Why did our refrigerator shut off (the circuit breaker it is connected to shut off) while we were away? Samsung and others say we should shut the refrigerator off when we are away for more than 2 weeks. I don't want to do that. Why does it shut off on its own? Samsung implies that if the refrigerator did not shut off some damage would occur to the refrigerator. Is this true. I am not interested in energy saving (sorry). Please just tell me why the refrigerator shuts off and if leaving on while we are way might damage it.

  • There might be a small possibility that not opening the door would increase frost levels, but two weeks should be minor. Imagine this is a newer fridge full of electronics and other useless stuff. Not using the fridge for two weeks is a good time to shut it off(if cleaned out), but a fridge itself should not make that decision.
    – crip659
    Commented Sep 10, 2022 at 15:46
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    You say "the circuit breaker it is connected to shut off". That tells me the fridge didn't make the decision, so to speak. Is it a simple circuit breaker, or more advanced one such as GFCI or AFCI - does it have a test button?
    – Mark
    Commented Sep 10, 2022 at 16:05
  • Thank you. The refrigerator is less than two years old. The warranty is 1 year on everything, 10 years on the compressor. Samsung will make a service call but state I will charge $120 just for diagnosis. Commented Sep 10, 2022 at 16:08
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    So, what do you change when you go away? Otherwise the circuit breaker would trip when you are there...
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Sep 10, 2022 at 16:59
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    Leaving food in your refrigerator and leaving it on while traveling is perfectly reasonable. It's more environmental since wasting food has a carbon cost too. You don't need to defend a desire to not waste a freezer full of food. However, StackExchange is not for grumbly rants. So we need enough information to inform a solution. Specifically what exactly is the type of breaker, photo prefered, and what other things are on the same circuit as the fridge i.e. what else lost power when the fridge did. Commented Sep 10, 2022 at 19:02

1 Answer 1


The refrigerator did not shut off. The breaker to the fridge was tripped.

There are no electronics made that will purposefully make a refrigerator overload a circuit. So leave what Samsung thinks out of it. There is nothing built-in to make this happen.

I also assume the breaker was in trip-free position, not in the off position due to your significant other deciding to turn it off to make Samsung happy. The only thing that will make this happen is an overcurrent condition. Your fridge does not have a condition that will only occur when you aren't home. Fridges run for months undisturbed in basements and garages across the world. So you are going to have to wait for it to happen again and have it serviced if it does.

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