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Repair and disassembly guides for food cooling appliances including refrigerators, freezers and fridge-freezers.

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Kenmore side by side ice maker not working

New unit, but will not make ice. Or fill with water.

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I have a side by side Kenmore that will not dump the ice into the dispenser bin after I have removed the bin to dump the ice into a small travel cooler. The water cycles to fill the tray a number of times before I notice that the it is just flowing over the ice filled tray and into the freezer compartment. Each time this has happened, I find the tray to always have frozen ice in it. Anyone know what could be the problem? The fridge is about 6 years old and has the water and ice dispenser with the temp. controls on the board controls.

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Icemaker not dumping ice. Ice is being made OK but dump cycle is not activating. Does not add more water to tray, just doesn't dump. Was working fine but had to remove icemaker to replace diffuser and when I reinstalled the icemaker it did not dump ice as it did before. Any suggestions as to what may have happened?

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I removed ice into a travel chest and now it is not making ice

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I have a kenmore side by side the ice maker not dumping ice turn off and when I turn back on will move tray with ice but stops . Seams like the tray is jamed up will move a little bit but then stops.

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My fridge was fine and made ice. I did some reno at home and unplugged the fridge for some times, but after that I didn't make ice anymore. I checked everything :

The water dispenser works fine, I checked the feed valve for icemaker and was ok , I checked the control board by removing the ice level switch board and connecting the 3rd and 4th pin. What else could be wrong here?

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7 Answers

Chosen Solution

Here's the first thing to look at:

Water Inlet Valve

How it Works:

If the refrigerator ice maker is not working the water inlet valve might be defective. The water inlet valve is an electro-mechanical valve. The coil can show good for continuity and still not let the water thru.

UPDATE

Ice Maker Assembly

How it Works:

If the ice maker is not working it could be that the ice maker assembly itself is defective. The freezer temp should be between 0-5 degrees for the ice maker to cycle properly. There are several components in the control module of the ice maker that can fail and most are not sold separately. Also, ice makers have a relatively short lifespan and so it might not be worth fixing. If other, simpler parts like the water inlet valve or shut off arm have been ruled out, and the only thing left is the ice maker itself, replace it as a unit.

Icemaker Module.

How it Works:

If the ice maker is not working the icemaker module at the front might be defective. The module has a motor that cycles the ice ejector arms around to push the ice cubes out when the ice maker thermostat closes. It also has contacts in it for the mold heater and water inlet valve. The motor or contacts of the module can fail. Usually there are test points in the module that a service person can use to determine if there is a problem with it or one of the related ice maker components.

Low Water Pressure from House Supply

Other Causes and Conditions

How it Works:

If the ice maker is not working the water pressure in the house might be too low. The water inlet valve which supplies water to the ice maker is designed to work with a minimum of 20 psi of water pressure.

Door Switch

How it Works:

If the refrigerator ice maker is not working, the door switch might be defective. When the freezer door is opened the freezer door switch does two things, it turns on the light in the freezer and turns off the ice maker and dispenser. If the door switch fails the dispenser will not turn on. The switch can be checked for continuity with an Ohm meter. If it doesn’t have continuity it should be replaced.

Ice Level Control Board

How it Works:

If the ice maker is not working the ice level control board might be defective. This refrigerator is equipped with an infrared light beam to detect the level of ice in the ice bucket. As the level of ice reaches the top, the beam is interrupted and the ice maker shuts off. As ice is used up and the level of ice drops below the beam, the ice maker starts up again. If the ice level control board fails, the ice maker will stop making ice.

Water Filter

How it Works:

If the refrigerator ice maker is not working the water filter might be clogged. Try changing the water filter.

Icemaker Mold Thermostat

How it Works:

If the ice maker is not working the icemaker mold thermostat might be defective. Inside the control module of the ice maker is a thermostat which monitors the temperature of the ice mold (ice tray). Once the mold reaches the proper temperature the ice maker starts a harvest cycle by ejecting the ice cubes and refilling with water. If the mold thermostat is defective the ice maker doesn't advance. The thermostat can be checked for continuity. Replace it as needed.The freezer temp should be between 0-5 degrees for optimum performance.

