If you have a modern Bosch fridge with a water dispenser, you know how convenient it can be (especially if your fridge also comes with an ice maker). To be able to get a glass of ice water directly from your fridge is certainly a bit faster than getting one the normal way. However, it can be a pretty big pain if your water dispenser stops working.
There are several reasons as to why this might happen. The water dispenser may be unable to receive water, or there could be a problem with the fridge’s water inlet valve. It could also be an issue with one of the fridge’s switches, the water filter, or the dispenser control board.
Today, we’ll be going over all of the problems that can affect your fridge’s water dispenser, and explain how you can deal with them.
Bosch Refrigerator Water Dispenser Troubleshooting
Faulty Water Inlet Valve
This is one of the most common problems that can affect your fridge’s water dispenser, so you should check this first before examining your fridge’s other parts. As the name implies, the water inlet valve is what actually lets water into your fridge; it opens automatically when the water dispenser or ice maker needs some more water.
However, if the water inlet valve breaks, then water may be totally unable to get inside your fridge. If you want to test your water inlet valve (which is electronically actuated), you can use a multimeter to test it for continuity. If the valve displays no continuity, have it replaced.
Blocked Water Tube
The water tube is, of course, what connects to your home’s water supply and provides water to your fridge. If this tube becomes blocked, it will cut off the water supply to your dispenser.
The most common cause of a water tube blockage is a buildup of ice inside it. This can happen if you’ve set your freezer temperature too cold; since the water tube supplies ice to the ice maker, it has to be in fairly close proximity to the freezer.
To check if your water tubes are frozen, disconnect one end of the tube and try blowing into it. If you can’t get any air through it, there’s probably ice trapped inside. Make sure the tube is thawed out before reinstalling it, and also consider raising the temperature of your freezer by a little bit.
Not enough Water Pressure
There’s also a chance that the problem doesn’t have anything to do with your fridge, but rather with your home’s water supply. Your water inlet valve requires 20 psi of water pressure in order to work properly, and if the pressure is too low then the valve will fail to open.
There are a couple of reasons why your home’s water pressure might be a bit too low. If it’s only your fridge that is experiencing low water pressure, you probably have a leaky pipe somewhere in your house that needs to be fixed. If your whole house is experiencing low water pressure, however, this is probably an issue that your municipal government should be dealing with.
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Broken Dispenser/Door Switch
There are two switches in your fridge that can affect your water dispenser: the dispenser switch and the door switch. The dispenser switch is, of course, the switch for the dispenser itself; if it fails, then the dispenser will obviously be unable to turn on.
The door switch automatically shuts off the water dispenser when the fridge door is opened. Not every fridge has this feature, but some certainly do. If this switch fails, it might prevent you from using your water dispenser even if the door is closed.
To test these switches, you can once again use a multimeter to check them for continuity, and if they have none, replace them.
Clogged Water Filter
If your fridge has a water dispenser, then it undoubtedly comes with a water filter. The purpose of this filter is to remove any harmful or foul-tasting substances from your water, like heavy minerals or lead. However, if the water filter gets clogged up with stuff, it can restrict the flow of water through it and cause your water dispenser to not work very well.
Fortunately, you can solve this problem by just changing your water filter. You should try and change your water filter at least every six months to keep your fridge running well.
Faulty Dispenser Control Board
The dispenser control board is a circuit board that controls the functions of the water dispenser. It’s not very common for the dispenser control board to fail, but it can happen on occasion.
Since this is the least common cause of this issue, you should check the other components of your water dispenser first before checking the control board. If you’ve determined that none of the other parts are at fault, replace the control board and see if that helps.
Let’s go over some of the questions that you might have about using your Bosch fridge’s water dispenser.
How Safe Is Water from a Fridge Dispenser?
Unfortunately, the fact of the matter is that drinking from a fridge water dispenser is generally less safe than just drinking water from the tap. While it’s true that the filter in your fridge can get rid of some stuff that might not be good for you, it’s also the perfect place for harmful bacteria to breed, especially if you neglect to change it regularly.
Bacteria and mold can also accumulate in the dispenser itself, which is located after the filter. Therefore, it’s important that you not only change your water filter often, but that you properly clean the dispenser itself too.
What If You Never Change Your Water Filter?
If you never change your water filter, you’ll find that the quality of your drinking water will suffer. A dirty filter will fail to get rid of all the gross crap that passes through it, so you’ll likely find that your water tastes kind of gross.
In addition, if you fail to change your fridge’s water filter, this can cause mineral deposits and scale to build up inside your fridge’s water tubes. At best, this can restrict the flow of water through your fridge and make it a lot harder to use your water/ice dispensers; at worst, this can cause serious damage to your fridge.
How Can You Tell if It’s Time to Change Your Water Filter?
As we’ve mentioned, you should be changing your fridge’s water filter at least every six months regardless. However, you might need to change it more often if necessary. So how can you tell if your water filter isn’t doing its job?
There are a few signs that your water filter is gunked up and should be replaced. The first and most obvious signs are that the water and ice produced by your fridge smell and taste bad. This is of course caused by the presence of minerals, bacteria, and other stuff that gets trapped in your filter over time.
You should also change your water filter if the pressure from your water dispenser is unusually low, or if the ice maker is taking longer than normal to produce ice. This can happen when your water filter gets dirty to the point that the flow of water through it is restricted.
Do I Need to Have a Water Filter in My Fridge?
This depends on what kind of fridge you have. Some fridges can indeed function without a water filter installed and without any extra steps; in this case, the water supply just goes straight to the water dispenser and ice maker. On the other hand, some fridges can work without a filter but need a special bypass plug in order to do so.
If your fridge has a place to install a water filter, however, we would highly recommend that you do so. Not only will this improve the taste of your water, but it will help your fridge last a bit longer too. That being said, if the quality of the tap water in your area is high, having a water filter might not be totally necessary.