Refrigerator Defrost Problem

by Kiet Busby
(Corona, CA)


I have a GE Profile Model #PDS22SCRARSS fridge with a defrost problem.

I viewed your YouTube video on defrost problem and read your page on this problem. This is what I've checked so far and need assistance in what to check next.

I removed the defrost heater along with the thermodisc(fuse-m) from the freezer and put them in my garage to test. After testing these two items per your directions, I did one more test. I directly wired the defrost heater with the thermodisc to an extension cord, plugged the cord to an outlet for 10 seconds and the defrost heater started heating up.

This tells me there is nothing wrong with either of these items. Is this an accurate conclusion?

Question 1: I'm getting continuity from the thermodisc at zero degrees and at room temperature. When is it suppose to open or does it open?

Question 2: In your video instructions, you indicated to check the evaporator thermistor and you got 16.3 k ohms. Is this reading when the thermistor is at zero degrees or at room temp? Should this check be when the thermistor is at zero degrees or at room temp?

Thanks for any assistance.


Find your part:


Hi Kiet,

As for your first question the thermostat should read continuity at any temperature below 140 degrees.

The Thermistor reads 16.3K ohms at 32 degrees. This is why I suggest testing before the ice is melted. The thermistor will be cover with ice and should be at or close to 32 degrees. The thermistor is very common almost as common as the heater now. At one time I wasn’t seeing many thermistors bad at all but now they are going left and right.

I have a page just for testing thermistors How To Test A Thermistor On A GE Refrigerator

If the ice is already melted this page will help more. But basically it says that if you place a thermistor in a cup with ice and some water for five minutes it should be at or around 32 degrees which should bring the thermistor to 16.3K ohms +/-5%.

Thank you,

Comments for Refrigerator Defrost Problem

Click here to add your own comments

Defrost problem?
by: Chris

Hi. Great site! My icemaker is making too much ice and it's all sticking together. I have a GE side by side electronic refrigerator. There is no ice on the coils or anywhere else in the freezer. The temperature in the freezer seems fine. I haven't taken the temperature when it's defrosting, however. Could the the defrost heater be getting too hot, or staying on too long? How would I test for this? I don't even know how I would know when the fridge is in defrost mode. Also the ice in the icemaker bin has frost on it, and the bottom of the bin has frost on it. The dispenser door seems fine, so I don't think it's that, and the freezer door gasket seems fine, so I don't think it's that. Also, it doesn't look like the ice tray is overflowing. Wouldn't I see ice buildup of icicles around the ice tray if that were the case? Any ideas? Thanks so much!

Hi Chris,
by: Shawn/Admin

As for the icemaker making too much ice there is a fix for this. There is a flat arm on the side of the icemaker that "tells" the icemaker when the ice bin if full and it stops making ice. The stock arm is flat which sometimes can cut right through the ice; therefore the icemaker "thinks" the bin is still not full. They make a curbed arm that corrects this problem. This new arm is easy to install simply remove the one screw on the arm and when you put the new arm on make sure the spring is in place the same as it was before. I didn?t realize I didn?t write about the new-curbed arm on my GE icemaker repair page. I will be doing so very soon now that it has been brought to my attention. It is funny because I wrote about it on my FAQ refrigerator page but not the one it should be on. Sorry for that.

Here is a picture of the arm (click on the picture to purchase the arm).


As for the frost I need the model number and serial because some models simply had this problem and there is nothing to do short of replacing the refrigerator doors. Give the model number and serial number so I can tell you if you have one of the models or not.

by: Chris

Thanks for getting back to me. The biggest problem I'm having is the ice all sticking together. I can live with a little frost and a little overfilling, but when the ice all freezes together, it's pretty useless.

I think I already have the curbed arm you're describing. So I'm pretty sure that's not the issue.

My model is GSH22JFTA BB and the serial # is SL226750. Does that help?

Thanks again!

by: Shawn

That isn’t one of the models that had this problem.

Make sure the flap is closing completely. If there is just a little crack this can happen. You have pretty much checked all the things that normally cause this problem. If the fan was running too slow this could happen. If the defrost was staying on too long you could get this problem. I have never known for this to happen without you noticing a problem with the temperature. But if you were not right there when it was in defrost you may not know. You would know it was in defrost if you see a red glow from the bottom if the freezer but you will have no way of knowing when a defrost cycle will occur.

