How to Reset a Refrigerator Compressor | A Simple Guide


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A refrigerator is an essential part of daily life as it is used frequently at home and for commercial purposes. The compressor is the key element of the refrigerator that helps to stabilize its temperature by compressing the refrigerant. Any fault to the backbone, compressor of the refrigerator may lead to its cooling failure. That is why a brief knowledge about ‘how to reset the refrigerator compressor’ is necessary.

Your refrigerator may stop cooling properly, and most probably, the problematic part found is the compressor. Before you call out for customer service, go through this guide, possibly you can reset the compressor without any aid. 

Features of a Refrigerator Compressor

how to reset a refrigerator compressor

Let us explore some most essential facts that are necessary to know before diving into deep discussion. Here is a brief introduction to the working and features of this part.

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Effective Sealing

A minor discharge of the gas may lead to compressor failure; to avoid this failure; it has a sealing feature that prevents leakage. Sealing’s may be found in the type’s i.e.

  • Open
  • Hermetic
  • Semi-hermetic 

Auto Shutoff Feature

The latest compressors come with the thermal shutoff feature that avoids any danger resulting from overheating. It prevents any severe damage resulting from overheating by shutting off the compressor automatically whenever the temperature is above average. 

Minimum Noise

A compressor with less noise is preferred as it is best for the environment. Such appliances suit the echo well. 

Adjustable Speed

The compressor has a speed adjustment feature; one can adjust the speed of cooling accordingly. The variable speed feature of the condenser fan helps to run the refrigerator properly in all temperatures.

Low Weight

Such compressors are the best that have low weight as these make the refrigerator weightless that makes the transfer easy.

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Repair and Replacement of Compressor

how to reset a refrigerator compressor

It is hard to choose the best brand of the refrigerator as most famous and old brands are more reliable. Always select a reliable brand so that the repair and replacement of the product would be easy in the future. 

There are plenty of company brands that are launching their products day by day. However, the most famous and trusted refrigerator brands are as following:

  • Samsung
  • Whirlpool
  • L.G
  • General Electric
  • Maytag

Keep in mind these well-known brands while selecting the best product for you. 

However, electric appliances are not reliable no matter what their company is. Technology may face any damage or technical issue during working. In the case of the refrigerator, the most worth noting thing is its compressor; most companies assure its replacement or repair. 

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What to do when the compressor suffers from any technical damage? Most likely, the refrigerator has lost its refrigerants. When you buy any appliance from a reliable, well-known, and trusted brand, they assure you to solve all the problems regarding that outlet. They would give you a warranty; if the compressor stops functioning within the warranty, they will replace it. Moreover, some other compressors are designed to run over 100% of the time apart from the defrost cycle.

However, if the problem occurs after the warranty, you would be able to repair it at a very reasonable price. They would look after your refrigerator properly so that it may work appropriately. And if they made a bad product, they need to own that 100%. For instance, the “Lowe’s and Home Depot” warranties are less than $300 for five years; you get 30% of it back if you do not use it.

“Is Your Compressor Faulty?” Here is How to Check

how to reset a refrigerator compressor

If you are confused about the compressor, whether it is faulty or not, read out the following signs that would clear your doubt.

  • When the compressor is running, the high and low line pressures are about 125 & 7, respectively, which is about where they were when the compressor was changed. If you find a different pressure, the compressor is faulty.
  • The compressor is making odd noises, growling, clattering, or screaming. 
  • The refrigerator takes time to get started.
  • The cooling process is slow or not at all.
  • Circuit breaker problem.
  • Load it in the freezer compartment.

If you see any of the above signs in your refrigerator, its compressor is not working correctly. Follow the following steps to locate the exact problem.

Check the Compressor Windings

Unplug the refrigerator, find the compressor’s start relay, and pull it off. There you’ll find the solid-state start relay having three pins’ S’, ‘R,’ and ‘C.’ Leave the common pin and check the reading between the remaining two wires with a multimeter. If you have an ‘O.L’ display on the meter’s screen, your compressor is faulty.

