Why is My Refrigerator Leaking Water

You don’t normally think of your refrigerator as an appliance that would leak water but they sometimes do.  Finding the source of the leak takes some investigation but it is relatively simple to do.

 

Defrost Drain

A very common problem is that the defrost drain could be blocked.  The drain has a small opening that is easily clogged by food particles or ice.  During the defrost cycle, water could build up and not be able to drain into the pan.  The water would then leak out onto the floor.  You can clear the drain by pouring hot water over it and using a stiff wire to remove the blockage if there is any.

Drain Pan

Normally the drain pan is not the problem but it can develop a crack and that would allow water to leak.  Only a small amount of water usually accumulates in the drain pan and not enough to overflow.  This water evaporates, with help from the condenser fan, which blows warm air across the surface of the pan.  Do a thorough examination of the drain pan looking for any damage or cracks. If the pan is damaged, replace it.

Ice Maker

The water line connections to the ice maker can sometimes come loose or the seals can crack from age.  The plastic hoses can crack, tear or get kinked which would cause pressure at the connection and cause a leak.  The water line going to the ice maker is normally on the back, outside of the refrigerator.  Check this line and its connections for any signs of moisture.  If the ice maker supply line is the problem there will normally be water running or dripping down the line onto the floor.  You should tighten all of the connections or replace the water line.

Refrigerator Water Inlet Valve

Water Filter

If your refrigerator has a filtering system the connection between the water filter and the water supply can cause a leak.  The filter may have been installed incorrectly, wrong size or wrong model for the refrigerator.  It’s also possible that it may be very old and the housing or seals are cracked, therefore allowing water to escape.  Remove and replace the filter if you see water running down the outside of the filter and into the interior of the refrigerator.  Make certain the filter is the one specifically for your model.

Refrigerator Water Filter Cartridge

Refrigerator Not Getting Cold Enough

Refrigerator Not Getting Cold Enough

Having a refrigerator that is not getting cold enough is both costly and unhealthy.  Food can spoil much faster than the expiration date and can make you sick.  Normally the problem is one that is easily fixed.

 

1. Defective Door Switch

The door switch is located along the internal frame of the refrigerator.  It turns the light on when the door is opened and off when the door is closed.  If the switch is not operating correctly, when the door is closed the refrigerator will not resume cooling and if the interior light stays on it will also affect the temperature because of heat from the interior light.

2. Condenser Coils Dirty

Condenser coils are located either under or in back of the refrigerator.  If you find that these coils are dirty, unplug the refrigerator before attempting to clean them.  If the coils are dirty they will not let the refrigerator cool properly.

3. Defective Door Gaskets

Refrigerator door gaskets keep the cold air in when the door is closed as long as they have a proper seal.  Gaskets can become loose or damaged therefore letting cold air leak from the refrigerator.  Constantly opening and closing the refrigerator door lets cold air out and warm air in.

4. Temperature Control Not Working Properly

If the temperature control thermostat is faulty the refrigerator will not maintain the correct coldness.  Check your refrigerator temperature to determine if it is set at the correct level.  A normal refrigerators setting is usually around 32 degrees Fahrenheit (0 degrees Celsius) and 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit (-17 degrees Celsius) for the freezer.

Refrigerator Temperature Control Thermostat

5. Frost-Free Feature Not Working

When the frost-free feature is not working it will cause a buildup of frost around the evaporative coils in the freezer.  This in turn causes the evaporator fan to malfunction and not be able to blow cold air around.  Should the fan hit the frost it could be damaged.

6. Air Flowing Inside The Refrigerator Is Inadequate

If you have your refrigerator stuffed with food and everything is crammed together then the air will not be able to flow freely inside the refrigerator. This will not allow a correct temperature of coolness to flow around your food items.  Not having enough food items in the refrigerator will also cause it to function inefficiently.

7. Clogged Vents Between Freezer and Refrigerator

Cold air flows through vents between the freezer and refrigerator.  If ice forms in the vents the air will be blocked from flowing into the refrigerator thus not letting the refrigerator cool down properly.  If this happens you can unplug the refrigerator and let the ice melt, then reconnect the refrigerator.

8. Leaking Refrigerant

This is not very common but if you suspect this is your problem it would be wise to call a qualified service technician.

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