One of the best features of a KitchenAid fridge is the Ice Maker, which allows you to produce ice on demand to keep your drinks cool on a hot summer’s day.
However, some users have reported that their ice maker suddenly stopped working for no apparent reason.
While this can be a frustrating issue to deal with, the good news is this is often caused by minor issues that you should be able to fix yourself.
So in this article, we’re going to cover precisely why your ice maker’s not working and show you how you can get it fixed up quickly and easily.
Why is your KitchenAid Ice Maker Not Working?
Several components need to work together for an ice maker to function properly.
Sometimes these components can run into problems such as freezing over or failing. So firstly, we need to inspect these components to get a better idea of where the problem lies.
1. The Temperature is Too Hot
For the ice maker to function properly, KitchenAid recommends the internal freezer temperature be below 0 degrees F but not lower than -18 degrees.
So if your ice maker is either too hot (or too cold), it will have problems producing ice.
Here you’ll need to ensure you’ve set an appropriate temperature for your freezer using the internal thermostat
2. The Water Supply Line has a Problem
The water supply line is the tube that carries water from your home’s water supply through the inlet valve and into the KitchenAid refrigerator.
It’s pretty common for the water supply line to become kinked or blocked, especially if you’ve recently moved the fridge’s position, as people will commonly push it too close to the wall causing the line to pinch itself.
You’ll need to check the water line and ensure that water can flow smoothly through it.
Additionally, sometimes the waterline may have become frozen and need defrosting.
3. The Ice Maker is Turned Off
Ice makers have an on/off switch in case you want to use the fridge/freezer portions of the KitchenAid refrigerator but still want the ice maker turned off.
This can be very handy during the winter when leaving the ice machine on can cause freezing problems.
4. The Water Inlet Valve is Faulty
The water inlet valve opens and closes upon instruction from the control board to let more water into the ice maker.
Sometimes this valve can burn out or experience faults preventing it from opening, which means the ice machine can’t get any water to make new ice.
We’ll need to test the water inlet valve with a multimeter to ascertain whether it’s broken, and if it is, then it should just be replaced.
5. Low Water Pressure
It’s recommended that water be supplied to the fridge at about 30 psi for optimal ice maker functionality.
If your home’s water valve isn’t open or only partially opened, then the ice maker won’t be able to get enough water. In this case, we’ll need to open the valve fully to restore functionality.
6. An Ice Maker Module Issue
The icemaker module is the device that turns the ejector blades to eject the ice cubes from their molds and into the ice bin.
This module usually has an ‘arm’ which can be raised or lowered to turn it on and off. It’s quite common for this arm to accidentally be pushed up, which then severs the ice maker circuit.
We’ll need to push it back down into the on position.
7. The Ice Control Sensor is Failing
The ice sensor (or ice level control board) is responsible for monitoring how much ice is in the bin at any time.
Once the ice level drops low, the control sensor tells the ice maker to get to work and top up the ice, and when there’s enough ice, it tells it to turn off.
So when this sensor becomes faulty, it won’t tell the ice maker to turn on. So the sensor will need to be tested and replaced accordingly.
8. A Door Sensor Problem
For fridges with the KitchenAid refrigerator ice maker mounted into the door, there is a sensor that lets it know the door is closed and can now produce more ice.
We’ll need to open up the side panel on the fridge door to locate the switch, and then it should be tested for functionality. It will need to be replaced if it’s found to be non-functional.
9. An Ice Maker Thermostat Problem
An independent thermostat is dedicated to monitoring the temperature of the ice maker, as it requires a specific temperature to work properly.
It’s common for this thermostat to fail due to being tripped by a power surge. If this happens, it will need to be replaced.
10. The Water Filter is Clogged
Before the water can make it to the KitchenAid refrigerator ice maker, it has to pass through the water filter. This is so it can filter out any unwanted debris or particulate and make the water you consume as clean as possible.
However, if this filter becomes too clogged up, it will prevent water from flowing into the ice maker.
KitchenAid recommends this filter be changed every 6 months, so if you haven’t done it for a while, now is a good time to do so.
How to Fix a KitchenAid Ice Maker Not Working
As you can see, there is a multitude of potential problems that can cause an ice maker not to work properly.
Now that you’ve had a chance to better diagnose the root cause of the problem let’s now look at how to fix these issues.
1. Adjust the Temperature
Using either the internal thermostat or the menu on the front display, you need to set the freezer’s temperature to below 0 degrees F for it to function properly.
After setting the temperature, you may need to wait a few hours before the temperature falls low enough for the ice maker to return to standard functionality.
2. Unkink the Water Supply Line
If there is a kink in the water line, it can obstruct the water supply to the ice maker.
You should pull your fridge out and inspect the water line for kinks, bends, or impingements that may hamper the water flow.
Straighten the water line out, and when you push the fridge back into place, ensure you don’t crush or further kink the water line.
In some rarer cases, the water line may have frozen over; this can easily be identified as you will see a layer of frost over the water line.
Here you can take a towel dipped in hot water, or a hair dryer also works, and apply heat along the length of the line to defrost it.
3. Switch the Ice Maker Back On
For older fridges, the ice maker on/off switch is usually located inside the freezer right next to where the ice dispenser is mounted; simply flick it to the on position.
This option is usually located on the front menu panel on newer fridges. Simply hold the ice button down for 3 seconds, and you should hear an audible beep which lets you know it’s been switched back on.
4. Replace the Faulty Water Inlet Valve
If the water inlet valve has been inspected and determined to be faulty, the only option is to replace it.
- Start by locating the water inlet valve, usually located at the back of the fridge near the water online.
- Turn off the water supply at the valve so you can work on the inlet valve without any water leaking out.
- Loosen the nut holding the old inlet valve and remove it; this can now be discarded.
- Insert the new water valve in its place and make sure to tighten it securely.
5. Ensure your Water Valve is Fully Open
If your water valve has been closed for some reason, it’s easy to forget to re-open it.
Ensure the valve is opened the entire way to ensure the ice maker can get enough water.
6. Return the Ice Maker Arm to the On Position
If the ice maker arm is in the upright position, it means the circuit has been severed. Return it to the down position so the motor and ejector blades can work properly.
7. The Ice Control Sensor is Failing
If the ice control sensor has been tested and determined to be faulty, it will need to be replaced.
This sensor is quite challenging to replace by yourself, so in this scenario, we recommend contacting KitchenAid support, who will help arrange for a trained technician to install this for you.
8. Fix the Door Sensor
If the door sensor is not working, this, too, will need to be replaced.
You can access the door sensor from inside the door panel. You’ll need to unplug the old sensor and remove the screw holding it in place.
Then simply insert the new sensor, and plug it back in using the same configuration.
9. Replace the Ice Maker Thermostat
If the ice maker thermostat is faulty, the only option is to replace it.
- Start by unplugging the power from the fridge.
- Unscrew the ice maker from its mount and remove it from the refrigerator.
- Then remove the old thermostat and install the new one in its place.
- Once the new thermostat is installed, you can place the ice maker back into its mount and screw it in place.
- Turn the power back on.
10. Change the Water Filter
If it’s been a while since you changed the water filter, now might be a good time to do it.
All you need to do is remove the old filter by turning it counterclockwise and pulling it out.
Then take the new filter, remove its safety cap and install it by pushing it into place and turning it clockwise to lock it.