My refrigerator leaks a puddle of water on the floor. This water leak issue is intermittent and does not happen all the time. The water puddle is about 5 inches in diameter. Most of the time the water puddle is underneath the fridge and closer to the front door. When the fridge leaks a small puddle like this, does that signify a specific issue?
If your refrigerator leaks water intermittently, the issue may be from high humidity or leaving the refrigerator door open for long periods of time. A clogged defrost drain tube causes the water to overflow and leak out of the bottom of the refrigerator.
Read all the information below to understand what can cause your refrigerator to leak water… Have water under the drawers in the fridge? Water found under the refrigerator drawers
4 Common Causes Why A Refrigerator Leaks Water…
1. Refrigerator door was left open an excessive amount of time.
2. High humidity weather causes excessive moisture.
3. Defrost drain tube is clogged and overflowing.
4. Water line or inlet valve leak at back of refrigerator.
Safety Notice: Remove the power supply to the refrigerator before any maintenance.
1. Refrigerator Door Left Open
If the refrigerator door was left open for a long period of time, the refrigerator slowly builds up water due to the warmer air coming in. This can overwhelm the evaporator system and leaks can occur.
Solution: Do not leave fridge door open for long periods.
(If your modern refrigerator has an alarm that signals when the door is open for excessive periods, turn it on using the control panel.)
2. High Humidity Weather
Excess water in the air can accumulate with the existing water in the fridge and cause a leak. Water leaking out of the refrigerator is a common issue on excessively humid days.
Solution: Clean out the drain pan to assist with heat transfer so the water evaporates faster. This speeds up the evaporation and will lessen or eliminate the water leaking problem.
3. Defrost Drain Tube Clogged/Frozen
Modern refrigerators equipped with automatic defrost systems use a drain tube that allows water to flow to the drain pan underneath the fridge. Once the water is in the drain pan it evaporates back into the air. The drained water gets help evaporating by sitting on top of the hot compressor motor. This helps to heat the water and speeds up the evaporation process. If the refrigerator drain tube becomes clogged or blocked the water has nowhere to go but to overflow and cause a water leak.
Solution: Locate the drain hole at the inside back of your refrigerator. (Usually located on the back wall of the freezer) Clean out the drain hole using a turkey baster filled with hot water. Once the drain hole is clear and free of any blockages you will hear water flowing down and into the drain pan.
We recommend clearing out the drain hole every 6 months to prevent further water leaks.
(One some refrigerators a screw needs to be removed to get to the defrost drain hole. A plastic panel is held in place by a screw. Remove the screw and the panel and the defrost drain hole will be accessible.)
How to Unclog a Refrigerator Drain Line
4. Water Line/Water Inlet Valve Leak
The water line that connects to the back of the refrigerator may be damaged or loose and cause water leaks. The water inlet valve where the water line connects into at the back of the refrigerator may also have a slight leak that causes a puddle of water.
Solution: Unplug fridge from power and slide it out from the wall. Be careful not to pull out the water line when sliding out the refrigerator. Use a flashlight and check if the waterline or water valve has any leaks. If any leaks are found, either tighten up the leaking area or remove and replace parts or components as needed.
Can’t Find The Refrigerator Water Leak? If you suspect the components near the back of the fridge are leaking but do not see an obvious water leak, put some paper towels down underneath the components and wait a few minutes to see if any leaks appear. If the issue is a very slow water leak, you may need to give it an extended time frame to find where the leak is located. Once you identify the leak, repair or replace the component that is leaking. Continue testing for leaks to ensure the refrigerator leaks are repaired.
NOTE: These refrigerator leak repair methods will work with all models of refrigerators including GE, Whirlpool, Samsung, LG, Haier, Kenmore, Hotpoint, Sharp, Bosch, KitchenAid, Frigidaire, Toshiba, Panasonic and more.
If you have questions fixing your refrigerator leak, please leave your question or issue below and we will get back to you with professional repair assistance.
Allen is the author and creator of this website. He has years of experience with appliance repair, commercial food machinery maintenance, electrical, HVAC, plumbing, vehicle maintenance, and critical aviation related systems.