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Ice Maker Troubleshooting-Small Ice-No Ice-Too Much Ice


Ice maker troubleshooting is not nearly as daunting a task as it may seem as long as you methodically approach the problem with patience and logic. Here are some of the most common problems with icemakers and some troubleshooting tips.

Too Much Ice

If the ice machine produces ice in excess, check the shutoff arm first. This part keeps track of the level of ice in the hopper and turns off the ice maker when the bin is full. Look for obstructions that prevent the arm from reaching the off position. You can also check to see if you can move the arm manually to shut off the ice machine. If there’s nothing physically wrong with the shutoff arm, you should look at the shutoff switch or control module.

If your icemaker has a modular unit, you probably can’t access the shutoff switch, so you will have to replace the whole module. If you have an icemaker with a discreet switch, you should be able to access it with test leads to see if it is functioning.

No Ice

If the ice maker is not producing any ice at all, go ahead and check for physical problems with the shutoff arm. You should also make sure there’s nothing wrong with the water supply and the supply line going to the icemaker. Sometimes the line inside can get squeezed so water doesn’t flow. Also, sometimes ice can form in the line, keeping the water out of the ice maker.

Sometimes the icemaker is making ice, but it just isn’t ejecting it. In this case, check for proper operation of the ice maker’s thermostat.
The absence of ice can also mean a physical failure such as worn gears on the ejection mechanism or failure of the warmer on the ice form.

Small Ice Cubes

Ice cubes can come out small when the water pressure is too low. Check to see if you can open the supply valve more. This will increase the pressure. You should also check the freezer temperature for this condition. If it’s not cold enough, the icemaker won’t work properly. If you measure the temperature in the freezer and it’s above eight degrees, you should change the freezer’s setting to make it colder.

Another thing to check is the tap on the icemaker where the water is let in. If this is worn out, it can usually be replaced.

Foreign Matter in the Ice

If you see little dark bits in the ice, this is an indication that the materials inside the ice maker are worn out. When you see this, the cheapest solution is to get a new ice maker.



“GE Icemaker FAQ: frequently asked questions, ice maker faq.” GE Appliances | Top rated Kitchen Appliances, Refrigerator, Water filter, Dishwasher. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Aug. 2010.

“Repairing An Icemaker Water Valve – Popular Mechanics.” Automotive Care, Home Improvement, Tools, DIY Tips – Popular Mechanics. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Aug. 2010.


Expert Opinion

Quote: “A restriction in the water supply could cause the ice cubes to be too small. GE recommends a non-self piercing saddle valve for this reason. Often times the self-piercing style will become restricted very quickly because the opening it pierces in the water line is so small. If a self-piercing saddle valve has been used, turn the saddle valve shut off all the way in and then back out again. The intent is for the saddle valve to pierce the hole again, which could possibly resolve the restriction. This is a plumbing issue not an issue with the icemaker or refrigerator.”


Source: Refrigerator: Ice Cubes Are Too Small   GE Appliances


Quote: “If the ice maker is producing too much ice, verify that the ice level arm is still intact and operating properly. When the ice maker arm is operating properly, it will rotate downward when the ice maker is harvesting the ice.”


Source: . . . Ice Maker Making Too Much Ice


Did You Know?

If your freezer is not at least ¾ full it could affect the ice production of the ice maker.  Ice production is contingent upon freezer temperatures, which may not be consistent in an empty freezer because frozen foods act as an insulator.

Old ice will absorb odors from your refrigerator and freezer causing your ice to taste bad.

If you do not use ice often and it is left to sit in the bin, the pressure from the ice on the top of the bin can cause the ice on the bottom to melt and clump.

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