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Old 03-16-2008, 02:09 AM   #61
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Just happened to me 2 hours ago. Same problem with the flickering lights and controls LEDs off. Googling the problem led me to this page - which was very helpful. All the major appliances at home are whirlpool and all are 3 years old. First the microwave had problems which I fixed (being an Electrical Engr. helped), then the washing machine died of a mechanical problem (which I replaced with a different brand), and now the fridge. No more whirlpool for me.

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Old 03-17-2008, 05:44 AM   #62
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Whirlpool refrig. problem




After living with no lights (on the refrigerator side) for about a year, we decided to go ahead and bite the bullet and pay the $100+ for the control board. My wife had called our local repair guy and told him about the problem mentioned in this thread. He hadn't heard about this problem and told her the bulbs were the problem. So just out of curiosity I googled the model number and found this site. After reading the posts I decided to try the repairs mentioned on earlier posts. For those who are wondering--that fixes the problem.

To help clarify...My frig did not have the 2 black wires on the 10 pin connector either. Like instructed in an earlier post, I tapped the yellow (w/ red tracer) to the solid black wire in the wire bundle that runs along the bottom of the frig. (Not the black wire w/ white tracer.) In the middle of the frig, just behind the cardboard cover is a 3 wire connector w/ 2 yellow wires and the yellow/red wire. Clip the yellow/red wire below the that 3 wire connector--making sure you have enough to reach the solid black wire. There is not a lot of slack there. I put a wire nut onthe yellow/red wire that goes back to the circuit board and taped it up. I simply clipped the solid black wire and wire-nutted the yellow/red wire to the (now) 2 black wires and taped everything back. Make sure you tie or tape everything back to take any strain off of the wire nut and avoid chaffing or pinching the wires.

Good luck and spend you $120 on something other than a part Whirlpool won't stand behind!
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Old 03-17-2008, 12:18 PM   #63
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Hi indyvol - When you first had the problem (lights flickering etc.) did the fridge work at all? I have the same problem, and the control board has the burnt trace, and my fridge isn't cooling after the problem occured.

Looks like you changed out the control board initially, didn't that fix all of the problems (including the lights)?

thanks
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Old 03-18-2008, 10:17 AM   #64
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


No, we never replaced the board. We thought about it
until we found out the price. We lived without lights for
about a year.

When ours went out, only the lights were affected. The frig
continued to cool just fine.
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Old 03-21-2008, 03:50 AM   #65
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Fix for "Whirlpool lights Flicker Problem"

I went ahead and fixed the control board myself. It took about 2 hours of figuring out the circuitry (difficult without a schematic) plus time to solder and replace some parts, and cost about 25 cents (that’s right, cents not dollars!). Hopefully with my posting it’ll take the reader only a few minutes to fix the board. You can directly go the end of the posting for the instructions if you don’t want to read my two cents.

I still don’t know the root cause of the problem, and I can only guess. Maybe if I set up some experiments I might have a better idea, but who’s got the time. (And once again I don’t have a schematic so it’s even more difficult)
The trace layout on this board is very poor. I design boards and it’s pretty obvious the people who laid out this board did a poor job at it. If the bulb went out when the door was opened it’s conceivable that some inductive surge event could have caused the problems that followed. One component that went bad was the transistor (see picture) next to the burnt trace. It could have died due some detrimental inductive/capacitive coupling caused by poor board layout. The transistor going bad could have caused the initial flickering of the light bulbs – the transistor controls the relay and it was rapidly moving the relay arms back and forth between “power” and “no-power” states. Eventually the transistor completely dies (I measured 16 ohms between emitter and base), which then switches the relay arms from “power” to “no-power” state. And that’s where it sits until you replace the transistor. I still don’t know why the trace burned (that trace is the 110V line that powers the bulbs – connects to the yellow/red tracer wire). Splicing the yellow/red tracer wire directly to 110V will also help, but if there’s ever a situation when the control logic deems that the lights need to be turned off then you are out of luck – “splicing” hard wires the lights to 110V (when the door switch is closed). So, if your lights are out, then replace the transistor (see instructions below).
In my case not only did I not have the lights, but my fridge wasn’t cooling. I traced that problem to C16 220uF, 35V Electrolytic cap (next to the biggest cap on the board). You should read around 3k Ohms across that cap but I was reading 13 Ohms. In the case of this board you should read high resistance values across all the caps – (3k being the lowest value across the aforementioned cap). If you don’t read high resistance values across any of the caps then replace that cap.

And finally the instructions (you need to have access to a soldering iron – pretty cheap). The picture is small, if necessary compare to the larger picture on page 4.

