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I have a General Electric HTS20GBCCC fridge that, after working faithfully for over a decade, suddenly started forming a layer of ice in the bottom of the freezer compartment.

I looked it up online, and the most likely culprit seemed to be that the drain at the back of the freezer had become clogged. So, I shut the unit down, took the back panel off, thoroughly melted and cleaned out the ice buildup, and ran some baking soda and water down the drain.

Now, earlier this week, the unit is building up ice on the bottom of the freezer again. I rapidly took out the back panel this time to try to see exactly where the water was coming from and.. nothing interesting is apparent.

I'm not a repairman or engineer, just a dad on a budget trying to avoid a service call. Is there something I'm missing? Is it clogging in such a way that it does not appear clogged when I take off the panel? Please let me know, and thank you so much for your attention.

Broad view of compartment

closeup of drain and radiator

back panel as it faces radiator fins

bottom of back panel

model number and additional unit details

  • Hello, and welcome to Stack Exchange. @mikes 's answer is good, but just to check: is there an ice maker in this fridge? – Daniel Griscom Sep 29 '18 at 15:48
  • No sir. It has the option for one, but it is not installed. – Darkmushroom Sep 29 '18 at 15:51
  • Then I'd go with @mike 's answer. – Daniel Griscom Sep 29 '18 at 15:54
  • Have you checked your defrost cycle? I suspect that your timer or defrost bi-metal thermostat is defective not allowing the system to properly defrost. – Jeff Cates Sep 29 '18 at 19:40
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I have had this issue myself. I had a good service tech who explained the issue and said if he fixed it the cost would be $300. Or he could explain how to fix for it $75. You have already figured out how to take the freezer apart. I used a turkey baster with a small hose attached to force warm water down the drain. After the water cools suck it out with the baster and replace it with more warm water. When the drain is completely free the water should flow through and collect in the drain pan under the fridge.

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