Whirlpool No Frost freezer fails to maintain temperature

This is a bit off topic for what is normally a blog devoted to life with computers and the internet but I thought it might be useful to somebody.

We have a Whirlpool No Frost freezer which we bought a little over 1 year ago, so just out of warranty of course.  We have been pretty happy with it so far but a few days ago it began to warm up.  Normally it maintains the set temperature of -18°C quite well, but lately the temperature has started to slowly drift upwards, even with the Fast Freeze function on it wouldn’t go below -14°C and then -12°C.

Now this is obviously a pretty serious problem for a freezer, a freezer that doesn’t freeze is not a good thing.  So I rang our local refrigeration engineer. John Mazur in Moreton in Marsh has been very helpful in the past and proved to be very helpful this time too.  He was able to solve the problem over the phone.

It seems that there is a known problem with Whirlpool No Frost Freezers (or at least with some models).  Although they are supposedly frost free and so should not require defrosting, they do clog up over a period (in our case about 14 months).  The solution is simple, empty the freezer, leave the door open and then switch it off for a minimum of 24 hours.  During this period it will defrost a little so leave a towel or drip tray under the spout at the bottom of the door.

Whirlpool No Frost Freezer temperature display

Whirlpool No Frost Freezer temperature display

After about 30 hours I switched the freezer back on and it came back down to the required temperature in another couple of hours, result! Thanks John!

I hope that this information enables somebody else to save the call out charge for a refrigeration engineer too.  But it does raise the question, if you have to defrost your Whirlpool No Frost freezer every year is it really a No Frost freezer? There isn’t a lot of ice to get rid of but you still have to go through the defrosting process.  We paid a premium for a frost free freezer but now it seems we have to defrost it anyway,  I think Whirlpool need to do a little work on this product range.

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38 Responses to “Whirlpool No Frost freezer fails to maintain temperature”

  1. Brenda says:

    Hi,
    I found your comments interesting. I found them while trying to find information on exactly how no-frost systems work.I live in Spain and bought a Teka fridge/freezer three weeks ago. Almost immediately the freezer temperature would increase to about -12º daily, then return to -18º and on one occasion the fridge increased to 15º (almost room temperature!) The engineer is calling on Tuesday, and no doubt will tell me it is normal! The freezer isn’t so bad, as the temperature is still well below freezing, but what about the fridge and items which ought to be kept at 5º? I think I might give your engineer a call -I hope he won’t mind. It is dificult to find any kind of knowledgable professionals over here – of any nationality!
    Best regards,
    Brenda

  2. cotsweb says:

    Hi Brenda,
    I am no expert but it sounds like a faulty refrigerator to me, hopefully your engineer will agree and you will be able to get it fixed under warranty.
    Mark

  3. eric newbigin says:

    we purchased an american style Whirlpool fridge freezer four years ago, V expensive, stupidly I did not take up the offer of a “parts” warranty as I had Whirlpool appliances in the middle east (freezers/washing machines/fridges) and in 20 years found them totally reliable. This appliance failed after 18 months (just out of warranty) has now cost me over £350.00 on parts and labour, new “mother board” etc and the ice maker is still not working. I wrote a letter to the customer centre in August, no reply. It seems that they have lost their reputation for reliability prehaps as they now are not made in america for the european market (Italy??)

  4. Oleg says:

    THANK YOU FOR THIS TOPIC.
    MY freezer IS ALSO GAVE ME LAST NIGHT SOMETHINK TO THINK ABOUT (SAME SIMPTOMS AS YOURS), SO INFORMATION FROM THIS PAGE WAS useful TO ME.

    P.S. SORRY FOR MY ENGLISH – IM FROM EASTERN EUROPE, AND I DONT HAVE MACH possibility TO practice IT.

  5. katrien says:

    I have the same problem and even worse with a Siemens freezer no frost type gs36na30. I bought it november 2006. In july 2009 temperature increased to minus 6 degree. I had to remove all food and unplug the machine for a day with open door. A couple of weeks later Siemens came to change a part that makes the freezer gets unfroozen, because it was not sollid enough.
    Februari 2010 again temperatures increased to minus 6 degree. I had to much food in it to be able to put it in freezers of friends. After 3 days leaving the freezer closed, temperature was minus 18 degrees again. But we heard the freezer was ‘freezing’ all the time. So today 19march I unplugged the freezer and saw that the upper part where the non frost techniques are located are completely froozen. Even after 6 hours no water is yet in the unfreeze reservoir.
    I cannot unplug my freezer every 6 months, this is so much worse than unfreezing your frezer once a year (at a time chosen by me)

