Fridges can make all sorts of noises during operation – which means it can be difficult to know which sounds are normal and which are a cause for concern – so is a noisy fridge dangerous or not?
The vast majority of the time a noisy fridge is not dangerous at all and the sounds simply indicate either the regular operation of the refrigerator or that some parts may need to be replaced. However, if the sound becomes extremely loud, it can be a sign that a component of the fridge is on the verge of becoming a hazard and needs to be replaced.
In this article we will dive into the different noises a fridge can make, how to tell which ones are normal and which aren’t, as well as the potential dangers that are involved with a noisy fridge and how you can prevent them in the future. Let’s get straight into it.
What Normal Sounds Do Fridges Make?
Fridges make a lot of different noises, and a lot of manufacturers actually publish a list of them that you can expect to hear on a daily basis. Let’s take a look at some normal sounds that you shouldn’t be worried about if you hear coming out of your fridge.
Ice Maker Humming, Clicking And Other Noises
If your fridge has an icemaker then you are probably already aware of the range of noises that it can make.
When the ice maker drops ice cubes into the storage bucket for example you may hear quite a loud noise as the ice hits the bottom. Another example is when the ice maker is filled with water and transfers it into the freezing area, which can create loud noise as well.
These are all completely normal sounds to hear on a daily basis, as long as they don’t last for long periods of time.
Fan Speed Changes With Door Openings
If you notice a change in fan speed either during or after a door opening then this is completely normal.
This happens to adjust the temperature in the fridge as the warmer air (or colder!) from outside enters the fridge when the door is open.
During defrost, you will hear dripping, but this is again completely normal and expected.
Some people think that the water is dripping directly onto the floor, but there is a drainage pan beneath the refrigerator that is in place to catch the water.
Squeaks On New Fridges
New fridges are prone to squeaking.
This happens because the seal around the door made from rubber is tight. Over the first few days of your new fridge, you may notice squeaking, especially when opening the door, but it does get better over time.
If the squeaking doesn’t stop then consider calling a technician to take a look at the seal. This isn’t a dangerous problem, but it can get annoying quickly.
Can Fridges Be Dangerous?
You wouldn’t consider a fridge to be dangerous, and rightly so, but if something does go wrong with your fridge it can potentially become dangerous under the right circumstances.
The first ‘danger’ is that the temperature inside the fridge goes outside of the recommended temperature range, causing any food inside to spoil quickly. If you don’t notice this and accidentally eat some of the food you could become ill.
Another possibility is that the fridge could catch on fire due to an electrical fault with one of the components (yes, fridges can actually set on fire). A fire hazard is the biggest danger, and although fridges can be set on fire, it is extremely unlikely to happen and if it does happen they burn slowly.
In Case Of A Fire
If you notice a fire then turn off the power to your fridge as soon as possible and call the fire brigade. Do not attempt to put out the fire with water.
Evacuate the area and get to a well-ventilated space, ideally outdoors, and contact any other residents living nearby who may also be at risk.
How To Spot Potentially Dangerous Sounds
The vast majority of sounds that a fridge makes are not dangerous, but there are some that can indicate that a component of the fridge is damaged.
A good rule of thumb is if you can hear the fridge when in another room of the house with the door closed then there could be a fault with one of the components. There are also some generic sounds that indicate damage, which are listed below.
Grinding And Scraping
If you can hear a grinding or scraping sound coming from your fridge this can indicate that one of the fans within the fridge is blocked. To inspect the fans first start by turning off the power.
You can then inspect the first one by opening the rear access panel and inspecting the condenser fan. The second fan is located by removing the evaporator fan cover inside the freezer.
Check for any debris and wipe it away. If there is more significant damage then contact a professional who can take a better look at the problem.
Loud Humming (Much Louder Than Usual)
If you can hear the fridge humming from the other room there could be a problem with the compressor.
This can be difficult to replace, and you may need to get in touch with a professional to solve this issue.
No Sound At All
Your fridge should always make a noise, just not a very loud one.
If there isn’t any sound at all coming from it then there could be an issue with the compressor. If this is the case, you will need an expert to come and take a look at your fridge as these are too difficult to fix by yourself.
How To Prevent Them
There are a few things you can do to prevent your fridge from making strange noises, although it isn’t possible to rule them out entirely.
Regular cleaning can keep your fridge in good shape which allows each component to continue working properly.
Keep the fans clean like mentioned earlier, and keep the shelves clean to maintain the humidity which will prevent an excess of moisture from building up.
Monitor Your Fridges Health
Monitoring your fridge is important, especially in older fridges.
If you notice any new sounds coming from your fridge, or any fluctuations in the temperature, then call the manufacturers as soon as you can. Fridge repairs are very common, and if your fridge is still under warranty you should be able to get it fixed in no time.
If you find yourself asking the question ‘is a noisy fridge dangerous’ then just remember that the main danger a fridge poses to you is not properly cooling your food.
While fires can happen, they are extremely rare and are usually not eluded to by a strange noise.