Freezer Door Won’t Open All The Way – What To Do?

In some cases, your freezer door won’t open all the way, causing issues with getting food in and out of the appliance. If you find yourself in this situation, what can you do? We consulted with the experts to explain the causes and solutions for your freezer door not opening all the way.

Damaged parts can be the main reason why your freezer door won't open all the way. The parts that you should check include:

  • Door closure cams
  • Door closure levels and cams
  • Door hinge bushings

Take note that fixing your freezer door for it to open and close properly requires repairing or replacing the right parts. Keep reading to learn how to check these parts and to find out the solution to repairing the appliance’s door.

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A woman opening the freezer door, Freezer Door Won't Open All The Way - What To Do?

Why Is My Freezer Door Not Opening All The Way?

Freezer doors open an average of 9 to 32 times per day, depending on the environment. Your freezer door not opening all the way can have different culprits. Some of the common suspects include the following:

  • Broken or damaged door closure cams
  • Damaged door closure levels and cams
  • Cracked door hinge bushings

A woman opening the small freezer door

What to do if My Freezer Door Won’t Open All the Way?

In this section, you’ll learn what to do in specific situations if your freezer door doesn’t open all the way.

Broken or Damaged Door Closure Cams

Door closure cams provide doors with a smooth surface to stay open or close fully. If the cams are damaged, the door won't open or close properly. Check for a plasticky grinding noise when opening or closing the freezer door.

You can buy cams individually or as a set. However, it's best to buy the cams as pairs because mixing different sets can cause issues. Check your freezer's manual to find the cam part model number for easier searching.

Take a look at the BlueStars freezer door closure cams on Amazon.

Damaged Door Closure Levels and Cams

Door closure levers and their connected cams allow the freezer door to open or close properly. Depending on your freezer's model and design, the closure level and cam can either be mounted at the top or bottom of the appliance's door. If these parts have damages, the door loses its ability to hold itself open or close.

Don't attempt to repair these parts using DIY methods because those quick-fix solutions are temporary at best. Instead, replace these parts if they're failing.

Cracked Door Hinge Bushings

Different designs of door bushings are available on the market. But all the bushings you see serve one purpose—that is to allow the door to have a smooth surface to ride on during opening and closing operations.

Depending on your freezer's design, you may have to remove the door to inspect the integrity of the hinge bushing. Doing some DIY repairs on the bushing is possible, but these solutions tend to be temporary. It's best to replace the damaged bushing if they fail.

How Do You Open A Freezer Door That Is Stuck?

An up close photo of a refrigerator seal

Sometimes a freezer door doesn’t budge if you want to open it. In some situations, warm air inside the freezer might have cooled rapidly, causing the cold air to take up less space than usual. In turn, the air in the appliance caused a negative pressure, making it more challenging than average to open the door.

If the negative pressure is the culprit, give your freezer some time to relieve the unwanted tension. You can achieve this solution by opening the door slightly, if possible.

Additionally, and in certain cases, negative pressure isn’t the culprit to a stuck freezer door. Instead, the seal or gasket might have become warped or damaged, sticking to the surface of the door. If so, you may have to break the seal by using your finger or a flat yet durable object to break the gasket gently. Then, replace the gasket as it may already be beyond repair.

Another culprit as to why your freezer door is stuck is because warm air became more apparent in the appliance than cold air. Not only will warm air ruin your food, but it can also cause the door's gasket or seal to warp. The main suspect of your freezer generating warm air could be a dirty condenser coil. For more information about the appliance's condenser coil, you can also check out our post: Should A Chest Freezer Be Hot Outside?

cleaning the freezer's condenser coil

Moving forward, here are the steps to clean your freezer’s condenser coil:

  1. Remove the freezer from its power supply.
  2. Locate the condenser coil by checking the owner’s manual.
  3. Remove the base grille, if required.
  4. Use a condenser cleaning coil brush to remove dirt, dust, pet hair, and small debris.
  5. Remove the excess filth surrounding the condenser coil with a broom or vacuum cleaner.
  6. Return the grille or replace it if it became damaged.
  7. After cleaning, return the power to the freezer.

Make sure to do this job reasonably fast. It’s because the longer you leave the freezer door open, your food will spoil at a faster rate than usual. For more details about this concern, look into our article: How Long Can You Leave The Freezer Door Open?

Check out this Vanitek flexible condenser coil brush on Amazon.

How Do You Realign A Freezer Door?

Before proceeding with this repair job, make sure you have enough strength to pull and lift the door away from the freezer. For example, an 18 cubic feet GE freezer will have a 17 lbs door. If you can’t carry that much weight, you may need to call a friend or household member to help with pulling and lifting.

After checking the weight of the freezer door, follow these steps to realign it:

  1. Loosen the hinge screws and remove the hinge cap.
  2. Pull and lift the freezer door so it comes off its hinges.
  3. Align the top of the door by straightening it with the top of the freezer.
  4. Align the lower portion of the door by adjusting the middle hinge.
  5. Secure the hinge screws and return the hinge cap when satisfied.

Samsung Freezer Door Won't Open

ice build up inside a freezer

Some Samsung freezer doors may malfunction with their doors that can either be more difficult to open or refuse to open at all. When that happens, check your owner’s manual and identify the model number of the appliance. Then, you can do an online search with that model number to figure out the cause and solution to the issue.

But before you search online for a potential cause and answer to your Samsung freezer door not opening, here are a couple of models from the South Korean appliance manufacturer—with potential problems and resolutions to this particular concern.

How to Fix a Samsung RF28HMEDBSR Freezer Door Not Opening

A Samsung RF28HMEDBSR French door freezer may not open because of significant ice buildup. Here are the steps to fix this problem:

  1. Slide the door open by removing the hinges.
  2. Locate the defrost drain and make sure it doesn't have a blockage.
  3. If there's a blockage, check the owner's manual and locate the water filter head. Inspect that part for cracks. Replace the part if it has cracks or other types of damage.
  4. Inspect the water tank assembly for leaks.
  5. If the water tank assembly has leaks, check your owner’s manual for that specific part model number and replace it. Don’t use standard glue to seal the leak as the adhesive won’t be strong enough to prevent water from penetrating.

How to Fix a Samsung RT35K5532SL/TC Freezer Door Not Opening

The Samsung RT35K5532SL/TC has the Twin Cooling Plus technology, which might fail. In turn, it can cause significant ice buildup in the appliance, restricting the door from opening properly. If this is your issue, here are the steps to help solve it:

  1. Check the owner’s manual and locate the defrost temperature sensor.
  2. Take out the power connected to the freezer.
  3. Remove the shelves and vegetable drawer.
  4. Use a small flathead screwdriver to remove the screw cover.
  5. Remove the Philips screws that hold the center support.
  6. Remove the two bottom screws and take out the evaporator cover.
  7. Remove the defrost sensor and replace it with the same part.
  8. Install the new defrost sensor and put back the items that you took out.
  9. Reinstate the power going to the Samsung freezer.

If you need a visual representation of these steps, you can also check out the video below:

Check the Samsung OEM defrost temperature sensor on Amazon.

Final Words

Check the freezer door closure levels, cams, and hinge bushings if your freezer door won’t open all the way. Repair these parts, if possible. However, it’s best to replace these components instead to take advantage of long-term solutions.

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