Friday, August 3, 2012

Charging 134a Freon On Residential Refrigerators.

Charging 134a freon  on residential  refrigerators.

If you own a refrigerator built after 1995 chances are it uses 134a coolant. Here at On-Time Appliance we use the large 30# cans but this is not piratical for the average person who owns a refrigerator.  I have found though 134a is 134a the only difference is the "Stop Leak" additive they add to the can. I have never tried this so I do not know if it works in refrigerators. It might end up restricting your sealed system. For the bold ones who have tried, leave a comment and I will update this article.
134a is suppose to be the Environmentally friendly coolant. It is more than the older R12 but it is still freon so be careful. Those of us with the E.P. A. License have to recover and be accountable for the freon we recover and use. This is an expense  added to the bill which unfortunately in many cases the owner disposes of the refrigerator (adding to the land fills). With this article I hope to show it is fairly easy to add coolant with out all the extra equipment and still have a reliable refrigerator.

After you  checked all other possibilities  and determined that your refrigerator has a coolant leak ( I say coolant because freon is a brand name like Kleenex is to tissue)

Supco Piercing Valve

You must first Tap the process tube on your compressor. The best way is to solder a valve onto the process tube of the compressor. But they have a non soldier piercing valve that works very well. Simply follow the enclosed instructions. The only tip I would give would be to tighten the screws until they are very firm to prevent leaks.

Enviro-Safe R12/R22 Can Tap with Gauge - R-134a Can to R-12/R-22 Port

Now that you have your compressor taped your ready to check and to recharge your system. Screw the hose onto the piercing valve and and open it. (Follow the enclosed instructions that came with the valve.) Make sure your gauge is turned off. If your not sure which way that is it will become obvious to you when you open the piercing valve. If you here gas escaping just turn the gauge's valve the other way.

Notice the " 0 " Scale on the gauge, to the right is green ( negative or in a vacuum ) to the left is black. Disregard the Blue graphs they are not needed here. We want to see 3-5 lbs. If you are low on freon it will be negative. If the gauge is 10 or above your compressor is defective or you have a restriction in your sealed system. If that is the case you must call a Appliance Repair Company to repair your refrigerator.

OK your gauge shows negative so lets put some coolant in. 

  1. Attach your hose to your can of coolant and pierce the can. Now you need to blow the air from your gauges. If you bought the gauges shown here the small amount air that will enter your system should not pose a problem. If your using longer hoses do not skip this next step.
  2. Close off the piercing valve installed on the compressor and loosen the hose connected to it. Open the can of coolant. Now slightly open the valve on your gauge until you hear gas escaping the loosen hose by the piercing valve, quickly tighten the hose and turn the valve off at your gauge.
  3. Open the piercing valve. Now your ready to recharge your system with 134a. Hold the can upright (most blended coolants need to charge with the can upside down, in its liquid state. This requires a different charging method.) and open the valve on your gauge. Let the coolant flow for about 10 seconds then turn off the valve at the gauge, check you pressure. Remember we are looking for 3-5 lbs. You will have to do this multiple times. Increase or decrease the amount of time you have your gauge valve open to tweak the pressure into place.
 After 10 -15 min check and adjust the pressure if needed. Tighten the piercing valve on the compressor and remove the charging hose.
Lat time I checked the prices to do this job was $34.00 if you buy everything you need from Amazon. You still have a leak in your system so every so often you might need to put a little more coolant in depending on the size of your leak. I have seen refrigerators last several years before another recharge is needed.
If you find the coolant leaks out quickly, check to be sure your piercing valve is good and tight. You might have to use some "Stop Leak". But that's for another Article.
 Leave your questions and comment below. We answer them all. Thanks from On-Time appliance.


