What Is a Fridge Evaporator Fan?

by Team eLocal
Critical case for a major appliance repair

Chances are, you've never given your refrigerator's evaporator fan much thought. This small component sits hidden in your refrigerator’s wall, but it's essential for keeping your fridge working properly. Knowing what a refrigerator evaporator fan is and how it works can help you spot common cooling problems.

What Is a Refrigerator Evaporator Fan?

Most modern fridges have an evaporator fan under the panel at the bottom of the unit or behind the freezer section. The fan motor turns on automatically when the compressor switches on. Your refrigerator may not have an evaporator fan if it's an old unit or you have a compact fridge model.

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What Does a Refrigerator Evaporator Fan Do?

A refrigerator evaporator fan works with the compressor to keep the inside of your fridge cold. It pulls air from the fridge compartment and pushes it over the evaporator coils to cool it down. The cold air then passes into the freezer compartment, and there may be a second fan that helps the air circulate. The air can move from the freezer to the fridge compartment through a small opening to cool the fridge down.

A broken or obstructed refrigerator evaporator fan can stop the fridge and freezer from cooling correctly. Over time, the lack of air blowing over the evaporator coils will cause them to ice over. One of the most common signs of a malfunctioning evaporator fan is a warm fridge, and you may notice that the compressor constantly runs to correct the temperature. You might also hear grinding, banging or squeaking noises if there is debris obstructing the fan blades. In this situation, you'll need to repair or replace the fan.

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