How to Troubleshoot a GE Model TBF-15S Refrigerator


When using your GE TBF-15S no-frost refrigerator, you must follow specific guidelines set by GE regarding its proper use to prolong its life. Ensure the power cord stays intact by gripping the plug itself to unplug, rather than pulling on the cord, and regularly inspect the cord for frayed or worn portions. Install the refrigerator according to the manufacturer's directions, and attempt to troubleshoot malfunctions that arise with the TBF-15S refrigerator according to GE's recommendations.

Things You'll Need

  • Fuse
  • Adjustable wrench

Refrigerator Not Operational

  • Look at the temperature control panel. If it is set to "off," change it to another setting.

  • Open the refrigerator and look inside. The light should illuminate the interior; if not, check the refrigerator's plug to be sure it's firmly secure in the wall outlet.

  • Check your home's circuit breaker or fuse box. Reset any tripped breakers and replace blown fuses.

  • Give the refrigerator 30 minutes to begin working after you notice the motor is not running. The refrigerator's automatic defrost cycle may be underway, and it should begin working again within that time frame.

Rattling or Vibrating

  • Pull the grille at the bottom of the refrigerator away from the unit.

  • Locate the refrigerator's leveling legs or roller adjusting screws. The legs protrude from underneath the unit, with one on each side behind the grille. Roller adjusting screws stick up within the base of the refrigerator, with one on each side above the refrigerator's roller legs.

  • Turn the screws or legs clockwise to lift, or counter-clockwise to lower the refrigerator until it is level and does not shift. If the refrigerator features screws, use an adjustable wrench to turn them.

  • Line up the prongs on the grille's backside with the clamps on the refrigerator. Push the grille into place.

  • Adjust dishes on shelves inside the refrigerator to keep them from rattling or vibrating.

Poor Cooling

  • Check the temperature control panel. Adjust it as desired. For the freezer, "A" is warmest and "E" is coldest. Inside the refrigerator, "O" is off, while "9" is coldest.

  • Avoid opening the door excessively. This results in a warmer-than-desired temperature as well as ice crystals forming on foods in the freezer.

  • Inspect the contents of the freezer or refrigerator. Make sure no items are obstructing the door from closing completely; move any that are in the way.

  • Look at the air ducts inside the freezer. Move any packages that block the ducts.

Ice Production and Taste Problems

  • Inspect the gasket around the edge of the freezer to make sure it properly seals if ice production takes too long. If any items within the freezer prevent the door's closure, move them so the freezer completely closes.

  • If ice cubes take too long to form, lower the temperature of the freezer by moving it closer to "E" on the temperature control panel.

  • Dispose of old ice cubes and properly wrap contents of the refrigerator and freezer if ice cubes taste or smell bad.

Tips & Warnings

  • The motor of a GE TBF-15S may start and stop more than you believe is necessary, but this is normal, as are long periods of motor operation.
  • Sounds like a fan blowing, water dripping, mechanical clicking, or cracking and popping are because of normal operation of the refrigerator.
  • If food dries out, make sure it's properly wrapped or covered.
  • Moisture collection on the outside or inside of the refrigerator may be a normal occurrence because of high humidity.
  • Empty the defrost water pan if a puddle of water collects on the floor around the refrigerator.
  • Clean the refrigerator and place an opened box of baking soda inside to combat odor.


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