The “Jazz” control board is what Whirlpool (makers of Amana and Maytag appliances) calls the Adaptive Defrost Control (ADC) board used in some models of french door and bottom-mount Maytag and Amana refrigerators. You can identify the Jazz control board by the two, single-digit digital displays for the freezer and fresh food temperature adjustment that are located at the top of the fresh food compartment.
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These Jazz boards fail pretty frequently. The two most common failure modes on these boards are
1) Failure to initiate defrost and
2) Failure to stop the compressor during defrost.
In both cases, the evaporator frosts up so much that air can”t flow through it anymore. When I get the call, the typical complaint is that the freezer temperatures are fine but the fresh food compartment (the beer compartment) is not cold enough.
Troubleshooting these Jazz boards is pretty straightforward. Put the unit into forced defrost mode and see if the defrost heating element in the freezer heats up. You can tell this in a number of ways:
– feel the heating element (carefully!) if you can reach it
– listen for sizzling as the frost melts off the evaporator and hits the hot element
– measure current or wattage change (should increase)– a Kill-A-Watt meter makes this quick and easy to do.
The compressor should shut off during defrost. If you still hear it running, then you don”t need to do any further troubleshooting because you know the Jazz board is bad and you can go ahead and replace it.
If the defrost heater does not get hot in forced defrost mode, then you need to disassemble the freezer and check continuity of the defrost limiter and defrost heater. But, I gotta tell ya, in these units I replace far more Jazz boards than I do defrost limiters. And I don”t think I”ve ever had to replace a defrost heater in one of these models.
So, how do you put the Jazz control board into forced defrost mode? I thought you”d never ask! The tech sheet behind the toe grill has instructions like this:
You can watch me in action as I show you how to run diagnostics on these boards, including putting it into forced defrost mode.
As far as replacing the Jazz board, there are a couple techniques out there. First thing is to remove the light cover (the clear plastic part over the lights behind the control panel). It just slides back and off. That”s the easy part.
One way to get at the Jazz board is to remove the entire control housing, like ahso:
The other method, and my preferred method, is to just unclip the Jazz board housing, letting it swing down, but leaving the rest of the control housing intact, like ahso:
You can also watch me in action as I replace the Jazz Board in one of these refrigerators: