How to Connect a Thermostat to a Refrigerator
The thermostat in a refrigerator controls the compressor’s on/off switch, ensuring the fridge stays cold enough to keep food fresh. It’s a small component that can make or break your fridge’s operation. A broken thermostat can cause the fridge to run warm or too cold and eat away at your food, leading to bacteria growth and spoiled food.
Thermostats aren’t hard to replace. You just need a little know-how and some basic hand tools.
Before you begin, check to see if the wires on your thermostat have been pressed or screwed in. If they’re pressed, use needle-nose pliers to remove the wires, if they’re screwed, use a screwdriver.
Next, examine the wires closely and identify the terminal markings on each of them. Some thermostats have a diagram printed on their surface, while others simply have labels that point to the different wires. Using this information, you can easily connect your new thermostat’s wires to your old one, which will make the process much easier.
Once you’ve identified the wires, pull out your old thermostat. The wires will be attached to the control housing and to the sensing tube. If an insulation sleeve covered the old sensing tube, remove it and replace it with the sleeve on the new temperature sensor. Straighten the sensor tube, making sure to align it with the connectors on the new thermostat.
You can also use a digital image of your thermostat’s wires as a guide, but it’s best to go prong by prong to be precise. If you’re not sure where to connect the wires, consult an online schematic or ask a professional.
Step 1: Removing the thermostat
To remove the thermostat, locate the control panel within your refrigerator’s control housing and loosen any screws or clips that hold the panel in place. Then, slide the thermostat out of the housing and set it aside.
Step 2: Getting the new thermostat ready to install
Grab your replacement temperature control thermostat and prepare for installation. It should have two or three wires attached to it and an insulated sensing tube that fits into the control housing. Carefully straighten the sensor tube so it’s the same shape as the old one. If the old one had an insulation sleeve, slip that onto the new sensor tube.
Step 3: Connecting the new thermostat
The thermostat should be labeled with a number of wires and their terminal designations. This makes it easy to connect the wires to the thermostat and a new controller, but it’s still important to pay attention to where the wires are attached and to the terminal lettering on the wires themselves.
Depending on your model, the wiring colors and terminals will vary. A low-voltage thermostat control system will typically have five main wires – brown (power), blue (neutral), green (ground), black (compressor) and white (lighting).
Taking the time to connect the correct wires to each of your new thermostat’s terminals is essential to ensure the new thermostat works properly. If the thermostat isn’t correctly connected, you risk damaging the appliance or even shorting out the thermostat circuit.