Is your Samsung refrigerator making loud jackhammer noises?
We understand how this could make you feel anxious, but the root cause may be simpler than what you expected!
In this article, we dive into the common causes of this issue. We’ll also provide you with quick solutions that you can try following without calling in for a technician.
From a 5-step, 3-minute-long troubleshooting method, to a more technical (but easy-to-follow) procedure to test the parts involved, we promise to help you get rid of that noise in no time!
Why is your Samsung fridge making jackhammer noises?
If your Samsung fridge is making jackhammer noises, this could be caused by an issue in its water filter case assembly, water line valve, or water pipes.
It could also be because there is ice buildup around the evaporator fan.
When you hear loud banging, rattling, or grinding noises from your fridge, the first troubleshooting method you need to do is to defrost the unit.
The banging, rattling, and grinding noise usually comes from the ice maker in production, particularly when ice falls and hits the bucket or other parts of the fridge inside. It’s normal to hear them occasionally.
As such, when they become insistent and only stop when you open the refrigerator door, you ought to check on the condition of the ice in your refrigerator first.
In regular cases, these noises are caused by too much ice buildup in the appliance, particularly around the fan area.
To get rid of the ice buildup, you can unplug your refrigerator and manually defrost the ice by leaving the doors open. Or you can put the unit in Force Defrost mode.
Force Defrost (Fd) is a special function in Samsung refrigerators that turns on all of the appliance’s heaters, allowing them to thaw out the ice in all the compartments without turning off the unit.
Depending on the thickness of the buildup, Force Defrost mode can also melt the ice in about 20 minutes — that’s faster than regular manual defrosting, which can last up to hours on average!
To put your refrigerator in Force Defrost, simply locate the two buttons that trigger this function. These buttons can vary from model to model; some of them have these buttons labeled, but to be sure, consult your user manual for the correct combination.
Once you know which buttons to press, simply do the following:
- Step 1: Press and hold the two buttons that trigger Fd mode together for at least 8 seconds or until the display goes blank. Most models use the Power Freeze & Fridge buttons for this.
Meanwhile, for dispenser models, you can try pressing the Freezer and Lightning buttons together.
- Step 2: Once the display is blank, press any other button on the control panel until “Fd” appears on the screen. Your refrigerator will beep to signal that the defrost cycle has started, and it will continue to beep until the cycle has ended.
While Force Defrost mode can effectively melt all the ice in the refrigerator on its own, there are a couple more things you can do to ensure its full efficiency. Here are a few recommendations you can observe during the defrosting session:
• Remove all the bins and leave all the doors open. This also means you have to pull out all the food inside.
You want to empty the fridge for two reasons: first, to ensure that the food will stay in its best condition and won’t go bad from getting in contact with moisture. This also prevents bad odors from occurring.
Second, to ensure that warm air can circulate and reach far-off corners freely. For this same reason, you have to remove all the bins and shelves as well.
Leaving the doors open, meanwhile, will let more warm air in. Typically, you don’t want to leave your fridge doors open during regular cooling cycles, as warm air that makes contact with the cold air inside can form condensation.
But during long defrosting sessions, when the cooling system is off, warm air from outside can help thaw the ice faster.
Moreover, removing the evaporator panel cover in the back of the regular compartment will ensure that any ice buildup around the evaporator fan will also thaw.
The evaporator fan housing is located behind this panel cover, hence it’s connected to the fridge body with wires, so you have to be careful in prying this part off.
• Don’t use a hair dryer or any heating devices on your fridge. While aiding the unit in thawing out the ice can help melt the buildup faster, you have to be careful with the instrument you use.
Heating devices such as hair dryers, for example, can do more harm to the appliance than good. Refrigerators in general are typically made of plastic materials which can melt or burn if exposed to too much heat.
Leaving the doors open can do enough.
• Reset the fridge settings after defrosting. Once you power the appliance back on, you might run into a few error codes or glitches.
These are normal and they usually go away if you reset the control panel. You can do this by pressing the Power Cool and Power Freeze buttons at the same time for five seconds.
You can also reset settings by powering off or unplugging the appliance for five minutes.
