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Ice Maker Problems also


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7 replies to this topic

#1 PaulT

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Posted 23 July 2005 - 12:11 PM

Hello there.  Model 363.9565412 GE Fridge with a Kenmore label evidently slapped onto it (I am assuming from reading other posts).

We bought the refrigerator new from Sears probably 1997 or so.  We used the ice maker for a couple of months and then moved to an apartment.  The fridge sat in storage about 2 years but we then moved to another house.  The cutout for the fridge in the kitchen was too small and we had to leave the GE/Kenmore in the garage, hooked up to AC and keeping foods cold but the ice maker was not connected.  (BTW, it was not turned off either with the big ol' leaver on the tray.... don't know if that goofed up the works or what........).

Another new move a week ago and now the fridge is back in the kitchen and operating again.  It seems to be cooling fine,....... With a brush I cleaned off the coils underneath before the move.  Got most of the goop off but still a bit.  Anyway, the icemaker is not working at all.  I just hooked up the supply line through a filter and I can see the water getting through the line but it appears it is not getting through the valve.  I don't know if the problem is in the ice maker not telling the valve to let it through or if the valve is defective.  I am getting water out the front of the door, if this helps in your diagnosics of my problem.


Is there a way I can jimmy things to test the valve before going out and buying something I don't need?  Suggestions at all?  Where is the timer on this crazy thing so I can rotate it through a couple of cycles to see if I can make the water flow into the tray?

I have not tested the temp inside the freezer compartment so I don't know how cold it is.  No water in, not cycling, no ice in the tube that I can see.  No hum or click in the attempt to do the ice maker thing.  I turn the phillips screw a bit on the gear and it seemed like it wanted to complete a cycle but it stopped.  I didn't want to turn it anymore because it just seemed like it was just tightening the screw........

Suggestions, comments, complaints, ............. nasty remarks?

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#2 Pegi

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Posted 23 July 2005 - 02:35 PM

The freezer has to be 10* or colder for the ice maker to start a harvest cycle, you need to see what the temp is in the freezer.  Assuming the arm is down in the on position.  If this has 2 gears, one small on the left and a larger one in the middle, as it looks like in the breakdown, grab the rake and gently but firmly pull the rake to the right till the ice maker starts by itself and let it go thru the harvest cycle, will take about 5 minutes, and see if it calls for water and fills.  If you can hear the fill valve hum but no water enters, the fill valve is bad or the thru tube to the ice maker is clogged with ice.  But the freezer will need to be cold enough for the ice maker to work on its own.
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#3 PaulT

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Posted 24 July 2005 - 06:04 AM

I will have to go buy a thermometer to check the temperature inside.

It does have two gears on it, itty-bitty on the left and a bigger one in the center.

I just happened to open the freezer and observe it going through a cycle.  The lever lifted and it went through a dump cycle but I cannot hear the valve operating to allow the water in and no water enters.  I cannot hear the buzz where it is telling the inlet valve to operate either.

I have fiddled with the lever but cannot seem to force a cycle to begin.  I may not be doing it correctly as I don't need to "firmly" pull the rake to the right.  I am assuming the rake is the big lever that shuts the works down when the unit fills with ice.  But I cannot seem to force a cycle to begin.  Could it be I am just not watching it long enough?

But I am not hearing the buzz for the valve to operate either.  Now this valve is down at the bottom in the back of the fridge, right?  I may have to check to see if the wires are on there correctly but I sure do not hear the buzz.

BTW, thanks for your help.  Believe it or not, I used to work in an appliance repair center.  I did not work on refrigerators though, as I was not trained on it and did not want to goof up someone's fridge just messing with it.  I had been on a number of refrigeration "calls" and watched a few people work on them but since I was not licensed, I kept my hands off.  But I saw all kinds of neat things happen with the experts like blowing off the coils underneath with the gas bottle.  No, it was not air he was using,...... he was using refrigerant.  Dumb, huh?  No wonder we have holes in the atmosphere.

I will be watching for your response.  Thanks again for any assistance you can provide.


#4 Pegi

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Posted 24 July 2005 - 09:49 AM

The "rake" is the fingered thing that rotates in the ice maker and "rakes" the ice out of the mold and dumps it into the ice bucket, I really do hope you were not pulling on the on/off arm.  Ok try this, take a very small screwdriver and turn the small gear to the left, counter/clock wise, large gear starts rotating clock wise on its own, untill the ice maker starts on its own to start a harvest cycle. But if the fill valve did not hum, either you cannot hear it hum, the ice maker is giving no power to the valve, you have bad wires to the valve or the valve has bit the dust. 
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#5 PaulT

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Posted 24 July 2005 - 12:45 PM

Thanks again for your response and here we go again:

I tried to turn that little screw CCW and it is very difficult to turn.  It seems as though it begins and then stops.  I have to give it another urging and it goes like that until it gets to the cycle where the fingers rotate through the cycle.  I cannot hear the fill relay operate though.

I further tested this and switched the wires on the two relays below, one for the ice maker and the other for the thru-the-door water.  When I switched the wires to the relays and had my wife push the fill-switch on the front of the door, water ran to the ice maker.  So this appears to be telling me that the signal coming from the ice maker is not making it to the relay, to operate it and cause flow of water to the tray.  It sounds to me like the relay/solenoid is good.

Check me on this now if you would:  Water makes it to the door OK.  I switched wires on the relays (solenoids or whatever you wanna call them) and by pushing the switch on the front of the door, water makes it to the ice maker.  My thoughts on it at this point are that the ice maker is not getting the signal to the relay somehow, to cause it to open and allow water to flow.

Question for you though, as you ponder the response:  This ran for about 5 1/2 years dry,... no water to the ice maker and probably cycling through and through for these years.  I did not have the little lifter-thingie lifted to stop the cycle so this probably operated dry for a period.  Could this have caused the problem I am experiencing now?  The relay seems to be operating but it appears it's not getting the correct signal to operate right now.

As I was typing that previous paragraph, it cycled again.  No water came to the ice maker however.  So it appears it is not getting the signal to allow water in.

Your thoughts?

It is appreciated..................

Paul


#6 Pegi

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Posted 24 July 2005 - 01:23 PM

Let us make this easy, make you a test cord and plug this right onto the fill valve on the ice maker side and test it direct to see if water flows thru the valve.  Also when the ice maker is going thru the harvest cycle see if there is voltage to the valve at the wire terminals that plug onto the valve when it reaches the fill part of the cycle.
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#7 PaulT

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Posted 24 July 2005 - 07:19 PM

I'm going to have to roundup a voltmeter to test with,.......... I think I have one around here someplace.  But switching the wires on the relays has already proved the relays are both good, has it not?

#8 Pegi

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Posted 25 July 2005 - 08:49 AM

Yes, sounds like you need a new G.E. ice maker.
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