General Electric manufactures a wide array of residential kitchen appliances, including an extensive collection of side-by-side refrigerators. GE refrigerators use an internal component known as a "damper control" to circulate cool air between the freezer and fresh food compartments. When the damper control fails, neither compartment is able to cool properly until the control is replaced. Fortunately, installing a damper control in a GE side-by-side refrigerator is a straightforward task that requires no previous appliance repair experience.
Safety should be your top priority when performing do-it-yourself repairs on major home appliances like refrigerators. Always disconnect your GE side-by-side refrigerator from its power source before servicing it to prevent serious electrical injury or even death. Since the refrigerator has to to be unplugged while you're installing the new damper control, it's important to put easily perishable food items into ice-filled coolers to keep them from spoiling.
In GE side-by-side refrigerators, the damper control is located in the top left rear corner of the freezer compartment. You can remove the top freezer shelf to give yourself plenty of room to access the damper control. Take out the screws securing the damper control cover; the type and number of screws varies by GE refrigerator model. Once the cover is out of the way, disconnect the wiring harness and thermistor. The damper control is attached with strong adhesive, so pull firmly to detach the component from the freezer wall. Use cotton balls moistened with rubbing alcohol to clean any remaining adhesive residue from the mounting area.
Install Damper Control
Installing the new damper control takes just minutes. The replacement damper control comes with a foam mounting gasket. Remove the paper backing from one side of the gasket to expose the adhesive; press the gasket to the back of the damper control. Now that the gasket is mounted to the damper control, you can mount the damper control to the freezer wall. Peel the paper backing off the other side of the gasket and press the damper control to the mounting area. The wiring harness and thermistor attach to the right side and bottom of the component, respectively. Replace the damper control cover and reinstall the removed mounting screws.
GE residential side-by-side refrigerators come with a limited warranty that covers the cost of certain repairs for a specified length of time. GE refrigerator warranties state that all repairs must be performed by an authorized appliance technician. Unauthorized troubleshooting or repairs may void the terms of your warranty and make it ineligible to receive service from the manufacturer. Consult your warranty agreement for more information.
- Troubleshooting and Repairing Major Appliances, 2nd Edition; Eric Kleinert
- GE Consumer & Industrial: Profile Side-by-Side Refrigerators Technical Service Guide
- GE Consumer Home Services Training: Side-by-Side Refrigerators Technical Service Guide