Why Does My Ice Maker Make A Knocking Sound?

Upgraded Home Team
by Upgraded Home Team
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why does my ice maker make a knocking sound

Refrigerators are a pride and joy in every kitchen. They come in all shapes and sizes, and many have ice makers. Fridges can make all sorts of noises that may sound pretty scary.

One part of the fridge that can make noise is the ice maker. It is not something that is out of the ordinary and should not always be a cause for concern. So, why does my ice maker make a knocking sound, you may begin to wonder?

The ice maker making a knocking sound may be due to the position of the fridge. Other problems may be due to:

  • The heat function is faulty.
  • The compressor may be going out.
  • Issues with the water inlet valve
  • Too large of ice cubes produced
  • The water pump may be blocked.

The Many Sounds of a Fridge

Some possible sounds could be as follows.

  • Clicking
  • Whooshing
  • Popping
  • Dripping
  • Pulsating
  • Rattling
  • Gurgling
  • Sizzling

One sound to be concerned about is the tapping and popping noises that sometimes seem like thumping and shuddering.

It is normal to hear this sound lasting for an hour. However, it’s abnormal to hear from a different room by a person with a hearing disability. Listed below are some of the other noises that may alarm you.

1. Hissing From the Freezer Are of Little Concern

If there is a hissing sound in your freezer, it is most likely your ice maker. The sound is from the freezer, with water shooting through the supply line and into the molds.

2. You May Hear a Crash and Tumble

Crashing and tumbling is one of the most startling sounds you’ll hear from your ice maker. The best way to describe the noise is if a person dumps a ton of gravel from one bucket to another.

Upon the cubes freezing in the molds, the machine drops the ice cubes in a basket below the ice maker. This is so ice does not end up everywhere in the freezer. Everything will echo if the bin is empty as it will amplify the sound, which might be louder throughout the house.

3. Snapping or Clicking Is Also a Familiar Sound

Once the ice dumps into the bin, it automatically begins to fill up with water. It begins to make another batch of ice for the next round.

At the moment the ice machine makes this request from the waterline, a clicking or snapping sound may seem like a problem. This is a normal noise and nothing of concern.

Distinguishing Sources of Noise in the Fridge

The typical culprit of noise in a refrigerator is the machinery circulating coolant throughout the system. This might sound like knocking or thumping. However, if the fridge has been turned off recently, this could be an issue with the compressor.

If the sound happens when the fridge is powering down, then there is reason to be concerned. It is not an urgent problem but should be addressed by a service technician. If there is only slight thumping while the fridge is running, there is no need for immediate concern.

Figuring the Source of the Noises in the Ice Maker

Ice makers are the parts of the fridge that are designed to make ice within the machine. Ice makers can be to blame for noises in the refrigerator. They may make noises that sound like gurgling, clicking, or buzzing.

These noises are perfectly normal and should not be worrisome. However, if there is knocking then, that is a cause for concern. There are specific tips that can help alleviate this noise. If the out-of-character noise does continue, then you should seek the help of a professional technician.

Positioning of the Fridge Causes Knocking

Sometimes the knocking sound can be due to the position of the fridge. It is usual for the appliance to vibrate or hum while being used. If the fridge is sitting on an uneven surface, then there may be a knocking sound.

Additionally, if the refrigerator is too close to walls or cabinets, there is not enough room, and it will start knocking. If you move the fridge away from the wall slightly, then the knocking noise should stop.

The Heating Function Does Not Work Correctly

In some refrigerators, ice is formed and dispensed within the fridge. There is dedicated machinery to this, and it is made possible by the heating function. The fully formed ice is dispensed from the mold with slight warming at the harvesting arm.

If the heating function is not working correctly, the ice cubes will be stuck in the mold itself. It will not be able to drop into the ice collection basket below. This heating unit generally makes a knocking sound like that of a compressor that is in the refrigerator.

However, this noise is usually just for a few seconds. If you find that the knocking sounds continue for longer than a minute, there is a problem.

Knocking to that extent means the heating component is not working correctly. At this point, you should contact a technician to properly and fully address the issue.

Sub-Optimal Functioning of the Compressor

Within the fridge, many essential parts keep our food cold. The compressors are imperative components of any freezing unit, especially the ice maker, as the refrigerant liquid is contained in them. This liquid is what makes it possible for the fridge to stay cool and ice to form.

It is expected that when this compressor starts and stops, it will make a knocking sound. This is very well pronounced in a commercial ice maker. A slight knocking sound indicates the functioning of the compressor.

If the sound persists or keeps increasing with time, it shows that the compressor is not working correctly. This is another time that you should contact a professional technician. It is crucial to the functionality of the entire fridge.

Problems May Arise with the Water Inlet Valve

Commercial ice makers or stationary refrigerators are equipped with a different water inlet valve. At the same time, portable ice makers demand that the owner refills the water whenever they wish to make ice. If you forget to fill the water for the ice maker, the unit will make a knocking noise.

The sound may continue to rise in volume if there are any clogs within the waterline or if the line is not installed properly. Should the water become insufficiently filled, the ice machine will do its best with what it has available. The lack of water will result in the knocking sound.

Other Possible Problems with Knocking

Faulty appliances and ice makers that are not appropriately maintained may not produce large ice cubes. You will then hear a knocking sound. Large ice cubes can be challenging for the appliance to handle and will get stuck at the harvesting arm.

The large ice cubes will not be able to drop into the basket. They will start melting at the mold and begin making the characteristic knocking sound until they melt completely. You may be able to avoid this problem with a smaller ice cube setting.

A block in the water pump can also make a knocking sound and cause ice-making problems. This water pump is what is responsible for bringing the water from the reservoir to the ice-making portion of the refrigerator.

It can be cleared with proper cleaning and maintenance of the appliance and frequently checking the drain for blocks. It would be best if you kept up with the quality and standard of all the equipment.

Maintenance Tips to Follow

The coolant or compressor is usually the culprit of knocking noises and can be serious. If it is something you have been hearing, investigate it immediately. Keep the fridge far enough away from the walls.

They should be between 1 inch to 5 inches, depending on make and model. This will help the air circulate properly, and the refrigerator will not work too hard. It will help keep some thumping under control and extend the life of your fridge.

Dirt and debris are problems that will clog the functioning system of a fridge. Vacuum the toe kicks and remove all the dust particles around the base of the fridge. Also, clean any collecting on the condenser coils.

For safety’s sake, unplug the refrigerator for a moment if you plan to wipe the coils and back of the fridge. If you catch any electrical wires without meaning to, it can become a catastrophic event.

The best way to ensure the ice maker does not make unusual noise is to allow adequate rest time. It will help the waterline and pump not to get blocked. It also keeps the ice from getting lodged in the machine, which will delay the ice-making process.

In addition, letting the machine rest might help you to accurately identify the source of the noise. Most importantly, if you are unsure of the noise source, it might be time to call a professional technician.

Upgraded Home Team
Upgraded Home Team

We are a team of passionate homeowners, home improvement pros, and DIY enthusiasts who enjoy sharing home improvement, housekeeping, decorating, and more with other homeowners! Whether you're looking for a step-by-step guide on fixing an appliance or the cost of installing a fence, we've here to help.

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