Samsung Refrigerator Freezing Up – 6 Tips to Balance It

Is your Samsung refrigerator freezing up?

You’re not alone! Having frost buildup in your fridge can be super frustrating.

Luckily, you’ve come to the right place for answers.

If your Samsung refrigerator is freezing up, the defrost system is probably faulty, you have airflow issues, or the thermistor is malfunctioning. It’s also important to inspect the ice maker and drain when fixing the problem.

Read on to keep your Samsung fridge from freezing up!

Why trust us? This article was written by Craig Anderson and Andy Fulenchek.

Craig has helped thousands of other homeowners repair their appliances since 2016.

Andy is one of our resident appliance repair experts with over a decade of experience. He currently runs his appliance repair company with a team of trusted technicians.

Samsung Fridge Freezing Up? 6 Reasons Why

In this section, I’ll guide you through the different reasons that can explain why your Samsung fridge keeps freezing up and provide various solutions to address the frost buildup issue.

Are you ready? Let’s dive in!

Before trying any of the fixes mentioned in this article, keep in mind that you should be careful when removing the back panel of Samsung refrigerators due to the presence of Styrofoam. It’s best to let the fridge thaw for 24 hours before disassembling it.

#1 Airflow Issues

When I see a Samsung refrigerator freezing up, I always check for airflow issues.

All fridges rely on a balanced airflow to maintain proper humidity levels and temperature. If the airflow is disrupted, frost can easily form.

Ensure nothing is leaning against the back of the unit and blocking the vent. When there’s not enough air flowing to the vent, you’ll spot frost all over your food and sometimes even large puddles beneath the unit due to a constant process of freezing a thawing that won’t stop until you move some things around.

It’s also important to avoid overloading your fridge and inspect the condenser fan to ensure proper airflow.

Overloaded fridge
If your fridge is overloaded, move things around so it can close properly.

#2 Check the Door Seal

I tend to find that when a Samsung refrigerator keeps freezing up, it’s typically due to a damaged door gasket (or seal).

You see, if the door doesn’t stay closed, warm and humid air will find its way inside. Unfortunately, when warm air comes into contact with the cold air inside, it condenses into water droplets, leading to potential freezing over time.

Clean the door seals with warm water and vinegar and let them dry. If you notice they’re damaged or broken, you must replace them with new ones.

Tip: You can inspect the door seal by putting a piece of paper or a $1 bill between the gasket and the fridge and closing the door. Then, pull the piece of paper. If it slips out easily, it means that the door seal isn’t tight enough, and you need to replace it.

paper in fridge door
Inspect your fridge’s gaskets regularly.

#3 Malfunctioning Defrost System

In my experience, a Samsung fridge can keep freezing up due to a malfunctioning defrost system.

You see, modern fridges have an auto-defrost mode that automatically removes frost buildup from the evaporator coils to ensure the unit’s cooling effectiveness.

refrigerator coil
Is your Samsung fridge freezing up? Inspect the defrost system!

There are different types of defrost systems. However, all of them have a sensor that measures the temperature of the evaporator coils. When the coils have frost buildup, the sensor sends a signal to the control board, the fridge’s coordinator. As a result, the control board activates the defrost heater to thaw any accumulated frost.

Unfortunately, if any of the defrost system’s components are malfunctioning, your refrigerator can freeze up.

So, please test the components with a multimeter. If you’re not getting the manufacturer’s recommended readings, you’ll need to replace the malfunctioning part.

Keep in mind that repairing control board issues can cost over $400. So, please consider your fridge’s age, as sometimes replacing the entire unit is more cost-effective.

If you want to get any replacement part – or see how much one would cost – click to enter your model number in the search bar below. Our partners at AppliancePartsPros stock almost every part with free guides on how to install them.

#4 Temperature Control Issues

If you’ve tried the fixes above, but your Samsung refrigerator keeps freezing up, you must check the temperature control.

Turning the temperature dial knob in a fridge
Check your fridge’s temperature.

Most refrigerators should sit between 3 °C (37.4 °F) and 5 °C (41 °F). If you’ve set the correct temperature, but your fridge is too cold, there are two possible issues you need to inspect.

The first is the thermistor. Use the manual to look at the thermistor to see where it is located. Then, test it with an Ohm/Resistance check. If no current flows through the thermistor, you must replace it.

But if you don’t notice any problems with the thermistor, you should look at the temperature control thermostat. Start by turning the thermostat all the way up; you should hear a click. If you don’t, then there’s something wrong with the thermostat. 

Keep in mind that if the temperature control is working properly, you’ll need to check the air damper assembly. If it’s always open, the refrigerator will freeze up.

#5 Malfunctioning Drain

When a Samsung fridge is freezing up, I usually advise checking the drain.

When the frost covering the evaporator coils is melted, the remaining water goes into a drain hole. However, if the water freezes before passing through the drain, the hole can easily get blocked, creating an additional layer of frost and ice.

The easiest way to solve the problem is by unplugging your fridge, accessing the defrost drain, and pouring hot water down the hole. I recommend using a turkey baster.

How to unclog freezer drain
If you don’t have a turkey baster, borrow one from a friend. You can also buy one on Amazon for less than $10.

I also recommend ensuring the rubber flapper on the drain line behind the fridge’s kick panel is clean. If you notice any dirt or grime, please clean it.

Tip: To keep your drain from freezing up, wrap one end of a copper wire around the heating element and the other end into the drain hole.

#6 Issues with the Ice Maker

Now, let’s inspect the ice maker on your Samsung refrigerator.

Any air leakage into the dedicated ice compartment will allow moisture in, which freezes and causes frost buildup.

So, the first thing you must do is look for signs of a leak. There should be a dispenser bucket in the refrigerator door. Keep the door open, and look at the exit of a dispenser on the outside of the refrigerator. If you notice water coming from the other side, then there’s likely a leak in your ice maker. 

To double-check your work, I recommend using a flashlight. If you can shine a light on the dispenser and see it coming out of the other side of the refrigerator, you have confirmed an air leak. Even though you can repair the ice maker on your own, you are better off replacing it.

You can use silicone to seal the ice maker as a temporary fix. Silicone is not a permanent solution, as it could eventually develop a hole or peel off. But it could be a quick solution until the ice maker can be replaced.

Many (most) of the freezing issues with Samsung ice makers are caused by a known design flaw that allows warm air to enter. There is a factory-recommended process to resolve the issue. However, I’ve seen that in many cases, if you contact Samsung directly, they will fix the problem at no charge

Wrapping Up: Your Guide to a Frost-Free Samsung Fridge

Hopefully, now you know how to fix your Samsung refrigerator issues.

Remember, if your fridge keeps freezing up, you must check for airflow issues, ensure the door seals are not dirty or damaged, and inspect the defrost system. Don’t forget to check the drain and ice maker to prevent frost buildup.

Thank you so much for reading! Please check out our related posts if you found this article helpful.

Have a great day.

I've been helping homeowners with appliance repair since 2016. Starting out as an enthusiastic amateur, I've since worked with many Appliance, HVAC, and DIY experts over the last 7+ years. My mission is to help fix your appliances and prevent future issues - saving you stress, time, and money. Visit my author page to learn more! Read more