Common refrigerator compressor problems include making noise, failing to run and going on and off. Most refrigerator compressor problems originate from another part of the refrigerator, such as a dirty condenser or a failing capacitor.
A compressor that makes a clicking sound is likely going on and off. This could mean it is overheating because of dirty condenser coils.
A compressor could fail to run, meaning it is not getting proper power. This could be because the capacitor has failed or another part of the power system has a problem. Using a multimeter helps in determining where the power problem is. Cleaning the system helps in solving the problem.
A faulty compressor can make noise, necessitating a replacement. A technician should check whether the noise is a result of a pressure buildup or a problem with the gas before deciding to replace the compressor.