How to Fix Refrigerator Tripping Breaker

Is your refrigerator constantly tripping the breaker? Fridge-breaking is a common and serious problem. You may think it is a sign of a faulty appliance and looking for a new one. However, the problem can be fixed without having to buy a new fridge.

The first step is to locate where the breaker is located. This can be done by looking in the breaker box or following wiring from the back of the fridge. Some breakers will have a red switch at the top that indicates that it is tripped.

Once you have located the breaker, try resetting the breaker by flipping it off and then back on. If the breaker breaks out again, then there may be a more serious issue with your fridge. If this happens, you’ll want to disconnect it from power and have it serviced.

However, before you go that route, there are some preventative measures you can take to fix the problem. One of the most common causes of fridge-breaking is a clogged or dirty condenser. Over time, condenser coils can collect dust and dirt, making them less effective.

To fix this issue, you’ll need to clean the coils. To do this, turn off the power to the fridge and use a vacuum to remove any visible dirt and debris. Also, you’ll want to check for any clogged vents or obstructions that are preventing proper airflow to the coils.

Another cause of fridge-breaking can be an old or worn out ice maker. If your fridge is old, check to see if the ice maker is still in good condition. If it isn’t, you might want to replace it. This can be done by unplugging the ice maker, disconnecting the wire harness, and removing the screws that hold it in place.

Finally, you’ll want to make sure your fridge isn’t overloaded with food. If it is, it may be putting too much strain on the breaker and can cause it to trip. So make sure your fridge is not overstuffed with items and you should be good to go!

Replacing the Breaker

If your breaker continues to trip after cleaning the coils and replacing the ice maker, the next step is to consider replacing the breaker altogether. This might be the best option, as an old or malfunctioning breaker can cause many issues with the fridge, such as tripping the breaker, flickering lights, and more.

If you do decide to replace the breaker, make sure you use the same type and size as the one you are replacing. It is also important to test the breaker after you have installed it to ensure it is working properly.

Inspecting the Wiring

Older refrigerators may have outdated wiring and components, so if your fridge is older, you’ll want to check the wiring to make sure it is up to current standards. If you find that the wiring is old and out of date, then replacing it is the best option.

For newer models, it is a good idea to inspect the wiring for any damage. Check for any frayed or exposed wires, corroded connections, or any other signs of damage. If you find any of these issues, it is best to have the wiring replaced by a qualified electrician.

Adding Insulation

An often overlooked way to reduce fridge-breaking is by adding insulation. Insulating your fridge can help reduce any buildup of heat from the compressor, as well as reduce any strain on the compressor.

Adding insulation is an easy job anyone can do. All you need is some insulation that can fit over the back and sides of your fridge. Once the insulation is in place, you should notice a difference in how well your fridge operates.

Checking the Compressor and Condenser

If you’ve taken all the steps above and the breaker still doesn’t stay on, then you may have a more serious issue with either the compressor or condenser. Make sure both the compressor and condenser are in good working order. You may want to replace or repair them if they appear to be faulty.

The compressor is responsible for circulating refrigerant throughout the fridge, and if it is not working properly, it can cause the breaker to trip. Similarly, if the condenser is not working properly, it can cause the system to overheat, resulting in tripped breakers.

If your fridge is still breaking the breaker, then it may be time to replace it. However, before you replace your fridge, make sure the steps above have been taken. You may be able to fix the issue without having to buy a new refrigerator.

Jake Newman is Appliance Mastery's expert on refrigeration and cooling systems. With over a decade of experience in the appliance repair industry and certification from NASTeC, Jake is a trusted source of knowledge for homeowners who want to troubleshoot and repair their fridges, freezers, and air conditioning units.

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