July 20, 2015

How to replace an evaporator fan motor in a side-by-side refrigerator

By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace an evaporator fan motor in a side-by-side refrigerator

Follow the steps in this refrigerator repair guide to replace an evaporator fan motor in a side-by-side refrigerator. The evaporator fan blows air through the evaporator before circulating cooled air to the freezer and refrigerator compartment. If the evaporator fan motor isn't working, the air in the refrigerator and freezer warms up. Replace the evaporator fan motor with the manufacturer-approved replacement part for your model.

This basic repair procedure works for Kenmore, Whirlpool, KitchenAid, Maytag, Amana, GE, Frigidaire, Electrolux, Bosch, LG and Samsung side-by-side refrigerators.

Quick links
Tools required
1/4-inch nut driver
Phillips screwdriver
Work gloves
Repair difficulty
Time required
60 minutes or less
Repair difficulty
Time required
60 minutes or less

Instructions

  1. 01.

    Disconnect the electrical power

    Unplug the refrigerator from the wall outlet. If the outlet is hard to get to, shut off the circuit breaker for the refrigerator at the circuit panel.

    Tip: Remove the food from the refrigerator compartment and freezer. If you find frost and ice buildup, unplug the refrigerator well enough in advance for the ice to melt.
  2. 02.

    Remove baskets and shelves

    Remove all baskets and shelves from the freezer. 

    Remove the screws from the shelf supports on the right wall of the freezer compartment and remove the supports.

    Remove the freezer basket.

    Remove the freezer basket.

    Remove the freezer shelf supports.

    Remove the freezer shelf supports.

  3. 03.

    Remove the back panel

    Using a 1/4-inch nut driver, remove the screws from the evaporator panel. Pull the right side of the panel forward to remove it.

    Remove the evaporator panel screws.

    Remove the evaporator panel screws.

    Remove the evaporator panel.

    Remove the evaporator panel.

  4. 04.

    Remove the fan motor

    Remove the mounting clip that secures the fan assembly. Detach the fan blade and disconnect the wire harness. Pull the fan out of the housing.

    Remove the mounting clip.

    Remove the mounting clip.

    Remove the fan blade.

    Remove the fan blade.

    Disconnect the wire harness.

    Disconnect the wire harness.

  5. 05.

    Install the new fan assembly

    Push the wire connector for the new fan into the wire harness. Insert the new fan motor into the housing. Push the fan blade completely onto the fan motor shaft. Replace the mounting clip.

  6. 06.

    Reinstall the back panel

    Position the evaporator panel so the screw holes line up. Insert the mounting screws and tighten them securely.

  7. 07.

    Reinstall the shelf supports

    Position the shelf rails on the right inside wall of the freezer and reinstall the mounting screws. Overtightening the screws can crack the freezer liner or the mounting rails, so turn the screws until they stop and then snug them up with a final twist.

  8. 08.

    Restore the electrical power

    Reinstall the baskets and shelves. Plug the cord in the wall outlet or reset the house circuit breaker to restore electrical power.

Warning: Undertaking repairs to appliances can be hazardous. Use the proper tools and safety equipment noted in the guide and follow all instructions. Do not proceed until you are confident that you understand all of the steps and are capable of completing the repair. Some repairs should only be performed by a qualified technician.

Symptoms common to all refrigerators

Choose a symptom to see related refrigerator repairs.

Main causes: leaky door gasket, defrost system failure, evaporator fan not running, dirty condenser coils, condenser fan not running
Main causes: blocked air vents, compressor problems, condenser or evaporator fan not working, control system failure, sensor problems
Main causes: water valve leaking, frozen or broken defrost drain tube, overflowing drain pan, cracked water system tubing, leaking door seal
Things to do: clean condenser coils, replace the water filter, clean the interior, adjust doors to prevent air leaks, clean the drain pan
Main causes: damaged door seal, faulty defrost sensor or bi-metal thermostat, broken defrost heater, bad defrost timer or control board
Main causes: blocked vents, defrost system problems, evaporator fan failure, dirty condenser coils, bad sensors, condenser fan not working
Main causes: jammed ice cubes, broken ice maker assembly, dirty water filter, kinked water line, bad water valve, freezer not cold enough
Main causes: control board or cold control failure, broken compressor start relay, compressor motor failure, defrost timer problems

Repair guides common to all refrigerators

These step-by-step repair guides will help you safely fix what’s broken on your refrigerator.

How to replace a refrigerator temperature control board

If the temperature in your refrigerator doesn't match the temperature you set, the problem could be the temperature control board—a service technician can give you a definite diagnosis. If the board is at fault, follow these steps to replace it yourself.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 30 minutes or less
July 20, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a refrigerator water valve

Replace the water valve that feeds water to the ice maker and water dispenser if it no longer controls the flow of water.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 30 minutes or less
July 20, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a refrigerator door gasket

The door gasket seals the gap around the door to keep the cold air in and the warm air out. It’s easy to replace a worn or torn gasket.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 30 minutes or less

Articles and videos common to all refrigerators

Use the advice and tips in these articles and videos to get the most out of your refrigerator.

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