Once the ice has melted, let your refrigerator run as usual and listen for the jackhammering noise again. If it returns, then the next place you need to inspect is the water filter assembly.
You might think the water filter assembly is easy to fix but take note: water filter assembly refers to the several pipes and wired components that supply the water for your fridge.
To learn more about it, we’ve listed below which particular parts of your fridge’s water filter assembly can be contributing to the jackhammer noise and how to patch them up.
Common Causes of a Samsung Fridge Making Jackhammer Noises and How to Fix Them
As previously established, the jackhammering noises your Samsung refrigerator is making typically point to an issue with its water supply.
Below, we’ve listed each part that makes up this supply system, and how to deal with each of them.
|Damaged Water Filter||Turn off the fridge’s water supply. Locate the water filter between the crisper drawers at the bottom of the compartment.|
Twist the knob of the water filter and pull it outwards. Inspect it for damages and verify its authenticity.
Replace it if necessary.
|Faulty Water Filter Case Assembly||Unplug the refrigerator and turn off its water supply.|
Remove all the bins and shelves above and around the water filter, including the crisper drawer assembly.
Remove the hinger cover assembly on top of the refrigerator and disconnect the water line (blue hose) from its connector.
Turn the appliance around and locate the blue and gray hoses behind it.
Unscrew the tiny black cover holding it in place, and remove the hose retaining clips.
Peel off the tape connecting the hoses to the fridge body.
Pull each of the hoses out carefully.
Remove the water supply line to the refrigerator.
Then, return to the inside of the fridge and carefully pull out the water filter assembly. Be mindful of wires still connecting it to the fridge body.
Once those are disconnected, you can freely pull out the water lines and remove the assembly completely.
Check the water filter head, the water valve, and the water tank for any damage.
If any of these parts are damaged, replace the water filter assembly.
|Closed Water Line Shut-off Valve||Inspect the shut-off valve near the water source or at the end of your fridge’s water line. Make sure that it’s open fully.|
If the shut-off valve does not turn, replace it.
|Unsecured Water Pipes||Inspect the hoses and water lines coming from the water source and into the fridge. Make sure that they are taped or clipped in place, and that they do not move easily.|
|Defective Evaporator Fan Motor||Unplug the refrigerator and remove the shelves and bins in the compartment.|
Open the evaporator panel of the fridge and check for any damage to the evaporator fan blades.
Otherwise, run a voltage test to check if the fan motor is capable of turning the fan freely.
With the evaporator panel wires reconnected to the fridge body, leave a small opening so you can check the state of the fan.
Then, with a pair of magnets, locate the door switch placements on top of the fridge. You can identify these by tiny arrowheads.
Place the pair of magnets on each door switch placement and let them bypass the door switch.
Once the fridge detects the magnets, the interior lights should turn off. Then, connecting the proper probes from the multimeter to the respective wires in the evaporator panel, run a voltage test.
If the fan motor faults the test, replace it.
Dealing with the water supply system rarely calls for technical assistance, and even if a couple of these troubleshooting methods may require you to bring out your toolbox, there’s nothing too complicated that will require advanced technical knowledge.
However, since this issue involves the water supply system, if at some point you suspect that the issue may be in the water source (i.e. the plumbing) itself, do not hesitate to call for professional help.
Damaged Water Filter
Samsung refrigerators use a set of water filters that are unique to each model. As such, they can be particular with compatibility.
If you’re using a brand-new water filter and notice jackhammer noises coming from the fridge, a possible cause for this is that you’re using the wrong kind of filter for your unit. When this happens, the filter body can get easily damaged.
Furthermore, the appliance is also particular about authenticity. If it seems that you’re using the right kind of filter but are still facing this issue, the problem might be because the filter replacement is a counterfeit.
Water filter issues like this will typically be accompanied by a leak inside the unit.
Solution: Check the water filter body for any damages as well as its compatibility and authenticity.
To remove the water filter body from its housing, follow these steps:
- Step 1: Turn off the water supply to the fridge, then locate the water filter between the deli or crisper drawers at the bottom of the regular compartment.
