REPAIR > REFRIGERATOR > DISPENSER WILL NOT DISPENSE WATER

How To A Fix Refrigerator That's Not Dispensing Water

Arguably the hardest working appliance in the home, a refrigerator is something you can’t live without. If your fridge is not dispensing water, don’t give up – we can help. We’ve compiled a list of the most common parts that cause a dispenser to stop dispensing water. You can use this information to troubleshoot your own refrigerator and then enter your model number into the search box to find the right part that will fit your fridge. Searching with your model will also give you access to even more information about this symptom and instructions on how to install your repair part.

Ice & Water Filter

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  • - Takes less than 15 minutes
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If so equipped, the ice and water filter in your refrigerator is responsible for removing any debris or contaminants from your water that may still remain after local water treatment. Most filters contain and are made up of carbon and a fabric filter. Over time the filter may become restricted and reduce or stop the water flow to the dispenser. Most manufacturers recommend replacing the filter every 6 months but local water conditions may require that you replace more frequently. The filter is normally found in a convenient location in the fresh food section of the fridge.

Water Inlet Valve

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  • - Customers rate this repair as Easy
  • - Takes 15 - 30 minutes
  • - We have 813 installation instructions
  • - We have 6 step-by-step videos

The water inlet valve is a solenoid-operated device that supplies water to the dispenser when activated. The valve is normally located at the bottom rear of the refrigerator, behind the access panel. When water is selected at the dispenser control panel, line voltage is supplied to the solenoid of the water inlet valve to allow water to flow. Verify that you have adequate pressure at the inlet to the valve, that the inlet screen is not plugged and that there are no restrictions in the inlet or outlet tubing. Check the terminals on the solenoid for power with a multi-meter, when the control panel switch is activated. This is a live voltage check and should only be performed by qualified persons.

On refrigerator models that have a water filter, you will find more than one solenoid valve for the dispenser, and will need to determine which solenoids are used for the dispenser. If power is present, you can check the solenoid for continuity with the multi-meter and if open circuit, then the valve will need to be replaced. If power is not present, then you will need to check the dispenser for a faulty switch or actuator.

Water Dispenser Actuator

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    • - Takes 15 - 30 minutes
    • - We have 179 installation instructions
    • - We have 2 step-by-step videos

    The water dispenser actuator is the mechanical part that activates the dispenser micro switch. It is normally a plastic lever that pivots when depressed by your water glass, and it may be covered with a soft plastic pad. You can usually hear a click when the switch is contacted. Remove the control panel cover and verify that the actuator contacts the dispenser switch properly and if not, check the actuator housing bracket, switch mounting bracket and the actuator pivot. Replace any defective parts. If the actuator is contacting the switch, you will need to check the switch or control board for the source of the problem. You should disconnect power to the appliance when working near electrical circuits.

    Micro Switch

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      • - Customers rate this repair as Easy
      • - Takes 15 - 30 minutes
      • - We have 424 installation instructions
      • - We have 14 step-by-step videos

      The dispenser micro switch is a momentary contact switch that when actuated will supply power to the solenoid on the water inlet valve. The switch sits behind the pad or lever that is pressed to dispense water. You will need to remove power to the appliance and then remove the control panel cover to access the switch. You can check the continuity of the switch with a multi-meter.

      Dispenser Control Board

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        • - Customers rate this repair as Easy
        • - Takes 15 - 30 minutes
        • - We have 133 installation instructions
        • - We have 1 step-by-step video

        Some models of refrigerators use an electronic control to supply power to the water inlet valve. If you have verified that the water inlet valve is not getting power and the actuator and switch are operating properly, then you may have a defective electronic control.

        More Repair Parts

          We’ve identified the most common parts that can cause the refrigerator's water dispenser to stop dispensing, but there are other parts that could be at fault. If you are unable to fix your refrigerator with the information above, enter your model number into the search box for additional repair help. Searching with your model number will give you access to all parts and schematics, symptoms for your specific fridge as well as all installation instructions and videos.