Level of DifficultyEasy
Time to do repair15 - 30 mins
Age of ApplianceMore than 10 years
The old fill valve was leaking water at a very low rate, sort of like a dripping faucet. Water was then freezing up in the fill tube and funnel areas, eventually causing the fill tube to push out of the grommet and allowing it to leak into the freezer's rear coil compartment. This resulted in a large icicle forming on the left side of the coils and defrost thermostat.
In addition to low icecube production, I also began to see excessively warm defrost cycles, due to the defrost thermostat being iced over. (Telltale signs--1.Ice cubes melted/frozen into a massive block in the bottom of the ice bucket, 2.Soggy frozen food boxes and soft icecream, 3.Water accumulating under the crisper drawers in the refrigerator.)
I ended up replacing the fill valve, which is about a 10min job, and also had to remove the icemaker and interior rear cover from the freezer compartment to de-ice the coils. This was a NECESSARY step as the freezer is not able to defrost and clear this amount of ice on its own. I used a small hair dryer, being careful not to get it wet. If you tap on the ice to break it up, don't use anything sharp. Just let it thaw--
My circa-1992 Kenmore fridge (363.9711780) does not show up at Sears Parts Direct anymore, but it's a GE unit, and in my case the parts were all listed in the owner's manual using GE "WR" part numbers.