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Refrigerator Troubleshooting: Ice Maker

Maintaining and Troubleshooting Domestic Refrigerators: Chapter 4


Refrigerator Troubleshooting: Ice Maker


In this module, we will discuss the common refrigerator problem associated with ice makers. We will also learn how to fix these problems. Skip to quiz!


Diagnosing Malfunctions


The common problems in the ice maker are:

  • Ice maker does not make ice,

  • Ice maker does not turn off,

  • Ice maker froze up, and

  • Ice maker does not eject ice.


The ice maker fails to run because of:

  • Faulty Ice maker thermostat,

  • Defective auger motor,

  • Faulty water valve,

  • Clogged water line and filter, or

  • Defective heater.

Let us discuss how to troubleshoot them.


If the water’s route is blocked, the ice maker won’t make ice. This occurs due to:

  • Faulty water valve, or

  • Clogged water line and filter.

We need to replace them as discussed earlier.


The water valve can be tested without having to pull the refrigerator away from the wall. This can be done by inserting the probes into the holes marked “V” and “N.”



Ice Maker Auger Motor


Recall that when the dispenser is activated, the auger motor will rotate to pull the ice forward to the outlet chute of the bin. If your ice maker is producing ice but does not correctly eject it, the problem is with the motor assembly inside it.


If the motor is not operating, then you can check it for continuity with a multimeter.


We should check the motor resistance by inserting the probes into the holes marked “L” and “H.” Our multimeter should read around 4400 ohms to 8800 ohms. If no continuity through the motor terminals, then we should inspect the control actuator and switch.


Recall that the dispenser switch is a momentary contact switch that will supply power to the auger motor when activated. The switch sits behind the pad or lever that is pressed to dispense ice.


We will need to remove power from the appliance and remove the control panel cover to access the switch. We can check the continuity of the switch with a multimeter.


Some models of refrigerators use electronic control to supply power to the auger motor. We need to verify whether the control board is getting power by checking continuity.


If the control board does not have continuity, we need to replace it.



Ice Maker Thermostat


Recall that the ice maker thermostat controls and regulates the ice maker ejection cycle by monitoring the temperature inside the freezer. Much like a refrigerator and defrost thermostat, we test the ice maker thermostat for continuity.


We need to set the multimeter to the ohms setting. Start by testing the thermostat when it is cold, about 10 degrees. Insert one probe into the hole labeled "T" and the other probe labeled "H." The meter should indicate zero resistance.


After the ice maker has warmed up, repeat the test, and this time the meter should indicate infinity. If the thermostat does not pass both tests, it should be replaced.



Ice Maker Heater


Recall that the ice maker heater warms up the mold to loosen the ice. Much like defrost heater, we check the resistance of the ice maker heater.


We test the control module heater for resistance using a multimeter. We need to set the multimeter to the ohms setting. Place one probe into the hole labeled "H" and the other probe labeled "L."


The multimeter should read in the range of 60 to 90 ohms. If the heater does not pass this test, replace the ice mold heater.



The ice maker fails to run because of:

  • Faulty Ice maker thermostat,

  • Defective auger motor,

  • Faulty water valve,

  • Clogged water line and filter, or

  • Defective heater.


We troubleshoot the water valve, heater, thermostat, and motor by inserting multimeter probes into holes present on the ice maker assembly. We need to replace these components if they do not pass this test.



 

Question #1: Why does the refrigerator ice maker fail to run? (Select all that apply)

  1. Faulty door sensor

  2. Faulty or clogged water valve

  3. Faulty defrost heater

  4. Clogged filter

Scroll down for the answer...

















Answer: Faulty or clogged water valve

Faulty defrost heater

Clogged filter

The ice maker fails to run because of:

  • Faulty Ice maker thermostat

  • Defective auger motor

  • Faulty water valve

  • Clogged water line and filter

  • Defective heater


Question #2: For diagnosing the problem of the refrigerator ice maker, we can check the water valve from the ice maker assembly.

  1. True

  2. False

Scroll down for the answer...
















Answer: True

The water valve can be tested without having to pull the refrigerator away from the wall.


Question #3: How do we troubleshoot problems in the refrigerator ice maker auger motor?

  1. Measuring resistance across different ice made by the ice maker

  2. Measuring resistance across holes marked “L” and “H”

  3. Removing the motor and checking resistance

  4. By checking ice maker switch

Scroll down for the answer...
















Answer: Measuring resistance across holes marked “L” and “H.”

We should check the motor resistance by inserting the probes into the holes marked “L” and “H.”


Question #4: Much like a refrigerator and defrost thermostat, we test the ice maker thermostat for continuity.

  1. True

  2. False

Scroll down for the answer...


















Answer: True

Much like a refrigerator and defrost thermostat, we test the ice maker thermostat for continuity.


Question #5: How do we troubleshoot problems in the refrigerator ice maker thermostat?

  1. Measuring resistance across different ice made by the ice maker

  2. Measuring resistance across holes marked “T” and “H"

  3. Removing the motor and checking resistance

  4. Measuring resistance across holes marked “L” and “H”

Scroll down for the answer...
















Answer: Measuring resistance across holes marked “T” and “H.”

We need to insert one probe into the hole labeled "T" and the other probe labeled "H" for troubleshooting the ice maker thermostat.

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