Freezer Coil Frost Build Up

by Dona Orsini
(Lacey Township, NJ USA)

I have a Frigidaire Gallery sise-by-side Model FRS26ZGEW1. Problem started when we noticed refrigerator was not cold. Then we noticed the build up of frost on the coils. (Original Frigidaire parts are very hard to find.) We managed to get an original used heater thermostat and have changed the timer. Still having frost build - has to be defrost with hair dryer every few days. Have read about checking continuity on thermostat and heater coil - but what is a good reading? What range should it be on and should the meter be on AC or DC. (Never used it before). Also, if it is the heater coil how difficult is it to replace. Can anyone send detailed instructions - step by step? Please help this has been going on for months now and we can't afford a service call.

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Hi Dona,

Replacement parts in FRIGIDAIRE FRS26ZGEW1 Frg(v3) / Side By Side Refrigerator

Typically if the heater is open (the meter doesn’t change) it is bad and if the meter does anything it is good. This is not 100% correct because every once in a while a bad heater will still read ohms but typically this ohm reading will be very high usually so high only good meters will read it. Most of the time a heater will read anywhere from 10-50 ohms. So if you put your meter on the 100-ohm scale or R X1 or Rx10 and you get any reading at all the heater is good. The thermostat (when it is cold) should read very close to 0 ohms, on a digital meter you will see it around .002 or maybe .005 and on an analog meter it will read 0.

You don’t set the meter on AC or DC it should be set on ohms on some meters there will be a symbol that looks like a horseshoe that stands for ohms.

Also note that when checking ohms always unplug the refrigerator and unplug the wires off the device you are checking or you will get a false reading.

Before the end of this year I want to have a video on this website that shows how to use an ohmmeter. I know this will not help you this time but maybe by the next problem you have it will be up.

With all of this being said you have replace all the parts that control the defrost cycle but I did notice you said they were used parts so check them with the ohmmeter. If the defrost thermostat and the heater check ok then you either have a bad timer or you have an air leak. Check the door gaskets and the flap for the ice to see if they are sealing properly. In extreme cases both can cause your problem. What I mean by extreme would be if the air leak is big or the humidity inside your house is high.

Thank you,

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