Can You Reset A Refrigerator By Unplugging It? [2023 Guide]

Is your refrigerator acting strangely? Have you found yourself frustrated with cooling or freezing issues that seem out of the blue? Maybe you've even wondered if unplugging it might magically fix everything.

You're not alone, and these issues are more common than you might think. In this guide, we'll provide you with straightforward solutions tailored to exactly what you may be facing with your appliance.

If your refrigerator is not cooling, you might think that unplugging it could resolve the problem.

This article provides concise, focused insights on just that. You'll learn about the methods of resetting your refrigerator, including the hard and soft reset options.

Why Read This Guide?

Whether you're feeling lost about the mechanics of your refrigerator, concerned about potential damage, or simply curious about how it all works, this guide speaks to your experience.

We'll provide detailed instructions that cover various makes and models, enabling you to tackle your unique problem with newfound confidence.

Resetting your refrigerator by unplugging is a proven and effective method for most models.

Mastering Your Refrigerator's Reset Options: A Complete Guide

Refrigerators play a crucial role in our kitchens. Refrigerators play a crucial role in our kitchens, but what if the fridge is not getting cold?

What happens if something goes wrong? How do you address potential problems with your refrigerator? Could unplugging it reset the appliance?

However, the recommended reset method could vary based on the refrigerator's age, brand, make, and model. 

If you're concerned about why your refrigerator might have stopped working, worried that unplugging it could cause harm, or curious about how long you can leave your fridge unplugged safely, this article is here to guide you.

Continue reading to explore well-researched answers to these questions and more!

Classic century inspired kitchen with white cupboards and cabinets and a marble countertop, Can You Reset A Refrigerator By Unplugging It?

Can You Reset A Refrigerator By Unplugging It?

Yes, you can reset your refrigerator by unplugging it, but it's more nuanced than just pulling the plug.

Are you worried that you might damage something or that you're missing something crucial?

We'll walk you through the exact steps, so you can be confident that you're handling your appliance the right way.

Double-Check: Always check for a reset button; it's often the preferred method for your appliance.

Unplug and Wait: Unplugging the refrigerator will reset the appliance. Choose the hard reset method or the soft reset method. More detailed step-by-step instructions are included below.

Keep the Doors Closed: Opening the doors will let the cold air escape. This affects the internal temperatures and may spoil the food inside.

Consult Your Manual: Always read the owner's manual for specific instructions related to your appliance's brand and model.

Seek Professional Advice if Needed: For personalized guidance tailored to your appliance, consult the manufacturer's customer service.

How to Reset a Refrigerator: Simple Steps for Homeowners

Feeling daunted by the idea of resetting your refrigerator? Wondering if it's as simple as unplugging it, or worried that it might lead to damage?

If your fridge is not cooling, or it is not cooling but the light is on, and you're unsure of what to do, we've got you covered.

Here's a step-by-step guide designed with homeowners like you in mind.

Related Reading: How To Reset A Frigidaire Refrigerator

Checking for a Reset Button: Do All Refrigerators Have One?

Not all refrigerators are the same. Some may have a dedicated reset button. If yours does:

  • Press and Hold: Find the reset button, usually located inside the appliance, and hold it down to reset.
  • No Reset Button? No Problem: If there's no reset button, the unplug-and-wait method works just as well.

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Related Reading: Does A KitchenAid Refrigerator Have A Reset Button?

The Hard and Soft Reset Methods: Proven Techniques to Restore Your Fridge

The Hard Reset Method: A Comprehensive Approach

How long do I unplug my fridge to reset it? For a complete hard reset, it usually takes 45 to 50 minutes. Here's how you can unplug it safely.

Unplugging the Appliance

  • Step One: Unplug the refrigerator.
  • Step Two: Leave the appliance undisturbed for 45 to 50 minutes.
  • Note: Set a timer on your phone to remind you to plug it back in.

Keeping the Doors Closed

  • Caution: Don't open the doors while unplugged. Cold air will escape and affect internal temperatures.

Plugging It Back In

  • Final Step: After forty-five minutes, plug the appliance back in.
  • Check: Ensure the power lights are on.

Will unplugging a fridge reset it? Yes, especially if the fridge is not cooling. The hard reset method takes more time but may be more suitable for significant issues.

The Soft Reset Method: A Quicker Alternative

For those facing issues like the fridge not getting cold, a soft reset might be all that's needed. It's a quicker alternative to unplugging it for longer periods.

This can be useful for simple adjustments or returning to showroom settings.

Performing a Soft Reset

  • Step One: Unplug the appliance for five minutes.
  • Step Two: Plug it back in.
  • Result: The refrigerator will revert to its showroom, or factory, setting.

The soft reset method is quick and can solve minor problems.

Resetting Your Refrigerator Made Easy

If your refrigerator is not cooling, you can reset most models by unplugging them for a specific time. Follow these clear instructions to handle the resetting process with ease.

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Related Reading: How To Reset A Samsung Fridge In 4 Steps

Prioritize Safety: Expert Guidelines for Unplugging Your Fridge

We know that unplugging your fridge may feel intimidating, especially if you've never done it before or are unsure of the potential risks.

That's why we've outlined these expert guidelines, designed to give you peace of mind and keep your appliance safe.

Can You Damage a Fridge by Unplugging It?

Understanding the Impact of Unplugging

Unplugging the refrigerator periodically is safe, but here's what you need to avoid.

Frequent unplugging can damage the compressor and motor.

Why? The compressor needs consistent pressure to prevent the coils from freezing or overheating. Each unplugging disrupts this balance.

The motor faces stress in building pressure again. This can strain your appliance.

Minimizing Damage

For the best results, only unplug when necessary. The supply cord can be significantly damaged by misuse, and a damaged cord will cause the appliance to malfunction.

