Frequently Asked Questions

Why does Germon Electrics charge a service fee?

Good service doesn’t just happen. Operating a dependable service business requires organisation, competent management and a substantial capital investment.

You may be happy with the service, but question the fairness of the bill… but… remember… you only see the technician who comes to your home.

The quality of his service depends on:

  1. His knowledge and skill.
  2. The necessary people who train, schedule, obtain spare parts and supply him – telephone operators, training specialists, parts personnel, clerical staff and administrators.
  3. His company’s sizeable investment in shop and warehouse facilities, computers, printers, fax machines, stationary, vans, replacement parts, employee benefits (superannuation, leave loading), legal, accounting and advertising expenses, taxes, insurance, government and industry licences, as well as bank fees.

Why isn't my fridge cold enough?

Make sure you have plenty of ventilation around your fridge. It is a good idea to check the manufacturer’s installation specifications if the fridge is located in a cavity. Lack of ventilation can cause your compressor to fail. If you suspect a compressor problem we can data log your fridge to determine how it is cycling and the temperatures it is reaching.

Is your freezer overloaded with food stuff? Air needs to be able to flow freely throughout your entire refrigerator. Ensure the vents are not blocked. Sometimes modifications can be performed to improve the air flow through your fridge.

Are the fridge and/or freezer fans working? If not, they may need replacing. Fans circulate the cold air. You should call a technician to test & replace fans.

Have one of the defrost system components failed? To test this, empty the fridge & freezer, turn the fridge off and open the doors for a good 24 – 36 hours. This will allow the ice build-up behind the back wall of the fridge to thaw. On turning the fridge back on, it should begin to work like a dream. It will take 4 – 8 weeks for the ice to build up behind the back wall again & prevent correct cooling again. It is necessary for a technician to test which of the defrost system components have failed & replace it.

Why does the outside of my fridge feel warm?

The heat that comes from the food inside a refrigerator is dissipated by a condenser.  In older products the condenser was located externally on the rear of the fridge and looked much like a radiator. In newer products, internal condensers are taped to the entire inside of the cabinet. This is why the whole exterior of the fridge gets warm to touch. This is also one reason why the installation of the product requires a reasonable gap to allow proper air movement to dissipate heat. If the heat is not dissipated, poor performance and a noisier product can be the end result.

Refrigerator components:

Compressor: also known as a dome or refrigerator pump motor. They are electrically driven,  air tight vapour compression pumps that move the refrigerant around the refrigeration circuit. Condenser: dissipates the heat that comes from the food inside a refrigerator. In older products the condenser was located externally on the rear of the fridge & looked much like a radiator. In newer products, internal condensers are taped to the entire inside of the cabinet.

Defrost Heater/Element: a heating element attached to the evaporator of ‘no frost’ fridges. This fascilitates defrosting by the refrigerator. Defrost heaters are controlled by the defrost timer & a fail safe device called a defrost termination thermostat (DTT).

Defrost Termination Thermostat: a fail safe device with two functions. It is a thermostat which terminates the defrost (cuts the heater/element off) when the eaporator has reached a certain temperature. It is also a built in thermal fuse.

When the temperature of the evaoprator rises above a certain level the thermal fuse will blow, causing the defrost circuit to be open. Defrost Timer: controls the regular self defrosting of a refrigerator. Electronic Control Modules: and sensors control the temperatures & in turn the cycling of the more modern refrigerator. Evaporator: located internally & can be of many different designs. It is where the circulating refrigerant absorbes & removes heat which is then dissipated by the condenser. Also known as the cooling medium. Thermostats: are used in conventional refrigeration to cycle the product on & off,  to control the temperature level.

Refrigeration Noises:

Hissing or Spitting Noise: The noise is usually heard while the compressor is running and comes from the point where the capillary enters the evaporator. The refrigerant gas is forced out of the capillary under pressure and expands into the larger diameter pipe of the evaporator. The noise you hear is the refrigerant gas expanding. In cyclic products the noise will be louder after defrosting as the ice acts as an insulator. >Hissing or spitting noises can also be the water running off the evaporator and hitting the defrost element while hot, in the defrost cycle. Running Water Noise: This noise is usually heard while the compressor is not running. The accumulator in the evaporator holds some liquid refrigerant to help maintain a constant temperature. Cracking Noise: This noise usually occurs just after start-up or just after stopping to defrost. It sounds like placing an ice cube into a glass of water. During start-up, water may still be present on the evaporator & this may crack slightly as it begins to freeze. The loudest noise is during the defrost cycle of the evaporator in the freezer. The heater element may be located quite close to the evaporator and the ice. The heater temperature rises very quickly; for example from -18 degrees Celsius to 270 degrees Celsius very quickly. The sudden change in temperature causes the ice to crack. This noise can be VERY loud! Interior Noise: It is normal to hear noise coming from inside the cabinet as the plastic components move  due to expansion and contraction. Expansion noises occur after a defrost. Contraction noises happen during the refrigeration phase of the cycle. Humming Noise: Frost free products will have fan noises. Slurping/Sucking Noise: This noise can occasional happen when the fridge door is closed. The reason is the drain tube is too long and is sitting in water. On closing the door a vacuum is created which draws air or water up into the drain tube.

