I have a GE PSS26MSRSS that decided to stop cooling the day before we were going on vacation. In a rush, as I knew I wouldn't have time to troubleshoot until we got back, I threw everything away, unplugged it, and left it open. I didn't think this through, as if it was a defrost issue, it could have made a mess off the floor, but fortunately that didn't happen. Unfortunately, I don't know where they came from, but while we were gone, little flies decided to make a new home in the open refrigerator. I took the opportunity to clean it up really well, including removing the top refrigerator lights and damper.
Now that I've got it cleaned up and am ready to troubleshoot, when I plug it in, the temperature control panel in the refrigerator doesn't come on/light up, but it did before I took it apart. I haven't got it all put together yet, still have the damper and top lights out. It doesn't make sense to me that removing these would make the temp control panel stop working, but I'm no expert either. Where does the control panel get its power from and can removing the damper or lights stop it from working?
Also, the initial issue was non-cooling on both fresh food and freezer sides. I'm thinking a fresh food thermistor gone bad, but I haven't got this far in my troubleshooting yet. Since there wasn't any sign of water coming out of it after I unplugged it. Is it safe to think that it isn't a defrost issue, and I can skip troubleshooting the defrost system, or should this still be part of my checks?