How to Inspect a Condenser Fan Motor on Your Refrigerator

Is your refrigerator running? Well, you better start wondering why you are hearing it so clearly in the next room. In general, a refrigerator running its cooling cycle should only be noticeable if you are standing near it or at the very least, in the same room. If your refrigerator is running loudly, or your hear any manner of grinding, clicking, or squealing noises – you have a problem.

While there can be a number of different causes for a refrigerator that runs loudly, one possible suspect is the condenser fan motor. This is responsible for circulating the produced cool air. If it has a problem, it can do so quite loudly before it breaks down. So if you have a refrigerator that is running loudly, here is how to inspect the fan motor.

  1. Start by unplugging the refrigerator and removing the rear access panel.
  2. With this panel removed, you will be able to spot the condenser fan motor. Now you will want to disconnect the wire harness and unscrew the mounting screws to remove it.
  3. Once outside of the refrigerator, you will want to inspect it for any obvious obstructions. Food particles, screws, or even dust build-up can all cause problems.
  4. Before moving onto other suspects, be sure to check the fan blades from any noticeable wear as well as the rubber mounting grommets. The fan should also spin without any noise. In some cases, light lubrication can be the solution. If anything is showing wear, you will want to consider replacing the afflicted part.
  5. Before reinstalling or installing a new condenser fan motor, you should use a vacuum or compressed air to remove any dust in the area. As the back of the refrigerator can get quite dusty, good cleaning is always a good idea since you are already back there.
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