My Fridge Won't Cool, What Should I Do?

Mary Smith
By Mary Smith. February 28, 2021
My Fridge Won't Cool, What Should I Do?

The refrigerator is one of the most important appliances in a home. Preserving food depends fundamentally on its proper functioning, since if you do not carry out the refrigeration process correctly, many products will be spoiled. For this reason, it is very important to carry out basic actions for the care and maintenance of the refrigerator.

If your fridge is not cooling, keep reading this oneHOWTO article where we explain the different causes why a fridge won't cool, and what to do about it.

You may also be interested in: How to Clean the Freezer
  1. Bad thermostat regulation
  2. Climatic class
  3. Constant door opening
  4. Tight ventilation space
  5. Refrigerator unplugged
  6. Technical problems
  7. What to do if your fridge won't cool

Bad thermostat regulation

One of the reasons why a fridge won't cool is an incorrect thermostat setting. When the appliance is first released, there is a temptation to turn the thermostat down enough so that the refrigerator can cool down very quickly. In contrast, energy expenditure is higher and therefore some people decide to raise the temperature of the refrigerator. With this action and in hotter environments, the appliance may have problems cooling, especially in the state of the food.

My Fridge Won't Cool, What Should I Do? - Bad thermostat regulation

Climatic class

The term climatic class in a refrigerator is the one that establishes the room temperature in which it works normally. Although it depends on the indications of each manufacturer, in general terms it is stipulated that a refrigerator must be at a temperature that ranges between 16 o C and 32 o C.

In kitchens or pantries with temperatures higher than those indicated, the refrigerator will probably have problems cooling.

Constant door opening

If you've ever thought “my fridge doesn't cool but the freezer does”, pay attention to how many times you open the fridge door. If you do this often, it is the most probable cause.

In times of high heat, constantly opening the refrigerator door causes the heat to enter the interior of the refrigerator, while the cold comes out, and slows down the cooling process. Because of this, you will find food and drink hot or slightly cold.

My Fridge Won't Cool, What Should I Do? - Constant door opening

Tight ventilation space

Optimizing the capacity and spaces of the refrigerator to the maximum is crucial for it to cool well. You have to optimize the space, which does not mean filling it to the maximum. If you fill it excessively, the cold will not be able to reach all the foods well.

In addition, you will make it difficult for the appliance to cool down by obstructing some air vents. The ventilation of the refrigerator is essential to optimize the cooling power. If you do not have enough space to expel all the hot air, the performance will be ineffective and it will not cool properly.

Refrigerator unplugged

Have you ever thought “my fridge doesn't cool or freeze”? In this context it is very important that you check if the appliance is properly connected to the electrical current. It will seem absurd, but sometimes the plug is unplugged or loosened by some type of movement.

If it is unplugged, it will be impossible for the refrigerator to cool and freeze. To check this, you can see if the controls and bulbs are working properly, make the usual noises due to cooling, see if the cable is plugged into the wall or if there is any broken part where it comes out of the fridge or along length of the cable itself. Even if all this seems to be fine, make sure that the electrical current in this part of your house works. For this, try plugging in another device and checking if it works or not, or if there's any other difference.

You may also be interested in our article about how long to wait to plug in a new refrigerator.

My Fridge Won't Cool, What Should I Do? - Refrigerator unplugged

Technical problems

Other problems that can cause you to realise that your fridge won't cool and performs poorly are technical issues. Freezing of the gaskets, refrigerant gas leaks, clogged fan or dirt in the condenser are some of the main technical problems of the refrigerator.

When you detect that the refrigerator does not cool and makes noise, it is probably due to one of these technical causes. This is when it's time to call a professional.

My Fridge Won't Cool, What Should I Do? - Technical problems

What to do if your fridge won't cool

Now that we've seen the main causes why a fridge won't cool, it's time to see what you should do about it. Here are our tips:

Thermostat regulation

Lower the temperature of the fridge to cool the food. Adjust the thermostat to an intermediate level, in most types of refrigerators you have to set it between 4º and 5º. Consult the instructions for use of your refrigerator to make sure you've done this right.

Relocating the fridge to a cool area

If the problem is a very high room temperature, change the location of the refrigerator and place it in a cooler place. Avoid exposing it to direct contact with the sun and sources of heat such as a heater, oven, and dishwasher.

Open the door less

An action as simple as opening the refrigerator door less often will help it cool properly. This measure is especially useful in summer: think about what food you need or what you are going to drink in advance to open the refrigerator door less times.

This can be tricky if you have children that are constantly opening and closing the fridge door to see what they can snack on. We must simply communicate with them that we can get the snack they want so they can stop opening and closing the fridge, causing it to not cool.


To solve ventilation problems in the refrigerator, try to detach it a lot from the wall for a while. Then reinstall it, leaving more space between the wall and the back of the appliance. Also, do not overfill the shelves to leave space so that the interior air can move better.

Cleaning the fan and condenser

Although it is not easy to access the fan and condenser of the refrigerator, try to clean them from time to time to optimize its performance. Remove the fan grill to check that it is not obstructed and, in the case of the condenser, read the manufacturer's manual to find it and clean it properly.

Defrost the fridge

If it is producing ice, it's best to defrost the refrigerator. Otherwise, the food will not be cooled properly and will not be stored properly.

Call a technician for the broken thermostat

If the refrigerator is plugged in and the motor is not making any noise, it is probably because the thermostat has broken and therefore the refrigerator will not cool. To solve this problem, call and hire the services of a specialist technician.

Now that you know why your refrigerator does not cool or does not cool enough and what you can do about it, you may want to also learn how to clean a smelly refrigerator.

If you want to read similar articles to My Fridge Won't Cool, What Should I Do?, we recommend you visit our Maintenance and home security category.

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My Fridge Won't Cool, What Should I Do?