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Cleaning your refrigerator's condenser coils

Cleaning your Refrigerator's condenser coils

This should be done at least twice a year. This is often forgotten about but is the leading cause for your refrigerator / freezer to perform poorly. Given time it will cause damage to your compressor. Here at Appliance Repair Carrollton TX. We find the major cause of compressor replacement is because of not cleaning your condenser.
Locate the refrigerator / freezer condenser by removing the front kick plate. A few models actually screw this in place but normally they are held in place with tabs. Pull the cover off, sometimes you have to be a little forceful. And look to see if the coils are there. 9 out of 10 times that is were it will be located. If they are not there you must pull the refrigerator out from the wall to gain access to the back. Take Care. You might want to place some thing down in front of your refrigerator so you won't scratch your floor. Also be aware of the water line going to your refrigerator (If you have a ice maker). The old copper water lines become brittle and crack over time, make sure this is checked for leaks before you push the refrigerator back into place. At the bottom of the refrigerator you will see a cover (usually cardboard but they may use plastic or metal) remove this to gain access to the condenser.

Showed here are the most common types of condenser's you will see on today's refrigerators. They may look different depending on the make and model but you will see the coils. Use your vacuum to clean as much of the dust as you can. The picture shown on the left is very deep and a brush must be used to get to the rear of the coils. If you dodn't have a "Coil Cleaning Brush" just use a rag attach to a thin rod to do the deep cleaning.
That is all there is to it. Give your refrigerator 24hrs to adjust the cooling, then check your temperature.
If you would like to have On-Time Appliance in the Dallas and Plano area perform this task. Just follow the link or call us at (214)916-0337

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Ge Refrigerator Main Board

                   Ge Refrigerator Main Control Board              

This part fixes the following symptoms:
  • Will not start
  • Freezer section too warm
  • Fridge section too warm
  • Unusual Noise
  • Water dispenser will not dispense water
  • Ice maker will not make ice
  • Fridge section too cold
  • Refrigerator runs too long
  • Freeze To Cold
    This control board is located in the back of the refrigerator. And is very easy to change. You should see the asscess panel. Simply unscrew the plate and you will have access to the control board.
    Fix your Board.Com is about 1/2 price on repair of  your board.
    If you need a company in the Dallas or Plano Texas area. Give us a call at (214)916-0337 or go to On-Time Appliance on-line scheduling available.

    This control board may be found in models similar to the following:



Unclogging Your Refrigerator Drain

Unclogging your refrigerators drain.

Are you having water dripping from your refrigerator onto your floor? 

This is a very common problem for refrigerators. First make sure water is not leaking from your Ice Maker. 
If not you have a clogged defrost drain line.
What happens (see above) your Condensation Collection tray under your evaperator coils fills with ice and covers the Drain Hole. When this happens the water from the defrost cycle has no were to go but into your refrigerator and onto the floor. This is why you have water pooling a few times a day and not a steady flow.

How to repair this:

The ways described here works for all makes and models of residential refrigerator. If you have a Top or Bottom mount freezer, Side by Side, or French door style. They all work the same way only the position of the drain hole will be different. It is always behind  the back wall of the freezer.

If you have the time to properly defrost your refrigerator this is the best and easiest way. Simply unplug your refrigerator, open the doors, and give it a proper 12 hour defrost. you might want to place a towel in front just in case your drip pan over fills, but this is uncommon.

If the above way will not work for you then you can manually defrost and unclog your drain line.
On the inside of your freezer locate the screws in the back of your freezer holding the back panel in place. Remove these screws then remove your back panel exposing the evaporator coils. No matter what type of refrigerator you have is should look similar to the above picture.
 I like to boil a cup of water in the microwave untill it boils. Pour the hot water in the Condensation collection tray. Use a towel to soak up the water after it has cooled. Repeat this process untill there is no ice.
NOTE: Do not pour the hot water over the evaporator coils directly. Just in the collection tray.
If you have a small air line you can blow into the drain hole to be sure in is completely defrosted. Pour a cap full or two of bleach into the drain hole to help prevent the growth of mold in your drain pan. Reassemble plug your refrigerator back in and you should be set to go.If you still need some help and your in the Dallas or Plano Texas area. Give us a call at   (214) 926-0337

