Is My Refrigerator Low on Freon?

Refrigerator Repair Freon - Appliance Repair Atlanta - It Is Fixed

Refrigerator Low on Freon

If you have a refrigerator that is not cooling properly, you may suspect that your refrigerator is low on Freon.

What is Freon?

Freon is the trademarked name for a liquid refrigerant that was a popular heat transfer fluid used in appliances such as refrigerators and air conditioners.

Does My Refrigerator Use Freon?

Due to its negative impact on the environment, use of Freon (R-12) in refrigerators and other appliances was phased out after 1994.  If you have a modern refrigerator, it does not use Freon. If your refrigerator is not cooling, check out our Refrigerator Not Getting Cold troubleshooting information. 

If your refrigerator was manufactured before 1994, it is likely that it uses Freon. 

Is My Refrigerator Low on Freon?

If you have an older refrigerator that is not cooling properly, an inadequate Freon charge is not the most likely cause of the issue.  Freon is pressurized inside a closed system, and unless the system has been compromised or damaged, Freon should not leak out. A warm refrigerator is more often a result of component failure or electrical issue. For example, while an always running compressor can be a symptom of low Freon, a broken thermostat or faulty condenser is the more likely culprit. Before checking the Freon, we use our Refrigerator Not Getting Cold troubleshooting information to eliminate more likely suspects. 

If you’ve ruled out other suspects, it is simple to determine if your refrigerator may be low on Freon.

Turn off the refrigerator and icemaker.

To turn off the refrigerator, turn the temperature control to the “off” setting. If you’re not sure the refrigerator is off, unplug the unit from the wall outlet or switch off the circuit at the circuit breaker box.


With your ear pressed to the refrigerator you should hear faint hissing or gurgling noise. The role of the compressor in your refrigerator is to pressurize the refrigerant gas. The gas cools as it moves through the coils. When the compressor is turned off, the Freon will hiss and gurgle through the refrigerator’s capillary tubes as the pressure equalizes within the system.

If you hear the hissing and gurgling, but your refrigerator is not cooling, check our section on common causes for refrigerator not cooling to find other troubleshooting tips, or contact It Is Fixed for same day repair service.

If you do not hear the hiss and gurgle, you may be low on Freon.

Can I Recharge the Freon in My Refrigerator?

We do not recommend attempting to recharge the Freon in your refrigerator yourself. An insufficient supply of Freon indicates that there is a leak in the system. If the leak is not repaired, the Freon gas will continue to leak. Freon (R-12) is a hazardous gas and inhaling the gas can cause respiratory difficulty, burns, brain damage, or even death.

If you suspect a Freon leak or your refrigerator needs to be recharged, contact a professional appliance repair service like It Is Fixed. We can find and repair the leak and safely recharge the system with Freon.

Brands Serviced

It Is Fixed Appliance Repair provides a complete range of repair services for refrigerators. All of our repairs are done in-house. We repair the following brands:

Whirlpool, Kitchenaid, GE, Sub-Zero, Wolf, Samsung, LG, Electrolux, Maytag, Amana, Sears, Kenmore, Frigidaire, Bosch, Thermador, Jenn-Air, Admiral.

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