1) Put a jumper across the burnt trace. From the picture below the most accessible points are the two solder points marked in the red Xs. It’s important to have one end of the wire on the X on the left. The other end is just 110V – you can get it at the other X or from one of the connectors but this spot is easy. Don’t use too thin of a wire (20ish AWG is ok). For better isolation between the jumper wire and components//solder points on the board put some Kapton tape on the board under the wire.
2) Replace the transistor (see picture) with a PNP BJT with at least 150V rating (any electronic supplier, Digikey etc – cost is less than 10 cents.) I used the MMBT5401.
3) If your fridge isn’t cooling, then if possible measure resistance across all the caps and replace as necessary. Assuming your problem is the same as mine, then replace the 220uF capacitor (next to the biggest cap on the board and on the other side of the board). Be sure to use a 105 degree C cap as it’s pretty warm where the board resides. A cap with a voltage rating of 35V (or whatever voltage is indicated on the cap) or higher should be used. Cost of cap is less than 20 cents.
4) Optionally, you could put a snap-on ferrite bead (big enough) on the 3 wire (white, yellow, yellow/red-tracer) cable going up to the lights in the fridge. If there is a surge issue, then the ferrite will suppress it.

That should do it. This way you save a lot of money. By the way, that was a heck of a lot of current that burned the trace – it’s potentially a safety issue. I think everyone should raise a bit of a stink about this.
(If a bigger and clearer picture is needed, I can email it - I can't seem to attach a bigger picture to my posting - if anyone knows please let me know how.)
dan_tera@hotmail.com
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Last edited by dantera; 06-03-2009 at 01:41 AM.
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Old 06-02-2008, 08:13 AM   #66
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Thanks everyone. Please include me in this party. My lights flickered on the fridge side and I have the chatty relay. This went on for about a day. Then the freezer/fridge stopped cooling all together. I am now living out of coolers. I understand that the circuit board will correct the light and chatty relay problem, but has it corrected the cooling problem as well. I see others experiencing the additional cooling problem but have not seen anyone said that their cooling problem was corrected with the new board? I hate to buy a new board and still have problems. Thanks.

Shaken, Not Stirred
007

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Old 06-02-2008, 11:54 PM   #67
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


James Bond:
Depends on what happened. Both my lights and cooling problem had to do with the circuit board. And most folks here seemed to have had only the lights problem. Depending on what all blew out when whatever happened to the circuit board - you may have one or both issues. If you go through the instructions posted above, and the referenced capacitor is shorted then the cooling problem is because of the board.
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Old 06-11-2008, 07:37 PM   #68
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


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Originally Posted by JSKRETCH View Post
I have the same exact problem that has been described numerous times here, same chattering relay, same burned board. I bought my Whirlpool "gold" fridge at Lowes. and it is 2 1/2 years old. I had to have it repaired 2 times already (under warranty ) within the first few months of owning it due to a faulty thermo switch in the freezer. Now this!

I was lucky enough to have been suckered into the 5 year appliance protection plan from Lowes. THeir Service guy came out this morning and by this afternoon had scheduled to come back in a day. I guess that the local parts center had 4 of these in stock which means something according to him. Glad I bought the warranty, although I am really unhappy with how Whirlpool is acting.

Here's an idea Whirlpool, Quit Making JUNK and wasting my time! Are we consumers really asking too much ? shouldn’t a fridge (especially the prestigious “Gold”series) last more than 2 years? I guess I should have looked for the Platinum series or do they make an iridium, or )dare I even say) rhodium series?

To be quite honest, I would gladly pay top dollar for the Adamantium series with full 24/7 support and a fully redundant , closed loop, EMP shielded , hermetically sealed control system, plugged into a dual UPS system housed in a titanium case and protected by a razor wire fence, armed guards, and vicious attack dogs (which are actually rabid wolf hybrids).
Then maybe the fridge would still be working and I wouldn’t be here ranting. But much like Adamantium, such a thing does not exist,

There should be a lemon law on appliances. Anybody have any ideas how we can sue Whirlpool, Lowes or somebody? Hey, I’m not being greedy, I ‘m just using the same rational they are to make an extra buck.
Adamantium! LOL! I agree! Just spent the $100 for new board after soldering bypass on the old one did not work. FYI, Their is yet another New PN for new board also W10135090. Now the temp control display shows J J it is set to 4 4. Any one know why? Next time I am going to shop for an LG.....
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Old 06-29-2008, 07:49 PM   #69
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Wow, this is quite the forum indicating a problem at Whirlpool. Thought everyone migh like to know if you are not aware, Whirlpool makes several brands including some Kenmore models and the "higher end" Kitchen Aid.
I have the Whirlpool Gold line for all the appliances in my home.
My fridgde is a GS6SHEXNB00. This week , the fridge side light went out. I tried to change it today. After changing the bulb not only did the light not work, but the digital display went out too. Actually, the lightbulb did not burn out so that was not the cause of my problem.
I have read enough here to know how to fix my problem and will tackle it this week but I just need to vent my frustration with Whirlpool in general right now with this forum.