- Step 2: Turn the knob counterclockwise until you hear a click. Once the water filter pops out of its housing, pull it out carefully.
- Step 3: Inspect the filter for any damage or cracks. If you need to replace it, proceed to the next step.
- Step 4: Install the new water filter the way you pulled it out. Hold it by the knob and push it in with the gasket facing forward towards the housing.
- Step 5: Turn the water filter body clockwise as you’re pushing it in place until you can’t turn it anymore.
Keep applying pressure while turning the filter in place. Unlike when it was being removed, locking the filter in place won’t make a clicking sound, so the only way to know it’s secured is if it no longer turns in place.
Once the new filter is installed, run at least two gallons of water to flush out any impurities that might be in the filter before you can drink the water.
Furthermore, when checking for the authenticity of the product you’re using, you have to look for two things: the product’s serial number and a rib on the filter body to lock it into place.
To elaborate, here are the elements that you should check:
- The water filter’s serial number. Samsung refrigerator water fillers have a serial number printed on the body, and not towards the nose or head.
As mentioned, the type of filter your unit needs depends on the model of your fridge. You may refer to your user manual for specifications.
When the filter you’re using is incompatible with the unit, even if it’s authentic, it can easily be dislodged from its housing and get damaged. In the worst-case scenario, this will lead to a leak.
- A rib along the water filter body. Counterfeit water filters have a more difficult time fitting the housing or locking into place because they’re missing a rib on the filter body.
Depending on the model of your fridge, you might need either a 2-rib lock filter or a 3-rib lock one. If the ribs on your water filter don’t match the housing, even if it’s authentic, it can be dislodged or may cause a leak.
Damaged Water Filter Case Assembly
If the water filter seems intact but the noise persists, then it’s time to check its compartment.
As its name suggests, the water filter case assembly houses the fridge’s water filter and all lines connected to it. You can also find here a small water tank and inlet valve used for storing and delivering water to the water dispenser.
In other words, the water filter case assembly is responsible for the transmission of water supply in the appliance.
The water filter case assembly works as a system, so when one of its components gets damaged or faulty, it affects the entire housing.
A common mistake that leads to damage to the water filter case assembly is putting the water filter into storage without properly draining the water from the assembly first. This can cause the undrained water to freeze and leak into the fridge’s compartment.
This also means the water supply won’t be able to flow smoothly through the assembly and into other parts of the fridge, hence the mechanical noise your appliance is making.
Solution: While the water filter case assembly is made up of various components, these parts are rarely sold separately, if at all.
So if you find one of its components damaged and need to replace it, it’ll be easier (and cheaper) to replace the entire assembly instead.
To remove the water filter case assembly and inspect it, you’ll need a few tools such as a Philips screwdriver and a flathead screwdriver.
Afterward, do the following:
- Step 1: Unplug the refrigerator. Then, turn off the water supply to the unit.
- Step 2: Remove all the bins and shelves above the water filter housing, as well as the crisper drawers beside it.
Then, remove the crisper drawer assembly by depressing the two locking clips above the water filter and lifting the assembly off its place.
- Step 3: Remove the hinge cover assembly on top of the refrigerator doors. This is where the water lines pass through.
To remove this part, you’ll need to unscrew the three Philips screws holding it in place. On each end of the cover, you’ll notice arrowheads indicating where the locking clips are located.
Pry the covers off these areas and carefully flip the cover. Be mindful of the wires still connected to the cover.
- Step 4: Locate the water line. You’ll recognize it as a blue hose going into the fridge body.
Using a flathead screwdriver, pry off the blue cover over where the water line is connected to a transparent connector, and slide it down. This should reveal a red collar.
- Step 5: Using the same screwdriver, press the red collar inward towards the transparent connector as you pull the water line outwards to disconnect it from the connector.
Afterward, slide the blue cover you previously pried off the water line.
- Step 6: Once the water line on the hinge cover assembly has been disconnected, you’ll have to remove the one on the back of the refrigerator.
Using a Philips screwdriver, remove the tiny black cover and hose retaining clips holding gray and blue hoses in place.
