How Long Does It Take To Defrost Refrigerator Coils?

By - Hs Saini

Updated -

As your refrigerator runs, it is unavoidable for frost to form around its components. For instance, it is a regular occurrence when frost forms on its coils.

However, you would have to remove the frost for your fridge to function optimally. So, you may be wondering how long it takes to defrost your refrigerator coils?

You would need about a day to thoroughly defrost your refrigerator’s coils.  However, you may need more than a day in other refrigerators with a substantial ice level. On the other hand, regularly defrosting your refrigerator coils prevents massive buildup and considerably pulls down the time you’ll need.

How Long Does It Take To Defrost Refrigerator Coils?

Defrost Refrigerator Coils

Ice formation on refrigerator coils is a pretty common problem for fridge users.

Unfortunately, getting rid of this frost can be frustrating, especially when you allow it to accumulate to significant levels. 

You shouldn’t fret when you see frost on the evaporator; that’s what it was meant to do.

Your refrigerator compartment’s evaporator coil creates cold gas using the refrigerant and distributes it to other fridge parts. During this process, it accumulates frost on its surface.

So, to remove the ice that forms on your refrigerator evaporator coils, you will have to defrost them. So, generally, it should take an hour to defrost refrigerator coils.

However, this can be much longer if the ice accumulates to greater levels. The length of time it takes to defrost your refrigerator depends on how much frost is on it.

But several factors contribute to the level of ice on your refrigerator coils:

#1. Humidity

When humid air gets into your refrigerator, it accelerates frost formation.

However, if you do not open your fridge for a while, the auto-defrost fan keeps out moist air and prevents ice from growing on the refrigerator coils. 

On the other hand, if the auto-defrost fan develops a fault, ice buildup accelerates on the refrigerator coils and in the freezer.

Also, if you regularly open your refrigerator’s door, allowing moist air entrance, your refrigerator coils freeze in no time.

#2. Excessive Or Insufficient Refrigerant

Your refrigerator coils quickly freeze when you use incorrect amounts of refrigerant. Unfortunately, this causes other problems to the fridge as well.

When the refrigerant isn’t enough, the compressor incorrectly compresses the gas to produce warm air instead of cold air.

On the other hand, excessive refrigerant creates leakage into the coils, escalating freezing.

#3. Damaged Defrost Thermostat And Compressor

There is always a tendency for frost formation on the evaporator coils for auto-defrosting refrigerators.

So, when the defrost thermostat breaks down, there is no way to trigger the refrigerator defrost heater correctly. So, there will be no regulation of the fridge’s temperature.

Also, when you’ve got a faulty compressor on your hands, the process of frost removal is inefficient. So, there’s unchecked freezing occurring once your fridge is in use.

How Do You Unfreeze A Refrigerator Coil?

Defrosting your refrigerator coils is a pretty important activity that goes a long way to maintaining the lifespan of your fridge.

So there are a few ways to achieve this:

#1. Thermal Defrosting

The first step here is to set your refrigerator’s defrost thermostat to the required temperature for your freezer and your fridge.

Then, place a container that collects water flowing out of the exit tube; you can find this tube behind your fridge, close to the bottom.

So, when your refrigerator attains the required temperature, its compressor goes off. This allows the frost on your refrigerator’s evaporator coils to melt.

Finally, the melted ice flows like water to the container you previously placed at the exit tube.

#2. Manual Defrosting

Manual defrosting is a bit complex and involves a series of steps:

  • First, defrost the refrigerator compartment; this is to do away with the accumulating ice on the freezer compartment’s evaporator coils.
  • Remove the ice cubes from the freezer and store them in a cooler. Then, empty the freezer and defrost it.
  • Using dry towels, collect the water on the refrigerator’s evaporator coils. This water emanates from the melting frost.
  • Place the thermostat at zero and remove the refrigerator from the power outlet.
  • Push the refrigerator doors open to allow for the circulation of warm air.
  • Wait for the fridge’s interior to dry before you plug the refrigerator back on and set it to your needed parameters.

#3. Defrost Using a Blow Dryer

A portable hair dryer works great if you’re trying to defrost your refrigerator’s coils.

However, you would have to observe some basic safety measures, such as keeping the dryer from getting in contact with water.

Also, give a little bit of space when blowing warm air into the coils due to their hypersensitivity.

Place towels at the bottom of the freezer to collect water when defrosting your refrigerator’s evaporator coils using a blow dryer.

So, because you’re trying to push warm air into ice, place the dryer parallel to your freezer’s wall.

Then, you can gently use a coil cleaning brush to remove the ice glued to your refrigerator’s coils gently.

#4. Heater Defrosting

Sometimes, heater defrosting is the best choice you’ve got; here are a few steps to do this:

  • First, remove all the foodstuff in your refrigerator and empty it.
  • Turn your refrigerator’s thermostat to Zero. The defrost heater would turn on, and hot air enters the freezer compartment into the refrigerator evaporator coils.
  • At this point, open the refrigerator doors to allow for proper air circulation into the freezer compartment.
  • The collecting tray now collects the water flowing as the ice melts.
  • Once this process is complete and you’ve got a frost-free refrigerator, put back your foodstuff, set the parameters, and turn it on.

How Long Does It Take To Defrost Freezer Coils?

It takes at least two hours to defrost your freezer coils, but this is if you let them melt naturally.

However, this process can take a day or even more, depending on how much ice accumulates in the coils. It also depends on how much warmth you could provide. 

Also, the size of your refrigerator affects the time it takes to defrost its freezer coils. However, there are certain things you do to speed up this activity; using a Blow dryer is one of those.

So, apart from scraping ice off the evaporator coils of your refrigerator’s freezer, you should be ready to spend some time.

Maintenance doesn’t come easy; in the end, you’ll realize that it was worth it. But, several factors determine how long it’ll take to defrost your freezer coils.

#1. Frost’s Thickness

If the frost is quite thick, you need more time to remove it. It can take you a day or two if you keep your freezer open.

#2. State Of Your Refrigerator’s Components 

How your refrigerator’s components work also determines how fast the ice will melt off its freezer coils.

For instance, a faulty thermostat or compressor in an auto defrost fridge creates a more extended defrost period.

#3. External Conditions

It takes longer to defrost your freezer coils naturally than it would take to use an accelerator.

For instance, placing a container of steaming water in your freezer or using a blow dryer helps defrost the coils even faster.

Final Thoughts

Defrosting the evaporator coils of your refrigerator is one of the most critical maintenance activities. And although it can take some time, maybe up to a few days, to complete, it is worth it.

This simple process saves you energy, and money and extends its lifespan.

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