  6. Frankie says:

    Thank you so much. Came accross this while trying to find a reason on the internet as to why our Whirlpool had decided to stop freezing any lower than -14. Like yours, ours is also only 14 months old.
    I had already phoned Whirlpool and was quoted £80 for a call out alone & in addition would be any parts or extra labour.
    Found your blog and promptly started the process of defrosting. First thing that struck me was that there was a definate coating of ice on the upper compartments.. so much for frost free. The towel we placed down to soak up melt water was soaking by the following morning! Upshot is that our freezer is now working away again… Thankyou !!
    The thing that annoys me is that I assume the freezer has to be defrosted and empty for the engineers call. … therefore one is paying for his time etc etc and the problem has already solved itself… sneaky eh.

  7. Hello To All . . . . I Am An Experienced Engineer With Over 32 Years In The Trade (12 Years Marine Engineer Middle East) I Could Write A Detailed Topic About Frost Free Refrigerator Cabinets Etc,So Here Is A Small Simple Paragraph On How It Really Works,
    Normally The Problems On Most Frost Free Cabinets Will Be The Auto Defrost System,Or Ambient Air,
    1)Frost/Ice Has To Be Produced To Achieve : 1 Degree Celsius & Below
    2)If The Auto Defrost Is Not On Long Enough It Will Leave A Small Amount Of Frost/Ice, So Next Time The Auto Defrost Heater Comes On(Approx Every 6 Hours) The Same Happens ICE/FROST BUILD UP (Sometimes Just by Relocating The Thermistor Cures This Fault),
    3)Defrost Heater Not On Long Enough To Defrost System Quickly & Efficiently
    Regards :John mazur (Refrigeration) Moreton-In-Marsh

  8. cotsweb says:

    Thanks for your input John.
    Is there anything I as a customer can do to make the Auto-defrost work properly on a freezer that is susceptible to this problem?

    Mark

  9. Lee Ann says:

    I have a whirlpool that does this same thing. It always seems to happen at the most inconvenient times. UGH! I think I will just put it on the calendar to do the unplug and wait procedure every few months.

  10. Kevin says:

    FOUND YOUR BLOG WHILST BROWSING
    i HAVE A WHIRLPOOL UPRIGHT FROST FREE FREEZER THAT DOES THE SAME THING. I have since found the reason for the frosting. It seems to be caused by the frost free workings AT THE TOP OF THE FREEZER NOT DRAINING EFFICIENTLY THEREFORE AFTER APPROX 1 YR IT IS CLOGGED WITH ICE ANY THEREFORE DROPS TEMPERATURE REGULARLY. NO FULL SOLUTION HAS BEEN FOUND HOWEVER HAVE FOUND IF YOU WIND THE FRONT LEGS UP FULLY THEN SEEMS TO LAST 2YRS BEFORE REQUIRING DEFROSTING.

  11. Korana says:

    hello! I have a Whirlpool fridge arc 4178 and also have a problem with it. He is no frost freezer but was too icy. He signals any attempt equalization temperature but fails to run. He works as he wants, even after we change one of the electronic card. The problem lies elsewhere. Service man wants to take the test. That we do not like because I think he will make some chemistry.
    But before that I will try to turn it off for awhile to see whether or not he there to help as some of you. Thanks for the advice everyone. Korana from Croatia!

  12. Leon T says:

    I have same problem with my Whirlpool upright freezer. To think I specifically didn’t buy the AEG 2 years ago because of this exact problem being reported for it. The repair man (just out of warranty) took one look at the model name and said it’s a known bug, the cure is a new motherboard. all the new motherboard does is kick in the defrost cycle twice as often (evey four hours instead of 8). That’ll be the equivalent of about $200 here in SA.

    Here are my thoughts:

    1) Frost only builds up when you open the door and new “wet” air comes in. That air cools down and the relative humidity gets too high, and ice forms on the evaporator (same way that it rains when the air high up cools down). So if you try to open not too often/long it can help. Leaving it closed might even solve the problem if the freezer gets a chance to “catch up”. I didn’t really try this however, and it might not work because when you notice the problem it is so packed up that the normal defrost cycle is too short to do anything but melt & refreeze the bit of ice near the defrost heater.

    2) In my case the drains were not clogged, that was my first hope.

