Your refrigerator is designed to keep cool, but it only knows to start a new cold cycle if its sensors tell it to do so. If the thermostat sensor inside your refrigerator can’t read the temperature, or the thermostat itself can’t respond, then your refrigerator will have unpredictable temperature changes. The compressor won’t know when to turn on and off. Your refrigerator might even fail to cool at all. Instead of putting your food at risk, replace the thermostat as soon as possible. Order replacement part #W11088945 for your Maytag refrigerator and follow these steps to install the new thermostat:
1. Unplug the refrigerator before you get started.
No matter what appliance you’re fixed, the first step is to separate it from its power source. Many appliances can continue to hold a charge or don’t fully turn off even when dormant. So unplug your refrigerator before you begin disassembling it. If your refrigerator is directly connected to your house’s power, flip the appropriate circuit breaker.
2. Disassemble the refrigerator to remove the control panel.
The thermostat is located in your refrigerator’s control panel in the fresh food section. This step will break down how to access the part.First, open the fresh food section of your refrigerator and empty the top shelf to give yourself plenty of room to work. Remove the top left cover panel by loosening the screw that holds it in place. Next, loosen the screw under the panel that holds the air diffuser cover panel. Swing the cover to the right, pull it off the tabs in the back, and set the panel aside. You should be able to see the air diffuser and the plastic-covered tube that wraps around it. This is the thermostat sensor.Pry the line of the thermostat sensor free from air diffuser. The clear pipe connects to the top of the refrigerator interior and runs into the control panel. Let the end swing freely for now.After that, go back to the front of the fresh food section and pry the right corner of the front control panel cover free. Then carefully pry the rest of the cover panel free of the tabs. Set aside to access parts below. Also, unscrew the light bulb behind the control panel so you don’t have to worry about it breaking.Then remove two screws under the back of the control panel and the front top of the control panel. The control panel will be completely free except for wires, so make sure you hold it in place as you remove the last screw. Carefully lower the panel and unplug the wire harness with yellow and white wires. Next, unplug the green wire. After that disconnect the air diffuser rod in the left side of the control panel by loosening the screw to the left and releasing the rod. Then remove the rod from the control panel completely. Lastly, disconnect the large wire harness on the left with red and black wires.Set the control panel on a flat work surface.
3. Remove the old thermostat.
Locate the thermostat in the middle of the control panel against the bottom edge. It looks like a gray bar. Then pull the clear light wire on top of the thermostat up and away from the thermostat. Remove the two screws holding the thermostat in place.Next, lift the thermostat free and pry the red and orange wire harnesses out of the thermostat. The configuration of the wires matters during reassembly. One helpful step is to take a picture of any wiring before you disconnect it. Then you have a clear guide to refer to later. Once the red and orange wires are disconnected, unplug the green wire from the thermostat, too.After that, locate the long sensor line that you loosened from the air diffuser earlier. It’s secured by two clips in the control panel housing. Pry the clips open and pull the sensor free. Now you can remove the entire thermostat part.The plastic is just the cover for the thermostat sensor. Straighten the sensor and pull the plastic cover free so you can use it on the new part.
4. Install the new thermostat.
Start by uncoiling the thermostat sensor on the new part and sliding the plastic cover from the old part in place. It can be a tight fit, so use a bit of soapy water as a lubricant if needed.Next, connect all the wiring. Connect the red and orange wire harnesses with the orange at the bottom and the red on top. Slide the light wire through the housing near the thermostat sensor. Then position the whole thermostat in place in the control panel. The actuator tab will fit into a groove in the side of the control panel housing. Tighten the two screws on either side of the thermostat to secure it in place.After that, connect the light wire across the thermostat at the black circle above the actuator groove. Run the thermostat sensor into place in the two clips.Then attach the green wire to the clip point at the top of the thermostat opposite the orange and red wire harnesses.
5. Reassemble the refrigerator.
Connect the control panel wiring. First, reattach the large wire harness in the left back corner of the control panel. Clip the green wire to the metal tab near the front right bracket. Connect the small wire harness with yellow and white wires next.Snap the air diffuser control rod into place and then tighten the screw that secures it. After that, position the control panel flush with the top of the fridge. Resecure it in the front and under the back of the panel. The back screws need the additional support of washers, so make sure to slip them into place on the screws before you finish resecuring the control panel.Next, snap the control panel cover into place. There are multiple tabs along the perimeter, so keep pressing them into place until you hear them click. Then clip thermostat sensor along the left wall and into air diffuser housing. Set the air diffuser cover panel into place on the back tabs, swing it back over the air diffuser, and screw it flush against the side of the refrigerator. Then reinstall the side cover panel.Your refrigerator should start correcting its internal temperature as soon as you plug it back in. For more appliance repair tips or to call in a professional technician, contact us at Authorized Service here.