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jgriffi1

GE GSH25JFRF WW water dispenser frozen again, heater kit already installed

29 posts in this topic

Hi Gentlemen,

I installed the heater kit (WR49X10173) on my fridge a couple years ago, and the water has worked fine until recently. It's back to intermittenly freezing up. Any other ideas? Can those heaters stop working? It's just a little resistor with no moving parts!!

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Possibly. Or loose/corroded splice connections. Check the resistance of the heater patch.

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The drain may need cleaning. If it cloggs with gukus, the water will back up and freeze.

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What drain? This is the water dispenser in the door.

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Just came here for the exact same problem.  Installed heater worked great for a couple of years (old thread here);

water dispenser stopped yesterday. :yucky:

 

I will check the wiring and resistance (PIA!) and report back in a few days...

 

EDIT:  Forgot to ask what the resistance should be.  What should the resistance be?  Arigato.

Edited by sbdivemaster

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EDIT:  Forgot to ask what the resistance should be.  What should the resistance be?  Arigato.

 

edit> powered by 12v DC

should be about 100 OHMs = about 1.4 watts

Edited by RegUS_PatOff

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I'd imagine it would only be a few watts ..

that would be somewhere between 3000 OHMs and 10,000 OHMs

Thanks!  Will check in the next day or two and report back...

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OK, just checked.  No corrosion, but white wire insulation right near the heater element is brown (too hot?); tested the resistance - 108.4 ohms.  I know very little about electronics, but if the resistance should be 3K - 10K ohms, Am I correct in thinking the heater went bad?

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... tested the resistance - 108.4 ohms.

If it was bad, it would be "open" infinite resistance ..

...oooohhh ... my mistake .. the Heater could be  in series with something ..

108 OHMs may be OK if you have your OHM meter set correctly

I'll have to find the Heater instructions ..

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The heater was disconnected from the other wiring, and I tested it alone.

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edit> powered by 12v DC

should be about 100 OHMs = about 1.4 watts

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Well, 108 would be just about right...  So, what should I do now about the frozen dispenser tube? :banghead:

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... No corrosion, but white wire insulation right near the heater element is brown (too hot?)

... connection heat can be caused by loose / bad connections

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... connection heat can be caused by loose / bad connections

It's not near the connectiones; the browning of the insulation is visible for an inch or so before going under the foil.

 

I guess I could redo all the connections making sure they are all solid...  after that, I haven't a clue. :confused:

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So, last night I was inspecting the heating element, and I noticed that the foil covering the actual loop at the end seemed melted or something.  That, along with the discoloration of the wiring is making me think the element burnt out.  Here are some pics (the melted parts are circled in red; last picture is new part for comparison):

 

heater_1.jpg

 

 

 

heater_2.jpg

 

 

 

heater_3.jpg

 

 

What do you think?  Is this heater bad?  Should I replace it?  (Just trying to avoid spending $$ on part that might not be the problem.

 

Arigato, Fermented Grand Master and RegUS_PatOff Sensei.

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... What do you think?  Is this heater bad?

.. if the resistance is reading 100 OHMs

(without loose / intermittent connections)

then the Heater should be working

(you may be able to feel it's warmth)

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No impressions on the discolored wires and the apparent "melting" of the foil covering?

 

When I first disassembled, I felt the heater, and it did not feel warm (but the heat is so slight, it may not feel warm).  Ruling out a foreign body blocking the dispenser tube (0.01% chance of that), I'm figuring the thing is frozen again - which leads to the conclusion the heater is bad, even if the resistance reading is correct....

 

Has there ever been confirmation that these heaters can go bad?

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I don't put a lot of stock in slightly discolored wire; burnt, yes, mild discoloration, no.  Doesn't necessarily mean anything and is not diagnostically useful.  

 

Something can check good on ohms and still be bad.  Check the current draw with the heater installed.  Should get something in the neighborhood of 120 ma, assuming 12vdc supply and the heater rated at 1.4 watts.  

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I don't put a lot of stock in slightly discolored wire; burnt, yes, mild discoloration, no.  Doesn't necessarily mean anything and is not diagnostically useful.

