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What Happens if You Don’t Change Fridge Water Filter

Installing A Fridge Water Filter

Are you feeling too lazy to change your fridge water filter? Well, there might be some more significant problems awaiting you if you decide to ignore them. Dirty fridge filters can cause severe damage, like the building up of debris and damage to the internal components, which affects the efficiency and cooling system of the fridge.

You might want to know the problems caused by unchanged filters in a fridge for prolonged periods. Stay tuned because we have discussed them in detail in this blog. You might not notice any significant signs of malfunctioning, but these minor signs can help prevent significant impairment.


Although the fridge might seem to operate normally for over a year, its machinery keeps losing efficiency if you don’t check up on its filters for more than five to six months.

Here are some consequences of leaving your fridge’s filters unattended for a prolonged period.

  1. Debris Starts Building Up.
  2. The Refrigerant’s Flow Route Becomes Narrowed.
  3. The Food Starts to Change in Taste.
  4. Bacterial Contamination Can Happen.
  5. The Performance of the Fridge is Affected.

You must know the possible problems that can arise when you don’t take care of the filters and change them once every six months. We’ll take you through all of this one by one.

5 Things That Happen When You Don’t Change Fridge Water Filter

Some of the significant problems start with not taking care of your fridge’s filters. Blocked filters affect the efficiency of your fridge and cause other problems given:

1. Debris Starts Building Up

Dirty Refrigerator Condenser Cooling Coils Covered In Dust

The filters in your ice box part have carbon installed, which filters out the dirt or any other unwanted and unhygienic particles that accidentally slide inside. With time, the tiny pores of the strainer keep getting blocked by this filtered debris, and if you do not remove this build-up, it will close all the pores, and it will not be able to perform its normal function anymore. This debris includes carbon and many other components, fuel fumes, lubricating materials, harmful bacteria, fungus, and dust particles.

2. The Refrigerant’s Flow Route Becomes Narrowed

Water Dispenser From Dispenser Of Home Fridge

As the debris keeps getting stuck in the strainer holes, the water flowing through these pores will also keep decreasing since there will be less space to pass through them. Narrow pathways result in a lower outcome, so you will notice that gradually the amount of water coming out of your water dispenser will become less and less compared to when it was new.

3. The Food Starts To Change in Taste

Woman Standing Near Refrigerator

Sometimes the pressure on the filters increases, and some of the holes become wide; this allows contaminations to pass along with the carbon and other chemicals associated with the filter. Long stuck particles also become a place for germs to grow and decay, and it will change the flavor of your normal water.

There is a change in the typical composition of water which changes the taste. There is a slight change in smell as well.

4. Bacterial Contamination Can Happen

Open Fridge With Water Bottle And Food Mix Storage.

Water filters of the fridge are essential for a healthy everyday liquid intake of the user and for the regular and effective working of the refrigerator. It is also crucial to regularly inspect these filters to avoid problems that affect not only the health of its users but also the machine itself.

The accumulated contaminations become a habitat of many microorganisms, including some harmful bacteria, which become a part of your daily intake and can affect your health slowly but harshly. Things like lubricants, vapors, and dirt come along with the water in unnoticeable quantities every time you pour water out of the fridge dispenser or ice cubes. This shows that it no longer remains a machine issue but a health concern for the user.

5. The Performance of the Fridge Is Affected

Modern Refrigerator In Kitchen.

Dirty filters cause an increase the pressure and load, which affects the overall cooling and freezing system, and your ice maker will either make soft or not make ice at all. You may also see that your frozen items start smelling different and will not stay preserved long enough. Your stabilizer will start making heavy noises which is also a consequence of increasing pressure on the internal parts of the appliance.

It is essential to understand that every small internal part of the refrigerator is somehow connected to the other parts. That is why if there is one malfunctioning piece, it will automatically lead to a chain reaction of pressure transfer, ultimately leading to the breakdown of the entire fridge.

Keeping a review on your fridge could be the least on our priority list when there is so much more to worry about every day, but not keeping a check will also add to our worries, and then eventually, it will catch up. Therefore it is better to manage a routine checkup on these electrical appliances.


Man Leaning On An Empty Open Fridge And Showing Thumbs Up

Every fridge comes with its instruction manual, and its filter replacement time duration is mentioned in that booklet. The average time for most fridges is about five to six months. This duration can slightly differ according to the company, and water filters should be cleaned according to those written instructions.

You can easily do this at home, but these filters have an expiry date, and old ones must be replaced after a certain period. These minor tasks of changing and replacing filters are easier to deal with than the permanent damage that dirty filters can eventually cause.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Can I Leave My Fridge Filters Unchecked Without Causing Major Harm?

Ideally, it can be left for five months, but if the limit crosses over six months, it will start causing long-term issues to the fridge. For more precise limits, you can check the instruction manual that comes with the fridge.

What To Do if My Water Filters In the Fridge Do Not Work Efficiently Anymore?

You can try cleaning them manually to make sure the substances are no more stuck in them, causing the inefficiency, and if it still doesn’t work, then they might be permanently damaged, and you will have to buy new ones.

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