is the start relay supposed to rattle at all? my old one rattled noticeably, so based on what I read decided to buy another one thinking that part was broken. i decided to buy a certified used one though (i know, i should have just bought new) and out of the box, which was opened, i shook it and heard the same rattle sound. installed new used relay and no difference afaik. i tried to search for some videos to see what the rattle is supposed to be like but could find any. so either i was sent a broken part or the part is supposed to have some sort of rattle. would appreciate a quick response so i can order the part again if necessary. thanks!!!

i used a multimeter and the old one jumps from 0-200. the new one seems to like .05

other background info side by side refrigerator was not getting cold. food in freezer thawing and fresh food size was pretty much room temp. freezer side DOES shoot cold air out sometimes. first read to clean the condensor coils. layer of pet hair over the front which i vacuumed and blew. did not help. checked evap coils and no sign of frost anywhere. evap fan does turn on sometimes. temp settings normal. lights functioning properly. checked back panel and didn't notice anything unusual, but i don't really know what i'm doing either. compressor is hot and fan working, but not sure if vibrating. a subtle vibrate at best. there is noise coming from the fridge but nothing loud. no clicking sounds ever.


You're probably going to want to revise the question, but the answer to your question is "sure," "yes," most if not all relays *(that are not solid state) will potentially make noise when you shake them.

Now with that said, shaking a relay does nothing to test it, and to be honest, is more prone to potentially damage it. Inside of a non-solid-state relay is a physical "switch" driven by an electro magnet. They have metal moving parts. Springs in some. SO .... yes, shaking a relay can make it make a noise.

Does a relay rattle? if you are shaking it, sure. But in normal operation, no not really. when it cycles on and off, its going to emit a click. A fridge does not turn on and off rapidly, so it wont "rattle"

Are your coils getting hot outside? cool inside? does the compressor come on? is the freezer air fan working and free to move a full revolution? does it do so? How old is the fridge? Provide this info along with make & model. Have you defrosted it? is the freezer jam packed to the brim?

When you said the compressor is hot, how hot? no vibration - could mean its siezed.

  • please read the entire paragraphs as i provided details. it doesn't seem like it's getting cold at all anymore. i'm not sure about outside coils do you mean condensor? are those safe to touch? i'm not sure how to tell if the compressor is on or not i just know that it's warm-hot. the fridge has been unplugged for a couple days now so it's defrosted and after i change the relay nothing was getting cold after 20 min or so. the evap fan and condensor seem to be working normally. the freezer was packed to the brim but pretty much empty now. – Jon Oct 21 '18 at 3:03
  • the reason i changed the relay is because everywhere online says that if it rattles it's bad and needs to be replaced. also some guy said that condensor coils packed with pet hair tend to wear them out quickly. forgot to say thanks for helping! – Jon Oct 21 '18 at 3:04
  • kitchenaid ksc24c8eyy01 – Jon Oct 21 '18 at 3:19
  • I did read your entire question and added content. I stated some things despite what your notes say because its not entirely clear (or is contradictory), such as, it isnt cool anymore but sometimes shoots cool air - it cannot shoot real cool air unless it is cooling right? Freezer food thawing is not indicative of thawed and spoiled, thus, if the food isnt pure spoilage and days of thawing with open doors, there can be a solid block of ice internally that you cannot even see that hasnt melted. Again, its not clear it is actually not ice jammed. – noybman Oct 26 '18 at 4:10
  • On the rlay front, not sure what to tell you other than what I said. Relays do not get tested byshaking them, and again, shaking a relay does not prove good or bad, this is a fact. Shaking a relay COULD damage it, but sincerely its not likely. To be honest, I'm not sure why you got on the path of replacing the relay if its not clear that the other things have been checked yet. To diagnose something like this you got to do a checklist of things, and logically identify a fault, preferrably with tools. With the model provided, and definite answers to the questions asked, we can get somwhere – noybman Oct 26 '18 at 4:13

When you say rattle I am guessing you mean the relay is buzzing, if this is the case the voltage may be low, loose connections in the outlet can cause this to happen. When the compressor trays to start the voltage drops and the relay drops out then the voltage is back so it trys to start again. A bad start capacitor can also cause problems. FWIW I have noticed on R134a units when they overheat that can cause the compressor to fail. I have see this a few times but would check the voltage under load first.

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