• Washer
  • Dryer
  • Range
  • Microwave
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Refrigerator
  • Oven

Service Hero Tips

If you’re one of those do-it-yourself weekend warriors, sometimes you just need a little help to figure it out. Hey, if we can help you fix your own stuff – or keep it running better – with just a few tips, that’s awesome. Go for it. The world needs more heroes.

But if it’s REALLY broken, don’t be afraid to call in the Omega Force Service Hero. There’s no shame in that, really

Tip 4 - Poor Refrigerator Water pressure?
 

I commonly get calls with a complaint that the water coming from the water dispenser is slow. The nice folks have installed a new water filter and the water pressure is not as good as it was when the fridge was brand new.

In almost every case the refrigerator is not plumbed properly. I think every refrigerator owners manual tells you not to use “self-piercing” water valves when hooking up the fridge. Even if your manual does not say it, take my word for it and plumb the fridge differentSelf piercingly. These type of water valves are extremely convenient and easy to install. A homeowner can get water going to the fridge quickly and cheaply by themselves. The only problem is that they will eventually fail and cause you problems. When you install them they puncture a pencil point hole into a copper pipe. With time that hole gets covered with impurities from the water such as calcium, lime, or other water debris. The hole gets smaller and eventually I get called to the house. If you purchase an icemaker installation kit from Home Depot, Menard’s or any other store I will almost guarantee you it came with a self piercing valve. These valves are not up to code in many states however in my home state of MN they can still be installed. As a warning, I have seen lots of refrigerators where customers have paid a “professional” to have the water hooked up to their fridge and the “professional” installed one of these valves.

14 hole valve

Notice the 1/4″ hole on this one instead of the sharp point.

The solution is cheap, effective and relatively easy for a home owner. Menard’s (Not sure of other stores) sells a valve for $7 that looks almost identical to the self piercing valve. When they are installed on a pipe you can’t tell the difference. The better valve requires you to turn off the water in the house and drain the pipes. Remove the old self piercing valve. Drill a 1/4″ hole where the pencil point hole from the self piercing valve was and the new valve will install and seal the new hole. The difference is going from a pencil point hole to a 1/4″ hole which allows far greater water flow. The waterline going to your fridge is a 1/4″ copper or plastic tube, you need a 1/4″ hole at the bare minimum.

Tip-If you don’t have time, money or expertise to change the valve, you can turn the self piercing valve off by screwing the stem in and this will push the water debris out of the way and open up the little hole again. Unscrew the stem to turn the water back on and you will have slightly better water flow. Caution-These valves are cheap and the valve may start leaking when you mess with it.

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