Why Your Refrigerator Keeps Freezing Everything

Frozen food in you your freezer? Great! Frozen food in the fresh food compartment of your refrigerator? Not so great. If your refrigerator compartment is freezing food, it is not always an indicator that something is broken. In fact, a few adjustments may solve the problem. Yet, there are a few real problems that can cause this symptom as well. So if your refrigerator is freezing food, this is what you want to check.

Incorrect Thermostat Setting

The first thing you should always check, and it seems like something so obvious, is the thermostat control. Sometimes this gets accidentally bumped to a wildly too cold setting for your refrigerator. Typically this results in items close to the vent freezing, but it can get cold enough that items further in can start freezing too.

Dirty Condenser Coils

The condenser coils on the exterior of your refrigerator – either on the back or the bottom – serve to release heat from the appliance. However, if they are prone to becoming covered with dust. When this happens, the coils need to work harder to disperse the heat, making the inside of the refrigerator colder. If it gets bad enough, it can result in freezing as well as a high energy bill.

Old Gasket

The gasket is the rubber lining on your refrigerator. Over time, this can become damaged or less pliable with age. This allows the cold air to seep out. In order to keep the correct set temperature, the refrigerator keeps running. This can cause items closer to the vent to freeze.

Faulty Thermostat

If all the above have checked out, then it could be that your thermostat is actually not sensing the correct temperature. This could result in it failing to turn off at the correct times. You can test it for continuity with a multimeter to determine if it is faulty.

Stuck Damper

Your refrigerator doesn’t actually produce cold air for the fresh food department. It produces cold air for the freezer. A damper then opens and closes allowing that cold air into your fresh food compartment. Obviously, if the damper doesn’t close, the fresh food department will become a freezer section as well.


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