As long as it’s keeping your food cold, you shouldn’t ever have an expensive refrigerator-related repair on your hands, right? Wrong! If you have a refrigerator leaking water all over your kitchen floor, that can not only lead to an appliance service call, but also a major flooring repair. That’s why you need to take action right away when you notice even the smallest leak.

Why Is Your Refrigerator Leaking Water?

Since most refrigerators have auto-defrosting and dispenser options, there are several different parts that can fail and create a leak. Here’s what you should look for when you notice your refrigerator leaking water:


fridge leaking

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1 – Defrost Drain

What it is: Most modern refrigerators have automatic self-defrosting freezers which thaw the ice that builds up and drains it as needed. If your refrigerator is leaking from the lower part of the freezer or fresh food door, the defrost drain may be blocked.

How it fails: Over time, these drain lines can become clogged with food and debris, or can even freeze up completely. The water generated from the auto-defrost will have nowhere to go, and will eventually overflow and leak onto the kitchen floor.

How to diagnose it: Unplug your refrigerator and check the owner’s manual for the location of the defrost drain. If you find the tube is frozen, defrost it and run warm water through it to flush out any excess ice or debris.


how do i stop my refrigerator leaking water

Image from Repair Clinic

2 – Defrost Drain Pan

What it is: If you’re still asking, “How do I stop my refrigerator leaking water?” then you should inspect your defrost drain pan. It’s what collects the water that melts away from your evaporator coils.

How it fails: If you see your refrigerator leaking from underneath or behind the appliance, your unit may not be level, or your drain pan may be cracked. Either scenario can lead to leaks or spills.

How to diagnose it: Use a carpenter’s level to verify that the unit is standing level. Next, thoroughly inspect the drain pan for cracks or tears, and make sure it’s positioned properly as well.


leaking refrigerator

Image from Metro 360


3 – Water Inlet Valve

What it is: For your refrigerator to produce ice and dispense water, it has to come from somewhere! The inlet valve makes these things possible by bringing water from your home’s plumbing into the refrigerator.

How it fails: Leaks can occur in and around the water inlet valve if it gets cracked, or if the fittings are loose or improperly secured.

How to diagnose it: Locate the inlet valve and give it a careful visual inspection. Look for cracks in the solenoid or water dripping from the fitting. Resecure the fitting to be safe, and if the valve itself is in good shape, that should take care of the problem.


refrigerator inlet valve

Image from Repair Clinic


A refrigerator leaking water can be tough to diagnose yourself in some cases, so just call the professional refrigerator repair experts at D & T Appliance Service Company instead!