If you notice that your wine fridge’s fan isn’t working as it used to, you may have a broken fan motor and in order to repair it, you’ll need to take it apart and then replace the fan motor before reassembling the unit.
In most wine refrigerators, these fans are built into the back wall or the side of the refrigerator, so you should be able to locate them fairly easily even if you’re unfamiliar with how they work. After replacing your fan, you should be able to use your wine refrigerator normally again.
STEP 1: Determine the problem
If your refrigerator is making an unusual sound, there may be a problem with your fan. The first step is to determine if it’s actually your fan making noise and not some other part of your appliance.
To do so, simply press down on different parts of your refrigerator while you listen closely for additional noises. If you hear clunking, grinding or clicking sounds while pressing down, then these are typically signs that something inside is broken and needs repair.
STEP 2: Remove the back panel
You should find that there are about 4-5 screws holding each side of back panel together. The exact number will vary depending on what brand and model of refrigerator you have. If you are unsure, consult your owner’s manual or contact customer service for assistance.
If you don’t know where these screws are located, use your flat head screwdriver to carefully pry along all four edges until they release.
Disconnect Power: Safety first! Never attempt repairs with any part of your refrigerator powered on. This is a common mistake made by novices that can result in blown fuses and overheated appliances. Locate your disconnect box (typically located underneath one end cap) and flip off its breaker switch before proceeding further with your project.
STEP 3: Inspect for loose screws
Loose screws and damaged housing can cause rattling. While keeping your finger over one of the grill holes, grasp both sides of your unit with each hand and rock back and forth gently. If you hear clicking or buzzing coming from inside, chances are good that your fan is loose or damaged.
If so, proceed to step 4. Otherwise, tighten each screw located around the edge of your device using a Phillips-head screwdriver. Be sure to check all four corners for screws – several may be loose even if you don’t hear any noise coming from inside.
STEP 4: Clean any dusty coils or fans
Sometimes your cooling unit might need some servicing because it has picked up some dust and dirt along its way. If you have noticed that your cooler is warmer than usual, then it is time for you to clean any dusty coils or fans. To do so, just blow off any excess dirt using a blow dryer.
Make sure that while doing so, you are not blowing towards anything else as blowing air can damage it permanently. Also make sure that if there are any loose pieces in there, don’t get them stuck between moving parts as that can cause further damage too.
STEP 5: Replace any broken fans or coils
Remove any old fans and replace them with new ones. You may also need to replace any broken coils by removing them from their mounts and replacing them with new ones. This step could take some time, depending on how bad your problem is.
The coils themselves are only about $10 apiece online, but you’ll also want to replace any fans or other electrical components that were damaged during your inspection of the appliance’s interior.
STEP 6: Reattach the cover and plug back in
Be sure not to touch any of its parts with your hands as they could have been charged by static electricity while you were disassembling it. If you touched anything, ground yourself by touching some part of your body or item such as door frame.
If you get zapped, rub dry wall dust (or salt) over your fingers and wrists before resuming work. (see footnote
Plug back in and test. If it doesn’t start right away, wait five minutes for it to cool down then try again. Once everything is cool and running smoothly again, reattach its original location using screws or bolts etc… Assemble anything else which may have been taken apart.
STEP 7: Test!
Once you have reassembled your wine refrigerator and flipped it back on, double-check that everything works properly. You can also use a multimeter (available at most hardware stores) to see if electricity is actually getting through.
The easiest way to do that is by hooking up alligator clips or tweezers onto live wires (you are working with an unplugged refrigerator, right?) and touching those clips or tweezers onto other parts of your appliance while it’s running.
If electricity flows across these connections, then you know you’ve got power. Just make sure not to touch both of them at once!
STEP 8a) If you can hear it, keep cleaning
You’ll need to disassemble your refrigerator (because it can be hard to clean when everything is sealed up). Check all of your fans, paying particular attention to those that seem louder than normal. If you do find a clog, try using a paperclip or another thin wire or straw you have laying around.
Poke it into one of the openings at the bottom of each blade and see if you can get something out. Most times, that’s all it takes! Once you’ve cleaned off your fans and checked them for damage, give them another test run before reassembling your appliance. If everything is still running smoothly, great!
STEP 8b) If you can’t hear it, then it should be fine. Congratulations!
You have just eliminated one of your biggest problems. In order for you to hear what is going on with your appliance, it must be operating properly. If you can’t hear it, or it is making noise when nothing should be running, then troubleshooting can begin.
Repairing your own appliance might sound intimidating, but here’s how it can actually save you money. If you can handle simple repairs like replacing batteries or cleaning out dust, you’ll find lots of parts are inexpensively available online and at many hardware stores—especially if they’re mass-produced items.
You can even start by taking apart an old appliance before taking on one that runs; eventually, you’ll get better at fixing things as you go along. Remember: With so many DIY bloggers and YouTube channels dedicated to home repairs, there’s never been an easier time to learn!