Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    794

    Domestic Refrigerator Noise

    Hello all! I have been in the HVAC field part-time for nearly 20 years, but I am having a problem with one of my refrigerators that has me stumped. It is a cheapo top-freezer fridge labeled as an RCA. It uses R-134a with a forced condenser underneath and a forced spine and tube evaporator mounted flat against the back of the freezer with the fan above it. The problem is a sort of ticking that is coming from the back right area of the evaporator where the refrigerant lines enter and exit the coil. The ticking happens at a rate of about 3 per second. It doesn't seem to happen at all when the refrigeration cycle first starts but starts about 50% of the way through a cycle. It almost sounds like a slight water hammer would sound in a steam heating system. I suspect it is refrigerant causing the sound. It is fairly loud and has been happening (as far as I know) since the fridge was new. Since the noise starts when the compressor has been running for a while it leads me to believe that the sound doesn't happen when the evaporator pressure is high and starts to occur when the pressure starts to drop through a cycle. It will also stop within a few seconds whenever you open the freezer door. When I pulled the evaporator cover panel I noticed that the cap tube enters from the top of the freezer and is soldered into the larger evaporator tubing then it immediately turns 90 degrees to the right. This elbow was sagging creating a little trap, so I straightened it out a little so that it sloped down towards the evaporator. Once assembled and tested the sound was worse. I took it down again and moved it back to the original position and the sound is reduced to where it was before. Anybody got any ideas? It is driving me nuts.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    OFFICES IN : ARIZONA - NEVADA - TEXAS
    Posts
    258
    Your insight and description is more of a compressor valve leaking or worn issue if the refrigerator has a static condenser ....
    "Rock-n-Roll " Ain't noise pollution..

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    794
    The noise is definitely coming from the area at the top right of the evaporator (nowhere near the compressor). Otherwise the machine works great.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Orleans metro area
    Posts
    161
    A long time ago I had a small piece of solder which was inside and intermittantly bouncing around and behaving similar to this.I would first pull the charge then open tubing inlet and outlet blow both ways including the cap tube . seperate suction and dicharge at the compressor . Let me know how you make out. Good luck.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    alexandria va
    Posts
    138
    does the unit have a switch that turns off the fan when the door is opened? if the noise stops with the fan . the blade may be hitting something. jbb

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Stumptown,USA
    Posts
    1,251
    Whilpool had a similar problem with their bottom freezer model a few years back. Right where the cap tube enters the evaporator a loud ticking noise. Their 'factory' fix was some sound deadening putty wrapped around the evaporator inlet. You might try some 'cork tape' or some armaflex. Good Luck!
    Challenge yourself, take the CM test --- Certificate Member since 2004 ---Join RSES ---the HVAC/R training authority ---www.rses.org

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    301
    A quick fix is to remove the R134A and charge with a blend.... MP39 or so.

    134A is a very noisy refrigerant.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    56
    Yup it's the cap tube. It may have a small burr or cut uneven at the inlet to the evap, but either way, don't worry about it. It will probably last longer than you. I have a new Whirlpool bottom freezer, it does the same thing. Try, if you can get any slack tie wrapping the cap tube to the evap ( as much as you can). Cooling the cap tube slightly seems to help sometimes.
    Oldfart

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    794
    I was afraid the noise was coming from the cap tube junction with the evaporator. I am not worried about it failing (it has been this way for a long while now), but in my new house the fridge is right next to the living room and the noise drives me nuts. It is quite loud. I might try to wrap some of the cap tube around the actual beginning of the evaporator tubing as suggested. It can't hurt. I don't have much slack though. Right now the cap comes in from the top of the compartment going straight down towards the floor, then it is soldered into the evap, then the larger evap tubing turns to the right before the evaporator proper starts. I wonder if bending the tubing so that the cap tube approaches the evaporator from the BOTTOM (ie, bending the aluminum evap tubing 180 or nearly 180 degrees) so that the cap tube comes in from the top, goes towards the floor as it is now, then the cap tube turns around back towards the top of the freezer? It would involve bending the aluminum evap tubing a fair amount. I have never bent old aluminum this much before. Might I rupture it? Might it even help the noise?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    56

    Frown

    Micahwes
    Hold off for a day or so before doing what I said. If I remember correctly we made the correction in the compressor area, and not at the Evap. I may have given you bad info, sorry but it's been close to 20 years. I'll call one of my co-workers, I know he has a better memory than mine.
    Oldfart

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    56
    Ok
    There are two things you can try, The first is to tie wrap some of the cap tube after it leaves the drier, to the Hi side line coming from the compressor. Do 3 or 4 inches if you can. It might not hurt to wrap some perma gum around it also. The other one is too tilt the accumulator out of level. I assume that you would want the cap tube on the highest end. These are not proven, but seem to help in some cases.
    My bottom freezer Whirlpool makes a ticking noise at times, But because it's in the kitchen away from everyone, I just ignore it.
    Let me know how you come out.
    Oldfart

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    322
    I have a Kenmore upright freezer and on the instructions that I just happen to read it stated that this freezer will make unusual noise that is normal. Could it be maybe you have one to.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Comfortech Show Promo Image

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor Magazine
Forums | Electrical Construction & Maintenance (EC&M) Magazine
Comfortech365 Virtual Event