How to Prevent GE Refrigerator Water Line from Freezing? (Top 4 Methods)

Some GE refrigerators have built-in ice makers and water dispensers. It is quite helpful and avoids the necessity to buy a separate water dispenser. Also, you can get chilled water whenever you like instantly.

But the refrigerator water line may get frozen frequently and you may not be able to dispense water during that time. In this article, we shall understand the different reasons for the water line to freeze so that we may prevent it from happening.

How to Prevent GE Refrigerator Water Line from Freezing

How to Prevent GE Refrigerator Water Line from Freezing

You can prevent a GE refrigerator water line from freezing by preventing the refrigerator temperature from dropping to zero or below using the thermostat control. Also you can prevent it by utilizing the fresh food drawers with a full load. You can also use an insulating material at the back of the refrigerator door where the water line travels. Further, you can try to adjust the temperature of the refrigerator according to the volume of food you are storing to prevent the water line from freezing.

In order to understand the methods to prevent the water line from freezing, you should know why the water line freezes. This will help you to comprehend the methods to prevent it from freezing frequently.

Reasons for the Refrigerator Water Line to Freeze

The top reasons for your refrigerator water line to freeze up are:

  • Refrigerator has a low food load
  • The temperature drops to zero due to thermostat malfunction
  • The water tank freezes up

Refrigerator Has a Low Food Load

Usually, the refrigerator is set at a particular temperature, and it has a sensor to cut off the compressor when the evaporator space reaches the desired temperature. When the refrigerator space is full load, it works for a longer time to chill the foods inside it.

But on the contrary, if you don’t have many food items inside the fridge, it can chill down pretty faster. It cools down to the set temperature despite the low food load.

When the fridge cools down to lower temperatures, it may freeze up the water line. This freezing causes a blockade and prevents the dispensing of water.

The Temperature Drops to Zero Due to Thermostat Malfunction

Every refrigerator including your GE refrigerator has a thermostat to set the temperature. It also helps to cut off the compressor unit when the refrigerator reaches the desired temperature.

But when there is a malfunction in this thermostat, the compressor will not cut off and it keeps cooling down the space. This leads to temperature drops below zero and easily freezes up the water tank and the water line.

Sometimes, you might accidentally set the temperatures below zero in the refrigerator section which causes the freezing up of the water line.

The Water Tank Freezes Up

In GE refrigerators, you can find the water tank that supplies water to the dispenser in the fresh food section below the drawers.

When you set the temperature of the fresh food section at zero or below it, the water tank at the bottom starts to freeze. This freezes up the whole line and prevents the dispensing of water.

Similarly, when you have low food volume inside the drawer, the water in the tank might chill down and freeze eventually. So, the water present in the line will also freeze creating a block.

Now that we know the reasons, let us understand how to prevent it from happening and protect the water line from freezing again.

Ways to Prevent Refrigerator Water Line from Freezing

You must observe and follow these guidelines to prevent the water line from freezing in your refrigerator:

Set the Refrigerator Temperature to Proper Temperature

GE refrigerators with water dispensers have temperature control settings. You can simply set the refrigerator temperature to not less than 3°C and keep the freezer temperature not less than -19°C. 

This is an ideal temperature to maintain, and it will not freeze the water line. Also, if you have temperature control in your fresh food drawer section, try to set it to normal or moderate cool. If you maintain the temperature at the proper level, the water line will never freeze.

Replace the Broken Thermostat

You have to first locate the thermostat in your refrigerator and then replace it. You can find a detailed procedure to remove the GE refrigerator thermostat and the steps to replace it here

Once you fix the broken thermostat, the refrigerator now will be able to control the temperature of the evaporator space. Now you can prevent the water line from freezing completely. 

Maintain Appropriate Food Load for the Temperature Setting

This is especially for the refrigerator section where you keep the fresh food. Since the water tank for the dispenser is present at the bottom of the fresh food drawer, you can try having a good amount of food load in it.

This prevents the cold air from settling at the bottom and freezes up the water present in the tank. It also prevents the water line from getting cold.

If you tend to have a lower food load, then try to reduce the temperature accordingly. You can also try setting the thermostat to a higher temperature to reduce the cooling.

Stick an Insulating Material

The water line travels from the final dispensing unit through the door present in the freezer section. Although this part of the door is thick and doesn’t conduct much heat, the lower temperature of the freezer might cause the line to get frozen.

So, you can stick up a sheet of insulation on the door and prevent the water line from freezing up. You can either get mica sheets or aluminum sheets to cover the part.

This is how you can prevent the water line in your GE refrigerator from freezing up. If your water line is already frozen, you have to rectify it before taking up preventive measures. So, let us now find out how to fix a frozen refrigerator water line.

How to Fix a Frozen Refrigerator Water Line?

If your water tank has frozen, then you have to perform a complete defrost of the refrigerator. But, if you only find the water line to be frozen, then it is pretty easy to fix it.

You will need the following things:

  • A bowl of hot water
  • An Extra-large syringe with a long flexible tube connected to the needle end

You can also get this syringe and tube apparatus commercially online. Once you have this apparatus set up, let us now start fixing the frozen refrigerator water line.


  • Locate the water dispensing tube in your refrigerator. It is usually present near the ice dispenser. Using your hands feel for a small tube protruding below the ice dispenser. This tube is where the water comes out. 
  • Drop some towels on the floor and at the station near the dispenser to avoid the water spilling all over the area.
  • Change the setting to water dispense and check whether any water comes out of it. If not, start to perform the fix.
  • Take some hot water inside the syringe through the tube. 
  • Insert this end of the tube into the water dispenser line till you cannot force it further and slowly press the plunger to force the hot water into the line.
  • Gradually, if there is any ice built up in the line, it will melt, and the chunks of ice will fall down.
  • After defrosting the water line, you can check the water dispenser. If the issue is not fixed, then try sending some more hot water into the line and wait.

Sometimes, the water line is frozen due to freezing in the water tank itself. In such cases, remove all the food items and plan for a complete defrosting of the refrigerator. You have to arrange for alternatives to store the food items and then proceed with defrosting.

Once you perform a complete defrost, you can do the preventive measures mentioned above to avoid freezing water lines in the future.


A water dispenser in the refrigerator is a great help for many consumers. When you encounter such freezing problems with the refrigerator, you can simply make use of these fixes and preventive measures to avoid this issue in the future. These fixes can be done for any refrigerator model, but the location of some parts might differ.

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