Ice Maker Repair: a Saddle Valve Tubing Leak


A refrigerator with a built-in ice maker requires a water supply to produce ice. The supply line that delivers water hooks up to the back of the appliance on the upper end of the freezer. The other end of the supply line connects to a saddle valve installed below your kitchen sink on the right-hand water pipe. If the supply line starts leaking at the saddle valve, try repairing the connection. If all else fails, you will have to replace the line.

Things You'll Need

  • Pliers
  • Teflon plumbing tape
  • Tighten the ice maker water tube connection at the saddle valve with pliers. The tube is fitted with a rotating coupler on the end. Tightening this coupler may stop the leak. If it doesn't, the water tube may be split or cracked from wear and should be replaced. Trying to patch a leaking tube may halt the leak temporarily, but water will likely begin dripping again sooner or later.

  • Twist the water shutoff knob clockwise until tight on the main pipe above the saddle valve.

  • Turn on the cold water at the sink faucet until the water runs out and drips. This takes pressure off the pipe while you work.

  • Unscrew the coupler on the water tube where it connects to the saddle valve.

  • Unscrew the other end of the tub from the back of your freezer and remove the tube. Hold the end of the tube upward to prevent water in the line from spilling on the floor.

  • Wrap Teflon tape tightly around the nozzle on the saddle valve and the nozzle on the back of your refrigerator freezer.

  • Attach the new water tube to the saddle valve nozzle and tighten with your pliers. Connect the other end of the tube to the threaded nozzle on the back of the refrigerator.

  • Unscrew the shutoff knob on the main pipe and the saddle valve to check for leaks around the new connection. Twist the coupler 1/4 turn with pliers to stop leaks at the saddle valve and the freezer connection.

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