- Step 7: Once unscrewed, remove the black cover by holding it from the bottom and pulling it out. Remove the hose retaining clips as well.
Peel off the tape securing the hoses in place.
- Step 8: With the tape removed, you’ll notice a black line on each of the hoses. We recommend taking a photo of it as a reference for when you reconnect the hoses later.
These black lines represent how far back you should push the hoses into the refrigerator body.
Afterward, using a flathead screwdriver, depress the collar of the gray hose as you pull the hose out to remove it.
To remove the blue hose, simply grab the line and pull it out carefully.
- Step 9: Locate the water supply line on the back of the refrigerator and remove it.
- Step 10: Back to the water filter assembly inside the fridge now, grab your flathead screwdriver again, and depress the locking clip under the assembly.
Slide the assembly forward while pushing down on the locking clip.
- Step 11: Once that’s unlocked, turn the assembly carefully until you see the wires connecting it to the back wall of the fridge. Once you have access to these wires, gently pry them off.
With that done, you’ll be able to remove the assembly freely while pulling the water lines out of the back of the fridge.
With the filter case assembly removed from the appliance, you can now inspect its internal components for damages.
To do that, remove the cover on the assembly, pull the water filter off its housing, and check the following parts:
- Water filter head. This is the part that holds the water filter in place.
When the water filter is removed, the internal valve on the water filter head immediately stops the water flow to avoid leaks.
- Water valve. Connected to the water filter head is the water valve, which regulates the water flow to the fridge’s ice maker and dispenser.
- Water tank. Above the water filter head and the valve, you can find a transparent water tank.
This acts as a reservoir for cold water before being transmitted to the water dispenser.
Once again, when any of these parts are damaged, you’ll be wiser to replace the entire water case assembly instead, as Samsung rarely sells each part separately for most models.
Closed Water Line Shut-off Valve
Following the water supply line of your Samsung fridge, when the water filter case assembly seems to be functioning well, then the next thing to check is the shut-off valve connected directly to the water supply.
While the internal components of the water filter case assembly regulate the amount of water being dispensed into the ice maker and the dispenser, the shut-off valve, located outside your fridge, is the one that determines the amount of water flowing into the unit.
The shut-off valve controls the water intake of your appliance. When the valve is open, water will freely flow from the supply source and into the fridge.
But when it’s closed, or not open all the way, water will have a hard time traveling into the fridge. When this happens, this part will produce a jackhammer noise.
If this mechanical noise is distinctly coming from the outside and towards the back of your fridge, the shut-off valve is highly likely the root cause of the issue.
Solution: When the water line shut-off valve is the issue, this could mean that the shut-off valve isn’t open all the way. Simply inspect the valve and make sure that it’s not closed.
In the case that your shut-off valve refuses to budge, replace it.
Unsecured Water Pipes
As you might have noticed when you inspected the water filter case assembly and the shut-off valve, there are two hoses taped behind the fridge. Aside from that, there is also the water supply line(s) connected to water shut-off valves.
To ensure that water flows smoothly from the source and into your Samsung refrigerator, these lines will have to be properly secured — hence, the tape on the back of the fridge!
These pipes need to be stable, otherwise, they can be shaken by the constant change in water pressure whenever you use the dispenser or ice maker.
When they shake, vibrate, or move, the pipes can easily disconnect themselves, come loose, and lead to leaks.
Solution: Similar to checking the water line shut-off valve for any issues, if you hear the jackhammer noise coming distinctly from the back of your fridge, this likely points to an issue with the pipes.
Ensure that the pipes are secured against the body of the fridge or the wall and that they won’t move easily. The safest option you have is to tape them in place.
You can also use pipe clamps or clips to hold them together.
Defective Evaporator Fan Motor
As we’ve established above, before troubleshooting the water filter case assembly and other parts, you need to first melt all the ice buildup in your Samsung fridge.
In most cases, the sound you’re hearing comes from the fan blades hitting the ice.
But when the noise persists, and the problem doesn’t seem to be in the water supply assembly, this could mean that something is wrong with your fridge’s evaporator fan.
Samsung refrigerator fans will make certain noises when they have difficulty turning in place.
