Condensation may come out from your refrigerator and leak out due to many reasons, such as clogged tubes, blocked drain pans, or ice buildup. Some of these are normal problems that you can fix yourself at the comfort of your own home using basic tools, while some may be due to a major issue that you will probably need a professional to do the work and repair.
Why you need to look at your refrigerator immediately
When you notice a leak coming from your refrigerator, even if you think there is no rush to do it because it is still working, you still need to inspect it as soon as possible. There are a lot of safety hazards that will result from a leak in the refrigerator such as floor damage, slipping that may probably cause unfortunate injuries, or even possible electric shock.
Common reasons why the refrigerator has water leaking
Reason Number 1: It's always running.
Many people think that refrigerators should run 24/7 as they are expected to store food efficiently for long periods of time, but in reality that's not how a refrigerator works. Refrigerators must be turned off once in a while in order to clean it off properly and to conduct maintenance.
How to fix the issue: Unplug your refrigerator for at least a few hours once every six months in order to clean it properly. You can use a brush or cloth to wipe off debris and a vacuum cleaner to remove the dust that has accumulated from the condenser coils. Make sure to look at your appliance manual for the recommended procedure.
Reason Number 2: The drain tube is clogged.
The drain hose of your refrigerator may be blocked by debris, like food particles, that will hinder its main function of draining liquids into the drain pan which is located under the fridge.
How to fix the issue: Regularly clean your drain hose by using a wiping towel. Turn off your refrigerator first, remove all the food and contents inside, and wipe all visible stains and debris. To remove buildup and dirt from your drain hose, insert a flexible tube inside until it comes out at the end of the opening. You can also pour a mixture of chlorine and water inside the hose. Make sure to drain the pan and tank of your refrigerator before turning it back on.
Reason Number 3: There’s an ice buildup.
There are many reasons why there is a buildup of ice on your freezer. You may have opened your freezer door for so long that it increased the level of moisture inside, or there are too many items in the walls that may be blocking the airflow. This will result in your freezer producing more ice than what is needed that liquid will eventually drain and leak under your fridge.
How to fix the issue: Do not open and leave your freezer door for a long time and regularly clear and reposition items to make sure that they are not blocking any vents.
Reason Number 4: The defrost drain is blocked.
If your refrigerator’s defrost drain is blocked due to particles and ice, one of the indicators you can see is a water leak under your fridge. This is because the water will overflow and drip under the appliance instead of going in the designated drain pan.
How to fix the issue: Some refrigerator brands have their tubes located in a different place so it is important to read your user manual before attempting to fix your fridge. You can unclog your defrost drain by removing the top of the outlet and pouring warm water inside to flush it. Some people may also use warm soapy water to remove bacteria if needed.
Reason Number 5: Faulty drain pan
The main purpose of a drain pan is to collect water so that it will not accumulate inside the fridge, especially during defrosting. On occasion, there are times when the drain pan is not positioned properly or may need to be replaced or readjusted so that it will not leak under the refrigerator.
How to fix the issue: You will need to examine your drain pan for cracks and adjust its position. If there are holes and damage, you should ask your manufacturer where you can get replacement parts.
Reason Number 6: Water Valve or Pipe Failure
To check the water valves and pipes of your fridge, you need to unplug it first. If you see wet joints, spots, and water in the pipes or places where it shouldn’t be, that would mean there is a malfunctioning valve or part.
How to fix the issue: You will need to inspect for unsecured lines, leaks, and dents in your pipe. As this process is extensive and the chance of electric shock is high, you may need to call a technician.
Reason Number 7: Door Seal Failure
The rubber gasket seals in your refrigerator door may be old and torn. If you see a puddle of water under your fridge and notice that the refrigerator door is not closing properly, it may be time to have your seals replaced.
How to fix the issue: Examine your refrigerator. If the door is not closing properly and there are moist areas and molds present in the gasket, it is time to replace it. You may ask your manufacturer where you can get replacement parts or search on their website.
When should you call a repairman?
Now that you may know the reason why your refrigerator is leaking, you may be tempted to try and fix it yourself. For small issues, repair, and maintenance, you can do it yourself if you want. Just make sure to read the user manual properly before attempting so that you can avoid giving your appliance more damage and causing yourself some injury.
For more serious issues and repairs needed, it is probably the best time to call a technician or a refrigerator specialist. Your health and safety are more important than saving money.