Sub-Zero is one of the best-known brands in the world of kitchen appliances. The creator of the free-standing freezer and one of the very first manufacturers of built-in refrigerators, the brand has a reputation for both quality and luxury. That does not, however, mean that Sub-Zero refrigerators are without their problems.
Sub-Zero refrigerators have many of the same problems as other refrigerators. These issues include the refrigerator or freezer not cooling or freezing, water leakage, vacuum condenser issues, ice maker failure, light problems, and even issues with the unit’s display. Fortunately, these issues can all be remedied if they are properly identified.
Problem 1: Refrigerator or Freezer not Cooling or Freezing
This is one of the toughest problems to diagnose because there are so many potential route causes. Sometimes the refrigerator or freezer runs too hot simply because the user has set the internal temperature too high; in other cases, the problem might exist because of issues with the condenser or with the air ducting of the unit. The best way to proceed, then, is to try the least complex solutions first and work your way down to the most complex.
The best way to start is by checking both the door seals and the drawers. If you are able to close both fully, you’ll want to check the control unit. If the control unit is off or displays too high of a temperature, you can simply set it to where it needs to be. If none of these solutions work, you’ll want to clean out the condenser and check the vents for blockage. If all of these solutions fail, you may need to replace the zone thermistor or evaporator.
Problem 2: Leaking Water
Leaks are uncommon, but they do happen even with Sub Zero refrigerators. They can happen for a number of reasons, ranging from issues with your drain and drain line to problems with your ice maker. As such, the most important part of fixing this problem is identifying precisely where the leak originates. The only way to do this is by observation – if you see water coming out of either the water or drain line, you’ll need to focus on that area to make your repairs.
If the leak is coming from the waterline, you’ll want to check to make sure that the line is tight and that it hasn’t been cracked or damaged. If the problem is in the drain line, you may need to disconnect it to remove a blockage. Both of these issues are relatively easy to identify and fix if you’re willing to do a bit of light repair work.
Problem 3: Vacuum Condenser Light is On
Another common issue with Sub Zero refrigerators is getting a notice on the control panel that reads ‘Vacuum Condenser’. It’s generally a good idea to think of this like the check engine light on a car. It is a warning that something has gone wrong. In this case, the refrigerator is telling you that there are only one of a few issues with your unit.
The first thing you’ll want to check is the temperature. If the temperature of your refrigerator is near its normal point, you should turn off the refrigerator and clean out the condenser. This is also a good time to check the doors to make sure that nothing is causing them from closing. If either of those problems caused the error message, turning the unit back on and closing the doors should clear the problem.
Problem 4: Ice is Not Being Produced
There are several reasons why your Sub Zero refrigerator might not be making ice. While some of them are relatively easy to diagnose, others might require the help of a plumber. As always, it’s best to take a look for the simple problems before you look at the more complex issues.
The first thing you’ll want to check is that the ice maker is actually turned on. If it’s turned off it can’t make ice. If it is on, you’ll want to check the temperature of the freezer – set it colder if it is too warm for ice. You should also make sure that the ice maker is not jammed with ice or that the ice bucket is not out of place – a simple adjustment can fix both problems. Finally, you’ll want to check the switch and the water line – if either of these areas are having problems, you may need a professional’s help to move forward.
Problem 5: Light Not Working
Inoperative lighting is harder to diagnose than you might imagine. The simplest explanation, of course, is that a bulb is burned out – if this is the case, you should be able to replace the burned-out bulb with ease. If it’s not, you might need to look at a few other possibilities.
The first possibility is that the doors aren’t closing on the unit. This can be solved by simply removing obstructions. There might also be problems with the door switch or with the various door sensors – if this is the case, you’ll need to have a technician look at the wiring for your unit.
Problem 6: Display Problems
The vast majority of issues with the display on Sub Zero products either have to do with the display itself being faulty or with user error. Some complain that the display doesn’t work, but the reality of the situation might be that it isn’t turned on. Likewise, a dark display is normal – Sub Zero units don’t have any extra lighting behind their displays.
If you notice problems with pixels missing or the LCD not turning on, you’ll want to check the wiring on your display. If everything is plugged in correctly, you may have a malfunctioning display. Unfortunately, the only thing you can do past this point is to contact support for help because there is at least some part of the overall control panel is faulty.