Ah, that's good to know. I will ignore the discoloration.

 

Something can check good on ohms and still be bad.  Check the current draw with the heater installed.  Should get something in the neighborhood of 120 ma, assuming 12vdc supply and the heater rated at 1.4 watts.

I will check those out today; just trying to assure the heater is the cause before I get a new one. However, at this point, the time I've spent dealing with this probably would have been saved by just replacing the thing. :bangin:

Figures a patch job made to correct a poor design would have a limited life as well... :wacko:

 

I'll report back results, but I figure I'm going to wind up buying a new one and seeing what that does anyway....

 

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This GE has an encoder board and if i am not mistaken, temps are contolled by dials using "cold-colder" etc and there are no digital temp settings. If so, I've had customers max out controls on these machines causing air imbalance and leading to frozen dispenser lines. Just a thought.

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Grand Master, I checked readings:  approx. 30 ma @ 13.7 VDC   :pinch:

 

What do you make of these readings?

 

DA, thanks for the input.  However, our GE has a digital temp setting, 1-9.  We inherited the fridge with the house we bought 6 years ago, I set the thermo on 5 for the fridge and 2 for the freezer, and they have never been changed in all that time.  I considered colder incoming water this time of year, but had no problem last winter - I think it's pretty much narrowed down to something wrong with the heater element.... (I hope)

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Okay...but I meant digital temp setting as in setting temp for 0 degrees or 38 degrees etc as oppose to a number setting. Why is the freezer set at 2 as opposed to the recommended setting? There are several  reasons I ask what appears to be a simple question. Remember, most fridges of this model do not require a dispenser heater. Maybe the heater is bad but maybe another problem is causing the need for a heater in the first place (other than bad design).  For instance, is the freezer temp set at 2 because it has been too cold? Which leads to another question....what's the freezer temp?   Anyhow for proper diagnosis of fridge problems it is best that a fridge be set at recommended settings. 

Edited by DurhamAppliance

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Grand Master, I checked readings:  approx. 30 ma @ 13.7 VDC   :pinch:

What do you make of these readings?

that would equal about 450 OHMs

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that would equal about 450 OHMs

Bad heater?

 

Okay...but I meant digital temp setting as in setting temp for 0 degrees or 38 degrees etc as oppose to a number setting. Why is the freezer set at 2 as opposed to the recommended setting? There are several reasons I ask what appears to be a simple question. Remember, most fridges of this model do not require a dispenser heater. Maybe the heater is bad but maybe another problem is causing the need for a heater in the first place (other than bad design). For instance, is the freezer temp set at 2 because it has been too cold? Which leads to another question....what's the freezer temp? Anyhow for proper diagnosis of fridge problems it is best that a fridge be set at recommended settings.

DA, I guess I misunderstood what you meant when you said "dials"; here's a pic of the temperature controls (my mistake, I transposed the settings for fridge and freezer):

 

temp_control.jpg

 

Here's what the manual says about the temperature controls:

 

(At the top is a graphic of the temp controls with both set to "5")

 

Below that (bold is as printed):

 

"Several adjustments may be required. Adjust the controls one increment at a time, and allow 12 hours after each adjustment for the refrigerator to reach the temperature you set.

 

Setting either or both controls to 0 stops cooling in both the freezer and refrigerator compartments, but does not shut off electrical power to the refrigerator.

 

Control settings will vary based on personal preferences, usage, and operating conditions and may require more than one adjustment."

The current air temp inside the freezer is -2°F; the fridge is 38°F - keeps my beer at the perfect temperature. :pint1:

 

I just happened to set the freezer to the middle setting (5) and the fridge a bit lower (2) as my starting point, but found those settings are just right.  As I said before, those settings have never been changed; the water dispenser worked for 4 years without a problem, then, after installing the heater, 2 years without a problem.

Edited by sbdivemaster

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that would equal about 450 OHMs

 

Bad heater?.

 

450 OHMs would be a bad connection if you said the Heater reads 108 OHMs

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