What to Do if Water Is Leaking Behind or Under Your Refrigerator

If you have a water dispenser or ice maker, there's a water hook-up to your refrigerator. Unfortunately, these plumbing hook-ups can sometimes leak and make a big mess for you and your kitchen. If you've noticed that there's water pooling under your fridge, here's what you need to do to get it fixed safely.

Shut Off Water

The first thing you should do is immediately shut off the water main and the power to your home. Your refrigerator is one giant electric appliance, and it's not intended to be wet. While you might have to throw out what's in your fridge, it's a far cry better than risking electrocution.

If you don't know how to shut off your water main or the power to your home, keep your distance from the kitchen and skip straight to the third step.

Clean the Area

If you were successful in shutting off the water and electricity, then you can start cleaning up the mess. Just mop up what you can; the goal here is to make it safe for you and a plumber to walk around. If necessary, throw down some towels to sop up the excess and to provide a safe place to walk.

Call a Plumber

Now, the final step. For a problem like this, you need a plumber. Not only is it difficult to pull out a refrigerator, but you'll need specialized equipment that your plumber will be able to get ahold of more easily than you.

When your plumber arrives, they'll pull out your fridge and take a look at the problem. More likely than not it's an issue with the water hook-up; the pipe may have come loose, become damaged, or there could be an issue with the connection to the fridge itself. 

Depending on the make and model of your refrigerator, your plumber may be able to fix the problem right away or they may need to order parts. If the latter is the case, your plumber will unplug your refrigerator and shut off the water so that you can go back to using your kitchen (sans fridge) while waiting for the replacement.

Once they get ahold of a replacement pipe, they'll hook everything up to your refrigerator, turn the power back on, and you should be back in business!

Having a problem with your fridge isn't something anyone wants to go through, let alone having a water leak. But if it happens to you, these tips can get you through until a plumber can help you out.