Check the Short Motor Windings

There are two types of short motors in a compressor, i.e., “turn to turn short” and “winding to frame short.” Check the reading with a multimeter between run and common as well as start and common pins. The difference you would see should be no more than 0.5 ohms. If the difference is different, your refrigerator compressor is faulty. 

Check the Cold Control and Temperature Control 

If all the readings are displaying exactly, the problem is with the thermostatic control panel. Check the readings of the wires and pins attached to the start relay by keeping the cold and temperature control switch between 4 to 5. If the readings of wires and pins in this state are 0.00, the compressor is fine; otherwise, it’s defective. 

Step By Step Procedure to Reset the Compressor

If you find any of the signs mentioned above in your refrigerator compressor, follow these steps to resolve them.

Unplug the Current Supply

Start resetting your fridge compressor by unplugging its electricity. It is compulsory for a safe procedure.

Locate the Power Card

Then move the fridge away from the wall and find its power card. Most probably, you would find it on the back of the refrigerator.

Disconnect the Power Card

After locating it:

  • Disconnect the power cord from the power supply.
  • Do not get afraid of the whoosh or knocking noise; it is normal.
  • Leave it as such for 5 minutes.

Turn Fridge and Freezer Control

Turn the freezer and fridge control to “off” or “0” and turn the refrigerator on by plugging in the power cord. 

Adjust the Fridge and Freezer Control

Read out the user’s manual carefully and adjust the freezer or fridge control according to the directions or needs. Usually, 9 is the optimal setting for most refrigerators. 

Let the Refrigerator Adjust the Temperature

Let the refrigerator adapt to the stable temperature. More often, it takes about one day for this purpose. Hopefully, after this procedure, your fridge compressor problem would have been solved. 

How to Reset a Refrigerator Compressor: FAQ’s 

How long does a refrigerator compressor take to reset?

Mostly, the refrigerator compressor should run for four to eight hours before you shut it off or it enters to defrost cycle. It is the ideal time for a fridge compressor to rest. 

How do you reset a refrigerator?

It is simple and easy to reset the refrigerator. Here is a short procedure:

  • Locate the power card that usually lies on the back of the refrigerator.
  • Cut off the power cord from the switch.
  • Turn the freezer and fridge controls to “Off” or “0 “.
  • Read the user manual and adjust the freezer or fridge knob according to the instructions. Most probably, its setting lies on the 5. 
  • Let the refrigerator rest for at least one day to adjust the internal temperature accordingly.

What causes the refrigerator compressor to stop working?

There are certain reasons behind the power performance of a refrigerator compressor, just like:

  • Faulty sealing setting that may cause the refrigerant to leak. 
  • Usually, top-quality refrigerators feature an auto-shutoff thermostat that prevents overheating. If this system is absent or stops working, it may lead to a faulty compressor.
  • Lack of lubrication may cause the poor working of a refrigerator.
  • Insufficient current.
  • Coolant or refrigerant shortage.

How do you know if your refrigerator compressor is bad?

The following signs specify that the refrigerator compressor is not working.

  • Low pressure of the refrigerant.
  • If the refrigerator takes some time to get started. 
  • Odd noise of the compressor.
  • Insufficient cooling or no cooling at all. 

Does the refrigerator compressor have a reset button?

No, there is no reset button in the refrigerator; you have to reset it manually. However, if a refrigerator would have a reset button option, it would take only 30s to reset the compressor. 

What is the first thing to check when a refrigerator stops working?

If the refrigerator suddenly stops working, the foremost thing you should look for is the power supply. 

Where is the reset button on the refrigerator?

There is no reset button on the refrigerator or ice-maker. Instead, you would have to reset it manually according to the proper directions. You can solve the compressor problems by resetting it manually; it would help in its proper functioning. 


Sometimes, the refrigerator compressor may stop working properly due to some technical issue and needs reset. It is not a tough task to reset the refrigerator compressor if it is causing some problem in cooling. Follow the instructions mentioned above to locate, find, and resolve the compressor issue. For such a minor problem, you don’t need to call out for professional repairing services.

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