Why Is My Fridge So Loud?

by Jennifer Porterfield | Last Updated: October 26, 2021
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A working fridge is a great thing – it keeps our food nice and cold, which makes it last longer. They’re the unsung heroes of the kitchen they normally don’t seem to do very much – they just sit there being cold!

Why Is My Fridge So Loud

However, there’s a complex set of mechanisms in a modern fridge that keep it working day and night to keep your food cold. It’s the one piece of your kitchen that is tirelessly working for you!

They’re normally pretty quiet, but yours may have developed an annoying noise. This can be worrying – especially if you’ve just picked up a big load of shopping!

Don’t panic, though – there are a few things that you can check on your fridge to see if it’s just a small issue, something more to worry about – or just a normal noise! This simple guide will give you a few tips to help you get to the root of that annoying noise!

Is This Noise Normal?

First of all – don’t worry about every little noise that your refrigerator makes. They’re quiet in normal operation, but not always silent.

It’s normal for them to make some noise occasionally, and if this is the case – it’s usually perfectly normal, and nothing to worry about. It could very well be that you’re just noticing the noise for the first time!

One example of a normal noise for a fridge to make is a humming noise. This is perfectly fine and doesn’t indicate that there’s anything wrong with your fridge.

If you live with somebody else, ask them if they can hear the noise, and if they’ve ever noticed it before. Maybe this is just how your fridge sounds sometimes, and you’ve never noticed it before!

Also, check the user manual for your fridge. If you’ve lost it, then don’t worry – as long as you know the make and model of your fridge, you’ll very likely be able to find it with a quick google search!

If the manual describes the noises you’re hearing as normal, then there’s nothing to worry about – your fridge is working as expected!

However, if you’re completely sure that these noises aren’t normal, then it’s time to find what’s causing them!

Fans

There are quite a few parts on your fridge that can make it noisy. First of all are the fans – they’re often the culprit of a noisy fridge.

There can be a few fans on your fridge – usually in the freezer – and they can all contribute to making your fridge noisy. If you’re hearing what sounds like a scraping or whirring sound, then have a look at all of the fans you can find.

You may have a fan inside the freezer – this helps with keeping the temperature correct throughout your freezer by circulating air.

If some of the contents of your freezer are able to poke through the guard, the movement of the fan can be impeded – this can, of course, cause noise issues!

The fan might also be blocked up. If possible, you may be able to clear it yourself – but make sure to turn the power off and unplug your fridge first!

You may also have a fan at the rear of the fridge, behind an access panel. This can be harder to access, and might be something you prefer to leave to a professional – but it can also be a source of noise.

Faulty Defrost Timer

There’s a chance it might be a problem with the defrost timer, if your unit has one. If you hear a ticking or scraping noise, and notice that frost and ice is building up, you should definitely consider the possibility that the defrost timer is faulty.

If the fridge only makes this noise perhaps once or twice per day, for a set period – say, an hour – that’s another sign that this could be the issue.

Unfortunately, this is a part of the fridge that you’ll need professional help to fix. If you don’t know what you’re doing, then leave it alone – and get somebody who knows what they’re doing to have a look at it.

Compressor

Your fridge keeps cool by means of a compressor. It’s normal for this compressor to make some noise when in operation – so hearing the compressor in action isn’t usually a cause for alarm. However, an overactive compressor can be a sign of issues elsewhere.

If your compressor is always active, it’s possible that your door seal has come loose, and isn’t keeping the warm air out anymore. This can mean that your compressor has to work more to keep the fridge cool – and staying on for longer means more wear and tear in the long run.

Check your seals, and consider replacing them if they’re too damaged to be any use. Of course, this aging might be a sign that the fridge is in need of replacement anyway.

If the problem isn’t that your compressor is active too much, but that it’s just too noisy – well, sadly, that’s a job for a professional.

Either get it repaired, replaced, or buy a new fridge – sorry to say, but those are the only realistic options. Unless you really know what you’re doing, you can’t fix this yourself – and you shouldn’t even try.

Drain Pan

At the bottom of your fridge, you might notice a drain pan. This can be a source of noise.

Sometimes, the drain pan can come loose from its fixings. This isn’t a huge problem, and if access allows, you should be able to re-tighten it. If that’s not possible, then you can always just duct tape it back on – it’s not a pretty fix, but it’ll do the job!

Perhaps sometimes you can hear a dripping sound coming from your fridge? This is likely to be the sound of water that’s come from the defrost cycle of your unit dripping onto the drain pan. This is perfectly normal!

Conclusion

There are a few things that can cause your fridge to make unwanted noise. Not all of them are a huge deal – but remember, if you’re in doubt, get a professional to take a look at the problem! It’s better to be safe than sorry!