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Constellation

RF260BEAESR Not Cooling/Freezing to set temp. FIXED!

I got mine fixed! If you don't care for my story below here's what THE PROBLEM WAS: LOW REFRIGERANT FROM THE FACTORY.

 

So I picked up my fridge (RF260BEAESR) at a big blue box store for a nice discount. It had a nasty scratch down a side and I snagged it for almost 50% off. Due to the cosmetic blemish the store only offered a 30 day warranty and I was told the standard Samsung warranty doesn't apply to scratch and dent appliances. Ok so no big deal, I couldn't remember the last time I needed warranty for anything anyway.

 

Fast forward a couple weeks, I noticed that the beverages in this fridge were not as cold as the drinks from the main fridge (different brand) while both were set at the same temp. I brushed it off thinking maybe my main fridge was overcooling, as it has happened before. At this point I have not used the freezer yet so I wasn't yet aware that it too was warmer than the set temp. Some time later, I placed ice cream in the freezer. Imagine my surprise when I went to get ice cream a a few days later and it was like soft serve you would get at Mickey D's. This was the oh-snap-something-is-wrong moment that hit me past my 30 day warranty.

 

Frantically, I started searching online, only to find countless reviews of folks who had the problem of their Samsung fridge being too warm and couldn't do anything to fix it.

 

I placed my own thermometers in the fridge and freezer sections and monitored the temperature for a few days. I set the temps as low as they could go I think my freezer was set at -8* and fridge at 34*. The average temperature for my fridge stayed in high 40s and would climb to 54*-56* occasionally (definitely no good for keeping milk fresh). The freezer remained around 25* occasionally reaching 30* (got some extra deer sausage you're saving? fugetaboutit).

 

I somehow found a service manual and let me tell you; no combination of buttons, resets, temperature shifts... none of it helped the fridge get any cooler. So my thought process went something like this... This is a new fridge, normally parts just don't go bad on new equipment. If this was a thermistor issue in the fridge then the freezer would work fine and vice versa. The fridge/freezer works somewhat so it's not a total dud. Short of pulling parts and testing I went through the whole troubleshooting checklist and then God gave me an aha moment.

 

I've worked on vehicle AC before but never put 1 and 2 together. When a car's AC blows cool but not cold air, sometimes all it needs is a small charge of refrigerant. I decided to try it, I had nothing to lose. I already had 134A (same as would go in a car). One resource I found stated that the particular compressor that was installed on my fridge had a working LOW Side pressure of 2 PSI. I hooked up my manifold gauges and let the compressor run for a few minutes and when it settled it was at 0 PSI. I slowly added refrigerant letting the compressor cycle for a few minutes between the small bursts of charge until it settled at 2 PSI. This was all that was needed. Ever since, my freezer has been holding a steady -5* and fridge 36*.

 

This may not be what is wrong with your fridge, but it fixed mine.

 

Lessons learned:
1) No matter how good the deal is, don't dismiss the reviews. Sadly my fridge was rated 3/5 stars.
2) Samsung is good at making phones and TVs but NOT appliances.