properly Store Items in your Refrigerator
Ensure you store items properly and don’t place them right in front of the vents unless you deliberately want them to chill quickly.
Secondly, ensure that your fridge is 80% full to avoid freezing or overloading. If you don’t have enough items to store, increase the temperature but keep it below 40F.
Reason #3: Damaged Door Seals
A damaged door gasket or damaged door seal is associated with a warm unit or water inside your refrigerator problems. However, it can also lead to the fridge getting excessively cold and freezing your food items.
This particularly happens when the gasket gets damaged and leaks the cold air from inside. Your machine believes that it needs more cooling to maintain a constant temperature. As a result, it produces and directs more cold air toward the refrigerator, and this causes the items to freeze.
Solution: Inspect the Door Seal
A simple inspection of the door seal can reveal what’s wrong with it. Some people recommend using silicone to repair the door seal; we suggest you change it if it is damaged.
Reason #4: Dirty Coils
Dirty condenser coils can be the reason behind your refrigerator not operating optimally. It can either make the unit go too warm or make it too cold. This happens when the coils get dirty and fail to perform the basic task; heat dissipation by the refrigerant. As a result, the refrigerator works harder and produces more cold air; the food in the refrigerator section freezes.
Solution: Clean the Condenser Coils
Cleaning the condenser coils is important for maintaining your machine in optimum working condition. If ignored, dirty condenser coils can create many problems for your machine, like clicking noises, not cooling properly, and storing items inside the refrigerator.
Follow the directions given below to clean the condenser coils.
- Unplug your machine and locate the condenser coils.
- The coils are usually located at the back of the machine for frost models and the bottom for no-frost models.
- Once located, move the fridge to access the backside.
- Use a vacuum cleaner to remove the dust and debris on the coils.
- You can also clean it with your hands, but you will have to clean a dirty kitchen floor later on.
Reason #5: Faulty Thermostat
The thermostat in your refrigerator is responsible for controlling the cooling process of your refrigerator. It sends a signal to the main control board to stop the compressor once the desired temperature is achieved.
If the thermostat fails and stops working, the compressor will not stop cooling, and the items in the refrigerator will get frozen.
Solution: Replace the Thermostat
The only solution to this problem is to replace the thermostat. You may not be able to do this independently if you are not an experienced refrigerator DIYer. The best way is to call a professional and get it inspected.
Reason #6: Main Control Board
It is possible that the main control board has gone bad and cannot stop the refrigerator’s cooling process. The result; is frozen food inside the fridge compartment.
Solution: Repair/Replace Main Control Board
The main control board controls all the functions inside your refrigerator. If the whole part or part goes bad, your fridge may need a professional inspection.
Reason #7: Damper Problems
A damper is an assembly installed in fridge/freezer units that control the flow of cold air from the freezer to the fridge section. If the damper starts to malfunction, it can disturb the flow of air in the unit and let excess air pass to the fridge. It will result in fridge items getting frozen.
Solution: Inspect the Damper
You will need to inspect the damper to ensure that it is working properly or not. The damper is located inside the air vents in the fridge section. Remove the vent cover if you can do it easily. If it is difficult to come off, call for a technician to take care of this task.
As you see that almost all the reasons behind your refrigerator freezing food can be fixed at home. However, if the problem persists, it is best to seek professional help as soon as possible because delaying can lead to some other serious issues.