    3) My whirlpool does not know when you open the door. (My old Defy (local brand)) did know, and stopped the circulation fan when you open the door. That could help a bit to prevent icing up by not circulating too much “outside wet” air over the evaporators.
    This also implies that the freezer doesn’t know how much ice is packed up, because it has no idea of how much fresh air came in, and it obviously has no sensor to reliably tell it how much ice is frosted. Really dumb design – I think it only has at most a temp sensor to tell it the little bit of ice closest to the heater/sensor did melt, or at least a timer.
    That implies it’s also doing the defrosting cycle when no one opened the door in weeks, which is a waste of energy.
    So much for the “6th sense” technology.

    4) Faulty door seals can cause the problem by virtue of allowing continuous outside air to enter.

    5) I was playing with the idea of opening up to get to the motherboard. If you can figure out the wiring you could connect your own switch that will stop the compressor & fan, and kick in the defrost heating element. That way you could “manually assisted auto” defrost the freezer when it’s clogged up by flipping this switch for an hour or so – without having to remove the food and store elsewhere. The heater will make it go faster than 24 hours.

    It seems to me that many different brands of “Frost free” freezer share this problem, and a manual override defrost button for such emergencies will make it bare-able. Else they really need to make the defrost logic a bit cleverer with more sensors telling the motherboard what’s going on with the ice situation.

    Regards
    Leon

  13. andrew murphy says:

    hi, I am having problems with a whirlpool american fridge / freezer. the freezer side keeps alarming and reverts to flashing (–) cursors. I have just noticed that the front of the dividing wall betwen fridge / freezer is very hot to the touch. ANY HELP PLEASE. SATURDAY EVENING AND NOWHERE TO CONTACT. THANK YOU. ANDREW MURPHY

  14. Francine says:

    My Whirlpool fridge/freezer is about 25 years old. For many years I haven’t had to move the settings. Now suddenly the freezer isn’t freezing.
    So I have a ridiculous questions: The settings are A, B, and C, and are on the dial in that order. It’s hard to determine which is coldest. The indicator says: cooler -> , but I don’t know if that means move the dial in that direction, which would give me A, or the rightmost is the coldest, which would be C.

    Thanks.

  15. cotsweb says:

    It sounds to me like you should be turning in the direction of the arrow, that is towards A.

    I suppose after 25 years there isn’t much chance that you have the manual, but there is a slim chance that it will be on the Whirlpool website.

  16. Meadesusan6 says:

    Thank you for posting this my freezer did the very same thing yesterday and have done what you said so hopefully it will work. Thank you.

  17. Karen742010 says:

    hi, i am wondering if anyone can help please, i have a whirlpool, frost free, fridge freezer,it is a 60cm wide one,and it worked fine up until a week ago, everything is working as it should but the freezer,temp on the front gauge setting will not let me set a temperature it skips, to the symbols,causing the freezer to defrost,well i think this is why, what could be the problem, could it be the circuit board behing the front gauge,were it states,a button for menu,a button for ok,and then displays symbols and temp on a front screen, if it is the circuit behind this does anyone know how much they are please as i cannot find any many thanks

  18. Wilfredhunter5 says:

    I bought a Whirlpool no frost Freezer about 4 years ago and a matching tall upright fridge. The freezer started making rattling noises just out of makers warranty which was the circulating fan catching on the build up of ice.I had taken out extended 8 year cover through Iceland and they sent someone from Comet who looked at it and said ”I have not seen one of these before” and told me to switch off and defrost it for 24 hours. not satisfied with this result I rang Whirlpool and they sent out a technician who changed the drain tube and I still had to defrost the no frost freezer.I had to claim for the food I lost about £80 or more and Whirlpool had the cheek to send me a hefty callout bill which I refused to pay as their product was not frost free as sold. I am again having trouble with the freezer, about the 4th time since I bought it.I would never ever recomend this Whirlpool freezer to anyone

