June 28, 2010

Ice Maker Parts and Advice

Posted in appliance parts, RepairClinic.com tagged , , , , , , , , , at 6:47 am by Liliana

Ice Maker

Ice Maker

The hot days of summer are here in earnest. Temperatures are high, humidity is steaming, and we all need something to cool us down.

Ice – it is such a beautiful word in summertime, isn’t it? If you have an ice maker, this is when you use it most.

If your ice maker is not working property, RepariClinic.com can help you diagnose the problem and find the right part to fix this essential summer helpmate.

Here are a few possible problems with your ice maker:

  • No ice – if your ice maker has completely stopped making ice, check items in this order:
    • It may be turned off. Look for the wire along the right side of the ice maker that looks a bit like a coat hanger. If the wire is in the raised position, the ice maker is turned off. If so, try one of these:
      • If your ice maker has a small red plastic lever, lower it to lower the wire.
      • If there’s no plastic lever, simply lower the wire.
  • Make sure that the temperature is 8 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. If the freezer is too warm, the ice maker won’t cycle properly and the ice maker fill tube may be blocked by ice. If this is the case, melt the ice by using a hair dryer; be very careful not to melt any plastic parts, though!
  • Replace the water shut-off valve or water-inlet valve, or both, if necessary. The ice maker head assembly may have broken parts. Look to see if the gears are broken. Check to see if the small plastic arms that rest against the ice rake are broken. If the ice maker head assembly is modular and you’ve found broken parts, you can just replace the entire thing.
  • Small ice cubes or too few of them – if your ice maker is producing ice poorly, you probably have a clogged water line, a defective water-inlet valve, or a defective ice maker mold thermostat that isn’t cycling properly. Check these:
    • The water line that’s attached to the back of the refrigerator. Make sure you have good water flow. If the flow is poor, you need to repair, clean, or replace the tubing or the shut-off valve that supplies the water.
    • The water-inlet valve. Replace it if it has failed.
    • Check the freezer temperature. If should be 8 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. If the freezer temperature is too low, the ice maker won’t cycle properly.
    • The ice maker mold thermostat. Make sure that it’s cycling properly.
    • Specks in the cubes  – if you find black or gray specks in your ice cubes, have a look at the ice cube tray. If the protective coating is peeling away, the most economical solution is to completely replace the ice maker.

Enjoy your summer with a cool, ice filled glass of lemonade!

May 11, 2010

RepairClinic.com – How Ice Makers Work

Posted in appliance parts, Home tagged , , , , , , at 7:10 am by Liliana

Icy Lemonade

Icy Lemonade

An ice maker is an independent small appliance that resides within the freezer.

Components of the ice maker:

  • An internal motor that (together  with a micro switch) specifies how long the water-fill valve needs to stay open in order to supply the correct amount of water. The motor also controls the ice-ejection sequence.
  • Tray for the ice cubes.
  • Thermostat that senses when ice is at proper temperature.
  • Ice cube tray heater; located under the ice maker water tray, it slightly warms the ice cubes to loosen them for ejection.
  • Sweep fork or push bar that pushes the ice cubes from the tray.
  • Holding bin that holds the ejected ice cubes.
  • Shut-off arm (looks like a coat hanger) that operates the switch turning the ice maker on and off.
  • Water-fill valve supplies household water to the ice maker; located on the outside (back of the refrigerator) near the bottom.

How ice makers work:

  1. The internal motor signals the water-fill valve to open the flow of water specified into the ice maker tray.
  2. When water tray thermostat senses that the tray has reached the right temperature, it signals the ice maker to begin ejecting the cubes.
  3. The ice maker then turns on the ice cube tray heater, which warms the tray enough for the ice cubes to move freely.
  4. The sweep fork then rotates and pushes the cubes up and out of the tray; if the ice maker has a push bar instead, it pushes the cubes up and out of the tray.
  5. While the ice maker is discharging the cubes into the holding bin, the metal wire swings up to let the cubes drop down.
  6. When the cubes have dropped, the wire goes back down, unless the holding bin is full. If the bin is full, the wire can’t go all the way down. This action turns off the ice maker until there is room in the bin for more ice.
  7. When there is room in the ice bin, the wire goes all the way down once again.  This allows the ice maker to refill with water and repeat the process.

Enjoy cool, icy drinks on warm days this May.