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JamesI, Handyman
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 2084
Experience:  I have repaired and maintained numerous items over the years, from fridges to freezers, radios to TV's.
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I have an RLFM171 fridge. Just lately it has started leaking

Customer Question

I have an RLFM171 fridge. Just lately it has started leaking water onto the floor. Water from the inside of the fridge drains OK into the black plastic container at the back. As I understand it, the heat from the compressor is supposed to evaporate the water however it doesn't seem to be working properly - the water level just keeps on rising until it fills up and overflows onto the floor. The fridge seems to be working fine so I assume the compressor is also working fine. In which case why is the water not evaporating, and what can I do to fix it?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Appliance
Expert:  JamesI replied 1 year ago.

There may be a blockage stopping the water going from collection tray into the evaporating heat sink, the tray may have a crack in it, or there may be to much water being generated for the compressor to evaporate.

With the appliance switched off, I would use a cloth to clean the tray dry and check if any of the pipes to\from are not blocked, and use a wire rod to clear any holes which have any debris in them.

There is very little else you can do, other than try and reduce the amount of condensation generated by the appliance, are you sure all the door seals are not broken, and making a good seal around the door?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The fridge is only 2 years old so seals are absolutely fine. It is as you say, the evaporator cannot keep up with the water coming in. Seems like a design fault to me but on the other hand it did work ok when it was new. Any idea what might have changed?
Expert:  JamesI replied 1 year ago.

Does the evaporating tray look like its making contact with the compressor heat sink?

I think the issue is most likely due to a increase in condensation rather than a reduction in evaporation, if you clear out the water, see if it fills back up, as maybe clearing it out will let it keep on top of demand.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
There was a big dollop of white sealant on top of the compressor which prevented the condensate container seating in contact with it. I removed the sealant and drained the container yesterday in the hope that would solve the problem but it had started to fill up again when I checked this morning.
Expert:  JamesI replied 1 year ago.

What do you have in place to ensure the condensing plate is making contact with the compressor?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
James, I am currently away from home for a few days. I'll send you a picture when I get back.
Expert:  JamesI replied 1 year ago.

Ok ill await to hear back from you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
James, the enclosed photos show the layout - there is no condensing plate as such. I have re-checked the seals and I can't see anything wrong however the fridge always seems to be heavy with condensation. So I am more inclined to think it is generating excessive condensation for some reason rather than a fault with the evaporator - as you can see, there is very little to go wrong with it.
Expert:  JamesI replied 1 year ago.

Considering the fridge seals are fine, it has to be a problem with a insulating panel failing or (more likely) the temperature control in the fridge.

I think you will find the temperature is fluctuating and this is causing the condensation, this may be the thermostat which is starting to fail so not maintaining a steady temp. The thermostat isnt the easiest to replace in this model, as the cables run right back to the control panel, I would suggest you get an engineer out, who can also check the control board and the coolant system.

If you would like me to recommend somone please advise of your postcode.