As I mention, I bought all Gold appliances, this was in 2004. This was actually the second complete set of Gold Appliances we bought, but the first set was included in a house sale in 2003, so I can only imagine that the folks who bought our house are faced with the same issues.

I have had problems with;
1. The original Front Load Washer (in my first house) where the drain pump stared becoming noisy.
2. the microwave in our new house was backordered for 5 weeks as there was a fire hazard notice out on the model we bought and it needed to be re-engineered
3. Our top of the line dishwasher untensil basket broke.
4. Our dishwasher could never actually wash dishes unless we only filled it to half capacity. The service tech also told us to never use liquid detergent and always turn on the hot water tap in our kitchen prior to doing a load of dishes.
5. Our dishwasher needed to have the control panel replaced because the rinse only button never worked.
6. Our side by side Freezer door needed to be replaced as the ice dispenser was cracked inside the door and the only way to fix it was to change the complete door.
7. Seems to me that I haved to change the water filter every two months, not because it is dirty, but because water will no lnger flow through it.
All the above were during the warranty period.

8. the ice maker broke in the fridge. One month out of warranty. I temporarliy replaced it with a 20 year old Kenmore Ice maker until I ordered an original ice maker on ebay for $50.00. Whirlpool wanted almost $300.00. There is another thread on this part indicating problems with the Ice maker, too. I asked Whirlpool if there was any notice out on the ice maker as there were so many stated failures, but they denied knowing there were any problems at all.
8. The current fridge control panel problem.

Needless to say, I will NEVER buy a Whirlpool appliance again.

this week I am going to call that guy on CTV (a Canadian TV station, for those not aware) who looks into consumer issues (Pat Horan, I think)

I will update you when I fix my fridge and let you know what Mr. Horan can do for all of us.
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Old 06-29-2008, 10:38 PM   #70
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


thats the luck i have with GE and SONY stuff
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Old 06-30-2008, 07:04 AM   #71
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Quote:
Originally Posted by comp View Post
thats the luck i have with GE and SONY stuff
Me Too, Been down the same road with GE "JUNK" also.
Just an update my whirlpool control still shows "J J" for some reason but the fridge and light works fine since the new board was put in. So untill I hear from someone exactly what to do I am not going to mess with it.
KEEPING FINGERS CROSSED!

ps. FYI: Maytag is now owned and built by whirlpool also.
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Old 06-30-2008, 10:38 AM   #72
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Whirlpool has always been good for me ,,but i haven't had the Hi-end stuff
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Old 07-18-2008, 09:44 PM   #73
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


I've read what you have recommended to fix this problem but before I try that, let me give you some history on my Whirlpool....

We have the side-by-side model GS6SHEXNL00 and around 1 1/2 years ago, we came back from vacation to find the whole fridge/freezer not working. The fridge was unfortunately not under warranty any longer so we ended up spending over $300 to replace the circuit board as that was what the repairman had determined was the problem. The fridge worked fine after that.

Now, 1 1/2 years later, the lights and control panel are no longer working. It is similar to what many have described.....once the light bulbs are removed the control panel light comes back on. As soon as you try to replace a light bulb, the control panel light turns off. The fridge is still cooling and the freezer seems to be fine.

My concern is that this happened once before. Is it worth fixing again? I appreciate any suggestions.
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Old 07-30-2008, 12:40 AM   #74
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Since it's only been 1.5 years since your last repair, ask if they will replace the control board for a nominal price (<$50). Else you can follow my instructions above and try to fix the board yourself (which is cheap but takes a little know how and tools). Unless they have redesigned the control board you can expect this problem every couple of years.
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Old 07-30-2008, 06:02 PM   #75
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Whirlpool refrig. problem


Execpt same problem... but i found this fourm after the repair man just left $264 - 12-01-2007, 07:33 PM same exact pics as this post... exact same board & exact same burn & exact same symptoms... as everyone described... flickering light etc... 3 years old frig.

Whrilpool bad boards for sure someone need to start a class action suit, I am keeping my bad board in case someone does...

Great board... will start here before I call the repairman next time... even I a novice newbie ... could have changed out the control board that was clicking...

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