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        Water line for fridge Sign In/Join 
        posted
        Hi,
        We just had our kitchen remodeled. The workers installed a new water line to our brand new Whirlpool fridge, for the ice maker and water in the door. They used a plastic tube down to a saddle valve hooked on the pipe connected to the water heater. The laundry room and water heater
        are directly under the kitchen, in an unfinished portion of the basement. The water pressure is very low, so much so I'm not sure we'd bother using the water on the door, which is silly, it's a brand new fridge, brand new remodeled kitchen. I've read online saddle valves are not the best, nor are plastic tubes. Would installing a t-valve instead with threaded steel or copper line to fridge likely help the water pressure?
        Thanks.
         
        Posts: 5 | Location: Rockville, MD | Registered: Mar 01, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Frodo
        posted Hide Post
        get rid of the plastic tubing and the saddle valve
        cut in a tee on the cold water piping at your water heater. install a 1/2 x 3/8 compression valve [same valve under your sink or behind your comode]
        how far is the heater to the fridge?
        install a copper tubing 3/8 line up to fridge


        https://www.youtube.com/*****?v=vn7bkncf1_E
         
        Posts: 3849 | Location: I live in southern mississippi | Registered: Jun 01, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Not a fan of the saddle valves either, but it may be a case of the saddle valve not being fully open.
        Here we have a plumbed connection behind the fridge with a shut off valve. There is a box in the wall specially for this connection. The connection from the valve to the fridge is a reinforced flexible plastic hose.

        It certainly can be done as Frodo mentions, you need to leave a large loop behind the fridge so you can pull it out to make the connections.


        General Disclaimer

        Any advice given here is general in nature and is not necessarily valid for your given area. If in doubt check with your local codes enforcement department for what is required when doing electrical, plumbing or structural work on your house. Permits may or may not be required in your area and home owners may not be able to DIY some tasks. I have no way of knowing if you have the skills needed to complete the tasks you are asking about, when in doubt seek professional assistance.

        My advice may be worth exactly what you pay me for it. :-) For the record I did not stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night.
         
        Posts: 742 | Location: Cary, NC | Registered: Aug 17, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Thanks very much. The water heater is directly under the fridge, so only a few feet. The contractor said he'd come back early next week and fix it. Should I insist on a t-valve or let the saddle clamp stay if the water pressure improves?
         
        Posts: 5 | Location: Rockville, MD | Registered: Mar 01, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        I doubt they'd do a better connection without applying pressure to the store manager. In my town to do it technically I'd need to pull a permit because it would involve cutting into the cold water supply line. If you want to try I'd reach out to the store where you bought the appliances. The installer may not be an employee of the store.

        To check the saddle valve all you need to do is twist the handle to see if it will open further.


        General Disclaimer

        Any advice given here is general in nature and is not necessarily valid for your given area. If in doubt check with your local codes enforcement department for what is required when doing electrical, plumbing or structural work on your house. Permits may or may not be required in your area and home owners may not be able to DIY some tasks. I have no way of knowing if you have the skills needed to complete the tasks you are asking about, when in doubt seek professional assistance.

        My advice may be worth exactly what you pay me for it. :-) For the record I did not stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night.
         
        Posts: 742 | Location: Cary, NC | Registered: Aug 17, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of CommonwealthSparky
        posted Hide Post
        While I'm not a big fan of plastic tubing, a look inside of most iceboxes will reveal a coil of plastic for cooling the water. And the same type most supply kits contain. Copper, a much better option, is a bear to work with when we are talking about 3/8" soft.
        And yes other setup are available when talking about saddle valves, which are a poor option, but sadly installed by most. I do like Frodo's setup idea for the supply tee.

        This message has been edited. Last edited by: CommonwealthSparky,


        Popeye only reached for the Spinach can as a last resort...
         
        Posts: 1450 | Location: Central Pennsylvania | Registered: Jun 02, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        My contractor wrote again saying his guys says there's nothing wrong with the pressure from the line, check the water filter. Did that, no change. I'm getting 2-3 ounces in 5 seconds, 30-35 seconds to fill a pint glass. That's gotta be too low.
         
        Posts: 5 | Location: Rockville, MD | Registered: Mar 01, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        There are different ways to install the supply for the ice maker. I prefer to use the little boxes with a shut off valve behind the refrig, and then use a flexible braided line to the refrig.

        But using what you have existing -- if it were me I would disconnect the water line where it connects with the refrig (turning off the water first). Then I'd grab a 5 gallon bucket, point the supply line inside the bucket, and turn the water on and see if I have good pressure up to the refrig. If you have good pressure, then the problem is the refrig.

        I wonder if they flushed the line before they connected it to the refrig? Don't ask them, they'll probably just say 'yes' (it's the answer they know to say automatically). But maybe debris has plugged the line or the refrig line.

        This message has been edited. Last edited by: Re-mdlr,
         
        Posts: 961 | Location: No. California | Registered: Mar 24, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Thanks for that tip! Just a trickle into bucket. It's not the fridge. Now is it the saddle valve and plastic tubing, or water pressure issue in my plumbing? We have no water pressure issues anywhere in house, except cold water faucet on laundry tub. Hmm.
         
        Posts: 5 | Location: Rockville, MD | Registered: Mar 01, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        But your contractor said there is nothing wrong with the pressure from the line. I'd get in touch with him and see what he has to say now.

        If you have galvy pipe for a water supply in that area, those pipes are known to have mineral buildup on the inside of the pipe to the point that they will close and allow just a trickle through. Did they connect into a good pipe with good pressure, or a pipe with problems??

