Ice Maker Not Making Ice
In this article we will discuss a refrigerator ice maker not making ice. There are many things that will cause a refrigerator not to make ice, however in this article I will focus on one specific thing that seems to challenge homeowners and technicians alike.
I cannot tell you how many times I have heard this, the water fill tube to my icemaker freezes up. I have change the valve but the problem persists. I actually saw on an appliance repair forum where a customer said that an appliance manufacture sent a factory service technician to their home to change the valve because the tube was freezing. That didn’t work so they sent another technician with a new valve and a harness. Obviously that didn’t work because the valve was not defective so the guessing game continued.
Let’s talk about how a refrigerator icemaker fill valve actually works and then we can talk about what causes the fill tube to freeze. First of all you should know that water fill valves on appliances need the house water pressure to stay closed. Think about it for a second. If valves did not use the house water pressure to remain closed and there was an electrical interruption, the valve would spew water. An ice maker water valve uses an electromagnetic coil to lift up a plunger when electricity is applied to allow water to flow.
When the thermostat in the ice maker is satisfied that the temperature in the mold will freeze water, it completes the circuit to send electricity to the coil on the valve. It doesn’t make much sense for the icemaker to ask for water if it’s not cold enough to freeze it. So the mechanism within the valve is held closed by house water pressure. When the house water pressure starts to decrease and is not sufficient to hold the valve closed, the valve can start to release a small amount of water. That water starts dripping and dripping into the fill tube. When it does the fill tube starts to freeze. If it were a full flow of water it would cause the icemaker to overflow. We have all seen the faucet on the sink dripping after it is turned off. No matter how hard you turn the valve to the off position the water still drips. When water slips by the valve on a refrigerator dripping into an ice maker fill tube it always freezes.