July 20, 2013

How to replace a freestanding ice maker recirculation pump

By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a freestanding ice maker recirculation pump

This DIY repair guide explains how to replace the recirculation pump in a freestanding ice maker. The recirculation pump sends water from the reservoir over the top of the evaporator plate where ice forms. If the recirculation pump stops working, water no longer reaches the evaporator plate. Replace the recirculation pump with the manufacturer-approved replacement part.

Use these repair steps to replace the recirculation pump in Kenmore, Whirlpool, KitchenAid, JennAir, Maytag and GE freestanding ice makers.

Quick links
Tools required
Slot screwdriver
Socket wrench set or nut drivers
Work gloves
Shop rag or cloth
Repair difficulty
Time required
45 minutes or less
Repair difficulty
Time required
45 minutes or less

Instructions

  1. 01.

    Disconnect power

    Remove any ice that is in the storage bin of the ice maker and store it in a separate container during this repair.

    Cover the drain hole at the bottom of the ice storage bin with a cloth to prevent hardware from falling inside.

    Unplug the ice maker or shut off the house circuit breaker to disconnect electrical power.

     

  2. 02.

    Drain the reservoir

    Unscrew the drain cap from the bottom of the reservoir and let the water drain out. 

    Remove the reservoir drain cap.

    Remove the reservoir drain cap.

  3. 03.

    Remove the recirculation pump shield

    Remove the screw from the recirculation pump shield.

    Pull out the recirculation pump shield and set it aside.

    Remove the recirculation pump shield screw.

    Remove the recirculation pump shield screw.

    Remove the recirculation pump shield.

    Remove the recirculation pump shield.

  4. 04.

    Remove the reservoir

    The drain pump is attached to the bottom of the reservoir.

    Disconnect the drain pump wire harness from the connection plug above the recirculation pump.

    Remove the 2 thumbscrews from the reservoir and pull the reservoir (with the drain pump attached) out of the ice maker.

    Disconnect the drain pump wire harness.

    Disconnect the drain pump wire harness.

    Remove the reservoir thumbscrews.

    Remove the reservoir thumbscrews.

    Remove the reservoir.

    Remove the reservoir.

  5. 05.

    Remove the recirculation pump

    Remove the recirculation pump outlet tube.

    Remove the screws from the pump mounting bracket and pull the bracket down to access the wire harness connections for the pump.

    Disconnect the recirculation pump wire harness and the sensor wire harness from the connection plugs.

    Pull the pump and bracket out of the ice maker.

    Pry the recirculation pump out of the bracket.

    Disconnect the recirculation pump outlet tube.

    Disconnect the recirculation pump outlet tube.

    Remove the recirculation pump bracket mounting screws.

    Remove the recirculation pump bracket mounting screws.

    Disconnect the recirculation pump and sensor wires.

    Disconnect the recirculation pump and sensor wires.

    Pull the recirculation pump and bracket out.

    Pull the recirculation pump and bracket out.

    Pry the recirculation pump out of the bracket.

    Pry the recirculation pump out of the bracket.

  6. 06.

    Install the new recirculation pump

    Snap the new recirculation pump into the bracket.

    Position the bracket and recirculation pump in the ice maker and plug in the wire harness connections for the recirculation pump and the sensor.

    Reinstall the bracket and secure it with the mounting screws.

    Reconnect the pump outlet tube to the recirculation pump.

    Install the new recirculation pump in the bracket.

    Install the new recirculation pump in the bracket.

    Connect the recirculation pump and sensor wires.

    Connect the recirculation pump and sensor wires.

    Reinstall the recirculation pump bracket.

    Reinstall the recirculation pump bracket.

    Connect the recirculation pump outlet tube.

    Connect the recirculation pump outlet tube.

  7. 07.

    Reassemble the ice maker

    Reinstall the reservoir and secure it with the 2 thumbscrews.

    Plug in the wire harness for the drain pump.

    Position the recirculation pump shield over the pump and reinstall the mounting screws in the shield.

    Reinstall the drain cap on the bottom of the reservoir.

    Remove the cloth that was used to cover the drain hole in the ice storage bin.

    Reinstall the ice maker reservoir.

    Reinstall the ice maker reservoir.

    Plug in the drain pump wire harness.

    Plug in the drain pump wire harness.

    Reinstall the recirculation pump shield.

    Reinstall the recirculation pump shield.

    Reinstall the reservoir drain cap.

    Reinstall the reservoir drain cap.

  8. 08.

    Restore power

    Plug the ice maker back the wall outlet or reset the house circuit breaker to restore power.

  9. 09.

    Fill the ice storage bin

    Fill the ice bin with ice that was stored in a separate container during this repair.

Warning: Undertaking repairs to appliances can be hazardous. Use the proper tools and safety equipment noted in the guide and follow all instructions. Do not proceed until you are confident that you understand all of the steps and are capable of completing the repair. Some repairs should only be performed by a qualified technician.

Symptoms common to all freestanding ice makers

Choose a symptom to see related ice maker repairs.

Main causes: failing compressor, bad condenser fan motor, faulty drain pump, bad recirculation pump, water supply problems, bad water valve
Main causes: dirty evaporator plate, untreated water supply, food items being stored in ice storage bin
Main causes: water supply problems, control board failure, weak recirculation pump, clogged water distributer, faulty cutting grid
Main causes: lack of electrical power, bad power cord, wiring failure, bad control board, faulty bin thermistor, bad evaporator thermistor
Main causes: bad bin thermistor, condenser fan failure, faulty control board
Main causes: wiring failure, broken cutting grid, faulty electronic control board
Main causes: bad electronic control board, water supply problems, faulty recirculation pump, sealed system failure, broken cutting grid
Main causes: cracked water supply line, leaky drain line, broken drain pump, cracked water reservoir, leaky ice bin

Repair guides common to all freestanding ice makers

These step-by-step repair guides will help you safely fix what’s broken on your ice maker.

How to replace a freestanding ice maker cutter grid

When the cutting grid is broken, ice cubes don’t drop into the ice bin. Use the steps in this repair guide to replace a broken cutter grid.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less
How to replace a freestanding ice maker electronic control board

When the electronic control board won’t activate the ice maker components, follow these steps to install a new one.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 45 minutes or less
How to replace a freestanding ice maker recirculation pump

If your ice maker isn’t making ice, the pump could be the problem. Here’s how to replace it.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 45 minutes or less

Articles and videos common to all freestanding ice makers

Use the advice and tips in these articles and videos to get the most out of your ice maker.

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