Thermostat in Refrigerator: A Basic Guide

A thermostat is a device that controls the temperature of a system by turning it on or off. In a refrigerator, the thermostat regulates the temperature inside the fridge by signaling the compressor to start or stop. The compressor is the part that pumps refrigerant through the coils and cools the fridge.

The thermostat is usually located in the fresh food compartment or the freezer section, depending on the model. It consists of a knob or dial that allows you to set the desired temperature, a capillary tube that senses the temperature, and a switch that activates the compressor.

The capillary tube is filled with a liquid that expands or contracts depending on the temperature. When the temperature inside the fridge rises above the set point, the liquid expands and pushes the switch to turn on the compressor. When the temperature drops below the set point, the liquid contracts and releases the switch to turn off the compressor.

The thermostat is an important component of the refrigerator, as it ensures that the food is kept at a safe and optimal temperature. However, like any other part, it can wear out or malfunction over time. Some common signs of a faulty thermostat are:

  • The fridge is too cold or too warm, regardless of the setting.
  • The fridge runs constantly or not at all.
  • The fridge makes unusual noises or cycles on and off frequently.
  • The food spoils quickly or freezes unexpectedly.

If you notice any of these symptoms, you may need to replace the thermostat. Replacing a thermostat is not a difficult task, but it requires some basic tools and skills. You can follow these steps to replace the thermostat:

  1. Unplug the refrigerator from the power source and remove the items on the upper shelf.
  2. Remove the cover or panel that hides the thermostat. You may need to unscrew or unclip it.
  3. Disconnect the wire harness and the ground wire from the thermostat.
  4. Pull out the thermostat and remove the knob, the capillary tube, and the wires from the old thermostat.
  5. Install the new thermostat and carefully route the capillary tube in the housing and the styrofoam block.
  6. Reconnect the wires, the ground wire, and the knob to the new thermostat.
  7. Put the cover or panel back and secure it with screws or clips.
  8. Plug the refrigerator back in and set the thermostat to the desired temperature.
  9. Check the operation of the refrigerator and make adjustments if needed.

The following table summarizes the main features and functions of the thermostat in a refrigerator:

Feature Function
Knob or dial Allows you to set the desired temperature inside the fridge
Capillary tube Senses the temperature inside the fridge and expands or contracts accordingly
Switch Activates or deactivates the compressor based on the capillary tube’s pressure
Compressor Pumps refrigerant through the coils and cools the fridge

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