How quickly does the ice stick together and it is the ice hard frozen or a lot of snow like frost on the ice.

Often the icemaker will leak just one drop per cycle and this is enough to do what you are saying. Sometimes you will not see an ice icicle hanging from the icemaker. Turn the icemaker off for at least 30 seconds. Then turn it back on and press in on the feeler are three times. The icemaker should cycle and run water. Look to see if it is leaking.

by: Chris

I'm pretty sure the flap is closing all the way. I shone a flashlight down the chute and couldn't see any light coming through.

I also cycled the icemaker and couldn't see any water dripping.

I guess it usually takes 2-3 days for the ice to start sticking together after I've emptied the bin. The longer I let it go, the more fused together everything becomes. There's sometimes a little frost on the ice cubes, but mostly they're hard frozen.

If the defrost is staying on too long do I replace the defrost timer? Or defrost thermistor? What do I do if the fan is running too slow?

Thanks again!


by: Anonymous

The fan problem and the defrost problem would more than likely be caused by the main board. But to be honest I don't really think either one is the problem. We have looked or talked about everyting I know to check. I have only seen the fan speed cause this one time but there was a lot of snowy frost everywhere. I tell you what try the flap in the ice chute first because it is so cheap compared to the other things we talked about and that is what causes it most of the time other then the icemaker leaking.

by: Cindy

GE side by side freezer, bright red glow in bottom rear of freezer. I have never seen this before and now the freezer is defrosting. I know it comes on every so often to defrost coils but the food is actually defrosting!! HELP : (

Main Board
by: Shawn/admin

The defrost cycle shouldn’t run long enough to defrost the food and if it is the main board is bad. Please note that this answer is assuming you have the same model as the one previously mentioned on this page and if not you will need to give your model number so that I can confirm that you even have a main board.

Ice sticks together
by: Izzy

Hey I also have a similar problem and it's driving me crazy. My model GE electric fridge is GSL22JFTEBS. The ice in the ice bin solidifies and sticks together. I have no idea what to do. Does this mean the temperature is off and its melting? Or does it mean water is dripping and causing them to stick together?

Also, the water from the main dispenser (where you put water into your glass), seems to be pouring out slowly. Not sure if its connected or separate issues.

by: Shawn/admin

The freezer temperature rising above freezing then back down can cause well ice sticking together. This is an issue we see sometimes on these models with the main board. However, it is much more common for water to leak from the icemaker causing this issue.

This can be caused by ice partially blocking the water chute causing water to spray into the ice bin. If this is the case it could be caused by low water pressure, which can account for slow water at the dispenser. I would look for ice in the tube that feeds water to the icemaker as well as the little funnel on the icemaker itself. If there is any replace the water filter and see if that corrects both problems.

If not then we can assume the issues are separate problems. But we cannot rule out the icemaker leaking just yet. If clearing the ice doesn’t solve the problem (or you don’t find any ice) then your icemaker could be leaking a drop or two each fill cycle causing you issue. Watch the icemaker during a fill cycle and see if it drops water on the ice.

If all else fails you may want to monitor the temperature in the freezer to see if it is fluctuating greatly causing your problem and if so replace the main board.

Defrost Issues
by: Jim O

My GE freezer GSH25JSXBSS temperature fluctuates daily to where the items in the freezer that and freeze daily. I have replaced the defrost heater, all three thermistors, and the main board. The problem is still occurring. The temperature increases when the defrost heater comes on. It appears to come on either when not necessary or for too long causing the problem. I have tested the defrost thermostat and it is working fine for continuity. The fan seems to be working fine since it eventually cools back down. How else can I fix the problem?


by: Shawn/admin

For the most part you have replaced everything that could cause this. However in rare cases there is a piece of foam rubber directly behind the screws that hold the evaporator cover in place. (This foam isn’t present on most models) If yours has this foam rubber strip, remove it, because the thermistor can read the temperature of the moisture (ice) that is on the strip causing the defrost-cycle to stay on too long.

