The water dispenser is one of the best features of a Frigidaire refrigerator, giving you instant access to cool, clean water anytime you want. Unfortunately, they do tend to break down from time to time which can be frustrating as it’s not always an easy problem to diagnose and fix.
That’s where we come in. In this article, I will explain exactly what causes your Frigidaire water dispenser to break down and give you all the necessary methods to restore it to working order.
Why is your Frigidaire Water Dispenser Not Working?
In order for the water dispenser to work, there needs to be a steady supply of water coming to the fridge. So usually, when the water dispenser is not working, one or more of the components involved with providing water to the dispenser have run into a problem and require fixing.
Let’s look at these potential failure points to better understand what’s wrong with your water dispenser.
1. The Control Panel is Locked
Most Frigidaire refrigerators have a control lock option that disables the front control panel to prevent it from being pressed on accident or by curious toddlers.
So you’ll need to check if the water dispenser lock has been enabled, and if it has been turned on, it should be unlocked before the dispenser will work again.
2. The Water Filter is Old
The water that runs to the dispenser must be passed through a water filter to ensure it’s as clean as possible. This filter helps remove unwanted minerals and even helps the water taste better.
However, these filters will age over time, and Frigidaire recommends replacing the water filter every 6 months, or it may become clogged up.
Fortunately, new filters can be purchased directly from Frigidaire and are very easy to install. Likewise, if you have a defective water filter, the easiest option is just to change it.
3. Water isn’t Being Supplied to the Fridge
Various functions, such as the ice cube maker and the water dispenser, rely on a working connection to your home’s water supply. So if the water supply runs into a problem for any reason, it can potentially impede the functionality of the water dispenser.
This could be due to various issues, such as the water line being kinked, the water valve being closed (or only partially open), or the water line might be completely frozen.
You’ll need to take the relevant steps to restore the water supply before the dispenser works again.
4. There’s a Problem with the Door Switch
To prevent issues such as leaks and spillages, the water dispenser will only function when the door is completely closed. The way in which the fridge knows the door is properly closed is because there is a door switch that gets activated once the door is closed.
However, sometimes the door switch can run into problems which makes the fridge believe the door is still open when it’s actually not. When this happens, the door switch will need to be inspected and tested for continuity; if it’s found to be defective, it will need to be replaced with a new one.
5. The Water Dispenser Switch is Broken
When you press the water dispenser button, or on older fridges, this may be a lever; it triggers a switch which then opens the water inlet valve, allowing water to dispense. This switch can run into issues and become defective, so when you try to use the function, it will not provide the signal to open the valve.
The dispenser switch will need to be tested with a multimeter to determine if it’s defective. And if it’s found to be broken, it should be replaced.
6. The Water Tube has Frozen Over
If the temperature in your fridge is too cold, for example, the weather might have turned cold during winter, but you still have your thermostat set like it’s summertime, it’s possible for the water tube to freeze over.
Ideally, the freezer’s temperature should be maintained from 0 to 10 degrees F for optimal performance.
An easy way to test if the water tube is working is to disconnect it from the bottom of the fridge and blow air through it; if air can’t pass through, then it’s a good sign that it’s frozen and will need to be defrosted.
7. The Control Board is Faulty
The control board acts as the brain of the fridge, sending out instructions to the relevant components when a button is pressed so they can operate. So when the control board develops a fault, it may not instruct the dispenser to turn on.
Unfortunately, the control board is quite a complicated component and, as such, is difficult to repair. So the usual course of action is just to replace the whole board.
How to Fix a Frigidaire Water Dispenser Not Working?
Now that you have a better idea of what causes this problem and can make an informed diagnosis on what needs fixing let’s look at how to fix these problems and restore the dispenser back to working order.
1. Turn Off the Control Panel Lock
While the panel lock feature is a great way to keep curious children from using your fridge when not wanted, while this option is enabled, the dispenser won’t work, so we need to disable it.
You can do this by locating the Control Lock function on the front control panel and pressing it down for 3 seconds. You should hear an audible beep which confirms the lock has been disabled, and the dispenser should now work.
2. Replace the Bad Water Filter
If you have a clogged water filter, or it’s over 6 months old, it’s time to change it out for a new one. You should first check the model number for your fridge and ensure you order the correct filter type for your specific fridge model.
- Once you have the replacement filter, you should start by turning the ice maker off. Simply locate the ice maker function on your fridge panel and click the minus button to disable it.
- The refrigerator water filter is generally located inside the fridge, in the upper right-hand corner. Twist the front tab to the right and pull to remove the old filter. This can now be discarded.
- Unpack the new filter and push it into the slot, rotate it counterclockwise, and you should hear/feel a click that confirms it’s now locked into place.
- You can now turn the ice maker back on.
3. Check your Home’s Water Supply
If water isn’t being supplied to the fridge from your home, then the fridge water dispenser won’t work. The first thing to look at is your home’s water valve; you should ensure it’s opened all the way.
Next, you should inspect the water line for kinks or pinches. You’ll need to move the fridge out from the wall to untangle the water line and then carefully push it back into place.
You may also be dealing with low water pressure; the water inlet valve requires a pressure of at least 20psi to open, so if you are not currently meeting that threshold, you should increase your home’s water pressure so the valve can open properly.
Finally, you may have a defective water inlet valve that requires replacing. If this happens, we recommend contacting Frigidaire customer support, who will assist in replacing this item for you.
4. Install a New Refrigerator Door Switch
If the door switch has been tested and found to be faulty, it will need to be replaced before the dispenser will work.
- Start by unplugging the fridge from the power supply.
- Locate the door switch cover inside the door and remove the screws securing it in place.
- Lift the cover off, which will reveal 4 more mounting screws which hold the switch in place, remove these.
- Take a picture of the old door switch before removing it; you must install the new one using the same orientation.
- Press the retaining tabs, and the old switch will pop out.
- Remove the old connector from the old door switch; this can now be discarded.
- Plug the wire connector into the new door switch and push it into the mount. Once again, ensure the orientation matches the original, or you’ll have to flip it back over.
- Install the 4 mounting screws and then re-install the cover.
5. Replace the Water Dispenser Switch
If the dispenser switch stops working, it will need replacing. However, as this requires the removal of the control panel, it can be quite an involved process.
So here we once again recommend contacting Frigidaire support, who will arrange for a trained technician to replace this for you.
6. Defrost the Frozen Water Tube
When the water tube gets frozen over, water won’t be able to flow to the fridge water dispenser. The easiest way to defrost the water tube is to grab a hairdryer and gently heat it up, continually keep the dryer moving, and hold it a good distance away from the tube.
Be careful not to leave it in one spot for too long, as if it gets too hot, the plastic tube might melt.
7. Replace the Control Board
As control boards are quite complicated components, they are very difficult to repair by yourself.
So you will need to contact Frigidaire customer support, who will help you source the correct replacement board for your particular fridge model and have a trained technician install it for you.