how to force defrost a samsung refrigerator

How (and Why) to Force Defrost a Samsung Refrigerator

Since the Genesis of Electronically Controlled Refrigerators in 2000, one of the first questions I am asked during training is “How do I run a forced defrost on a Samsung Refrigerator?” 

As a Field Engineer, the reason is obvious; defrost system components are among the top replaced parts for a “no cool” complaint. The ability to energize that system for testing is a must. But, with Samsung, there are many more procedures that require this.

You need to Force Defrost a Samsung Refrigerator before taking one tool out of your bag.

Why do I need to force defrost a Samsung Refrigerator for no cool AND ice maker issues?

Why is a Samsung refrigerator forced defrost a must? 

For one, you need to run a forced defrost before removing the Direct Contact Icemaker. This system includes the icemaker “clamped” to an evaporator tube. Force Defrost, indicated as “Fd” on the seven-segment displays, activates the ice maker’s heater loop as well.

In fact, depending on the model you are working on, Force Defrost will also activate other electric heaters in the appliance. Those may include the fill tube heater, damper door heaters and duct heaters, besides the obvious defrost heater.

Regardless, removing that icemaker while it is frozen to the cooling tube will result in…… and YOU buying the customer a new refrigerator. But wait, there’s more!

Since Samsung’s evaporator covers are mounted in such close proximity to the evaporator itself, it is a MUST to Force Defrost before attempting to remove that cover. If not, it’s a sure bet the compressed foam type insulation behind the cover will break, and airflow will be severely compromised upon reassembly.

How Do You Force Defrost a Samsung Refrigerator?

To force defrost a Samsung refrigerator, follow these two simple steps:

Step 1: Press Power Freeze & Fridge Buttons Simultaneously

On “tabletop” control models, press the Power Freeze and Fridge buttons simultaneously for about 8 seconds, until the display goes blank. Then, press any other button until “Fd” appears. A beep will be heard and defrost begins.

For dispenser models, press Freezer (top left) and Lighting (middle right) buttons simultaneously for about 8 seconds, until the display goes blank. Then, press any other button until “Fd” appears.

Where to find the Samsung Defrost Buttons:

how to force defrost a samsung refrigerator

Press the Power Freeze Button.

1 of 3

Press the Fridge Button.

2 of 3

Press the Lighting Button.

3 of 3

Step 2: Disconnect from Power to Reset

After the defrost is complete, you MUST disconnect from power to reset! As always, refer to the Fast Track Document for the model in question to verify. Some older models with bar level display, you must refer to the Fast Track for that model.

How long does it take to defrost a Samsung refrigerator?

It should only take about 20 minutes to force defrost a Samsung refrigerator. This is a lot faster than trying to do a manual defrost.

While the defrost is running, you may feel like not much is happening. If you hear the refrigerator beeping, this is an indication that the force defrost is running.

Contributing Writer

Richard Sedlack is the President and Founder of Level 2 Learning, LLC, a national training company. Level 2 Learning offers workshops across North America, delivering much needed technical training to appliance industry professionals, including their newest Lokring Engineer Certification workshop.

If you are interested in hosting or attending a workshop, please contact Level 2 Learning at or call 518.545.8448.

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