A leak in your kitchen may not be from your dishwasher or sink; the culprit may be your refrigerator. We rely a great deal on our refrigerators. A good refrigerator allows us to safely store our groceries, keep leftovers or even enjoy a chilled drink. Unfortunately, your refrigerator can develop a leak, even if it doesn’t have a water dispenser or ice maker. So, when you notice a puddle of water underneath your refrigerator, things can quickly go downhill. Here we’ll explore the topic of refrigerator leaks to help you diagnose a leak and what you can do to correct it.
A Blocked Defroster
If your defroster is blocked, it can prevent the defrost cycle water from properly draining away. This is one of the most common causes of refrigerator leaks, making it an excellent place to start your troubleshooting. This small drain opening can be easily blocked by ice or food particles that have accumulated during each defrost cycle. When sufficient water builds up, it will start to leak out of the refrigerator. You can try to clear this small drain by pouring some hot water down the drain line. It is also a good idea to use a pipe cleaner to clear any debris that may be clogging the defroster.
Occasionally, the drain pan in your refrigerator can develop a crack. This pan is located at the bottom of your refrigerator, but while a small amount of water may accumulate, it should not escape the pan. The water inside the drain pan should evaporate as the condenser fan blows warm air over the surface before it can become a concern. If your defrost drain is clear, check your drain pan for any signs of damage or cracks that will prompt a repair.
Ice Maker Connections
The water line connecting your ice maker to the supply can become loose, or the seals can crack over time. This leads to water pooling around and under your refrigerator. If the hose is plastic, it may become kinked, cracked or torn, allowing a leak to develop at the connection. Check the entire length of the water line as it leads to your ice maker for any signs of moisture. If the supply line is the underlying problem, you’re likely to see water dripping down from the line onto the floor. You may need to tighten the connections, or you may need to replace your water line.
If you have a poor connection between your water supply and water filter, it can create a refrigerator leak. When your filter is improperly installed, is the wrong model for your refrigerator, or has aged to the point where the seals or housing is cracked, it will allow water to escape. Carefully examine both the filter and housing assembly for signs of dripping water. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to remove and replace the filter with the correct model as specified.
Steps to Deal With a Refrigerator Leak
If you notice a puddle of water under your refrigerator and suspect a leak, there are some steps to take to minimize damage. Firstly shut off the water supply to your refrigerator. The shut off valve is likely to be under your sink. Unplug your refrigerator or switch it off at the circuit breaker. You should then call in professional help.
There is a variety of reasons for refrigerator leaks and educating yourself will help you to troubleshoot and perform basic maintenance. For practical guidance and advice, you can rely on the expertise of a professional home appliance repair technician to help you.