If this doesn’t work or the foam strip isn’t present…

How much temperature variance are you experiencing? Is it enough that the meats and/or the ice in the bin start to thaw or just ice-cream. During defrost it is common for the ice cream to soften.

Also make sure the door is sealing and the door switches are operational (both doors).

Ice in my GE side by side freezer-frig ice bin is thawing/freezing
by: David

I have the same problem with ice sticking together. I have a GE GSH25JFTA WW serial #ZL206407. To give some background, our first problem was that the water selector stopped working for weeks, then started working, stopped again, and then started. Now it works fine. Around a similar time the cubed ice selection stopped working and either choosing cubed or crushed ice gives crushed ice. We lived with this, assuming this was going to be an expensive repair. Then more recently we began having the problem of the entire ice bin becoming one frozen, interwoven piece of ice, whereupon we have remove it, break up the ice and toss it all. It continues to happen. The icemaker itself is not leaking. However, there are frozen 'drips' on the bottom of the icebin (not icemaker) and clearly water is dripping below the bin onto food and freezing. Food stays frozen for the most part and ice cream is frozen solid, indicating to me that the temperature is probably fine. It seems to me that the defroster cycle is staying on too long and ice in the ice bin is thawing and sticking together. None of the ice looks like it was dumped too early and cracked open releasing water. Nor are cubes sticking together when first dumped. Any help would be appreciated. I have no tools to keep track of temperature changes over time during a defrost cycle. thank you

Defrost issues
by: Berlin

I have a side by side GE BSS25jstass. Ice started fusing and damaged auger which i replaced and the evaporator froze up. unplug let melt then good frige for a day or two. changed the blown heater no more frozen evaporator. now evap fan motor went and i changed that now the freezer is freezing but evap fan comes on 20 mins after compressor and condenser kicks in. thenafter all is frozen the heater comes on and melts the ice and partially the meats. I changed the board already now i plan to change the defrost limiter. ANY Help you can offer.

Issues continue, defrosts, but water won't evaporate
by: Joyce Hus

So here I am reading all these issues with different models. Heavy sigh. I am a 70 year old woman, living alone and have had the same repairman out 3-4 times. Each time "It's fixed now!" Really? NOT! I pulled out frig and tried to test the items you listed in one of your videos. Not much success. At least I had an Ohm meter. When I asked the repairman if he used one on the frig any of the times he was here, he replied "Oh, I don't have one. I don't get into any computer components"!! WHAT? Is there a frig out there without computer parts? I called and spoke with the Office manager and indicated I was extremely unhappy with the service I received and his lack of experience. To which I was told "He's the best we have" Perhaps it's time they go back to the resumes. Even the owner was perplexed as to how to repair it. I have paid in excess of $300 for new motherboard, auger, etc. I kept the old motherboard just in case. Done venting.
Reason for my comments simply the freezer still has issues. I'm not satisfied with the test I did and not sure I did it correctly. I stuck a safety pin into the slot on the blue connection as it was too small a hole to get the connector wire from the Ohm meter into it. The reading I got was off the charts, so I'm guessing I did it wrong. Months ago I turned the water to freezer off in case it was leaking somewhere. Freezer defrosts and all the water just stays everywhere in freezer and refreezes, doesn't dissipate. I have been living with problem as I am not sure what to do next. All obvious things checked by myself and dumb repairman. Bottom line is, it could be so many things I think I'll just get an ice box, buy ice everyday and forget about the pile of steel looking pretty, but useless in my kitchen. Seriously though, it could be the heater, the dumahiggy, the whatchamacallit, the houchie or ? Model # PSS25SGMB BS Serial # LA 405951

by: shawn

Hi Joyce,

I would ask the repairman if he checked or replaced the evaporator themistor. It sounds like it is staying in defrost too long. Most of the time the board causes this but you had that replaced so I would say its the thermistor. I have seen the thermistor cause this issue once.

The evaporator themistor is the one on the very top of the evaporator near the defrost thermostat.

Click here to add your own comments

Return to Refrigerator Questions Archives . is a free service but it cost to keep it up and running. Donate to let this website help you next time!

Appliance parts online, right part, best price and fast shipping.