How to Replace a Refrigerator Electronic Control Board

 

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This refrigerator DIY repair guide shows how to replace an electronic control board in bottom-freezer and side-by-side refrigerators. The electronic control board is the "brains" of the refrigerator that controls major components such as the compressor and fans. If the electronic control board fails, the refrigerator can't cool correctly. It won't cool at all if the control board relay that turns on the compressor fails, which is the most common problem with a refrigerator control board (other failed parts can prevent the control board from running, such as the start device or overload fuse). Another symptom of a failed control board is that fans, lights or other components aren't working.

For a reliable diagnosis, have a service technician test the electronic control board. If you need to replace it, use the manufacturer-approved replacement part that fits your model.

This repair procedure works for Kenmore, LG, Samsung, Whirlpool, KitchenAid, Maytag, Amana, Frigidaire, Electrolux, GE, Bosch, JennAir and Daewoo refrigerators that have the electronic control board mounted on the back cabinet panel.

Repair difficulty:
     
Time required:

Less than 30 min.

Parts Required

  • Refrigerator electronic control board

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Tools Required

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Slot screwdriver
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Work gloves
  • Grounding strap (optional)

Before you begin

To prevent static damage when handling the new control board, touch the metal refrigerator cabinet or wear a grounding strap. 

The refrigerator will be without power for about 30 minutes, which shouldn't affect most refrigerated or frozen foods. However, you may want to move highly perishable food to a cooler. 

Wear work gloves to protect your hands. Enlist a helper to pull the refrigerator forward.

 

Instructions

 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.

Step 1: Disconnect the electrical power

Carefully pull the refrigerator forward and unplug the refrigerator. Move the refrigerator so you can easily reach the control board cover on the back of the refrigerator. 

 Tip: If the water supply line for the icemaker isn’t long enough for you to pull the refrigerator out, shut the valve and disconnect the line.

Step 2: Remove the cover on the electronic control board

Locate the control board cover—idepending on the model, t could be on the back of the refrigerator, or inside the refrigerator on a side wall or the ceiling.

Using a Phillips screwdriver, remove the screws from the control board cover. Support the cover as you remove the last screw so it doesn’t fall. Remove the cover.

Step 3: Detach the wires

Label the wires or take a digital picture before detaching them so you can reconnect them correctly later. Depending on the connector type, you might have to pry the connectors off with needle-nose pliers or release a locking tab with a slot screwdriver. Detach all the wires from the electronic control board. 

Step 4: Remove the electronic control board

Using a slot screwdriver, release the plastic locking tabs that secure the electronic control board and then remove the electronic control board. 

Step 5: Install the new electronic control board

Insert the new electronic control board and snap it into the locking tabs. Referring to your notes or digital photo, connect the wires to the new control board.

 Tip: To dissipate static discharge that can damage to the new control board, touch the metal cabinet or wear a grounding strap.

Step 6: Reinstall the cover

Position the cover on the control board compartment and line up the screw holes. Insert the screws and tighten them firmly.

Step 7: Restore electrical power and connect water

Plug the power cord into the wall outlet. Reattach the water supply line and turn on the water valve.