Whirlpool is an American brand known worldwide for its products for the home. But among all the appliances it makes, it has an outstanding reputation with its Whirlpool refrigerator ice maker.
These products are market leaders and guarantee great performance. However, even though they are from the best brands on the market, that does not prevent you from occasionally having problems with your refrigerator and especially with the ice machine.
Many people know how to use an ice machine. It’s super easy, you just have to put the glass in the dispenser and the ice cubes will magically fall into your glass.
But the reality is not so simple. Ice machines have a delicate process that if you don’t know how to use or fix them, can bring you a lot of problems and headaches.
In this guide, we will address the most common causes of malfunction with Whirlpool refrigerator ice machines and give you clear instructions on how to fix them yourself.
In this way, you will save significant sums of money, instead of calling a specialized technician. Let’s get started!
Why My Ice Machine Doesn’t Work?
No product lasts forever, the constant use and wear and tear of time will end up causing some of its parts to malfunction or be completely damaged.
But what can you do when your ice machine breaks down and it’s not even a year old yet? The easiest solution will be to take advantage of your warranty, but the problem may not be as serious as it seems and you could solve it yourself. The fact that an ice machine is not working correctly is usually a minor problem that any of us could solve if we know the correct procedure.
In addition, the guarantee requires a waiting time and changing the products, plus the installation time. So it’s best to see if we can solve the problem before you use your warranty. It will be better to save it for something more serious or important.
Ice machines stop working due to two essential things: a bad installation from the beginning or a mechanical or electrical malfunction of the appliance.
Installation problems are more complicated, but mechanical or electrical malfunctions can be fixed on our own, thus saving time and money. This troubleshooting guide will tell you how.
Common Ice Maker Problems And How To Fix Them
1. My Ice Maker Turned Off
A Whirlpool fridge should have by default a push button on the back of the front wall of the fridge with which you turn the ice maker on or off.
Make sure the wire arm attached to the ice maker is pointing down. Every time you want to turn on the icemaker you must push that arm down and up when you want to disconnect it.
Check that the wire arm is located on the front wall, otherwise, you must seat it in the ice maker mechanism. If you found it out of place, it is possible that it was installed incorrectly or that it is a factory error, but do not worry because it is easy to repair.
If the wire arm is in the right place, then check for debris around or under it that would prevent it from connecting properly.
You should also keep in mind that if your refrigerator is new, you should wait a while for the water line to fill up or for it to accumulate enough ice cubes.
2. Wrong Freezer Temperature
The ideal temperature for an ice maker is 0 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit. Getting less than one ice tray per day is an indicator that the machine is not working well and the problem may lie in the temperature.
When you raise the temperature above 5°F, your freezer will produce less ice, and over time, it may become completely clogged.
You must be very careful with the minimum temperature of your freezer. You don’t change it every time, since it needs stability to work well. It doesn’t just need to be below 5°F. If you put a very cold temperature the ice cubes can get stuck, they will be frozen on the way and they will not come out properly from the dispenser.
There are several reasons why your freezer is not cold enough. One of them is the condenser coils. Every time the coils are not clean, the fan will not be able to cool them, and this will cause the ice maker to stop producing ice properly.
Defrost your refrigerator and look at the evaporator coils. Coil buildup prevents cold air from doing its job inside the freezer compartment.
It is important that you always check the coils, and that this is a problem that can go unnoticed. But it will heat the temperature of your freezer and will cause you to consume more energy. Therefore, the electricity bill will increase considerably.
3. Stuck Ice Cubes
An ice jam in the ice machine is one of the most common problems. Fortunately, it is also one of the easiest to solve.
When the ice cubes have not been formed quite well, the metal fingers that eject the ice cubes fail to grip them correctly and that is when the ice cubes get stuck.
The ice cubes melt, and a part of it leaks through the fingers but some of the water remains frozen on the metal fingers, creating an ice bridge that prevents new ice cubes from falling.
To avoid this, we must empty the container after completing each load and let all the ice cubes fall on the metal fingers.
To get rid of the ice bridge formed on the metal fingers, you must break it using a wooden or plastic stick or spoon. Avoid using metal or sharp instruments so as not to damage your refrigerator.
4. Blockage Or Freezing In The Water Supply Line
There can be different types of blockages in the supply of ice cubes, but the most common is always freezing at some point in the supply chain.
To fix this we must close the water supply that our refrigerator has. Usually, the water valve is located behind the fridge or under the sink.
After verifying that everything is closed, we have to defrost the water line. Leave the refrigerator unplugged for a few hours. Some people prefer to unplug it overnight.
But if you have nowhere to put the food and you think that many things can go bad overnight, you can also use a hair dryer to defrost the supply line.
When cleaning the water in the refrigerator, you should observe whether the water is translucent or not. As long as the water is clear, there are no problems, since you can clean the clog with a small brush.
But if the water is not translucent, it is best to call a technician, since the problem is internal and much more serious to solve. The best thing to do is to visit a technical service center for an expert diagnosis.
5. Water Filter Replacement
You should change the water filter every six months. If you do not, particles accumulate in the ice machine and this prevents it from working properly. You may also notice that you need to change your filter when you notice a strange taste in the water.
Another sign to change the filter is strange sounds or ice cubes that get stuck easily.
To replace the water filter you must refer to the manual of your Whirlpool ice maker.
6. Water Inlet Valve Without Pressure
Sometimes the problem is that there is no pressure and the water does not enter in the correct amounts. This will stop the water from flowing, turning off the ice maker.
The minimum pressure you should have is 20 psi. Sometimes the component is faulty or worn. If no water comes out but the outlet is open, it means you need to change the valve.
7. Faulty Mold Thermostat
The thermostat controls the temperature of the ice mold or ice tray. The thermostat is also responsible for notifying the ice maker when to expel the ice cubes from the ice bucket and refill the molds with water.
The best way to determine whether your thermostat is faulty is to look for cracks or leaks.
You can also do a basic continuity test, setting up a multimeter to check that the resistor is working properly.
You should replace your thermostat immediately if your gauge does not show any reading.
We hope this guide has helped you to have a clearer idea of all the problems that your ice maker can have. You just need some patience to fix most of them.
Remember that if you have to repair a part or component of your ice maker, it is best to call or consult a specialist. Check your refrigerator manual if in doubt and go through this guide again each time you have a problem so you can rule out the various problems that your ice maker is not making ice cubes correctly.