What exactly does this part do?
Answer It is what regulates the flow of air coming out of the freezer compartment into the fresh food compartment.
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Had my damper replaced 22 days ago. Now the refrigerator side doesn't feel as cold. The guy came back,saw frost in the freezer side and said I need a new defrost thermostat. There's a crack in the freezer. Could that cause the refrigerator to have warmed up and caused the frost in the freezer side? Thanks.
The crack in the freezer liner would not cause that type of issue. If the refrigerator is not cooling properly and there is heavy frost build up on everything in the freezer then either the damper is not opening or the return air duct that goes from the freezer to the refrigerator is blocked up. If there is just frost on the back wall of the freezer compartment lower half then the defrost thermostat could definitely be the issue.