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How to Fix a Musty Ice Maker

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Alright. Now we’ve got Holly in Iowa who’s dealing with some yucky ice coming from the ice maker. That sounds terrible, considering how much I love ice. Tell me what is going on.

    HOLLY: Yeah. It’s great to talk to you both.

    We got a new refrigerator. It has the freezer on the bottom and it came with an ice maker. And our old refrigerator had an automatic ice maker on the top. And I don’t know if it’s the original water line when the house was built but the ice comes out – it smells bad, it tastes bad so that we won’t even put it in drinks, because the drinks take on that kind of icky, musty smell.

    TOM: OK.

    HOLLY: And wondering is it a matter of replacing the water line? Does it need to be flushed? A filter? We’re not quite sure which way to go.

    TOM: Right. Well, I mean the easy thing to do here is to replace the water line, if you can get to it. Ice-maker water lines are about the easiest plumbing project that you can do because they attach to their supply pipes by what’s called a “saddle valve.” And a saddle valve basically pierces the copper line and makes space for the water to come through and into the ice-maker line. And it’s plastic tubing, too; it’s not even metal.

    So I would replace the ice-maker line. I would also put in a filter – a charcoal filter – on the ice maker, since you’ve got such a problem with taste. I think between those two things, you should turn this right around.

    HOLLY: So is a charcoal filter the kind that you put on the back? See, there’s no water in the door.

    TOM: It doesn’t go inside the refrigerator; it goes into the water line.

    HOLLY: Right, in the back.

    TOM: Yeah, it could be behind the refrigerator; it could be wherever the water line connects to the supply. Anywhere it could be is fine. Just one tip, though: make sure you write a date on your calendar when you put that in and remember to replace the filter as time goes by. I think – usually they last about a year.

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