Optimum Operational Temperatures:

The ideal temperature for a freezer is -18 degrees Celsius.The optimum temperature for a fridge is 3 degrees Celsius.

Effects of Turning a Refrigerator To A Much Colder Setting:

Often, when an individual believes a fridge is not cold enough they turn the thermostat to a colder setting. Usually this is by at least 2 settings. This is not advisable. Gradual reduction in temperature is always recommended.

There are a number of consequences. The fridge will initially seem a little cooler. As the cooling plate becomes heavily frosted, the fridge temperature will become warmer. As the temperature of the cooling plate becomes warmer, foodstuffs may start to spoil. Ice cream will become harder as the fridge will be running longer. Noise level may increase as the compressor overheats. The outside of the cabinet may get hotter as well.

Gas Leak!!!!

Many people assume that the failure of a fridge to cool properly is related to a shortage of gas. Refrigerators do not use gas up. They have a sealed system. Gas leaks are uncommon in modern fridges.

The inability of a refrigerator to cool is usually the result of an electrical component failure.

My fridge is running all the time!

Fridges should run approximately 50% of the time. It is common for them to run for half an hour, turn off for half an hour, then turn back on etc. Remember that fridges also contain fans. Fan noise can sometimes be confused with compressor noise.

Washing tips:

1. Make sure your washing machine is level. If on a plynth, make sure it is approved for your brand of washing machine. 2. Add detergent prior to clothes, to allow it to fully dissolve. 3. Don’t overload. This will prevent your clothes from washing as well and may wear the washing machine out faster. 4. Turn water taps off when machine is not in use.  Hoses that burst make an awful mess and this can occur when you are away. 5. Be sure not to use excessive detergent quantities. As we have soft water in our local area it results in over-foaming which can cause wear and damage to components.

Black/brown/green substance on washing.

SCRUD is the name given to this waxy build-up that can occur within any washer. It is often mistaken for oil or grease! It is usually the result of fabric softener reacting with detergent. This build up is not the fault of the machine. Stains on clothes and unpleasant smell in the washing machine can result if scrud is allowed to build up.To prevent scrud build up it is recommended to:

  • Use fabric softener sparingly or not at all.
  • Use fabric softener of a thinner consistency.
  • Take care when filling the fabric softener dispenser not to splash or overfill.
  • Clean the dispenser as soon as the cycle is finished.
  • Use warm or hot washes, as cold water washes increase the likelihood of scrud build-up.
  • Better quality detergents and detergents containing phosphates reduce the incidence of scrud development.
  • Clean the inside of your machine regularly.

If scrud is still a problem for you, phone our office for further assistance.

Cold Water Washing.

The process of washing clothes is the removal of soil from fabrics in the presence of water and detergent. The efficiency of this process is improved if the water temperature is raised as the active ingredients in the detergent is more effective at higher temperatures. The detergent assists in loosening the soil and when the fabric is agitated the soil is emulsified, being taken into suspension in the detergent solution. Generally, the higher the temperature, the better will be the cleansing efficiency.

Of course, some fabrics are not suited to high temperature washing and there must be a compromise between giving the best possible cleanliness at the highest temperature the fabric can withstand.

Detergent Use.

Most washing machines are now high efficiency types and the use of a low sudsing detergent will prevent oversudsing problems. Low sudsing detergents are the type used in front loaders.

Liquids provide the best results; especially when washing darker colours.

Poor Cleaning Result.

  • Wash water is too cold.
  • Poor quality detergent.
  • Inadequate detergent for load size (rare with soft water).
  • Overloading the washer.
  • Hard water.

Linting.

  • Lint filter (if present) requires cleaning or replacing.
  • Overloading the washer.
  • Not enough detergent to hold lint in suspension (where no lint filter present)

Machine Not Powering Up?

Is the power switched on at the wall?

  • Switch the power off at the wall and wait 60 seconds before turning the power on again.
  • Is your household power at fault? Try plugging in another electrical appliance.

Not Filling.

  • Are both hot and cold water taps turned on?
  • Are the inlet hose filters blocked?
  • Is delay start on?

Not Spinning Properly?

  • Is the load out of balance?
  • Is the machine level?
  • Is there suds buil-up?