Do you have an ice maker that is capable of dispensing ice and multiple shapes and sizes? If so, you may be relying on your ice maker to dispense crushed ice. It can be frustrating when the ice maker is not dispensing crushed ice as it should. Fortunately, you can solve this by taking a look at a few possible steps. 

If you want to make sure your ice maker is dispensing crushed ice, you should make sure crushed ice is selected. Check to make sure the ice isn’t clumping together, and then see if the ice bin needs to be cleaned. There is also a chance the ice dispenser chute could be clogged. 

Do you want to learn how to address this problem permanently? If so, take a look below, and make sure your crushed ice maker is behaving as it should. What should you do?

How Does a Refrigerator Crush Ice?

Before getting into why the ice maker is not behaving as it should, it is important to understand how a refrigerator crushes ice. There’s a valve that controls the flow of water from the water supply to the freezer. The water valve is responsible for filling the ice molds with water. Then, because the temperature in the freezer is cold enough, the ice molds create ice cubes.

After creating ice cubes, there is a crushing mechanism, such as an augur, that is responsible for crushing the ice cubes. Finally, when you select the crushed ice button, crushed ice is supposed to flow out of the chute into the glass. 

If you’re frustrated because your refrigerator is not producing crushed ice, there are several steps you need to follow to address this problem. Take a look at the list below.

Why The Refrigerator Is Not Dispensing Crushed Ice: Steps To Follow

There are several steps you need to check to figure out why your refrigerator is not dispensing crushed ice. These include: 

1. Check the Selection

Even though this may seem obvious, there are a lot of people who get confused. You need to make sure the freezer has actually been set to dispense crushed ice. If you did not select the right option, then you are not going to get the right type of ice. Even though this is similar to asking, “is the computer plugged in,” you need to rule out the obvious problem before you go any further. 

Ice maker switch
Check that your freezer has got the automatic ice setting selected

2. Look for Signs of Clumping

If you have selected crushed ice and there is still not crushed ice coming out, you need to look for signs of clumping. Take a look at the ice in the storage bin. Sometimes, the ice in this bin will clump together. As a result, you do not have crushed ice coming out.

The ice in the storage bin will come together if it’s been sitting there for a long time. If the ice begins to melt, it sticks to the other pieces that are present. This causes the ice to clump, making it difficult to get out. If you have not dispensed crushed ice in a long time, you may encounter this problem. 

Fortunately, this is a relatively easy problem to address. You need to take a sturdy object and break up the clumping. For example, you may want to use a wooden spoon or spatula. Importantly, you should never use anything sharp to break up the ice clumps. Otherwise, you could go right through the ice and break the ice machine. Stay away from any sharp knives or scissors. 

3. Check the Cleanliness of the Ice Bin

Next, you need to take a closer look at the cleanliness of the ice bin. If the ice bin is not dispensed regularly, you may need to clean it. In general, you should clean this area at least once per month. Over time, ice shavings are going to stick to the inside of the dispenser. As a result, it will not function properly. If you clean the ice bin and remove the ice shavings, you can make sure the crushed ice feature is working properly. How do you do this?

In order to clean the ice bin, the steps you need to follow include:

  • First, you need to remove the ice bin from the freezer. 
  • Then, empty any ice you see into the sink.
  • Finally, you should hand wash, rinse, and dry the ice bin completely. Vinegar is a good cleaning solution for the ice bin. You can mix this with water and a one-to-one solution. Make sure you thoroughly rinse and dry the ice maker before you put it back in the refrigerator. 

After you put the ice maker back together, see if it’ll dispense crushed ice once again. 

4. Make Sure the Ice Bin Is Correctly Installed

As you are dealing with the ice then, you should also make sure it’s been installed correctly. If the ice then has been recently removed and not properly replace, the crushed ice feature might not be behaving properly. Therefore, you may need to remove and replace the ice storage bin. 

Use your fingers to remove the ice storage bin. Then, when you are done cleaning it, place it back in its proper location. You should feel an audible click when the ice maker goes into place. Then, check to see if the ice maker is working properly. You may notice that it begins to dispense crushed ice once again. 

Removing ice tray
Remove the ice tray and ensure it’s replaced correctly

5. Make Sure There Is No Clog in the Ice Bin

After this, you need to turn your attention to the ice chute. There is a possibility it could be clogged. Humidity causes ice to clump together. Ice particles can build up in the dispenser until it becomes completely blocked. You need to clean the delivery chute to try to prevent this issue from happening. Use a warm, damp cloth to remove any clogged ice from the dispenser. Then, make sure it has dried completely. After this, you can test the dispenser again. Make sure it is working appropriately. 

6. Take a Closer Look at the Motor

Finally, if you have done all of this and your refrigerator is still having a difficult time dispensing crushed ice, then there may be a problem with the motor. There is a motor that is responsible for powering the project mechanism. Eventually, the motor may burn out. If you find that the motor is not working properly, you may need to replace it. You also need to get a quote on the cost of repairing it. This will help you figure out if it is worth fixing. 

You should take a closer look at these steps to figure out why the ice maker isn’t dispensing ice properly. Then, it is important to make sure this problem does not happen again. What do you need to do?

Preventing the Crushed Ice Maker from Malfunctioning

After you have fixed the problem, it is important to make sure it does not happen again. There are several important tips you should follow to make sure your ice maker works appropriately. These include:

  • Monitor the Temperature: You need to keep a close eye on the temperature in the freezer. The temperature has to be at the appropriate setting in order for your freezer to make ice. If you find that your refrigerator is not dispensing ice at all, there is a possibility the temperature might be too hot. Consider lowering the temperature by approximately three degrees. See if that fixes the issue. 
  • Clean the Ice Maker Regularly: You also need to make sure you clean the ice maker regularly. From time to time, the ice maker is going to get dirty. Old food particles could contaminate the ice. Ice shavings could end up blocking the dispenser. This is a common reason why the ice maker is not working properly. Clean the ice maker from time to time to prevent this from happening. Water, vinegar, and a damp cloth are all that you need. 
  • Use the Ice Maker: Furthermore, you need to use the ice maker regularly. If you don’t use the ice maker, the ice that is present is going to stick together. This can lead to a clog, preventing the ice maker from working properly. 
  • Check the Humidity Level: Finally, you also need to keep an eye on the humidity level. If the humidity level gets too high, the ice will start to melt. Then, when it refreezes, it will stick together. This will prevent crushed ice from coming out of the chute. You can prevent this problem from happening by keeping a close eye on your humidity level. 

These are a few of the most important steps you need to take to prevent your ice maker from malfunctioning. Keep in mind that nothing is going to last forever. There may come a time when you need to replace the refrigerator entirely. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Crushed Ice Makers

A few common questions people ask about crushed ice makers include: 

How often do I need to clean the ice maker?

You should clean the ice maker at least once a month. You may even want to clean it every two weeks. 

Why isn’t my ice maker dispensing any ice? 

Your ice maker might not be dispensing any ice because the chute is clogged. Make sure there are not any ice shavings blocking the exit.

Why does my crushed ice taste funny? 

Your crushed ice might taste funny because you did not run it after cleaning it. If you use lemon juice or vinegar to clean your ice maker, this may end up in your first few ice cubes. Dump out some ice before you start adding it to your drinks.

Take Care of Your Crushed Ice Maker

These are a few of the most common reasons why your crushed ice maker might not be behaving appropriately. It’s important for you to clean your ice maker from time to time. This can go a long way toward preventing problems from happening. If you take care of your crushed ice maker, it should work for many years before it burns out. 

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Have a great day!

-Craig