How to Repair Refrigerator Leaks

A refrigerator is an appliance that keeps food cool so it won’t deteriorate. It keeps the food below room temperature to prevent spoilage. It uses a thermally insulated compartment to transfer the heat from inside to the outside.

This appliance is one of the most commonly used in households. It can get damaged due to prolonged and constant use. One of the most common problems is when the refrigerator starts leaking water.

The common sources of refrigerator leaks are leaks in the drain pan, a clog in the defrost drain, a leaky ice maker, and when the refrigerator door does not close properly.


Leaking Drain Pan


The drain pan located underneath your refrigerator catches the condensation caused by the change in temperature. The water is supposed to evaporate but it sometimes builds up faster than it can evaporate.

  1. Clean the drain pan and check if there are holes.
  2. Remove the grill at the bottom of the refrigerator. Pull out the pan towards the front.
  3. Remove the drain pan, clean it in the sink and inspect.
  4. Pour water on the pan to check for leaks. If there is damage, you need to replace the drain pan. Otherwise, put it back in the refrigerator.

Heat from the refrigerator coils regularly helps evaporate the condensate faster. It prevents water from overflowing from the drain pan. Keep your refrigerator coils clean by dusting regularly.


Clogged Defrost Drain


Condensation from the refrigerator passes through the defrost drain, usually located under the vegetable and fruit bin.

  1. See if it is damaged or clogged by pieces of fruit, vegetables, or other food items.
  2. Pour hot water or soapy water to flush out the clog.
  3. If water flows through the defrost drain, it should end up in the drain pan.


Leaky Ice Maker


If the water comes from the back of the unit, the leak may be coming from the ice maker.

  1. Check the water line tube connecting the ice maker to the water source for leaks.
  2. If the water line is in good condition, the fitting connecting the tube to the refrigerator may be loose. You can tighten the fitting with your hand or a pair of pliers.


Refrigerator Door Does Not Close Properly


Condensation will come through a refrigerator door that does not close properly.

  1. If the door does not close properly, make sure the gasket surrounding the door is not dislodged.
  2. Use a sponge or warm rag to clean a dirty gasket. You can replace a torn gasket with a new one. This can be bought from an appliance store.
  3. If the gasket is working, try closing the door to see if it shuts tight. If not, you may need to tighten the door’s screws and bolts.
  4. Self-closing doors need to be placed at a slight angle. Try checking the tilt of the legs and adjust it as needed.

If these steps can’t fix the refrigerator leak, call your home improvement service.

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