cleaning coils

by James

i have a ge side by side GSS201EPC WW
THe coils are not visble from the back or under the unit. How do i get to them? THere is a small panel on the bottom rear that when removed exposes the compressor, i think. It was full of dust, and i vacuumed it out the best i could. The whole thing is not cooling properly. please advise on how to get to the coils.

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Hi James,

On this model refrigerator you aren’t supposed to have to clean the coils. That is not to say the coil will not get dirty just that GE says that when the coils get dirty it will not cause it to stop cooling like it would on the older models. In any case when you take the back cover off the refrigerator the coils are to the right. They are round like a barrel or cylinder.

The problem you are having is most likely caused by something else such as fan motors, defrost, compressor, or main board.

The most common is the defrost problem, look in the back of the freezer to see if the back wall is covered with ice and if it is remove the back wall. If when you remove the back wall the freezer coils are wrapped up with ice you have a defrost problem. A bad heater or thermistor typically causes this.

These pages will help GE Refrigerator Not Cooling

Use this page if the compressor isn’t running GE Refrigerator Not Running

Thank you,

Comments for cleaning coils

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by: James

Thanks Shawn, Not exactly what i wanted to hear, but thanks for the info anyway.

by: Shawn

Just in case it helps I just posted a picture on the page I left you a link for earlier that shows what the freezer coils will look like if there is a defrost problem.

Thanks for your help
by: james

The coils were frozen over, just like in the pic you added. I defrosted them, and just plugged back in. You stated that in could be the heater or the thermistor. What is in volved in changing the thermistor things? I located 2 of them. The one i could see was barely rounded on the white end. I did not see what type of connection was at the other end of the wire. Is this something that is fairly easy to do or would it be better to hire someone to do it. If i hired someone approximately, how much would it cost. To replace the fridge it will cost $700-800. Also, if i get it fixed, what's the likelyhood it will last. It was in the housae when i moved in 2.5 yrs. ago


by: Shawn

The thermistors are easy to change it is just two wires on each one. Wires nuts are easiest but they are not quite as good as bell connectors. The only thing is you have to have a tool to crimp the bell connectors and if you have the tool go ahead and use the bell connectors. If you don?t have the tool just use wire nuts. Whichever one you chose fill the connector with silicone to seal it off so that moisture will not get to the connection. Also when you cut the old thermistor off, be sure to leave enough wire to install the new one in fact cut the wire right behind the old thermistor.

While the thermistors could have caused the problem the heater is more likely. If you have a meter you can test ohms across the heater and if not you could just take the chance and replace them because 90% of the time it is going to be the heaters. The heater is very easy to install but it is going to be different from your old one. The old one was a single heater and the new one is going to be a double heater. On the new on both wires connect on the right side whereas the old one had one wire on each end. What you have to do is reroute the wire that is on the left side to the right. On some models the wire isn?t long enough to reach so you have to install a wire extension on the wire (the extension comes with the heater). On most models this isn?t a problem because the wire reaches around just fine. There are directions with the heater, be sure to read them.

Replacing the heater and the thermistors isn?t a hard job and will be easy for people that make repairs around the house but if you don?t feel comfortable repairing this yourself hiring someone may be the best route. Typically this repair will run $100 to $200 (more than likely around $150) depending on labor charge (labor charge varies a lot from town to town) in your area and about $60 if you do it yourself.

As for the likelihood that it will last, it is like anything it may and it may not. If I were you I would fix it because there is a good chance it will last.

Thanks again
by: James

Thanks again Shawn. You helped me save about $700.
THe heater element was very easy to change and cost $43 at a local Appliance store. it took me about 10 minutes to change it.

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