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Dales-Electronic, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 1483
Experience:  I am a Home Appliance / Refrigeration Technician of 25yrs+ with my own business and for multi-brand national companies.
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We have a hotpoint fridge and freezer combined Model number

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We have a hotpoint fridge and freezer combined Model number FF200E. It is approx 7 years old and until August was working fine. The freezer part works fine but the fridge is not working at all. The temperature is the same as the surrounding temp outside of the fridge and it does not change no matter whether it is set for holiday mode or high boost.
I have looked everywhere in and around the fridge and there are no obvious signs of how the compressor works the fridge. I assume the compressor on the freezer is the only one and it is working just fine. Can you help? Gavin
Dales-Electronic :

Hello My name is Ian ~ I am not on the site constantly so please be patient whilst waiting for responses to you queries

Dales-Electronic :

OK I need you to do a couple of things for me firstly can you go around the back and tell me if the compressor is hot to the touch and what refrigerant is it using ~ it will be on a label on the compressor and either be R134a or R600a then come back to me please

JACUSTOMER-uqsfp4rp- :

The compressor is warm to the touch ie you can keep your hand on it comfortably. The refrigerant is R600a.

Dales-Electronic :

OK this is abit of a pain but there were massive problems with this model to do with the defrost of ice and a number of modifications were carried out during its life span. I need you to remove all the stuff in the freezer and tell me if the fan is running and if you have a build up of ice around and behind the back panel

JACUSTOMER-uqsfp4rp- :

We have had a problem for the last year or so with a build up of ice under the bottom drawer. Periodically my wife has cleared the ice out otherwise the bottom drawer could eventually not be opened. There has never been ice on the back panel but definitly under the bottom drawer. There is no fan running.

JACUSTOMER-uqsfp4rp- :

sorry the fan is running now.

Dales-Electronic :

OK the way it works is this so that you can understand the next bit, the rear panel is removable and behind this you will see a finned radiator assembly called the evaporator, this is the thing that cools everything, usually this gets totally frozen up with ice and stops the air flowing around it. Have you got a wallpaper stripper at home?

JACUSTOMER-uqsfp4rp- :

OK taken the back panel off and you are right there is a lot of ice! Should we start removing it with scraper or can we leave it to thaw out? Is there anything we should do help it defrost in future without it freezingup, ie. is there any adjustmant that can be made on the electrics, if so where?

Dales-Electronic :

OK excellent, the query about the steamer is that if you take the head off you can use the steam to clear the ice without damaging the plastic ~ do not use a scraper or hair dryer !! Either let it defrost naturally or invest in a wallpaper stripper. Now once you get the evaporator cleared of ice look for two vents that go up into the fridge one is the cold air feed the other the warm air return, make sure that these are also free off ice. The was that it works is that when the fridge needs cooling it switches on the fan which blows air up thro one vent into the fridge and the pressure causes the warm air to be pushed back down the other vent where it is cooled in the freezer and circulates again ~~ so get the ice sorted out, the vent tubes clear and you should be good to go ~ hope that helps, if so kindly rate my service, you can continue to ask questions once rated at no extra cost ~ best of luck ~ Ian

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Many thanks for your excellent service and explanation.

We live in an island off the north west coast of Scotland where it is often difficult to get people to repair things, especially when service manuals lack much help in explaining what is wrong and how to take things apart.

I did figure that it was a problem with the circulation as I knew the freezer would have to deliver the cold air to the fridge as there was only one compressor. But thinking it did its own defrosting I did not realise it was getting iced up behind the panel.


Glad You managed to sort it ~ take care

Gavin, Could you rate my service on the system to allow me to shut the job down. Many thanks ~ Ian