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Thread: Kenmore Elite Fridge: Can't Adjust Temperature

  1. #1

    Kenmore Elite Fridge: Can't Adjust Temperature

    Model Number: 596.76573602
    Brand: Sears Kenmore
    Age: 6-10 years

    My 6-year old Kenmore Elite refrigerator temperature control has malfunctioned. The temperature control touch pad is unresponsive. I got no response when pressing the buttons on the temperature interface. The display only showed the actual (warm) interior temperatures of fridge and freezer. I followed the program button sequencing for this unit -- Door Alarm + Freezer Down button, etc. -- but no response at all.

    So, I replaced the touch pad interface board with a new one. Still no results. Then I replaced the main circuit board with a new one. Still unresponsive, though now it displays, "PE0 000" instead of the interior temperature. When I go through the programming paces (Door Alarm + Freezer Down button, etc.), nothing happens.

    I've checked wire connections. They look secure. No sign of wear or dirt or corrosion.

    I'm stumped as to what to do next and would welcome suggestions.

  2. #2
    Admin/Technician Doc Ryan's Avatar
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    It sounds like the overlay key part # 67006603 is probably bad. This part is discontinued and no longer available from the manufacture.
    Ryan

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  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Ryan View Post
    It sounds like the overlay key part # 67006603 is probably bad. This part is discontinued and no longer available from the manufacture.
    I agree. Which means this 6-year old fridge goes to the dump and I'm out another $1000-plus buying another marvel of U.S. manufacturing. All over a dinky plastic part that cannot be found anywhere.

  4. #4
    I've been doing a lot of internet sleuthing. As you know, most fridges with Whirlpool, Kenmore, Maytag and Kitchenaid labels are actually one and the same product manufactured at the same plants. I've found Whirlpool and Kitchenaid fridges like mine that have the same control parts, but sometimes with different part numbers. So, some units I've found have the very same control housing and temperature interface board as mine. The overlay looks the same as mine in their diagrams, but are identified as #W10209973. This part is available and I'm thinking of ordering it. if it doesn't match, I can just return it. At this point, I'm at the end of my rope. A replacement fridge would set me back close to 3 grand.

  5. #5
    Admin/Technician Doc Ryan's Avatar
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    I am showing W10209973 is also discontinued by the manufacture.
    Ryan

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  6. #6
    That's possible, but I've had several parts suppliers tell me they have it in stock. My research, however, indicated that this Whirlpool part isn't compatible with the Sears overlay I needed. So, I gave up and today purchased a new fridge. I just couldn't drag this out any longer. I think it's criminal that a manufacturer can get away with stopping parts production on a fairly new product. I my case, Sears ended production of the overlay a mere five years after I bought my fridge. Insane and exploitative. Thanks, Doc, for your interest.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by JLB View Post
    That's possible, but I've had several parts suppliers tell me they have it in stock. My research, however, indicated that this Whirlpool part isn't compatible with the Sears overlay I needed. So, I gave up and today purchased a new fridge. I just couldn't drag this out any longer. I think it's criminal that a manufacturer can get away with stopping parts production on a fairly new product. I my case, Sears ended production of the overlay a mere five years after I bought my fridge. Insane and exploitative. Thanks, Doc, for your interest.
    Realize this is VERY stale, but responding here in depth in case it can still help you or someone else motivated to avoid throwing away a perfectly good $2K fridge just because a part isn't available (or spending the $$ for a new control board that sits behind this panel or getting the one in the back of the fridge checked out only to find it doesn't fix the problem.) I have a 596.76573600 Kenmore Elite that I'm guessing is similar to the one being discussed. When I couldn't get the part, I decided to run the problem to ground. Hope this helps others with similar frustrations.


    I found a hairline, intermittent short in the flex circuit that connects the touch panel to the control board. I found it by measuring the resistance between each of the pins in the flex's connector as I wiggled the cable to catch intermittents. Without any buttons pushed, each pairing (1 & 2, 1 & 3... 7 & 8, 7 & 9 etc) should all measure open no short) using a typical ohmmeter (find a pair of thin stiff wires to push into the connector holes to do the test). If you find a pair (or more) where there is a short, that's 1/2 the battle won. My short was actually between two adjacent pins (5 & 6), and was hidden by the plastic connector that houses the pins that make the connection - it looked to me like a defect of the flex manufacturing process, so yours and many others may have that same exact problem. To fix mine, I used a needle to carefully press in each of the 9 connector pin catches (squares) you can see on the connector side so I could then pull the flex cable and pins out of the connector housing. The short was obvious (see pic) - looked like extra conductive ink splashed between several pins when they made the flex cable. Those were easy to cut away, and the panel worked great after that. If you find you have a short but its elsewhere, you'll need to carefully peel the graphics layer off board to see the connections underneath (don't worry, it will stick back on after) and examine them to determine where the short or open might be. Example of what that looks like also provided. To help me originally, I made a schematic which I've also included (the greyed stuff is the LEDS and buttons my fridge doesn't have on its graphics panel, but yours might), that's a bit easier to read. Good luck to you and anyone else that has the resolve to find and fix the problem - I saved myself buying a new $2K fridge, because we were that over it always freezing everything in the fridge section. Happy Hunting!


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