How to Connect an Icemaker to an Osmosis Unit


The taste of tap water from municipal water companies has gotten progressively worse over the last few years. Reverse-osmosis filter units eliminate the unpleasant taste and odor. They are frequently installed in kitchen sinks with a separate faucet for drinking and cooking water.

After the reverse osmosis unit is installed, it is easy to extend the line to the refrigerator's icemaker. The same supply line also feeds the refrigerator's water line so that the cold-water dispenser will provide chilled and filtered water.

Things You'll Need

  • Utility knife
  • 1/4-inch quick-connect plastic tubing "T" connector
  • 1/4-inch quick-connect plastic tubing coupler
  • 1/4-inch quick-connect plastic shut-off valve
  • 1/4-inch plastic tubing
  • Turn off the shut-off valve supplying water to the reverse-osmosis unit. This is the valve located under the sink that also turns off the cold-water line going to your primary sink faucet. In addition, turn off the valve located on top of the osmosis storage tank, if it is so equipped. The output of the valve has a 1/4-inch plastic tubing line that connects to the reverse-osmosis faucet located next to the primary faucet. Not all systems have this additional shut-off valve.

  • Find the plastic line to the reverse-osmosis faucet. This is the line discussed in Step 1. It is the only plastic line connected to the large round storage tank. It is also the only line going to the reverse-osmosis faucet. Cut the line near the storage tank and install the 1/4-inch quick-connect plastic tubing "T" connector between the two cut sections.

  • Cut off a 2-inch piece of tubing from the roll you purchased and insert it into the "T." There is only one opening remaining in the "T," as you already used the other two openings to connect the piece of tubing that was previously cut. Connect the 1/4-inch quick-connect plastic shut-off valve to the end of the 2-inch piece of tubing. This is the opposite end of the 2-inch piece that was inserted into the "T." Insert one end of the remaining roll of tubing into the remaining opening on the shut-off valve.

  • Route the tubing to the back of the refrigerator using the shortest route possible, while keeping the tubing concealed and out of the way.

  • Hold the open end of the tubing over a suitable container and turn on the shut-off valves. Flush about one quart of water through the tubing. Turn off the shut-off valves. Turn off the icemaker's shut-off valve. This is usually a lever arm located above the ice tray. If you lift the arm until it stops, it will remain in that position and will be off. To turn it back on, gently push down on the lever, and it will return to its normal position.

  • Cut off any excess tubing, but leave enough so that you will be able to pull the refrigerator away from the wall to clean behind it. Connect the open end of the roll of tubing to the 1/4-inch quick-connect plastic tubing coupler and then connect the other end of the coupler to the icemaker supply line that is located behind the refrigerator.

  • Turn on the shut-off valves again. Lower the lever arm located above the ice tray to turn on the icemaker. Discard any ice produced for the next four hours to ensure that all contaminants are removed.

Tips & Warnings

  • Turn on the reverse-osmosis faucet at the sink before cutting the plastic tubing to ensure that the line is not pressurized. If water flows out of the reverse-osmosis faucet when you turn it on, you have not shut off the source. Do not cut the line until water does not flow when you turn it on.
  • Push the plastic tubing firmly into the connectors. Pull back on the tubing to ensure a solid connection.
  • Do not use copper tubing between your reverse-osmosis unit and your refrigerator.
  • Check for water leaks for two or three days after installation. If you put a paper towel under all fittings, it is easy to find small leaks. The paper will stay wet for some time.
  • Photo Credit Ice image by vilarcampos from
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