Friday, July 27, 2012

My Dishwasher is not cleaning as well as it should

' My Dishwasher is not cleaning as well as it should.' and  ' It takes a Very long time for my dishwasher to complete a full cycle' Is the most common statement we hear from our customers about there dishwashers here at On-time Appliance.  And both  problems seems to  run  together.
The first thing that you should check if your dishwasher is having these symptoms is the water level. Start your dishwasher in a normal way, after the water fills and you here the pump start. Open  your dishwasher (slowly, your dishwasher will automatically stop but the water may splash for a moment.) Move your lower rack out and check the water level. I have found a good level should be approximately 1" to 1.5"  bellow the heating element. Now check the  temperature of the water. Dishwasher detergent does not completely  dissolve and activate until 120 degrees. If you find that the water temperature is find and water level is ok, Then call the Appliance Repair Service people. You may have a more serious problem. But often this is not the case.
Typically you find the water temperature is to cold. If you run the hot water at your sink  prior to starting your dishwasher cycle. The water entering your dishwasher will also be Hot. Check the temperature of the water by filling a glass and using a thermometer. You may have to increase The temperature of your hot water heater.  This is always a trade off. Hot water uses more energy. But to have clean and dry dishes, only you can decide.
Now that the water temperature is checked and corrected what do we do with all of that soap scum that has built up over time. I recommend Dish Washer Magic. There are several other types of cleaners for your dishwasher but I have been using this product for several years now with very good success. It may take a few applications to completely remove all of the build up. But you will shortly see a significant difference.

A monthly cleaning of your dishwasher  keeps your dishwasher clean and washing at peek performance.
1 cup of apple cider vinegar placed in your lower dishwasher rack (empty dishwasher). Start a normal cycle and allow the water to wash over the vinegar to slowly distribute. Your dishwasher will be cleaning like new again. Hope this helps. If it turns out you still need service and are in the Dallas county or Collin county area Give us a call here at On-Time Appliance. 

Water is Not Filling My Washing Machine

Water is Not Filling My Washing Machine

Here are a few things to try before you call an Appliance Repair Company for service.

Problem:  Water does not enter tub during “Fill” period, but machine agitates in “wash.”
Explanation: this condition is often brought about by either an oversight or improper use of the clothes washer.

Tools and materials needed:

1. Check to make sure that the water supply valves are open at the faucet. (figure 1 )
2. Advance the timer control knob to “spin dry.” Allow the machine to complete this period of evaporation so that any water left in the machine from previous use can be completely discharged.
Special note: in the construction of modern automatic clothes washer, the quantity (fill level) of water required by the machine is automatically regulated by a device called the “fill level control.” This device in the washer is capable of sensing the pressure created by the weight of the water in the washer tub. This pressure information is then acted upon by the water fill control as an electrical switch either to allow water to enter the washer when called for or to shut if off when it is not required. If the clothe washer is stopped manually during the final “spin dry” period and before all of the water has been discharged from the machine (this may be attempted by the user when “permanent press” and “drip dry” clothing are removed to be hung while still wet), a sufficient quantity of water may be left In the tub to prevent the water fill control from allowing additional water to enter the tub when a new wash load is started. It is important, therefore, to allow the washer to complete the entire cycle to avoid this problem.
3. After all water has been discharged from the machine, return the timer control knob to the “fill”

