Hotpoint refrigerators are owned and manufactured by General Electric, or GE. The refrigerators are frost-free units, which have an automatic defroster built into the wall behind the freezer. The defrost assembly consists of a defrost heater, which is controlled by a defrost timer. The defrost timer is located in the temperature control housing of the refrigerator, and is identified as a square box with four terminals on one end. The purpose of the defrost timer is to turn the compressor and defrost timer on and off for set amount of times to ensure that the refrigerator maintains its cooling capability and that the evaporator coils remain frost free. If the defrost timer malfunctions, it will not adequately cycle, and you must replace it.
Unplug the refrigerator prior to repairing.
Open the fresh-food cavity door, then remove the screws securing the control housing to the roof of the cavity.
Depress the tabs securing the timer to the control housing, then disconnect the wires and remove the timer.
Connect the wires to the new timer, then snap the timer into the control housing.
Replace the control housing, using the screws that you removed to secure the timer to the roof of the refrigerator.
Close the refrigerator door, then restore power to the refrigerator.