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Old 10-30-2019, 09:38 AM   #1
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Winterize Whirlpool Res Fridge Ice Maker

Looking for suggestions on how to winterize my Whirlpool fridge ice maker. I can't find any water shutoff, and, there is no access to the rear of the fridge short of un-bolting the bottom mounting brackets and pulling the fridge out. I wouldn't mind this step if the fridge was on the floor like in a house, but it sits on a raised platform. With my first rig I had a Dometic RV fridge with ice maker and had no problem winterizing it from the outside access panel and removing the ice maker cover and manually cycling it through as outlined in the Dometic owners manual.

All I can think of with the Whirlpool is to attach the siphon hose back onto the water pump, make sure all faucets etc. are off and turn on the pump and hope the ice maker picks up the antifreeze and cycles it through.
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Old 10-30-2019, 03:11 PM   #2
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this topic seems to be coming up frequently. i can't give specifics for your model refrigerator but there are several techniques that can be used depending upon whether you have access to electricity or not.

first, if you have a water filter in the refrigerator remove it. it will filter out the antifreeze coloring making it hard to tell when you are getting antifreeze. some refrigerators require either a dummy filter canister or a bypass plug to allow the water to flow without a real filter in place.

if you have an in door water dispenser just treat it like any other faucet. open it until antifreeze is flowing out of it.

now you will need electricity in order to operate the ice maker fill valve. if you have it continuously leave a jug of antifreeze and just run the ice maker for several cycles until you see the pink antifeeze coming out. this may take many hours.

many ice makers have a switch or jumper terminals on them that will allow you to press the switch or use a short piece of wire to jump the terminals in order to manually force the ice maker to do an ice cycle. during this cycle it will open the ice maker valve. do this a few times until you see the antifreeze coming out. there are videos on youtube of how to do this.

if you have an operator control panel on the door of the refrigerator you may be able to manually operate the ice maker valve from it. we have a frigidaire and i was able to find a wiring diagrams and service diagnostics sheet on line at there web site. this is info that is not in the operator manual. one of the diagnostics test that you can perform from the control panel is to open the ice maker valve. again do this a few time until you have antifreeze coming out.

i know this is not model specific to your model but i still hope it helps!
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Old 10-31-2019, 08:30 AM   #3
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CHICKDOE thanks for the info. I did try a "search" first on this forum before I posted my question but the option that seems to fit my Whirlpool is the one with siphoning more pink stuff and hoping the ice maker picks it up.

My fridge is a two-door top freezer 18-20 cube residential fridge with no water filter. There is zero access to the back of the fridge other than removal as I stated. Also compounding the issue is when I removed the cover of the ice maker, thinking there was a manual way to cycle the ice maker I found a large sticker stating "Do Not Manually Force the Ice Maker Cycle". Again as I mentioned, this was different than the Dometic Ice Maker in my 2000 Tiffin that told you to put a flat screwdriver in the cycle gear and advance the cycle a couple of times.
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:05 AM   #4
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i know what you mean about not being able to get to the rear of the refrigerator! you might want to call whirlpool support and see if they have any info, but don't expect much. if you can get the model number of the ice maker there might be some information about it online. many ice makers have a couple of electrical terminals that you can manually jump with a short piece of wire to make the ice maker cycle. this is not manually cycling it as you are using the built in electronics to cycle it. look on you tube as there are many videos on how to do this. others on the forum have posted information on how to do this. but get the info on you ice maker to verify that it has this capability and where the jumper terminals are.
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Old 10-31-2019, 09:56 AM   #5
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I don't run the pink stuff through my rig anymore. I simply hook up an air line to my city water and blow the water out the through door water fill. Once I'm getting all air, I let the ice makers cycle a time or two, then call it a day. With most of the water removed through the water fill, the lines to the ice makers (I have 2) only hold a couple of cubes worth of water.
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Old 10-31-2019, 10:08 AM   #6
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I do blow out my lines first and then siphon usually less than a gallon of antifreeze back in to get areas such as the water pump, toilet valve, and ice maker that even the smallest amount of water can ruin the valves. In my 13th year doing this and the only time I ever experienced a problem was my second year, 3rd camping season, the toilet water valve was shot. Never a problem with the Dometic absorption fridge and ice maker.
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Old 10-31-2019, 10:21 AM   #7
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I have a bit more air than most (100+ cfm @125psi) and can leave my lines open for extended periods (and no, I don't run that much pressure through lines). I also have Blue Streak on both toilets and add a little antifreeze to the tank which siphons into the toilet.
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Old 10-31-2019, 12:35 PM   #8
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I use 40 psi air from my compressor to blow out the ice maker while it runs through a fill cycle or two.

Washing machine gets the same treatment, followed by a spin cycle to pump water out of drum, then dump in a pint or two of RV antifreeze to protect pump if its not completely empty since it has to pump up-hill to the drain.

Has not failed me yet.

Most important thing is to not have any water trapped in any valve, pump, or strainer.

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Old 10-31-2019, 02:04 PM   #9
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Fleck, Exactly!
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Old 11-01-2019, 08:41 AM   #10
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Success! I finally got around to YouTubing my question. The first video that came up, one minute and seventeen seconds worth shows my exact ice maker. As ChickDoe stated the video showed the "jumper" connection on the front of the ice maker to cycle it. Within seconds out poured the pink anti-freeze from the waterline. All told including watching the video, cut a piece of old extension cord wire and striping the ends to jumping the ice maker, less than ten minutes. Thanks to all who offered suggestions of help!
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Old 11-01-2019, 08:58 AM   #11
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super! i'm glad it worked out for you! obviously we don't get the same level of cold as you do but it has dipped below freezing here the last few nights. i've blown our lines out with air as we will be taking a trip starting this weekend but we'll end up doing the antifreeze thing when we but it to bed for the winter.
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