Problem: water does not enter tub; machine does not agitate or spin.
Explanation: from all indications the clothes washer would appear to be completely “dead.” This can be caused either by simply forgetting to turn on the water supply or by electric power failing to reach the clothes washer.
Tools and materials needed:
(a) A lamp (tabletop or other portable type)
(b) (b) a 3- prong male plug ( heavy duty metal clad type available at any electrical hardware store)
(c)  An electrical fuse ( style and size depends upon fuse to be replaced)
Solution:     1. Check the water supply valves at the faucets to make sure they are open
2. Test the electric outlet to which the machine is connected to see if electric current is present. This is done by disconnecting the washer line cord plug from the electric outlet and plugging a lamp or other electrical device known to be good in its place.
3. If the test lamp lights, the electric outlet is good and a check should be made on those washing machines that have “overload” or “unbalance” protection switches to see that the switch button is depressed to restore machine operation.
Note: not all washing machines are equipped with “overload” or “unbalance” protection switches that can be reset manually by the sure. Review the “user’s instruction booklet” which has been supplied with the machine by the manufacturer to determine whether or not your washer has been so equipped.
4. If the washer does not contain a manual reset button, a careful check should be made of the washing machine line cord plug.
5. Examine the line cord plug for loose prongs and frayed, broken, or burned wires. (Figure 4) if the plug proves defective or even if its condition is dubious, replace the plug with a new one. For complete information see section 2, general repair procedures, how to replace a three-prong male plug.
6. If the test lamp does not light when plugged into the washing machine wall outlet, the outlet is dead and a check of the house fuses or circuit breakers (whichever are used) will probably reveal that either a fuse has been blown or that a circuit breaker has been tripped, as the case may be. See section 2, general repair procedures, how to locate and replace fuses, for this information.
7. Caution: do not connect the washing machine plug to the wall outlet until the fuse has been replaced.
8. After replacing the fuse, star and operate the washer in the routine manner for washing clothes. If the fuse blows ( or circuit breaker trips ) again, it indicates that a serious defect exist in the machine- one which will require further testing by a qualified appliance technician, do not attempt to use the washer until it has been properly tested and repaired.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Cleaning your front load washing machine

In today's Dallas homes, Here at On-Time Appliance  front-loading washing machines are popular choices as compared to traditional, top-loading machines for 3 main reasons:

1.    They wash more clothes per cycle, lowering household energy costs
2.    They?re environmentally-friendly, using less water per cycle
3.    They?re gentler on clothes, preserving colors and fabrics longer

They also require more care in the cleaning department.
Because of the way most front-loading washers are built, they tend to pool water in their drums, which can be a breeding ground bacteria and mildew.
Whether your front-loading washer smells dirty or not, you'll want to follow proper procedures to keep it clean.
First, only use High Efficiency detergent. High Efficiency detergent is super-concentrated and creates fewer suds than traditional laundry detergent. Fewer suds mean more soap is drained in the rinse cycle, leaving fewer chemicals and fragrances to sit in the drum.
High Efficiency detergent is also sold fragrance-free. This is the preferred variety for a long-term, stink-free washing machine.
Next, at least once weekly, take a dry cloth and wipe the inside rim of your front-loading washer. There, you will find a wide plastic tube in which water settles between loads of laundry. If you find stains or grime, remove it. If your washer has a drain filter on its front-lower edge, remove the filter and allow the water to drain. ( Check your user manual ) preferably onto a towel or into a bucket.
Then, lastly, consider running an empty cycle with just bleach and water. This is optional, but can help remove lingering stench. 
Once your front-loading washing machine is cleaned, going forward, after each load runs, try leaving your washers front door open. This will allow fresh air to circulate through the washer and help drum-settled water to evaporate.
With less water and humidity in the drum, bacteria growth is slowed.
Here are some comments left by customers about their Front load washing machine odor problem.

This happens to me with my front loader.

Also, the rubber seal around the door stays wet and gets moldy.  I think that is where most of the smell comes from.  If I am going to be using bleach for any clothes, I always do that load last and it seems to freshen the inside of the drum. After the last load, I leave the door ajar so that it can air out.  I also clean the rubber seal with spray tub and tile cleaner that contains bleach every week or so.  The important thing is to make sure that it is dry and that there are no pockets of sitting water on the seal after you are done using the washer.  The idea about leaving the door ajar came from my sister in law and I have just started doing that in the past month or so and it really has made a big difference.  I think since the system is so airtight, unlike top loaders, the moisture does not evaporate once the door is shut.

Here's what I do, and it works for me

Use about a quarter cup of vinegar and add it to your wash.  It takes away the entire odor as well as any musty smell of any laundry that was left in the washer too long.  My towels in the summertime, if I leave them in the wash too long (which doesn't take long), will smell awful, vinegar will take it right out.  Otherwise, try running a bleach wash, with nothing in your washer.  If you have well water, that may be the reason.  In that case a water softener will help.
If you need any more assistance for your front load washing machine repair Or if you are in the Dallas or Collin county area Visit On-time Appliance washing machine repair or call us at (214) 916-0337