        Sounds to me like they need to take a look at it.

        And the reason I grab a 5 gallon bucket is because there should be enough water pressure coming out that it causes lots of splashing.

        So until you get it solved, you might want to leave off the supply line, and shut off the ice maker or lift the arm so the ice maker doesn't work.

        This message has been edited. Last edited by: Re-mdlr,
         
        Posts: 961 | Location: No. California | Registered: Mar 24, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Jaybee
        posted Hide Post
        Just call them back and have them install a proper valve like they should have done to begin with. Saddle valves are crap and no pro should install one. Even if they work at first, the opening is so small that any calcium in the line will clog it up over time.

        While there is nothing really wrong with the plastic tubing, there are lots better options. I prefer a 1/4' braided steel line - you can get them in different lengths up to 20' long. Easy to install, reliable and will never kink.

        Frodo is a plumber, put in a real valve like he says and a better supply line and it will work fine. Your guy didn't really do anything 'wrong' just took the cheapest and easiest way out. Even if you have to pay him a little extra for the better materials (maybe $20 tops) it will be worth it.


        Jaybee
         
        Posts: 10343 | Location: Knoxville, Tennessee | Registered: Sep 27, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Frodo
        posted Hide Post
        if your worried about pressure to your icemaker/water
        first..replace the filter
        then fill a gallon jug of water and time it
        not a guess but an actual timed event. look on your filter for gpm it should tell you the max gpm its allowing thru the filter
        if its the same your ok. if its way off you got a problem
        to prove its the piping instead of the fridge
        disconnect the water line and fill a gallon jug from the plastic tubing. timing the fill up


        https://www.youtube.com/*****?v=vn7bkncf1_E
         
        Posts: 3849 | Location: I live in southern mississippi | Registered: Jun 01, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of CommonwealthSparky
        posted Hide Post
        quote:
        Originally posted by Ollignas:
        Thanks for that tip! Just a trickle into bucket. It's not the fridge. Now is it the saddle valve and plastic tubing, or water pressure issue in my plumbing? We have no water pressure issues anywhere in house, except cold water faucet on laundry tub. Hmm.

        Not a bettin man but I would place a fin on the saddle valve being the culprit. Wink


        Popeye only reached for the Spinach can as a last resort...
         
        Posts: 1450 | Location: Central Pennsylvania | Registered: Jun 02, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Frodo
        posted Hide Post
        yes sir your right
        change out that POS saddle valve!
        if your piping is copper, you can buy a 3/4x3/4x1/2 compression tee [brass] to cut into your water line. it requires no solider its compression
        and a valve that i stated before.


        https://www.youtube.com/*****?v=vn7bkncf1_E
         
        Posts: 3849 | Location: I live in southern mississippi | Registered: Jun 01, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Thanks for all the tips and info. Contractor said it must be the fridge (which is brand new) and that the water pressure was fine out of the line. I took the line out and ran into bucket. Not fine. That was a lie. After a week a half he finally came back and took out the saddle valve and intsalled a t-valve. Good as new, water pressure is great. Phew!
        Thanks all.
         
        Posts: 5 | Location: Rockville, MD | Registered: Mar 01, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Thanks for taking the time to follow up. It is appreciated by those who take time to answer your questions.


        General Disclaimer

        Any advice given here is general in nature and is not necessarily valid for your given area. If in doubt check with your local codes enforcement department for what is required when doing electrical, plumbing or structural work on your house. Permits may or may not be required in your area and home owners may not be able to DIY some tasks. I have no way of knowing if you have the skills needed to complete the tasks you are asking about, when in doubt seek professional assistance.

        My advice may be worth exactly what you pay me for it. :-) For the record I did not stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night.
         
        Posts: 742 | Location: Cary, NC | Registered: Aug 17, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of CommonwealthSparky
        posted Hide Post
        quote:
        Originally posted by Ollignas:
        Thanks for all the tips and info. Contractor said it must be the fridge (which is brand new) and that the water pressure was fine out of the line. I took the line out and ran into bucket. Not fine. That was a lie. After a week a half he finally came back and took out the saddle valve and intsalled a t-valve. Good as new, water pressure is great. Phew!
        Thanks all.

        Big Grin Big Grin Big Grin


        Popeye only reached for the Spinach can as a last resort...
         
        Posts: 1450 | Location: Central Pennsylvania | Registered: Jun 02, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        I never been do this kind of problem,but i notice the first suggestion was a good one.In Espoo most of the problem i been fix are about leakage in gutter and peltikatto or tin roof stuff but never encounter for water line of an refrigerator and good to see first suggestion cause i am thinking it and it can be possible.
         
        Posts: 7 | Location: Philippines | Registered: Aug 12, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Frodo
        posted Hide Post
        where you at in the philipines? manilla or angelies city? bagio? ive been at clark field...beautiful country you have Smile


        https://www.youtube.com/*****?v=vn7bkncf1_E
         
        Posts: 3849 | Location: I live in southern mississippi | Registered: Jun 01, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        saddle valves plain (hoover.) I considered one for our new fridge, and then, since we were redoing the basement, ran a half-inch hardline up into the wall, drop ell to a screwed-in brace inside the wall, and a real shutoff valve tipped to 3/8 compression.

        that sucker will never leak, corrode shut, or become inoperative. it's a lifetime install. and it didn't take much longer to do.


        sig: if this is a new economy, how come they still want my old-fashioned money?
         
        Posts: 5769 | Location: North Burbs, MN | Registered: Mar 14, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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