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While Sub-Zero refrigerators are known for their superior cooling technology, even this high-quality fridge can experience temperature issues. What are the fastest ways to troubleshoot a Sub-Zero refrigerator not cooling? From inspecting the door seals to identifying common parts failures, here’s how to pinpoint the diagnosis and fix the problem.

Troubleshooting Tips For a Sub-Zero Refrigerator Not Cooling

Whether you have a freestanding Sub-Zero refrigerator or built-in model, cooling issues can occur from time to time. When your refrigerator won’t get cold, these troubleshooting tips can help determine if a DIY fix or professional repair is the right solution.

Inspect Door Seals for Damage

The rubber seal on refrigerator doors is essential to keeping warm out and cold air in when the doors are closed. However, if you notice your Sub-Zero refrigerator not cooling sufficiently, inspect the seal for rips or tears. Any damage can compromise the seal, allowing cold air to escape and raise the refrigerator’s temperature.

A damaged door seal requires replacement. However, if there’s no visible damage, here’s how to test the door seal to make sure it’s working appropriately:

  • Open the refrigerator door and position a dollar bill so half is inside the refrigerator while the other half remains outside.
  • Shut the door.
  • Attempt to pull out the dollar bill. If it comes out with minimal resistance, the door seal isn’t functioning optimally and should be replaced.

Check the Temperature Settings

If your refrigerator is warm sometimes a simple check of the temperature settings can solve the problem. Sub-Zero recommends that refrigerators with an electronic control panel be set to 38°F. Check the control panel at the top of the refrigerator’s interior and adjust the temperature if necessary.

For refrigerators with a dial control, temperature dials are typically located on the top left corner of the refrigerator’s interior. If you find your Sub-Zero refrigerator not cooling, check to make sure the dial is set between 4 and 6 to cool sufficiently.

Sub-Zero refrigerator not cooling
Image: Sub-Zero, Wolf, and Cove

Clean the Condenser Coils

Condenser coils help cool refrigerant, creating cool air for the refrigerator. If these coils get dusty or dirty, they may not be able to cool refrigerant sufficiently, leading to Sub-Zero refrigerator temperature problems.  Regular cleanings every 6 months can help ensure that the coils function optimally. Here’s how to clean Sub-Zero condenser coils in 5 simple steps:

  1. Turn off the refrigerator’s power at the control panel.
  2. Pull the top grille forward and upward.
  3. Use a vacuum cleaner’s brush attachment to clean the coils, taking care to vacuum in the same vertical direction as the coils.
  4. Reposition the grille by pulling downward.
  5. Turn the refrigerator’s power back on at the control panel.

Troubleshoot Part Failures

If all else fails, then it’s possible that temperature issues are due to a part failure. These components may be responsible for a Sub-Zero refrigerator not cooling:

  • Condenser Fan Motor: The condenser fan motor powers a fan that draws air over the condenser coils, which helps cool the refrigerant. When assessing the motor, first check the fan for obstructions by turning the fan blades by hand. If they turn easily or the motor exhibits a lack of continuity with multimeter testing, the motor requires professional replacement.
  • Evaporator Fan Motor: This motor powers a different fan that cools refrigerant once it reaches the evaporator coils. The fan also helps distribute cold air throughout the refrigerator. If the motor’s fan blades turn easily or the motor runs unusually loud, test it for continuity. If the motor shows a lack of continuity with multimeter testing, it needs to be professionally replaced.
  • Start Relay: This component signals the compressor to turn on when the refrigerator needs cold air to maintain its set temperature. If the start relay is defective, it won’t signal the compressor when needed and cool air won’t be produced. If the start relay has a burnt odor or shows a lack of continuity with multimeter testing, it should be professionally replaced.

Caesar’s Appliance Sales and Service can address the needs of any high-end refrigerator brand. Call us for the very best Sub-Zero repair Laguna Niguel.