  19. Rob says:

    Or could the problem with the Whirlpool AEG8271NF freezer be due to failure of a non-return valve which slips over the end of the defrost tube located above the compressor at the rear of the freezer?The valve takes the form of a rubber cap with a flap which I assume is supposed to open with the weight of defrost water and then close to prevent entry of moist air.My valve seemed to be permanently open so I inserted a piece of plastic between the flap and the tube – a slot was cut in the plastic to pass the flap through and enable the plastic to be held in place because it passed behind the rubber post to which the flap attached. The plastic was cut from a replacement diaphragm for a toilet syphon unit.
    My freezer failed after 2 years when I was told I needed to defrost twice a year. I did two complete defrost cycles giving me 10 months operation each time but then decided this was not what I wanted to do. I had a closer look at the freezer with the following results:
    -You can get the freezer to go through a defrost cycle by switching off for a minute and then back on. Start up cycle includes defrost but this will not defrost the fan which is the real problem.
    -Recently I have only been defrosting the top of the freezer (fan and defrost water exit) using a hair dryer(bad idea I know) to see what happened. Initially I only got 3-4 weeks of operation before failure.
    -I found that after this partial defrost an ice plug formed in the defrost water exit tube within 3-4 days and this prevented defrost water leaving the freezer. This probably accounted for the large amount of ice I had forming in the freezer during periods after the 24 hour complete defrost.
    -I fitted a small heater (0.5Watts) in the defrost tube and this prevented formation of the ice plug but I still found the fan iced up after 2-3 weeks.
    -I then spotted what I believe to be the problem with what I believe to be the non-return valve at the end of the defrost tube – having carried out the above fix the freezer has been working for 11 weeks without the formation of ice in the freezer (apart from the time we accidently didn’t close the door properly).
    I cannot see why the freezer failed originally as it had been working for 2 years so I believe there has to be a real failure not just a need to defrost the freezer regularly. Failure of this valve at least makes some sense as damp air would enter the defrost tube, water would then condense and freeze where the damp air meets the cold freezer air forming the ice plug which prevents any further defrost water leaving the freezer – the defrost element ends part way down the defrost tube in the back of the freezer. As the circulation fan is located at the back of the defrost unit it is then liable to icing from the water unable to escape the freezer. Must admit though I am still running my small heater in the defrost tube but will switch it off in a couple of months if all continues to go well.

  20. Imcg says:

    Im having the same problem. Did you find a dsolution?
    Irene

  21. barbara says:

    HI my problem with frost free whirlpool fridgefreezer is the fridge has stopped working. lights on but no cool air. this happened about 6 months ago and a kindly engineer advised (over the phone) to defrost as mentioned here previously. but now 6 months on here we are again. food ruined. its only 5 years old. would never buy whirlpool again, terrible customer service, want an arm and a leg to come and look. any advice would be welcome otherwise its going to the skip!

  22. Esmaeil says:

    Hi there, my three years old Whirlpool mini freezer (type CV127W) has stopped working last night. I found it this morning but could not find the reason. the only thing that I think is, last night we had some appliances with high energy demand working at the same time, such as freezer, vacuum cleaner and other normal appliances. may be the voltage was not in acceptable range; I don’t know. I live in the Netherlands and I believe the energy supply and electric system at home is well designed. I checked apartment fuses and connection plugs they are all connected. Can any body suggest what can be the problem. Thanks in advance. Esmaeil

  23. Chut velasquez says:

    I have a 6 yrs old Whirlpool refrigerator slim with freezer and body two doors no frost. The temperature automatically had reduced its coldness capacity. What should i do? Is defrosting 24 hrs. may help? Thank you

  24. Dave R. says:

    I have a Whirlpool, upright, frost free (model: EV200NXGW00 D0) built in 1997. About 6 months ago the temp started to climb and there was a thick layer of frost on the outside of the evaporator cover (as well as the coils) when I took the cover off. I removed all the ice and started it back up; but, it never fully dropped the temp well enough below freezing to freeze the items on the top two-three shelves. The only area that still remained just barely below freezing, was at the bottom. I opened it back up today and removed the ice from the evaporator coils and cover again. This freezer has done very well considering it is over 15 years old; but, I’m not so sure the newer models would even come close to working without a problem for that long!

  25. Kathleen Greville says:

    Hi I have a Whirlpool American Fridge Freezer ARZ740/B the freezer is working fine, but the fridge is freezing all the contents even milk & eggs! I paid an engineer £250 to replace the compressor when the freezer stopped working, but now the whole thing is acting like one giant freezer.The engineer told me by phone(?)it is definitely nothing to do with the new compressor and it might be the Thermostat can anybody advise.I am reluctant to spend more money on it and am considering replacing it.Many thanks
    Kathleen

  26. gwen says:

    Whirpool side by side. Noted freezer side leaking. All frozen food drenched. Ice maker not making ice. Water dispnser in working. EMpited ice bin and leaking stopped. Like it defrosted itself; however, it is NOT keeping frozen stuf frozen (ice cream became soup). Ideas?

