Danby Refrigerator Not Cooling (5 Causes and Solutions)

Have you ever had to deal with a Danby refrigerator that isn’t cooling? Besides the frustration, you can expect costly repairs and food and energy waste. Moreover, you may be forced to buy ice boxes to store your food or think of other temporary solutions.

While Danby refrigerators are a popular choice in American homes and boast a solid reputation across North America, they face occasional malfunctions now and then.

But the good news is, a warm fridge doesn’t always mean a hefty repair bill. In many cases, you can fix it yourself by following some simple steps or troubleshooting tips.

In this blog post, we will explain the possible causes of the Danby refrigerator not cooling and how to solve them.

Why Is Your Danby Refrigerator Not Cooling?

Pinpointing the exact culprit behind your Danby refrigerator not cooling can be a challenge.

While common reasons like dirty condenser coils, malfunctioning evaporator coils, or a faulty door seal often come to mind, even the main control board or start relay could be orchestrating your cooling woes.

Without further ado, let’s get to the bottom of these unique and common issues of your Danby mini fridge’s lack of cold air.

1a. Faulty Thermostat Dial

The dial is a part of the thermostat and contributes to controlling the temperature inside the appliance. It helps the thermostat do its job by sensing the temperature and telling the rest of the system to cool things down. You can use the thermostat dial to adjust the cooling temperature as per your preferences.

When this dial fails to function, the thermostat may fail to regulate the refrigerator temperature properly. Additionally, the thermostat keeps sending mixed signals, which leads to inadequate cooling and potentially leaves your food at risk.

Among the common causes behind a bad dial are wear and tear, dirt, electrical issues, or incorrect settings.

1b. How To Fix Faulty Thermostat Dial

If your fridge shows erratic temperature control, this points to a problem with the temperature control thermostat. To ensure the problem lies in the knob or dial component, you should follow these steps:

  1. Unplug your appliance: As a safety precaution, disconnect the fridge to avoid electric shocks.
  2. Find the dial: This component is usually located near the top of the fresh food compartment. But you can read the user manual if your model has it elsewhere.
  3. Remove the protective cover: Use your pry tool or flathead screwdriver to remove the holding clips or screws.
  4. Perform a visual inspection: Visual inspection is one of the easier ways to diagnose problematic dial. It might be blocked by dust, debris, or grime buildup. Also, a visual check reveals obvious signs of damage or wear and tear.
  5. Test the electrical flow: Use your multimeter to check whether there is continuity or electrical flow in the dial. If the dial shows no continuity or abnormal resistance, it is faulty and needs to be replaced.

2a. Defective Thermistor

A thermistor inside a Danby regular-sized refrigerator or Danby wine cooler acts as a temperature sensor. A thermistor senses the real internal temperature in your refrigerator and freezer compartments. Then, it transmits this information as an electrical signal to the temperature control board to regulate the entire cooling system.

When this component goes bad, your Danby fridge may run constantly without being cool enough.

Some of the common causes of a defective thermistor are:

  • Improper handling or installation
  • Heat damage or thermal mismatch
  • The presence of dirt or moisture
  • Disconnected or broken wires

2b. How To Fix Defective Thermistor

If you suspect that your Danby refrigerator not cooling problem has something to do with the thermistor, you should check it yourself before making unnecessary replacements. However, if you don’t have enough knowledge of your fridge’s electrical parts, it’s better to leave it for the pros.

If you are certain of what you are doing, follow these steps:

  1. Find the thermistor: Look for this component near the ceiling of the fridge compartment. Look for it inside the fresh food section. It is a small sensor that appears like a tiny bead and is attached to two wires. Also, it’s partially clipped to the fridge’s wall.
  2. Get access: Now that you have successfully located the sensor, make sure to remove its protective cover. Use a screwdriver to remove its screws or clips.
  3.  Assess its condition: You can rely on visual inspection to assess the condition of the thermistor. If it has corrosion or physical damage, you should opt for a replacement thermistor. To get the right replacement part you should look online for replacement parts for your fridge’s model or consult a repair technician.
  4. Perform an optional test: Bring your multimeter and hook it correctly to the thermistor (after disconnecting it from the attached wires). This step aims at checking the thermistor resistance. Abnormal readings confirm your initial diagnosis of a malfunctioning thermistor.

3a. Blocked Airflow

Blocked airflow is a common problem that affects the cooling efficiency of your Danby refrigerator or wine cooler. These ventilation obstructions occur when the vents that allow the cold air to circulate between the freezer and the refrigerator compartments are obstructed by food items or ice.

When this happens, your Danby appliance may not maintain the desired temperature or humidity levels. This leads to uneven cooling and your fridge works overtime to keep things frosty.

