Learn How to Connect a Refrigerator Today

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So you’re ready to install your brand new refrigerator. One thing you need to understand is modern fridges often come with built-in water dispensers and ice makers that require a water line. This means you need to do some kitchen plumbing handywork.

It’s not as scary as it seems. As long as you do the necessary prep work and buy the right materials, this project shouldn’t be too difficult and soon you will enjoy your new appliance in your Calgary, AB home. Here’s a how-to guide to help you along.

Water Dispenser Connection

First you need to locate a nearby cold-water supply. Kitchens normally have them under the sink. If you’re lucky, you might find one behind the area where the fridge is supposed to be.

If that’s the case, make a direct connection between the supply and the refrigerator to complete the job. If not, follow these instructions once you’ve found a water supply.

Step 1: Map out the piping

The path your piping takes depends on the layout of your kitchen. Being able to run it through cabinets would be ideal, but in many cases you might have to install piping beneath the floor. Make sure you take precise measurements during this process so you buy enough materials. Remember to leave a lot of slack behind the fridge so you can safely pull the appliance out if necessary.

Step 2: Shut off the water source

Turn off the water using the valve at the supply. Next, run a faucet until the pipes are empty. This will minimize the amount of leaking water as you make connections.

Step 3: Attach an adapter to the water supply

There are three types of adapters you can use to connect your fridge with the water supply: a soldered tee-fitting, a compression tee-fitting and a saddle valve. Many do-it-yourself kits found in stores have saddle valves. We recommend against using them.

Saddle valves don’t work as well and aren’t designed to last long. Instead, you should use a tee-fitting. Soldered tee-fittings, made by hand, are stronger than pre-made compression tee-fittings, but both perform the job just fine.

Once you’ve decided on a type of tee-fitting, disconnect the kitchen sink faucet from the water supply and replace it with the tee-fitting. Afterward, you can connect the faucet to the tee-fitting, giving both the fridge and faucet access to water.

Step 4: Connect piping to tee-fitting and refrigerator

Attach the piping to the third and final port in the tee-fitting and hook it up to the last connection behind the fridge. This completes the installation, but next you will want to turn the water back on and look closely for leaks along the piping and at the tee-fitting. If everything seems to be in order, you can test your fridge’s features by running a few gallons of water and making a couple buckets of ice.

Ice Maker Connection

Modern refrigerators with water dispensers and ice makers only need a single water line.

This means that as long as you made the connection detailed above both devices should be fully operational.

Hiring Professional Help

If you don’t feel confident about being able to install a new refrigerator on your own, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Kitchen plumbing projects can be intimidating, but professionals are always ready to lend a hand.

The benefit of hiring a specialist is you know the installation will be done properly. Just sit back and relax while a plumber safely and quickly sets up your new fridge.


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