Refrigerator - Unusual Noises

The normal operation of your refrigerator will cause some sound. If you are concerned about the noise, check the following to determine if normal sound:


  • Refrigerant after a defrost cycle can cause a normal tapping sound. If this is an older refrigerator or a newly occurring noise, this may not be normal and would require service to diagnose.

  • If sound is coming from the freezer that sounds like a fan blade is hitting something, it is not normal, please contact GE Appliance Service.

  • Check for any loose items such as drain pan (if removable), bottom grill, shelves or food on shelves.

  • A buzzing sound every 10 to 15 minutes, lasting 5 to 10 seconds the water to the icemaker may be shut off. Check to see that the water is turned on to the icemaker. To stop the buzzing from the icemaker water valve, turn the icemaker off either by the on/off switch or by raising the feeler arm up to the stop position (on some models).

  • Short rattling, humming, buzzing, or vibrating sound on lasting around 5 seconds about once every hour on Bottom-Freezer and SxS models with the XWF filter. This can occur if the icemaker is on but the water is not connected; it is caused by an isolation valve that is designed to help prevent major leaks from the filter. To correct: Turn the icemaker off.

  • A sound coming from underneath (like playing card hitting bicycle spokes) may indicate something hitting condenser fan blade on models without a NeverClean condenser. Unplug the refrigerator before checking.

    1. Pull refrigerator away from wall.

    2. Unplug the refrigerator.

    3. Remove the cover at the bottom of the back (5/16 hex head screws). The fan blade will now be visible. Check the fan blade for obstructions; cheese wrapper, credit card slip, etc. If obstruction is a large rubber strip -- It will require service. This rubber strip is an air divider that helps for proper air flow underneath the refrigerator, it is very important that it gets correctly reinstalled. Otherwise remove obstruction.

    4. Reinstall rear cover.

    5. Plug the unit back in.

    6. Push back in position.

For normal noises, visit: Refrigerator - Normal Sounds and Noises Made.


For service, please schedule an appointment with GE Appliances Factory Service.