This problem usually happens due to these reasons:

  • Overstuffing the fridge
  • Excessive moisture or ice buildup
  • Inconsistent temperatures

3b. How To Fix Blocked Airflow

The problem of poor ventilation or blocked airflow inside your Danby wine fridge or standard refrigerator appears to be a complex issue. However, in some cases, simple maintenance steps may resolve the issue.

  1. Make some space: Locate the vents at the back of the fridge. Clear any stored food blocking these tiny holes. Also, remove any sort of buildup blocking them using a brush or cloth.
  2. Clean the condenser coils: The condenser coils need some attention too. Find them near the bottom part of the fridge’s back. If there is dirt buildup, it will act as a heat trap. Use a vacuum cleaner for this purpose.
  3.  Check the door seal: Make sure the fridge door closes snugly and doesn’t have any damaged seals. Otherwise,  A leaky door lets warm air in, making your fridge work harder to stay cool. Make sure the rubber gasket is perfectly aligned and not torn. If it appears torn, replace it.

4a. Power Not Reaching The Fridge

Power not reaching the fridge is a serious problem that affects the cooling performance of your Danby refrigerator or wine cooler. This means that the fridge is not getting any electricity to run its compressor, fans, lights, and other vital components. Without power, your Danby appliance will not be able to keep your food and drinks cold and fresh.

This problem usually happens due to these reasons:

  • Faulty power cord or outlet
  • Tripped circuit breaker or blown fuse
  • Power outage or surge
  • Defective power supply board or switch

4b. How To Fix Power Not Reaching The Fridge

Now, if none of the previous solutions is effective and your Danby fridge plays dead, you can get the power flowing again with these simple troubleshooting steps:

  1. Check the power cord and outlet: While it seems obvious, you may forget to plug the fridge back after a power outage. Ensure that the cord isn’t loose or has exposed or frayed wires. Also, ensure the outlet appears in shape.

In case of a damaged outlet, get an electrician to fix it for you. Plug another appliance into the same outlet to see if it works before making the call.

  1. Check the circuit breaker and fuse: Head to your breaker box and see if the switch controlling your fridge’s circuit has flipped to the “off” position. If so, simply flip it back to “on.” If it trips again or there is a blown fuse, avoid DIY solutions and seek pro help.

5a. Faulty Control Board

The control board of your Danby refrigerator keeps all its functions in order. So, if your fridge is acting confused or is not cooling as before, it’s worth checking the main control board. The effect of a faulty control board isn’t just about loss of cooling prowess. Its effect reaches your Danby refrigerator ice maker, water dispenser, and lights.

So, what goes wrong causing this huge problem? Here are some common reasons a control board might malfunction:

  • Power Surges: Voltage spikes can damage delicate electronic components.
  • Age and Wear: Like any electronic device, the board can wear down over time.
  • Component Failure: Individual components, like capacitors and relays on the board might malfunction.

5b. How To Fix Faulty Control Board

Ignoring the issues of your control board leads to multiple defects in the fridge’s body. Before worrying about complex replacements or expensive repairs, you might want to try these simple troubleshooting steps for your Danby fridge’s control board:

  1. Reset the fridge: Unplug your fridge for a few minutes, then plug it back in. Sometimes, a quick reset can be magical. If your fridge model has a reset button, hit it.
  2. Refer to the manual: Sometimes, the fridge’s manual may contain some advice on troubleshooting common error codes. If your fridge displays any of them, follow the manual’s instructions.
  3. Find the control board: If you have a modern Danby refrigerator model, locate its board behind the control panel. Remove its screws to have access to the board. Older models, however, may have their boards inside the refrigerator compartment.
  4. Test the control board: use a multimeter to test the board’s electrical continuity and voltage. You will need to detach it from the wires and probe the terminals with the multimeter. Compare the results with what is stated in the user manual. If the readings are too low or too high, find a compatible replacement. You can search for replacements online or in hardware stores.


Now that you have reached the end of our comprehensive Danby refrigerator troubleshooting guide, you know how to effectively handle the heat from a lukewarm Danby refrigerator.

From a faulty thermostat dial to a defective thermistor, blocked airflow, power issues, and a faulty control board, these components can wreak havoc on your refrigerator’s cooling performance.

Before breaking the bank and purchasing a new refrigerator, consider these common culprits and quick troubleshooting tips:

  • Blocked airflow: Clear vents, clean condenser coils, and check the door seal for a breath of fresh (and cool) air.
  • Faulty components: Check the thermostat dial, thermistor, or control board for malfunctioning signs. Remember, consult a qualified technician for repairs involving electrical components.
  • Power issues: Inspect the cord, outlet, circuit breaker, and fuse for any disruptions.

While these steps can often solve the mystery, remember, safety first! If you’re unsure or uncomfortable with any step, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.

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