My fridge-freezer is not cooling

My fridge freezer temperatures are too high, the appliance is running hard but it's not staying cool. I pulled it out to check if the back grill was dirty, but it's clean.

What I did notice is that the unit at the bottom (big black thing, Danfoss NLX15KK - I think it's the heat exchange unit) is very hot almost too hot to touch, however the pipe leading off it that goes into the coil/grill at the back of the fridge quickly cools off before the first loop, so the back of the fridge is not distributing the heat as it should be.

This would explain why the fridge and freezer aren't staying cool, but why is the heat not being sent around the coil? Is there supposed to be a pump? Could this be broken?

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Hi @emilysweep ,

The compressor is hot because the desired temp not being reached, therefore it is running continually, trying to achieve this.

If the compressor (Danfoss NLX15KK), which is also the "pump", is hot, but the condenser coils aren't then the refrigerant is not being pumped through the system. The condenser coils should be warm/hot as this is where the refrigerant condenses back from a gas to a liquid (releasing absorbed heat from the fridge / freezer cabinets) before going back into the compressor, to start the cycle again.

Is the line out from the compressor into the fridge icy cold or can you see frost on it? (Don't 'burn' yourself or 'stick to it' - if access is possible, wear dry cotton gloves to feel, when trying to find out).

As it is a 'sealed' system, you need a qualified repairman to check it out as it could be anything in the sealed system, faulty compressor, lack of refrigerant, some fridges (you don't state the make or model) even have a valve in the line from the compressor to the evaporator unit.,etc.


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Thanks for your answer.. if it's a job for an engineer then it is what it is lol...

No frost on the line out.. it's a Meile, only about 5 years old and was stored for about 2 years. Maybe there is some corrosion, I can see quite a bit of blue/green corrosion on the copper piping..


Hi @emilysweep ,

Copper will turn green/blue due to humidity. It not a problem usually. Check the copper roofs of churches in Europe for example

Hopefully it was stored in an upright position.

Has it been running OK up until now that is, since coming out of storage?

Does the line out feel cold etc?

If not then it is either a faulty compressor or a lack of refrigerant (possible leak as it should be sealed loop).

If it turns out to be either check the warranty as a lot of manufacturers provide a longer warranty for the compressor or sealed system than they do for the rest of the fridge. Although Miele say to check the "guarantee' that came with the appliance because they only offer a 2 year warranty Depending on your location you may be able to get them to cover at least the cost of the part if it is the compressor. In Aust the consumer law states that major appliances should 'last' for a reasonable amount of time. 5 years for a fridge is not reasonable. in my opinion

Just a thought.


You're right I think that's the case in the UK, worth a shot, it's been running faultlessly the 6 months since it was out of storage and it's been properly looked after. I'll post the outcome in case it's useful to anyone, engineer coming on Friday!


Well, someone came out. He had a look, with a torch and by feeling all the pipework at the back, said either the compressor is not pumping or the gas has gone, however no sign of a leak externally which would be fixable (said there would be oil residue) but he would not change the compressor because there *might* be an internal leak which could not be fixed. Plus this all would cost £200-£300 and a new fridge freezer costs £400 and they're all basically the same so no point paying £1000 for one like ours. He had no specialist equipment to pressure test the pipework or anything like that, I assumed this is something that could be done.. because if someone can confirm there is no leak, I think I'd rather buy a new compressor and have it re-gassed for £300. So, did we get a duff engineer, or is there really no way to tell if it's leaked?


Hi @emilysweep ,

Thanks for the update

I'm not a fridge repairman, but I too thought that it should be possible to test the pressure of the refrigerant in the system.

Perhaps you should contact a Miele authorized repair agent and ask them if it can be tested to determine whether it is the compressor or a lack of refrigerant due to a leak. (unless this is what you've already done then maybe try someone else -check their reviews)



Cause 1

Condenser Coils are Dirty

The condenser coils are usually located under the refrigerator. They dissipate heat as refrigerant passes through them. If the condenser coils are dirty, they won’t dissipate the heat effectively. As debris builds up on the coils, the refrigerator becomes less efficient, causing the refrigerator to work harder to cool down. If the coils are significantly dirty, the refrigerator will not be able to maintain the proper temperature. Check the condenser coils to determine if they are dirty—if the condenser coils are dirty, clean them.

Condenser Fan Motor

The condenser fan motor draws air though the condenser coils and over the compressor. If the condenser fan motor is not working properly, the refrigerator won’t cool properly. To determine if the fan motor is defective, first check the fan blade for obstructions. Next, try turning the fan motor blade by hand. If the blade does not spin freely, replace the condenser fan motor. If no obstructions are present and the fan blade spins freely, use a multimeter to test the fan motor for continuity. If the condenser fan motor does not have continuity, replace it.

Cause 3

Evaporator Fan Motor

The evaporator fan motor draws air over the evaporator (cooling) coils and circulates it throughout the refrigerator and freezer compartments. Some refrigerators have more than one evaporator fan motor. On refrigerators with only one evaporator, the evaporator is located in the freezer compartment. If the evaporator fan is not working, it will not circulate the cold air to the refrigerator compartment. If this occurs, the freezer may still get cold, while the refrigerator will not get cold. To determine if the evaporator fan motor is defective, try turning the fan blade by hand. If the fan blade does not turn freely, replace the fan motor. Additionally, if the motor is unusually noisy, replace it. Finally, if the motor does not run at all, use a multimeter to test the motor windings for continuity. If the windings do not have continuity, replace the evaporator fan motor.


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there is no condenser fan, it's a big grill fitted to the back of the fridge. so the compressor is hot but the grill is cold... it doesn't seem to be dissipating the heat. the internal fans are working.




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