Icemaker Switch

How it Works:

If the refrigerator ice maker is not working, check the icemaker switch. This switch frequently gets turned off by accident. If the switch is turned on but the ice maker still doesn't work, check the switch for continuity with an Ohm meter. Replace as needed.

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The water dispenser works. Doesn't this mean the valve is working.

Is it possible that the ice maker is not getting power? The plug has 4 prongs. How do you check?

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Ice Maker Was Working Ok, needed To remove Ice Bin To empty & The Arm went To The Off Position ,Do i Try to Raise it of not ? don't want to Break it

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Works Fine When Arm Is Up ,How Do I Raise The Arm.?

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Mine does not work at all, I am afraid is the whole assembly that is defective, maybe?

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I have a kenmore side by side I have replaced the watersolenoid valve and icemAker and inspected switch in door but it still does not call for the solenoid to open and fill water

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It is interesting how no one will touch on the number one reason why Ice makers fail. As a technical advisor for a major corporation, I see 95% of Ice making failure is inadequate door suction(seal) issues. The temperatures become unstable with warm air seeping into fresh food door if not suctioning to front of frig. When temperature sensor senses the warmer air, the controller keeps the compressor running overtime to maintain the 37 degrees in the fresh food. This will cause the freezer temp to fall below zero, which will freezer the tip of the water tube that provides the Icemaker with water. It is a fact that anytime the freezer drops below zero, the defrost cycles can no longer maintain a thawed water tube for the IM. Please keep in mind that the controller's main priority is the fresh food, since a 3 degree increase will cause rapid food spoilage.

The door suction must be maintained. Most technicians as well as "so called experts" are totally unaware that the doors need to be self closing. The doors are big suction cups. A suction cup needs pressure to stick. The doors need their own weight to press them, through use of the earth's gravity. The leveling rollers or legs need to be adjusted to provide a tilt back of the frig to enable the earth's gravity to get ahold of these doors/drawers. Suction will happen while compressor is active, due to air flow; the compressor shuts down and all suction is lost. Just as your dart fell off the mirror when you shot your dart at the mirror as a kid, so does the frig doors from the front of frig. If you tilt the frig back, your doors will be heavy to the front of the frig cabinet and will suction. Temperatures will stabilize in frig and freezer. Within 24 hours, the defrost cycles will thaw the water tube and ice production will start.

Obviously there can be other variables that can contribute to bad suction, such as a damaged door gasket. One should always be looking for the obvious.

Yes, there are other potential causes, but I find that 9 out of 10 times, if the frig doesn't even have the basic conditions needed for successful ice making, then how can you even begin to blame the problem on failed parts....that can get very expensive- Door suction issues can cause water flow issues to the dispenser as well, as the compressor overworks and brings in an extreme amount of cold air, which freezes the water tube and reservoir in back of frig behind back wall. Temps should be a perfect balance of 37 frig, 0 freezer with good door suction. With water flow and good temps, the IM should make ice. If you have perfect conditions first, and still do not have ice, then you can start looking at replacing Ice machine or inlet valve depending on situation.

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Anyone have a problem with a red blinking light that is my the on/off nob and I've turned it off and on and it still blinks red??

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I understand the red blinking light is possibly caused by clogged water filter. I'm having same problem & ice maker is frozen but not dumping. New filter ordered.

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Temps must be set for 37 degrees in frig, zero in freezer (middle settings). Below zero will freeze water tube to ice maker at the tip. You are only getting a couple of trays of ice per day because the defrost cycle thaws the water tube so you get one batch, then it refreezes. Your defrost cycles run about every 12 hours. Make sure the doors are self closing. If not, tilt frig back using leveling rollers or legs in bottom front of frig.

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Chuck thanks for your comments. That sounds like my problem. I'm not in front of the fridge at the moment but I don't recall it having adjustable legs. It's a Kenmore Coldspot Model 106. I'll check when I get home. If not maybe I can rig something up to make the fridge lean back a little. I assume it should only be a slight lean right?