In the evaporator fan’s case, this might mean that its blades have sustained damaged, which usually stems from overexertion when they try to spin despite being frozen. Or they could also have been dislodged.
Solution: To inspect for any damage to the evaporator fan, you’ll have to open the evaporator panel inside the fridge. Do the following steps:
- Step 1: Unplug the appliance or cut it off at its power source. Then, remove the shelves and bins in the regular compartment to access the evaporator panel on the back.
- Step 2: Unscrew the panel cover and carefully disconnect the wires connecting it to the fridge body.
- Step 3: Once the wires are out of the way, you can freely remove the panel and locate the evaporator fan on it.
- Step 4: Inspect if there are any physical damages to the fan. If there are any, you’ll need to replace the fan motor immediately.
If there aren’t, you can try turning the blades by hand to see if they can spin freely in place.
You can also run a voltage test on the fan motor to test if it’s still capable of turning the evaporator fan. To do that, you’ll need a pair of magnets, some tape, and a multimeter.
Then, do the following:
- Step 1: Reconnect the evaporator panels to the fridge body, but do not close it completely. Leave a little opening for you to check if the fan will turn during the voltage test.
- Step 2: Tape the magnets above the door switch placements. You’ll recognize them by little arrowheads — the same ones you pried off when you pulled out the water filter case assembly.
This is to bypass the door switch. Typically, your fridge will temporarily pause the evaporator fan when the door is opened to save energy and lessen the risk of ice formation.
The magnets will then proxy for the door and signal the door switch that the door is closed.
Once the door switch detects the magnets, it may take about 10 to 60 seconds before the evaporator fan turns on. The interior lights should also turn off.
- Step 3: Set up your multimeter. If you’re using an auto-ranging model, turn the meter to the DC voltage setting.
If you’re using a manual-ranging model, turn the meter to the lowest setting of 20 or 40.
- Step 4: The evaporator fan is connected to the unit via three wires of different colors: red, black, and white.
The red and black wires relay power into the fan, while the white wire relays the fan speed to the control board.
Insert the black probe of the multimeter into the end of the black wire, then take the red probe and do the same with the red wire.
- Step 5: Run a voltage test on the evaporator fan at two different fan speeds. Refer to your user manual for the specifications on appropriate voltage.
For reference, at high speed, the fan motor should be giving a voltage reading from 10 to 12 volts DC. At low speeds, the voltage reading should be about 8 DC.
If you got proper voltage readings but the fan motor isn’t running, it needs to be replaced.
Now, to replace the evaporator fan motor, you’ll have to consult your user manual first for the specific model number that your Samsung refrigerator uses.
Similar to the water filter, the evaporator fan motor also differs from model to model.
Once you’ve gotten the appropriate model ready for replacement, do the following:
- Step 1: Unplug the fridge and remove the items and shelves to access the evaporator panel.
- Step 2: Unscrew the evaporator panel cover and carefully remove the wires connecting it to the fridge body.
- Step 3: Remove the cover to access the fan motor. Disconnect the surrounding wire harnesses from their clips.
- Step 4: Remove the 4 Philipp screws connecting the plastic housing to the panel cover.
- Step 5: Once unscrewed, you can remove the fan motor from its housing by gently pushing it off its locking clip.
- Step 6: Reinstall the new fan motor face down on its housing. Make sure that the sticker is facing you.
The wires should also be placed on the bottom right corner of the housing.
- Step 7: Once the new fan motor is in place, screw the four Phillip screws back in and reinstall the wire harnesses in the clips. Tie them around one of the clips securely.
- Step 8: Reconnect the panel cover’s wire plugs into the refrigerator, then place the cover back in place. Reinstall it completely with its screws.
Loud noises coming from your Samsung refrigerator may seem like intimidating issues, but they don’t always mean you need overly-technical or mechanical solutions.
In the case of this one, making sure your unit’s water supply is free-flowing, secured, and not leaking can be all it takes to fix it.
We hope this article has given you more insight into dealing with noises like a jackhammering sound and has cleared up any misconceptions you might have had before.
The next time you hear this noise from your fridge, you’ll know what to do!