Diffective Diffuser Causing Warm Side-By-Side Refrigerator
Written by Todd Fratzel.
Trouble Shooting Kenmore Elite Refrigerator
The last few days we’ve been having trouble with our Kenmore Elite (Model #10656703500) side-by-side refrigerator. Last week I noticed that my morning yogurt drinks didn’t feel very cold and then a gallon of milk spoiled. At first I didn’t think much of it and just turned the temperature down a bit in our refrigerator. Well today we found another spoiled gallon of milk and it finally dawned on me that the refrigerator wasn’t keeping things as cold as they needed to be. The first big clue to the problem was the fact that our freezer was keeping temperature just fine.
After doing a bit of research I discovered how these side-by-side refrigerators work. Cool air flows from the refrigerator side into the freezer compartment and back into the refrigerator. The flow of air is controlled by an air diffuser located in the wall between both compartments. The diffuser is connected to the thermistor and electronic controls and opens and shuts a door between the compartments based on the desired temperature.
Because our freezer is working fine and because I could not feel any cold air coming out of the refrigerator vents (see diagram) it’s quite obvious to me that one of two parts is not working properly. Either the diffuser or thermistor are defective and need to be replaced. So rather than take a chance I went ahead and ordered both parts today.
Kenmore Model 10656703500 Parts Diagram
One of the things I like about Kenmore appliances is how easy it is to find parts for repairs. I simply went online and looked up the diagrams for our Kenmore Elite Model 10656703500 refrigerator at Sears PartsDirect.
The part in question is #15 and it’s located in the upper left hand corner inside the refrigertor compartment (see photo below). To remove the diffuser you’ll need to remove part #17 and #16 by removing two small screws. You’ll also need to remove the cover inside the freezer compartment adjacent to the diffuser (see photo).
In order to remove the diffuser you need to release the “tabs” on the freezer side. If you look closely in the photos you can see the tabs. Once you release those you can remove the diffuser from the refrigerator side.
I’m fairly confident that this will fix the problem. I say this because I removed the diffuser and the doors inside it were closed shut even though the refrigerator was running full steam ahead trying to cool things down. In the mean time while I wait for parts I’ve manually opened the doors so the refrigerator should cool down quite a bit, if it get’s too cold I’ll manually adjust the doors.
So I wanted to pass on that my assesment was accurate and the refrigerator is now fixed. If you’d like to learn more then read: How to replace a refrigerator air diffuser. You can also read my post about How To Temporarily Fix A Warm Side-By-Side Refrigerator.
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