  27. ann b. says:

    ann b Thank you for tips about defrosting our ‘no frost’ freezer. Disappointed that this has to be done regularly which defeats the object of purchasing ‘no frost’! However, very grateful that we have solved the problem without the cost of calling out an engineer. Thank you for sharing this information. Ann B.

  28. lala abdallah says:

    Hello everybody, this problem is the defrost system Disabled,it might be damaged resistor or it might be the problem in the electronic card (timer of the defrosting) or there is some obstacle makes pane not opened to feed the refrigerator with cool ,its all technical Hypothesis it maybe be cause this problem

  29. d campbell says:

    Hello, i have a Whirlpool upright frost free freezer,which does not defrost. I unplugged it for 24 hours,plugged it back in and only the bottom of the freezer would freeze,I completely emptied the freezer no change only the bottom shelves freeze ,any suggestions, before I start taking off the panels??

    thanks d

  30. cotsweb says:

    I’m afraid I have no idea but if anyone out there has any ideas feel free to comment.

    I am a website designer not a refrigeration engineer, I just posted the original article because I thought it might be useful to somebody. I am happy for this page to be used as a resource but I don’t really know anything about refrigerators or freezers.

  31. David says:

    We have a Whirlpool freezer AFG8255NF about 6 years old and having problems of icing up and rising temperature. I just stumbled across this blog which is exactly what I was looking for.
    The moisture outlet section at the top had so much ice that it had forced the section so much that the top compartment flap would not close fully and was in danger of breaking. After defrosting for over 24 hours it still felt cold with the ice inside. After warming with a hair dryer for a long time it finally melted and drained away. The non return valve is a rubber cap over the end with a slit in the end for drainage that seems to work. I have now positioned it so it is above the future water level so hope this will be right. Many thanks to Rob’s posting which answered a lot of questions. Will certainly refer to this blog as long as we own this freezer.

  32. Julie says:

    I have read a blog about the temperature display. Both fridge and freezer displays are flashing with an annoying clicking sound. It’s an American style fridge/freezer and I’m sure this problem is affecting the fridge more than the freezer. Can anyone give any advice on how to put this right. We had insurance but had to cancel it because we could no longer afford it. Any comments would be very welcome
    Thank you for reading.

  33. John says:

    Hi Julie it is the circuit board behind the display that is at fault if both sides are flashing if only the freezer is flashing it’s the pcb on the rear

  34. Charles Lindstrom says:

    I live in Thailand where service is kind of spotty and service people (no matter what kind) usually try to get away with just replacing an expensive part, whether needed or not.
    My Whirlpool fridge freezer gets too warm during defrost cycle, {today I saw water dripping from the inside top of the freezer) and ice cream often gets mushy and refreezes. No apparent controls except warmer-colder knob in freezer. Am afraid of some of the meats and other items in the freezer so will probably be throwing a lot food out.
    A friend had the same problem, they replaced an expensive box however nothing changed. After repeated calls to service and being told by the tech there was no problem, he gave up and bought another brand fridge.

  35. Nellie says:

    I have a Whirlpool upright frost freezer for 2 years,it was of for a month and when swithed on it has been running for 24 hours, freezing but no drop on tempreture gauge and not swithing of. The alarm stay on aswell the the powerplug light. Can someone please help, thank you

  36. jessica says:

    I have an ongoing issues with my whirlpool american fridge freezer for a couple of months now. Whirlpool calls are now been handled by a major insurance company here in the uk who have sent out three different engineers who were totally useless in getting it fixed. They told me the usual engineer get out clause that it had a gas leak this is why it was not working. Funny how it freezes every thing only to stop doing so every so often. Finally manage to get appliance fixed by sourcing another service company http://www.agsrefrigeration.co.uk who replaced faulty circuit board. http://www.agsrefrigeration.co.uk/

  37. jan says:

    hi I have a whirpool upright freezer and the temperature keeps dropping then going up again I have just bought it from someone who has moved house and do not have a booklet to explain how to use it. It is not frozen up as it has not been used for a month but the dial at the front keeps flashing red even when I leave the fast freeze on. It goes up to minus 16 then drops down to minus 8 if I open the door and the red light comes on. Has anyone any ideas on what the problem may be.

  38. jan says:

    HI I have now managed to get hold of the information booklet re my whirpool upright freezer and it gives me no indication as to why my temperature keeps dropping on my freezer, I dont know if anyone else has had this problem. It is not frozen up as it has been stood for a month without being switched on as anyone any ideas or had a similar situaton. Jan

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