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pro_DIYer 12-31-2008 03:10 AM

freezer leaking into fridge - cannot locate drain hole
 
I have an old Kelvinator brand fridge, model 00-13518-3.

The freezer leaks water regularly into the a small "drip cup" at the top of the fridge (pictured below). It drips often enough that the water doesn't have enough time to evaporate away (which I am assuming is supposed to happen), so it overflows and fills the bottom of the fridge with water.

I've done some research and a likely culprit for this problem is a blocked drain hole - the problem, is I can't find it. The freezer itself has no hole anywhere. The only other logical place I can imagine the drain hole being is behind the drip cup. Unfortunately, it's positioned in such a way that I would have to break it to see what's behind it.

Would the drain hole be behind the drip cup?:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v4...b/drip_cup.jpg

And a question on the side: where exactly is the water leaving the freezer from towards the drip cup if I don't see any holes in the freezer?

AllanJ 12-31-2008 01:04 PM

The water comes off the cooling coils for the freezer that are usually under or behind the freezer compartment.

You might pull the fridge out from the wall to see if there is an exposed vertical tube that channels the defrost water down to floor level where a pan may (usually should) be.

I would guess that the cup inside the lower compartment collects condensation and adds that to the flow down to the pan.

pro_DIYer 12-31-2008 04:46 PM

Well I pulled the fridge out and yes, there was a tube leading from the drip cup to the pan. I had to unscrew a large panel that was in the way (which I assume were the coils). I found the most disgusting things clogging the tubing, including pieces of weird mucousy materials, chunks of mud/dirt, old bits of food, and bits of hair. Yes... HAIR. Long, short, different colours. Really weird, and really gross.

Hopefully, the combination of boiling water and a bent paperclip cleared out the valve as well. It's rather gross knowing water that had come into contact with those weird materials has been overflowing and dripping onto my food over the past few months. I'd hate for it to still happen, especially knowing what I know now. :eek:

Nestor_Kelebay 12-31-2008 07:22 PM

Quote:

The freezer leaks water regularly into the a small "drip cup" at the top of the fridge (pictured below). It drips often enough that the water doesn't have enough time to evaporate away (which I am assuming is supposed to happen), so it overflows and fills the bottom of the fridge with water.
No, the freezer doesn't "leak" water regularily; your fridge defrosts itself regularily.

A frost free fridge will have a way of automatically defrosting itself. If you take that same panel off in your freezer compartment, you will find that near the evaporator coils you'll find an electric heating element. There will be a timer in your fridge called a "defrost timer" which turns on that heating element for 10 to 20 minutes every 8 to 20 hours. That melts the frost off the evaporator coils, and the melt water drips onto the evaporator drain pan and drains into that cup at the top of your fresh food compartment. On the back of the fridge will be a tube that carries that melt water down to a receiving pan near the warm compressor where the melt water re-evaporates into your house air. You can direct that tube into a house drain if you want.

The best tool I know of for clearing a clogged evaporator pan drain is a car speedometer cable. You can get one free at any auto wrecker.

pro_DIYer 12-31-2008 07:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nestor_Kelebay (Post 205090)
The best tool I know of for clearing a clogged evaporator pan drain is a car speedometer cable. You can get one free at any auto wrecker.

Is it normal to find weird materials clogging the tube like I described above?

I wasn't expecting anything more than some mineral depositing and maybe ice.

Nestor_Kelebay 01-01-2009 12:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pro_DIYer (Post 205102)
Is it normal to find weird materials clogging the tube like I described above?

I wasn't expecting anything more than some mineral depositing and maybe ice.

Yes, you typically find all manner of rot in the evaporator pan and near the drain hole.

You see, the evaporator drives TWO air currents simultaneously; one through the freezer compartment and one through the fresh food compartment. Typically both air currents return to the fan through the space between the roof of the fresh food compartment and the freezer floor.

So, the freezer compartment will typically have holes in it's floor where the air returns to the fan (and the fresh food compartment will typically have holes in it's roof.) The dirt, hair, food and such gets into the holes in the floor of the freezer compartment and falls into the evaporator drain pan.

Life fluorishes in the most inhospitable places.


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