Unplugging your refrigerator isn't always foolproof. If the refrigerator is not cooling and you need to reset it, follow these safety guidelines.

This will reduce the risk of fire and electrical damage that could cause personal injuries and property damage.

Key Guidelines

  • Use a certified outlet.
  • NEVER unplug the refrigerator by tugging the cord.
  • Always grasp the plug firmly and pull straight forward to unplug it.
  • Get a damaged cord replaced by a technician.
  • Avoid cords with cracks or damage.
  • Don’t roll over the power cord when moving the fridge.

Read more about plugging and unplugging your fridge here.

How Long Can You Leave a Refrigerator Unplugged?

The appliance manufacturer GE provides guidance on how long a refrigerator can remain unplugged and how to care for it when it is.

Optimizing Unplugging Time: Expert Insights from GE.

  • Less Than a Month: Remove perishables, clean the fridge, turn the ice maker and water supply off, and leave it plugged in.
  • More Than a Month: Empty it completely, turn the ice maker and water supply off and turn the circuit breaker off for added safety.

Pro Tips for Long-Term Storage

  • Keep doors open for airflow.
  • Store in a climate-controlled space.
  • Prepare the refrigerator properly for unplugged storage.

By taking these simple precautions, you can ensure that your refrigerator remains in optimal condition, ready for use when you need it again.

Cropped view of man holding unplugged power cord of fridge isolated on white

Identifying Common Refrigerator Problems: A Professional's Guide

Generally, a few issues will cause your refrigerator to stop cooling and freezing, and the most common possibilities are the following issues.

Recognize the Key Factors That Stop a Refrigerator from Working

If the fridge is not running and the inside is still relatively cold. Please check that the appliance is plugged into the wall outlet and that the outlet is functional.

Also, a blown fuse will cut power to the refrigerator, which could be why it stopped cooling. A power outage caused by a storm can shut the power off to the fridge, resulting in a reset.

If the refrigerator is too warm, check the temperature setting to see if it was accidentally changed.

If the temperature is at the correct setting and the fridge is still too warm, you will notice that foods in the freezer show excessive freezer burn, and the freezer walls are caked with frost.

Also, the refrigerator's food will be partially cool and spoil much quicker.

What stops a refrigerator from cooling?

These issues often occur when something is wrong with the condenser coils, either damaged or dirty. Also, the evaporator fan motor could have malfunctioned and will require a complete replacement.

If the freezer feels warmer than the appliances' temperature displays state.

Place a refrigerator thermometer in the freezer to monitor the temperature for added peace of mind. You could track the temperature differences and report those to the manufacturer for further assistance.

For those looking to monitor their refrigerator's temperature more closely, consider investing in the Taylor Classic Series Large Dial Fridge/Freezer Thermometer.

It provides accurate readings and helps ensure that your appliance maintains the optimal temperature for food safety.

Click Here To See This Refrigerator Thermometer On Amazon

If you're in the market for a new fridge, don't leave anything to chance.

Educate yourself on all the available options by reading our definitive guide: 'Best Refrigerator Brands On The Market.' 

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Ensuring Food Safety: Essential Considerations When Unplugging Your Refrigerator

If you find your fridge not getting cold, and you're considering unplugging it for resetting purposes, make sure to follow these food safety considerations.

Expert Guidelines for Protecting Your Food

According to the USDA, the foods inside an unplugged and cold refrigerator will remain safe for a limited time. Here's what you need to keep in mind:

Time Limit for Unplugged Refrigerator

  • Up to Four Hours Maximum: Foods will keep inside an unplugged refrigerator for up to four hours. Beyond this window, the risk increases.
  • When in Doubt, Throw It Out: Don't take a chance on consuming foods that have sat in an unplugged fridge for more than four hours. It's better to be safe and discard any questionable items.

Additional Tips for Food Safety

  • Use a Thermometer: Monitor the temperature inside the refrigerator to ensure it stays at safe levels.
  • Keep the Doors Closed: Minimize opening the refrigerator doors to retain the cold air for as long as possible.
  • Prepare for Power Outages: Consider keeping ice packs or frozen water bottles on hand to help maintain cold temperatures during unplanned outages.

Safety First: Expert-Approved Strategies for Unplugging Your Refrigerator

Unplugging your refrigerator may be necessary at times, but it's essential to prioritize food safety.

Always adhere to the above guidelines provided by authorities like the USDA and be vigilant about the time and conditions inside your refrigerator.

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Refrigerators play a crucial role in keeping our food fresh and safe. Understanding how to reset them correctly is an essential skill for homeowners.

Will unplugging a fridge reset it?

This guide answered this common query and more, including methods for resetting your refrigerator safely.

Recap Of Refrigerator Resets: What You Need to Know

Mastering Refrigerator Resets: Everything You Need to Know

Resetting a refrigerator can solve various problems, such as the refrigerator not cooling. It can tackle minor adjustments to more significant issues. Resetting this appliance is an essential maintenance task that you can often perform yourself.

Methods for Resetting Your Refrigerator

There are different methods to reset your refrigerator, including hard and soft reset options. Knowing which one to use can make the process smoother.

Safety Considerations

Whether unplugging your fridge or using a reset button, safety should always be a priority. Make sure to follow the proper guidelines to avoid any damage to the appliance or yourself.

Extend Your Knowledge Of Household Appliances With

You've now learned how to reset a refrigerator by unplugging it, among other valuable insights. But the world of household appliances offers so much more to explore. is your go-to resource for more informative and helpful content.

From learning about the best refrigerator brands to tips on maintaining other essential kitchen appliances, has it all.

Don't hesitate to dive into our other posts to become a better-educated consumer. Your kitchen, and your peace of mind, will thank you!

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