Refrigerator filters do a good job of removing contaminants in the water that runs through the appliance's water lines, but it isn't always capable of removing all of the minerals and calcium that is in most household tap water.
The water supply line in the refrigerator needs cleaning on a regular basis to keep ice tasting fresh and the appliance running smoothly. Water lines that get clogged with hard water deposits can lead to mold in the water and ice that has a bad odor. Cleaning the lines is effective and not very expensive or complicated to complete.
Prepare to Flush the Lines
Always unplug an appliance before working with lines and electrical parts to be safe. Turn off the water supply at the source so that the lines are safe to remove and clean. Unscrew the ice maker line and leave the dispenser line to the door nozzle attached to the fixture.
Discount Filters recommends washing the reservoir with 1 cup of vinegar mixed with 1 gallon of water to remove any impurities that have found a way to set up residence in the bin. Flush clean water through the reservoir after cleaning two or three times to clean out any taste or odor of the vinegar solution. Push the tubes back together until they lock to reconnect them.
Clean Refrigerator Line with Vinegar
Bacteria in the refrigerator water dispenser can grow unnoticed until it shows up as an odor or mold on ice cubes and in the reservoir. A simple, affordable and quick way to clean a refrigerator water line is with vinegar. It is gentle enough to pass through the Kenmore or Frigidaire plastic refrigerator water lines without damaging them or their parts while strong enough to remove foreign materials, deodorize and disinfect.
The common household natural cleaner can effectively disinfect the water lines after the first flush. However, if you have lines that have an odor or small signs of bacteria growth, then you may want to flush the lines out with vinegar a few times. This won't hurt the plastic or parts that the vinegar passes through or comes in contact with.
Water Pressure Issues
If the Frigidaire refrigerator water dispenser is slow, then it could be that the water line that is connected to a well system has low cut-off or cut-on pressures. Most household water pressure is around 60 psi.
A Frigidaire refrigerator that is connected to a reverse osmosis system may need a minute. When the reverse osmosis system is in its regenerative phase it can dip below 20 psi.
Water Filter Changes
Cleaning the refrigerator lines is a part of maintaining the appliance, as is changing out the water filter. The small water filter does a big job in reducing odor and bacteria in the ice and water that flows from the dispenser.
The flow from the Whirlpool refrigerator water dispenser may be slow because the water filter needs to be changed. Whirlpool recommends locating the type of water filter your model requires and replacing it about every six months. The filter can require a few cycles to get back to its regular working after being replaced, so be patient.
A Samsung refrigerator water dispenser that is running slow could also be due to a recent water filter change. If the water continues to be slow long after a filter change, then check the lines for kinks or damage. Check that the water pressure is at least 30 psi if the water continues to run slow for no apparent reason.
Kimberley McGee is an award-winning journalist with 20+ years of experience writing for a variety of clients, including The New York Times, Las Vegas Review-Journal Home section and other national publications. As a professional writer she has researched, interviewed sources and written about home improvement, interior design and related business trends. She earned a B.A. in Journalism from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Her full bio and clips can be viewed at www.vegaswriter.com.