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WHY IS MY REFRIGERATOR MAKING NOISE?

LET'S DIAGNOSE THOSE UNUSUAL SOUNDS

Although they make a range of sounds as part of their normal operation—like the gentle hum of the fan or an occasional click as the defrost timer turns on or off—fridges are usually very quiet appliances. That makes it all the more noticeable when unusual noises start to occur.

Wondering why your fridge is making a loud noise, or even a weird noise? Let's find out what could be causing some of those strange sounds.

1. SQUEAKING OR RATTLING

A squeak or rattle that comes from inside your fridge is likely caused by the circulation fan, which can be accessed through the interior panel at the back of the main compartment. Damage, corrosion, and debris can prevent this fan from circulating properly, warm up the fridge, and cause noisy operation. You may be able to clean it out or a replacement fan may be needed.

2. BUZZING OR HUMMING

Refrigerators usually buzz or hum very quietly, but there may be an issue if these sounds become louder than conversation level. Buzzing could be something as simple as an internal light bulb reaching the end of its lifespan, or it could indicate an issue with the compressor—especially if the noise is loud or accompanied by a knocking sound.

3. RAPID TAPPING

This kind of noise could be caused by ice building up around the fan. A manual defrost will get rid of the noise, but it won't address the original cause of the buildup. The noise is likely to return once the ice accumulates again, so a service appointment may be your best option.

4. CLICKING

The occasional sound of quiet clicking is normal; it's usually the thermostat or defrost timer turning on and off. But a loud click is something else. If your fridge is too warm on the inside, there may be an issue with the condenser coil or start relay. The former can be addressed by cleaning; the latter may require a replacement part. Clicking could also mean that an icemaker has been incorrectly hooked up, especially if the clicks happen regularly.

IS IT TIME TO CALL IN THE EXPERTS?

Your refrigerator isn't supposed to be silent, but that doesn't mean you can ignore all noises it makes—especially if they're loud enough to disrupt conversations or your fridge simply isn't performing as it should. If targeted troubleshooting and regular maintenance haven't put an end to those strange sounds, it may be time to book an appointment with our local specialists. We're usually able to get the job done in the first visit.*

*GE Appliances technicians carry an extensive parts inventory on their service trucks. In the event a part is not available on the service truck, a follow-up service call may be required.
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