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Thread: How to shut off valve - disconnect Fridge water line

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member gfob's Avatar
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    Default How to shut off valve - disconnect Fridge water line

    Please excuse my beginner level question but I am trying to save myself $125 to have a "Sears technician" come and disconnect my refrigerator's water line for me.

    I found the shutoff valve under the sink, as done by the previous homeowner, but I can't determine whether it's a ball valve or not. It looks like it could be a saddle valve as well.

    I assume once I figure out how to shut off the water via the valve I can then simply disconnect the wiring harness and water line from back of the fridge.

    Any help for this new DIY'er would be greatly appreciated!

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  2. #2
    DIY Senior Member DougB's Avatar
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    That is a 1/4 turn shut off valve. When 'open' the handle will be aligned with the tubing. Right now it looks 'closed' - perpendicular to the tubing.
    If a hammer won't fix it, it's an electrical problem.

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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    There will be some water in the line so be prepared for some to leak out when you disconnect it at the frig. You might want to open the valve to relieve any pressure first in the frig's door.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    DIY Junior Member PossessedFridge's Avatar
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    I have a thin water line to my fridge with no apparent shut off valve. Previous owner said it is behind the fridge, but it is not. Fridge acts possessed because house has major heating/cooling problems and when it gets hot the freezer portion melts the food. I desperately need a new fridge, however, I am not sure what to do about the waterline. Do I buy another fridge with the same line hook-up, even though I will NEVER use the water (the old plastic line doesn't look sanitary), or are there "stoppers" that can be installed on the end of the line???

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    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    The line is normally a 1/4" OD tube.
    You can pick up a shutoff for that at a hardware store.
    The copper line is the easiest to cap or install a shutoff on. The plastic line will need and insert inside the pipe if it's a compression fitting. They do make a sharkbite type of fitting that just slips over the tubing.
    You will need to locate a shutoff for the home first.

  6. #6
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    If you got a new refrigerator why wouldn't you "ever use the water line"? Wouldn't you want cold water or ice cubes?
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  7. #7
    DIY Junior Member PossessedFridge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    You can pick up a shutoff for that at a hardware store.
    Thank you so much for replying. I do know where the house shut off is, so that's good. I'll try and find a video tutorial to see if I'll be able to do it... Unfortunately I'm not very handy.

    Quote Originally Posted by hj View Post
    If you got a new refrigerator why wouldn't you "ever use the water line"? Wouldn't you want cold water or ice cubes?
    As I stated, I have no idea of knowing the quality of the existing plastic line. It could be 15+ years old and have BPA (as it is semi-clear/translucent). I'd rather use a food-grace silicone ice cube tray w/ Brita. Also, proprietary fridge filters cost a fortune. And $150-200 + HST savings over a fridge that doesn't have water/ice capabilities would be nice, since I don't want to use them, anyway.

  8. #8
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    It would be foolish on your part to disable the ice maker. The connection kits sold by appliance dealers are mostly junk. They use saddle valves to connect to the water supply and plastic tubing. The best connection is made by tapping into the water supply with a tee into a ball valve. You then use fittings to reduce the ball valve size to 1/4" copper tubing which then goes to the kitchen. At that point, you should transition to a flexible line that will allow the refrigerator to be pull out from the wall without damaging the connector. The plastic lines are not unsafe health wise, but can get brittle and break. Copper is far better. Saddle valves are really crap. This installation is not a highly complex job, but you do have to be able to do some basic things. A plumber could do this very quickly.

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