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Chuck, I read your response regarding why ice makers fail. I adjusted the elevation in the front and i now have ice but both sides are warm. What could be the problem and how do i fix it.

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If your doors are not self closing, all of these symptoms will occur. Please read my above explanation to solve your issue. Your doors need to suction to front of frig using the earth's gravity. They will suction when compressor is on, because of air flow. Once it reaches its desired temp in fresh food, the freezer will be way below zero and water lines will be frozen. The frig shuts compressor down at 37 degrees and then doors fall off front of cabinet (gravity pulls them off) and warm air seeps in. It then turns back on and starts the cycle over and over again.

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Light blinks on and off a bunch

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How to stop the inside lights from blinking

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I have a Kenmore elite that is just two years old and the ice maker in the door stopped working. I read so many blogs and what little tech Sears and coldspot provided and decided it was the ice maker. Bought a replacement and same thing. Started tracing wires and noticed that the harness that goes from the main controls up through the freezer door is severely angled and flexes every time the door is opened. I opened up the casing the harness is in and found two broken wires. I have been looking for a replacement harness and find nothing. Not listed in the parts manual. Sears parts people cannot find the part. I have repaired the wires but it didn't last. The angle is too severe and I am not happy. I will never buy another in door ice maker.

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Dave, my ice maker hasn't worked for a while and I replaced it due to a failure with the tray getting wedged due to extended motor travel or that is my best guess. Anyway, the ice maker worked for a while and then finally just quit. Well, there are two wires (one brown and one white) that have severed down on the bottom of the door which I am sure is the problem. There isn't much wire to work with to strip and re-solder, but it certainly seems like a huge design flaw that will plague just about everyone I suspect. Anyway, thanks for the hint as I believe I have found the root cause for my failure.

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My kenmore refrigerator send message door ajar and not work dispenser, no ice, no water and all door are close firm

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Sounds like a bad door switch to me

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If your doors are not self closing, all of these symptoms will occur. Please read my above explanation to solve your issue. Your doors need to suction to front of frig using the earth's gravity. They will suction when compressor is on, because of air flow. Once it reaches its desired temp in fresh food, the freezer will be way below zero and water lines will be frozen. The frig shuts compressor down at 37 degrees and then doors fall off front of cabinet (gravity pulls them off) and warm air seeps in. It then turns back on and starts the cycle over and over again.

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The freezer door was not completely closed overnight. Not making ice. Temps were were at _4 on freezer. I adjusted temp to 0 on freezer and fridge from 35 to 37 which they were originally set at. How the temps got changed, I dont know. Possibly because the freezer door was not completely closed? How will i know if this damaged the compressor?

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The door had suction and everything was working until it was hitting a pizza box or something in freezer and i did not notice until the next morning.

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They have all these answers that require a tech to come out and replace boards and switches because of the temperature and the unit freezing on the Kenmore side by side refrigerator. We had the same problem I thought it was the switch or possibly temp board after really looking I found poorly designed vents that blow directly on the ice maker thermostat and ice maker motor. If you block the vents with a good 2” wide tape to block any of the vents that blow on the unit itself it doesn’t affect the freezer at all and ice maker works like a charm. These vents are a design flaw they have to be aware of by now I have fixed 2 other Kenmore refrigerators with this process with successful results on both. Try this before you have them come out and charge you.

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Not the vents, the wiring harness routing from the controller to the ice maker goes up thru the door and is kinked and eventually breaks. I just want the part number for that specific harness. None of the parts manuals list it.

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I had the same issue and I tried everything and it didn’t work. I read most of the strings here and I came up on the wire harness. I looked on the frig and I found all wires were fine but the cover was not properly latched. I did that and voilaaah it started working and no problem.

That solved my problem but I dont know if it will do the same to you

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Sounds like you got lucky. Where the wires route up into the door to the ice maker and water dispenser, the angle and the constant flexing actually broke the wires inside the insulation. Found the problem and re-spiced the wires. The real problem is I cannot find a replacement harness when they eventually break again. Thanks for your comments

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On my Keone elite French door refrigerator freezer the blue lights on the ice dispenser stays on. Why? Will that cause a problem?

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It sb Kenmore^

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