Reasons Why Your Refrigerator Dispenser Might Not Be Working



Refrigerators are one of the most important home appliances since they allow you to stock up on all kinds of perishable ingredients and use them to cook the best meals. That’s why it’s a big issue when it breaks down. Fortunately, you can search for “refrigerator repair near me” and hire professionals to fix it for you. For now, let’s check out why your refrigerator dispenser is not working.

The Reasons

  1. Dispenser Tube – Check the dispenser of your fridge and identify its actions. Is it spraying water or getting completely blocked when you press the buttons? In that case, the problem probably lies with the dispenser tube. The dispenser tube connects the water line of the fridge to the in-door dispenser on the refrigerator and then continues into the dispensing mechanism. It is made from a type of clear plastic and should be easy to identify once you have disassembled the panels and have access to the dispensing mechanism.

The dispenser tube may also have end pieces made out of plastic that pour water into your glass. You need to check the dispenser tube and the plastic pieces at the end and make sure that there are no leaks or signs of damage anywhere. If there are any signs of damage, you’ll need to replace the tube to fix the dispenser. On the other hand, if the water supply is blocked due to a kink in the dispenser tube or a clog, you can simply fix the kink or remove it and clear out the clog by running pressurized water through it.

  1. Clean the water lines – If you press the button for dispensing water and instead of regular water flow, you get inconsistent flow, low pressure, or lack of water, then it’s probably due to a clog in the water line. You need to inspect the water line and other components that feed or get water from it. You’ll need to do this in segments so that you can identify where the clog is located.

Check how the water is flowing through those tubes and if there’s excessive pressure at some point, you have located the clog. The next step is to mix vinegar and baking soda and feed the water line with that mixture. These food-safe ingredients are very effective at loosening all kinds of buildup and would clear out the clog within less than half an hour. After the clog is cleared, feed clean cold water through the tube to flush out all the residue and reconnect it in position.

  1. Water filter – Nine out of ten times, water problems in a fridge occur due to its water filters. Water filters differ as you move from one brand to another and even among different models of the same series from the same manufacturer. The problem may arise due to how the water filter connects to its socket, clips into the water lines, and many more variables. Start inspecting the water filter by checking if it’s twisted or clipped in any way to obstruct water flow.

When this happens, you’ll encounter leaks inside the filter tubes or flooding near the refrigerator. Sometimes the problem happens due to mistakes at the factory where workers forget to remove the packaging cap from the filter. On the other hand, you may also face problems if your water filter is too old and hasn’t been replaced in a long time. A bad water filter release can easily clog up water flow and even pollutes the water by releasing germs and particulates instead of trapping them. If that’s the case, you’ll need to replace your water filter as quickly as possible.

  1. Check the water pressure – As mentioned above, low water pressure usually is caused by problems with the water line and its connected components. However, if that’s not the case, then the water supply feeding into your fridge may be low. If it’s due to a problem inside the fridge, you can check water pressure at different points of the water flow.

On the other hand, if the water pressure supplied to your fridge is low, then you’ll have to make your way back to your plumbing system to find the clog. However, if you’re not familiar with your home’s plumbing system, it’s best to call a professional plumber for help. You don’t want to flood your house just because you can’t get cold water from the fridge.

  1. Inspect the door switch – You’re obviously familiar with the fridge door switch. You know that the lights inside the fridge are automatically turned on when the fridge door is opened, and the switch is disengaged. However, that’s not the only job of the fridge. It also sends signals to the compressor motor and also acts as a safety measure against the water dispenser. If the switch is malfunctioning and tells the fridge control board that the door is open even when it’s not, then you won’t get any water from the dispenser. You’ll need to check that out with a multimeter and replace the switch if it’s faulty.
  1. Control board – As the name suggests, the control board is the brain of the refrigerator and controls numerous components to keep the fridge running smoothly. If you’ve checked all other components of the fridge and everything is working fine, then the control board may be partly fried and not sending any signals to the water dispensing mechanism. In that case, you’ll need to swap out the control board with a new one. However, it’s best to call a professional for this job since the control board is sensitive and requires a lot of technical knowledge for correct disassembly.


Refrigerator dispensers have the simple job of dispensing ice or water. However, they have quite a few complicated components at the back to make that happen. If you can’t diagnose the problem and fix it yourself, you can always hire a pro for the job. To do that, you can search for “refrigerator repair near me”.

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