It can be a disaster when your freezer won't keep your food frozen. You may have a lot of money tied up in freezer food, especially if you have a chest freezer that can store a lot of meat. Quick repairs are vital for a freezer, so the first step is to determine what's wrong. There are some things you can check yourself, but if you don't find the problem and fix it quickly, call for an appliance service technician to make a house call. Here are some possible reasons your freezer is running but not keeping your food as cold as it should.
The Freezer Is Packed Too Full
If your freezer is crammed wall to wall with food, then that could be the problem. Air has to circulate freely throughout the freezer to properly chill your food. Food also has to be far enough away from the fan that air can blow out and reach all parts of the freezer. If your freezer is packed full, try removing some food or rearranging the packages, so there is space around the fan and room for air to flow between the food.
The Freezer Seal Is Broken
Your freezer needs a tight seal to keep freezing temperatures inside. The seal around the freezer door can wear out and allow cold air to leak out of the freezer compartment. When this happens, the freezer won't be able to keep your food frozen even if it runs all the time. You can test the seal by closing the door shut on a piece of paper. If you can slide the paper out of the door, that's a sign the seal isn't tight. When the seal is as tight as it should be, you'll need to tug hard to get the paper out.
A repair technician can repair a worn seal so that your food stays cold and frozen. Also, check that a food carton isn't breaking the seal by holding the door slightly ajar. Keep all the food pushed back far enough that it doesn't interfere with the door closing.
The Coils Are Dirty Or Frosty
You can't always see the coils on a freezer, especially the chest models. Some refrigerator freezers have exposed coils on the back, and you'll need to clean them occasionally to keep them free of dust and grime. If the coils look dirty or if they're covered with frost, clean them off and see if your freezer starts working. If that doesn't make any difference, a technician will check the internal parts to determine what has malfunctioned to cause ice to develop.
Internal Parts Are Malfunctioning
There are several things that can go wrong with a freezer and it will probably take a trained technician to diagnose the problem and make repairs. Some things that might go wrong are parts that operate the compressor, fan, or thermostat. The technician may test various circuits with a meter to determine which system is in trouble. Fortunately, freezer repairs can often be done on the spot. However, you may want to transfer your food to the refrigerator or a cooler so that the technician can access the freezer without worrying about leaving the door open and ruining your food.
For more information, contact your local home appliance repair service.