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Samsung RF197 defrost issue & resolution


lenp
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My three year old Samsung RF197 decided to stop cooling the refrigerator last week - freezer was fine.  It kind of cooled down to 46-48 degree range but no where near the set temp of 36.  First thought was defective defrost function.  Found a service manual with excellent troubleshooting, error codes, schematics, parts lists and diagrams here:

https://www.manualslib.com/manual/1095484/Samsung-Rf195abrs.html

Be aware this manual is not 100% correct regarding part numbers - probably an earlier version.   Best to check for part numbers on the defective part - Samsung seems to be good at labeling each part.  In fact the defective part (below) is not even shown in this manual.

Error code showed a defrost heater error.  Troubleshooting section tells you to check the heater resistance by (1) removing the control board connector that supplies power to the heater and (2) measuring continuity of the element.    Getting to the control board is a challenge when installed in a motorhome with the frig secured at the top and bottom.  Had to pull the unit forward six inches to remove the control board.  Sure enough, the heater element measured open.  

To access the heater you must remove all the internal shelves (which in my case required removal the right side door) and remove the fan assembly and cover.  Unfortunately, the entire evaporator was frozen in one big ice cube preventing the easy removal of the fan assembly.  It had to be thawed for several hours before it could be removed.  Turned out the heater was fine but the thermal fuse had blown.   New one on the way scheduled for delivery tomorrow.  We will see if it resolves the issue - but it will probably take a week or more to be sure.

Lenp

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  • 2 weeks later...

We have the newer version of the 197 and our fridge side went out this summer, freezer was fine. Got a service tech out and he identified a "high level " switch had gone south - not a resettable thing. He replaced the switch and life was good again. Cost us about $180. All work was done through the front so fridge didn't have to be removed (Thank goodness!). Find someone who services Samsung, it's not exactly a DIY project.

 

Good luck - Ken/Wobblywheels

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Update....

It had been nearly a month now and all is good.  Hopefully I have not jinxed myself now!

It is cooling and defrosting fine.

Can't help but wonder if the transfer switch (invertor/shore) may have switched during a defrost cycle and blew the fuse???  Probably ner know.

Lenp

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On 10/18/2017 at 1:47 PM, ksmedley said:

We have the newer version of the 197 and our fridge side went out this summer, freezer was fine. Got a service tech out and he identified a "high level " switch had gone south - not a resettable thing. He replaced the switch and life was good again. Cost us about $180. All work was done through the front so fridge didn't have to be removed (Thank goodness!). Find someone who services Samsung, it's not exactly a DIY project.

 

Good luck - Ken/Wobblywheels

 

I used to work on refrigerators. What is a "high level" switch?

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  • 2 weeks later...

The part I replaced is called a thermal fuse but could easily be considered a "high limit" switch.  It is there to prevent overheating of the defrost heater as masterdrago indicated but it is not a thermistor.  Is is a thermal fuse that opens if it gets too hot.

I suspect ksmedley's failure was the exact same thing I had.

Lenp

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