Your refrigerator is designed to circulate cool air from the freezer compartment to the food section. But sometime it happens that the food section becomes extremely cold and starts freezing food. Situation like this where you find most or all the content inside your food section frozen can be very frustrating.
The possible reasons behind refrigerator freezing food are:
Incorrect thermostat setting
A correct thermostat setting is very important to maintain the right temperature inside the food section. In order to prevent any bacterial growth and food poisoning, the food compartment should be maintained at a temperature between 36 to 39 degrees Fahrenheit. A temperature above this can spoil and rot the food whereas a temperature below this range can cause food freezing.
So if your refrigerator is freezing food, check your thermostat settings. It is quite possible that the thermostat setting get changed accidentally while loading or unloading the food in the refrigerator.
Faulty temperature control thermostat
The thermostat controls and powers the compressor, evaporator fan and condenser fan during the cooling cycle. So when the thermostat gets bad, the refrigerator does not know when to start or stop cooling and under such condition it may not cool or may cool continuously.
Try to rotate (turn on-off) the thermostat and listen for a click. Turning this cooling controls on-off gives the compressor an indication to start or stop the cooling cycle. When the cooling cycle starts you may listen a power hum which gives you a general idea of whether the thermostat is functioning or not. If the click and power hum are heard, the thermostat is probable working fine. If not, then your temperature control thermostat might be at fault.
The thermistor is a sensor which monitors the air temperature inside the refrigerator. It is connected to the temperature control thermostat board. When the temperature inside the refrigerator drop below a certain range, thermistor triggers the thermostat to power up the compressor and start the cooling cycle and vice versa. If the thermistor is defective the thermostat does not know when to power up the compressor to start or stop the cooling cycle. Under such conditions, the refrigerator does not cool or may cool continuously.
Over working evaporator fan
Fans helps in moving cold air from the freezer into the refrigerator or food section. While a broken fan most often leads to a warm food section, an over-packed food section can interfere with cold sensors, causing the fan to overwork. A constantly running fan produces excessive cold air into the refrigerator section and which eventually results in frozen food in the refrigerator.
Do not clutter food section and rearrange food to determine whether you can re-stabilize the system. Refer to “Fridge not cooling fast? We found 5 silly mistakes people make in India” to understand how to use refrigerator rightly.
A damper is either an automatic or manually operated door which opens and closes to let more or less cold air into the food or refrigerator compartment. By doing so it control the flow of chilled air from freezer to the food section. A jammed or broken damper can let too much cold air flow in the food section that can freeze food. The damper is usually at the top of the refrigerator compartment, so it may be the reason if food is freezing primarily on the top shelf.
Book a refrigerator PRO with Mr Right and stop your food from freezing and getting spoiled.
For more information on refrigerator care and maintenance and problem diagnosis refer to Ideas by Mr Right
References: Repair Clinic and ehow.com