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KitchenAid Refrigerator Lights Not Working

I love the unique features that my KitchenAid fridge has, but all of sudden the lights stopped working. I have a bit of skill in repairing things so I wondered how to get it working again. I did some research into how to get it working again and here’s what I found.

KitchenAid refrigerator lights not working can often be due to a burnt-out bulb. To fix this, unplug the refrigerator, remove the bulb cover by pushing in and sliding out, unscrew the old bulb, and replace it with a new appliance bulb of the same size and wattage. Plug the refrigerator back in and check if the lights are working.

If the bulb replacement does not solve the issue, the problem may be with the light switch. The switch can become stuck in the off position or may fail to function due to dirt accumulation or wear and tear. To address this, locate the switch, typically found on the refrigerator’s interior frame. Clean it with a soft cloth and try pressing it to see if it’s stuck. If cleaning does not help, the switch may need to be replaced.

Confused woman looking at the refrigerator

To get it working again, check your KitchenAid fridge for each of these issues one by one until you identify the problem. In this article, I will explain how to test for each of these issues, as well as, what to do if you’re unable to perform any of the steps yourself.

KitchenAid Fridge Lights Not Working

Man checking at the fridge

I’ve explained briefly how to get the lights working on your KitchenAid fridge so below I’ll outline how to check for each of these issues, how to avoid it from happening, and how to fix each of these issues once you find one of them is causing the issue.

1. Door is open for longer than 10 mins

There is a feature on KitchenAid fridges that turns the light off when it has been on for longer than 10 minutes. This saves the life of the bulb, as well as saves on electricity.

It’s possible the last time the door of the fridge was closed it wasn’t closed completely and the light stayed on. If that has happened you need to keep the door closed properly for 1 minute to to reset it so that it works again.

After 10 minutes it would have turned off, then when you went to open it the light wouldn’t come on. If it happens consistently then there can be an issue with the light switch, or the seals on your fridge. I’ll explain about the light switch in the next step. But, do a quick check that your door is closing all the way.

Modern KitchenAid fridges close automatically, as the door gets close to the closing you can let go of the door and it will close by itself. If there’s a food item stopping the fridge from closing the door won’t close all the way. Based on my experience, common culprits are something sticking out too far on one of the shelves that stops the door from closing.

It can also be OK and close all the way, but then you add something new into the door of the fridge such as a bottle of soda, or a carton of milk that now gets in the way of something sticking out on the shelves.

A good first step is to check that the door is closing all the way, and if it isn’t, move around any food items that are blocking it.

Fridge seals can be worn or split and the fridge won’t stay closed

The other issue could be the seals have broken. The seals on the fridge door go around the entire edge of the fridge, and over time they can get worn or fail. You may notice the seal is sagging in places. When it’s not making a good seal the fridge won’t stay closed and the light can stay on, and then turn off after 10 minutes.

2. Light switch not activating

As you may know, there’s a small switch on the hinge of the door that gets pressed in when you close the fridge, and pops out when you open the door. This switch turns the light on and off.

There are a few things to check to ensure your light switch is working correctly. First, your fridge should be level. To check your fridge is level you can download a free app on your smartphone, or use a carpenter’s level. A carpenter’s level is also called a bubble level, or spirit level.

Place the level on the top of your fridge and move it around in different directions to ensure your fridge isn’t perfectly flat in all directions. You may need to add something thin such as a business card, or a folded up piece of paper underneath one of the feet as a makeshift solution until you can have a repair person make your fridge completely level.

I would attempt the other solutions I’ll explain in the article before trying to level your fridge as it is a bit of a hassle. And it may not necessarily be what’s causing the issue. Unless, you notice it’s dramatically slanted in one direction.

Electronic devices within 3 inches (7.5 cm) of the door switch

Devices that have magnets in them can interfere with the door switch. Electronic devices can have magnets in them, so make sure there aren’t any electronic devices within 3 inches (7.5 cm) of the door switch.

3. Replace wiring harness

This step only applies if you recently installed or moved your fridge. It occurs when the fridge is being installed. It’s particularly technical to check. The connection in question is the wiring harness. I recommend doing this step after you’re tried the other steps, as it takes a bit of time.

Here’s a video that shows how to replace the wiring harness on a 5-Door KitchenAid fridge, which will show you what it looks like and how it works.

But, each individual Kitcheaind fridge differs. So, it’s best to follow the instructions in your owners manuals.

4. Sabbath mode on Sabbath day

The Sabbath day is a religious holiday on the Saturday of every week. It’s considered a day of rest in the Jewish faith. For that reason, there is what’s called a ‘Sabbath mode’ setting on fridges which will stop any lights coming on for the entire day, every Saturday.

Each model has different settings, and you should check the owner’s manual for your fridge to see whether it’s turned on, and how to turn it off.

5. Light socket can be loose

The actual light itself can have come loose if it wasn’t screwed or plugged in firmly when it was first installed, or the fridge was bumped around a bit.

Similar to checking the wiring harness, checking the light socket is a bit involved, so it’s best to check this step after you’ve done the other steps on this list. The owner’s manual has detailed diagrams that show how to access it and check it’s plugged in properly or screwed in well.

6. Light bulb is blown

To check that bulb is blown, first remove it following the instructions in your owner’s manual. Signs that it is blown are:

  • There will be a rattle when you shake it
  • There are dark spots on the bulb
  • You can see pieces of material inside the bulb

You can easily find replacement bulbs at hardware stores and online. The main consideration is to get the right wattage bulb for your fridge. To know what bulb you should get, check your owners manual.

KitchenAid Refrigerator Freezer Light Not Working

Woman checking at the fridge

I noticed that the fridge and the freezer lights can both not be working. So, I thought I’d explain what to do when the freezer light on your KitchenAid isn’t working. Here’s how to stop it from happening and how to fix it.

A KitchenAid freezer light will go off if the door wasn’t closed completely, if the door switch is not activating, or if the bulb is blown. The bulb can have also come loose and unplugged itself, especially if the fridge has been installed or moved recently.

I have explained exactly how to fix these issues at the beginning of this article starting with ‘Step 1. If the door is open for longer than 10 mins the light will go off.’

All of the 6 steps above should be followed to troubleshoot when the freezer on your KitchenAid fridge isn’t working.

KitchenAid Refrigerator Interior Lights Not Working

Woman checking at the fridge

There are KitchenAid fridges that are just the fridge themselves, and don’t have a drawer at the bottom with a freezer. So, I thought I’d explain specifically how to fix a KitchenAid fridge when the interior lights aren’t working.

As a general rule, start by closing your fridge completely and waiting for 1 minute. After that, open the fridge again and see if the lights are working now. If that didn’t get the lights working again, then there can be an issue with the light switch, or the light bulbs can be loose or blown.

Copyright protected content owner: and was initially posted on August 30, 2021.

To troubleshoot the issue, I’ve included step by step instructions above at the beginning of this article. It’s a matter of doing each of the steps until you find what’s causing the issue.

If you try all of the steps and it’s still not working or you’re not comfortable performing any of the steps then it’s best to have an appliance repair technician take a look at it.

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