When you face the problem of Whirlpool ice maker not working, you need someone who knows the brand and its products like the back of their hand. That’s where we come in. We have a complete troubleshooting guide that will walk you through common issues and how to solve them.
A refrigerator stocked with ice is a useful addition to anyone’s kitchen. But sometimes, you may get up in the morning to find that there isn’t any ice in your ice maker— and this can be a big inconvenience if you have a special event to attend or a party at a friend’s house.
Why Whirlpool Ice Maker Not Working – Troubleshoot and Diagnosis
Ice makers don’t last forever. They break, they melt, and they need to be replaced. This is an unfortunate reality of owning a refrigerator with an ice maker. Fortunately, we’re here to help.
You can diagnose and repair a faulty ice maker yourself before forking over cash for an expensive service call. Most ice makers, both portable and built-in, work in a similar manner — dispensing crushed ice in exchange for cold water — and most ailments, including what we just discussed, will fall into one of two categories: mechanical/electrical failure or improper installation.
Here’s how to fix some common Whirlpool ice maker problems.
Ice Maker is OFF
Any Whirlpool freezer with a built-in ice maker will have a push button. This button turns the ice maker on and off, and this is usually located behind the front panel of your refrigerator. The wire arm attached to your ice maker should be pushed up to turn the ice maker OFF and lowered to turn it ON. Many people who own a Whirlpool refrigerator can easily spot the wire arm on the front panel. If this part is not in its proper place, you will need to reset it so that it is seated within the mechanism of the ice maker.
The ice maker is located on the bottom/top of the refrigerator. If it isn’t making ice, push the arm down to activate the ice maker. If the arm is already down, check for debris around or under it. Please also be aware that if your refrigerator was recently installed, it might need time to build up enough ice or for the water line to be filled.
1. Freezer Temperature Issue
It’s best to maintain your ice maker between 0-5°F. As the temperature of the freezer goes up, your ice maker will either produce less ice or jam entirely. If you are consistently getting less than one tray per day, the temperature may be too high.
It’s important to follow specific conditions when storing your ice machine in your freezer. When your machine is producing ice, its temperature must stay below 5 degrees F. If your machine gets too cold, the ice won’t come out properly and may even jam it. If it’s too hot, the machine won’t be able to produce ice at an optimal rate.
If your freezer isn’t cold enough, there could be a number of reasons for this. One may be that your refrigerator’s condenser coils are dirty which prevents the fan from cooling them down. To clean the condenser coils, unplug your refrigerator and remove all items from the freezer.
When it comes time to defrost your refrigerator, take a few minutes to check the evaporator coils and remove any buildup that has occurred. Buildup on the coils prevents cold air from flowing freely within the refrigerator compartment — which can compromise cooling efficiency and lead to increased energy bills.
2. Jammed Ice Maker
An ice jam is one of the most common issues with refrigerator ice makers. Ice Jams happen when the metal fingers that eject ice cubes fail to grab new ice that’s not yet fully frozen. Water that doesn’t melt freezes on the metal fingers, creating an ice bridge that keeps new cubes from falling into the bin. Result? The machine can’t make more ice, and your fridge is empty. When your water supply is low, you may find that your ice maker has stopped making cubes entirely. The easy way to prevent this is to empty the bin after every load so the cubes fall freely onto the fingers.
To remove the ice clump from your refrigerator’s ice maker, chip away at the ice bridge on the ejector arm with a plastic spoon or other similarly-shaped object. Try not to use anything metal or sharp, as it may damage the ejector arm and/or ice maker.
3. Clogged/Frozen Water Line
When your ice maker doesn’t work, the problem is likely more complicated than a few frozen cubes in the tray. The typical cause for malfunction is a clog in the supply line. Although there are many different types of clogs that could occur, one of the most common problems comes from ice that has frozen solid at some point along the supply chain.
Switch off the power to the refrigerator. Shut down the water supply to that refrigerator. Locate the valve that controls water flow into the ice maker, usually under the sink or behind the refrigerator. Turn it clockwise to close it.
A turkey baster is a great way to defrost a refrigerator water line. However, it can be difficult to tell when the line is defrosted. A nice workaround is to use a hair dryer on a low heat setting, or to leave the refrigerator unplugged overnight or for a couple of hours. It’s also a good idea to verify that the water line is moving water by watching it carefully as you use the hair dryer.
Restoring power to the refrigerator and letting it run for a while clears water. If the clog is translucent, try removing it with a toothbrush. If the clog is not translucent, contact a professional for help removing it.
4. Defective Water Filter
When your ice machine is making noise and the ice cubes are jamming up, this could be a sign that you need to replace your water filter. If you don’t change the filter every six months or so, sediment and other particles may build up in the ice machine and make it stop working; while a dirty water filter will leave bad-tasting water behind when you try to make drinks with the dispenser.
A good rule of thumb is to change your water filter every 6 months or so, depending on use. If you detect a problem like poor cooling, freezing foods, or unusual noises, consult the Whirlpool refrigerator repair guide for how to replace your water filter.
5. Check Water Inlet valve
An inlet water valve is responsible for supplying water to the refrigerator’s ice maker. If there isn’t enough water pressure entering the valve, it can’t open sufficiently to allow water to flow through. That means the ice maker will shut down and you’ll be without ice. If you want to ensure your ice maker keeps producing, have the problem fixed as soon as possible.
Inlet valve needs to operate at a minimum pressure of 20 psi (pounds per square inch), otherwise, it won’t put out enough water to make ice. The component can either be faulty or worn out, resulting in no workable ice.
To ensure that water will come out of the valve, check the water pressure to the valve. The correct pressure should be between 20 and 125 psi. If the outlet is open, but there is no water coming out of it, you need to replace the valve.
6. Faulty Icemaker Mold Thermostat
An ice maker mold thermostat is a small device installed in the ice maker of older refrigerator models. The thermostat regulates the temperature of the ice mold, or tray so that it can efficiently freeze water into cubes.
Your ice maker may not be making ice because the thermostat is defective. This thermostat monitors the temperature of the ice mold (ice tray) and tells the icemaker when to eject the ice cubes and refill the ice maker with water. If you suspect that your ice maker has a defective thermostat, examine it for cracks or leaks, which can cause failure.
A basic continuity test can help you check if the thermostat isn’t working correctly. Set your multimeter to check for resistance, and run the test probes along the thermostat’s wires. If the thermostat isn’t working, there will be no reading on your meter. Replace any defective thermostats before proceeding with the repair process.