Refrigerator Water Dispenser Not Working


Are you having trouble with your water dispenser? Then hopefully this article can help you out. We have put together a list of the main causes of the water dispenser not working and how you can fix each one.

Water Filter

The first component in your refrigerator to check is the ice and water filter. Refrigerators that have filtered drinking water taps and automatic ice dispensers have a water filter to help purify the water.

To check if the water filter is faulty:

  1. Check when it was last replaced. You should be replacing the filter twice a year (or more if your manual says so). If you find that the filter is overdue to be replaced, then replace the filter, and if not, then still check the current filter to see if it’s clogged up.
  2. To inspect the filter or to change it, you need to locate the water filter inside your refrigerator.
  3. Once located, change the filter or check the current one for any signs of wear and tear and/or if it is clogged up. If you replace the filter, you can then check over the next 24 hours if the problem has been solved.
  4. If you find it is damaged, then replace the filter. If it is in good condition, then it’s probably not the cause of the problem, so you can move on to checking the next component.

Door Switch

The door switch on the refrigerator will stop the water dispenser from operating when you open the refrigerator door. If the door switch is faulty, it might be stopping the dispenser from working even if the door is shut. To check the door switch:

  1. Unplug the refrigerator.
  2. Locate the door switch (check the refrigerator manual if necessary).
  3. Use a multimeter to test the door switch for continuity. If the door switch has continuity, then it is working correctly, and you can move on to checking the next possible cause. However, if it doesn’t have continuity, then the door switch needs to be replaced.
  4. Once you’ve replaced the door switch, plug the refrigerator back in, and check if the water dispenser is now working correctly.

Water Inlet Valve

The next possible cause of your refrigerator water dispenser not working is a faulty water inlet valve. If the valve becomes blocked or if the water pressure is too low, then water won’t be able to travel into your refrigerator. The valve requires at least 20 psi to function correctly.

To check on the water inlet valve:

  1. Unplug the refrigerator and shut off the water supply to your refrigerator.
  2. To access the water inlet valve, you will need to pull your refrigerator out from the wall and remove the back panel.
  3. Ensure that the water pressure is strong enough for the inlet valve to function correctly.
  4. Use a multimeter to test the water inlet valve for continuity. If the water inlet valve has continuity, then it is working correctly, so move on to checking the next possible cause. However, if it does not have continuity, then you’ll need to replace it.
  5. If you do replace the water inlet valve, then once the repair is completed, you’ll need to put the back panel back on, put your refrigerator back in place, and plug it back in. You can then check if the problem has been solved or not.

Water Dispenser Actuator and Micro Switch

The next components to check are the water dispenser actuator and the microswitch that is behind it. The actuator is the small plastic component that you press your glass up against when you want to disperse water from your fridge. When you press it in, the microswitch behind it ensures water is distributed.

To test the dispenser actuator and microswitch, you need to:

  1. Unplug the fridge from the power source.
  2. Remove the control panel cover. This usually involves removing a couple of screws and then unclipping the control panel. Just be careful with the wires when you take them off.
  3. Press the actuator in and see if it activates the dispenser microswitch – you should be able to hear a click sound when you press the actuator.
  4. Next, inspect the bracket that houses the actuator, the bracket that supports the switch, and the pivot of the actuator. If you find that any of those small components are faulty or are worn out, then you will need to replace them.
  5. If the problem is not with any of the brackets or the pivot of the actuator, then the microswitch might be faulty due to an electrical issue. Use a multimeter to check the switch for continuity. If the switch has no continuity, then you’ll need to replace the switch. However, if it passes the test, then the switch is working correctly.
  6. If you do replace the switch, then you can put the refrigerator back together, plug it back in, and see if replacing the switch has solved the problem.

Dispenser Control Board

The final component to check is the dispenser control board. This component controls the functions of the dispenser system, so when it becomes faulty, the water dispenser will stop working. If you have tested out all of the components above and still haven’t solved the problem, then it is a good idea to replace the dispenser control board and see this solves the problem.


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