How to Change a Maytag Refrigerator Light Bulb

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Problems with lighting in your refrigerator is probably not due to the lights themselves.
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How many homeowners does it take to change a Maytag refrigerator light bulb? The answer is just one, and if you're wondering how long it will take, the answer is just a minute or two. But there's a possible problem. The reason a light bulb doesn't work isn't always that it's defective, and if that's true, changing it won't have any effect.


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If the refrigerator has LED lighting that isn't working, you can't change the individual LEDs unless you're ready to disassemble the appliance. That would probably be a waste of time because LEDs seldom burn out, and the problem with the lighting is usually something else.

It's Easy to Change a Maytag Refrigerator Light Bulb

If your Maytag refrigerator freezer light isn't working or the light in the refrigerator compartment has gone dark, Maytag offers simple replacement instructions on its website, and they're exactly what you'd expect:


  1. Unplug the appliance.
  2. Remove the plastic light shield, if there's one. This may or may not involve removing a screw.
  3. Unscrew the old bulb and screw in a new one of the same size and the same or lower wattage.
  4. Replace the shield and plug the refrigerator back in.

The only possible glitch you might encounter is that the shield has no screw and you can't figure out how to remove it. In most cases, the following procedure will work:

  1. Grasp the shield with one hand and put equal pressure on its two sides to release the snap-on tabs from the frame.
  2. Pull the shield down or slide it toward you to remove it.
  3. Replace the shield by reversing the procedure for taking it off.


The shield is designed to be easy to remove, so if you can't get it off, you're probably putting pressure in the wrong places. Readjust your grip and try again.

What Kind of Light Bulb Should I Use?

Some Maytag refrigerators take standard 40-watt appliance bulbs, which have the same shape as regular incandescent bulbs but are a little smaller. Some are frosted and some are clear, and it doesn't matter which you choose as long as the wattage is the same or less than that of the bulb you're replacing. A higher wattage bulb generates more heat and may spoil food placed too close to it.


Other models are designed for tubular bulbs, which are smaller than appliance bulbs and occupy less space. These typically have a smaller screw base than appliance bulbs, so it's a good idea to remove the bulb and take it to the store to be sure you get the right replacement. Again, be sure to check the wattage and choose one with the same or less wattage.

You can use an LED or CFL bulb to save energy, but it has to be the same size as the one you're replacing or it won't fit. Wattage isn't as important because both types of bulbs use less power than incandescents. The same would be true for a Maytag dryer light bulb replacement.


The Light Still Doesn't Work

If the new bulb fails to come on when you plug in the refrigerator and open the door, and you're sure the bulb is good, the reason could be a defective:

  • Light socket.
  • Light assembly.
  • Door switch.
  • Wiring connection.
  • Control panel.

You can isolate the problem by testing with a multimeter, but if you're not familiar with appliance wiring, it's a better idea to call a service technician, which you should also do if the refrigerator has LED lighting that isn't working.



Chris Deziel is a contractor, builder and general fix-it pro who has been active in the construction trades for 40 years. He has degrees in science and humanities and years of teaching experience. An avid craftsman and musician, Deziel began writing on home improvement topics in 2010. He worked as an expert consultant with eHow Now and Pro Referral -- a Home Depot site. A DIYer by nature, Deziel regularly shares tips and tricks for a better home and garden at Hunker and Family Handyman.