Maintaining Your Heating and Air Conditioning Units
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Maintaining Your Heating and Air Conditioning Units

Hello. My name is Max. My wife and I have five children who all live at with us in our large two-story house. My wife and two of our kids suffer from severe allergies which means keeping our home as dust-free as possible. I have learned that it’s crucial to keep our heating and air conditioning units properly maintained at all times. We have a fantastic HVAC company that comes out two times a year to perform routine maintenance on our system. They have taught me what I can do on a monthly basis in order to not only help with my family’s health but also keep our system running efficiently. I would like to share some of the tips I’ve been given. I hope you find this to be useful!

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Maintaining Your Heating and Air Conditioning Units

Frozen Ice Cream, Moldy Cheese? How To Address Defrost System Problems

Kristin Pierce

A common situation with refrigerators is that your refrigerator feels warm, but the freezer continues to keep items frozen as normal. The underlying problem is usually a problem in one of several components in the defrost system.

Check The Back Panel

After turning the unit off, you will need to check behind the back freezer panel. Every model is different, but you may need a ratcheting screwdriver to loosen and remove the screws that hold the panel in place. Once you remove the screws, the panel may be stuck if there is ice buildup holding it in place. You can use a hairdryer to melt the ice enough to remove the panel, but you must do this carefully. There are typically wires attached to the panel, so moving the panel too much may break these wires. If there is significant ice buildup, this is an indication something is not working correctly with your defrost system. You can use the hairdryer to melt the ice. Once you are finished, replace the panel and turn the system on. It may take a couple of hours before you can determine if defrosting the system helped.

Use The Forced Defrost Mode

If defrosting your freezer improved the problem, this will only be a temporary fix, since ice will eventually build up behind the panel again. When the ice collects again, an easier way to temporarily defrost the system might be using the forced defrost mode. Entering this mode usually involves pressing the button inside the refrigerator that is responsible for turning the light on and off in rapid succession until the system beeps. You may need to refer to the tech sheet or instruction manual for your specific model to determine how to activate the forced defrost mode. If your forced defrost mode works, the ice behind the panel will melt. You may be able to hear this without opening the panel, because chunks of ice will start falling off. If you have not heard any ice falling off after 30 minutes, you may want to check behind the panel to check whether the forced defrost mode is helping.

Call A Professional

Regardless of the outcome during your testing, you will need to call a professional like A-Thompson Refrigeration Air Conditioning & Heating Service Inc for a long-term solution to your defrost system issues. In the meantime, you can either use the forced defrost mode or hairdryer method to keep your food in the refrigerator cool until the repairs can be done. Typically, if the forced defrost mode worked, the problem is with the thermistor. This component is much like a thermostat, which detects the temperature and tells your system when to turn on/off and when to defrost. When the forced defrost mode does not work, the problem can be any of the other components, such as a broken control panel or heater. Due to the complex nature of testing these parts to find the exact problem, it is not a task you want to take on yourself.

When the defrost system fails, there are some strategies that will help you defrost your system and keep your food from spoiling until the refrigerator can be fixed.


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