How to Remove a Refrigerator Water Filter (Step-by-Step Guide)

Wondering how to remove a water filter from your refrigerator? We’ve shared the basics of removing a refrigerator filter in this guide.

๐Ÿ“Œ Key Takeaways:

  • Most refrigerator filters are found inside the fridge, at the bottom of the fridge, or at the water line behind the fridge.
  • To remove a water filter in your refrigerator, push the filter eject button (if there is one) and pull the filter out, or twist the filter to the left and pull it out. If there’s a filter cap, remove this first.
  • You should aim to replace a water filter at least twice a year in your refrigerator.

๐Ÿ”Ž Where Are Refrigerator Filters Located?

The exact location of your refrigerator filter depends on the type of fridge you own and the type of refrigerator water filter replacement required.

For instance, if you have an in-line filter that isn’t built into the fridge, you’ll find it somewhere along the water line leading from your kitchen sink to the fridge. Most in-line refrigerator water filters are hidden behind the refrigerator itself.

If you have a standard integrated refrigerator filter, the filter location will depend on your refrigerator model. Some refrigerator water filters are located in the refrigerator interior, usually in the top corner, while other filters are installed at the back of the fridge at the bottom, just above the grill.

Check your user manual if you’re struggling to find the location of your fridge water filter.

Refrigerator water filter

๐Ÿ”€ How to Remove and Replace an Integrated Refrigerator Water Filter

To remove and replace an integrated refrigerator filter, follow these steps:

  1. Locate the filter. Your user manual should have information on where the filter can be found. Otherwise, check the website or contact the manufacturer.
  2. Lift the filter door or push the filter housing to open it.
  3. Pull out the old filter and put it to one side. Make sure the old o-rings are also removed.
  4. Open the new filter and slot the new o-rings in place.
  5. Slide the new filter into the housing and push the filter door closed. If the filter needs to be installed in a particular direction (usually vertical position), follow the instructions for doing so.
  6. Prime the new filter according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

๐Ÿ“Œ The exact steps for changing your filter depend on the refrigerator model and filter brand. If you don’t have a push-button system, you’ll probably have a quarter-turn filter and filter cap. You’ll need to turn the filter clockwise to click the filter into place.

โžก๏ธ How to Remove and Replace an In-Line Refrigerator Water Filter

To remove and replace an in-line refrigerator filter, follow these steps:

  1. Turn off your under-sink water supply and open the faucet to relieve pressure.
  2. Disconnect the old filter from your water line, removing the tubing from each end.
  3. Unpackage the new filter and install it at the water line by pushing the tubes into each end, checking that the inlet and outlet ends are facing the right way.
  4. Make sure the filter is securely in place. The filter will probably come with nuts that need to be screwed tight against the filter.
  5. Dispense water from your fridge’s water dispenser for 5 minutes (or according to the instructions in the user manual) to flush the filter. Make sure there are no leaks.
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โ๏ธ How to Replace a Filter In The Base Grille

If your fridge filter is located in the back-bottom or front-bottom grill, follow these step-by-step instructions to replace it:

  1. Open the water filter cover (usually located in front of the base grille).
  2. Either push the eject button and pull the filter out, or twist the filter counterclockwise and pull it out. If the filter is protected by a filter cap, turn the cap counterclockwise to remove it first.
  3. Insert the new filter by pushing it into the filter slot or twisting it clockwise as you push. Turn the cap clockwise to slot it back in place in front of the filter.
  4. Properly flush the filter as advised by the manufacturer.

โคด๏ธ How to Replace a Filter In The Upper-Right Corner

To replace your refrigerator water filter in the upper-right corner of the fridge, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Find the filter’s housing inside the fridge.
  2. Look for the filter housing tab. If it’s on the bottom of the cover, grab it and pull forward to open the housing. For a filter tab that’s facing outwards, push the tab and pull the cover down.
  3. Remove the filter by pushing the eject button or turning the filter counterclockwise and pulling it out.
  4. Unpackage the new filter and insert it in the housing. Push the filter straight forward or push and twist in a clockwise direction.
  5. Close the filter door, making sure it snaps shut.
  6. Make sure to properly flush the filter before use.
Removing fridge filter from housing

๐Ÿ“† When Should You Replace a Refrigerator Water Filter?

You should buy a new filter for your refrigerator at least twice a year.

Most fridge filters last about 6 months, although smaller filters may only last 2-4 months. The exact lifespan of a fridge water filter depends on your water quality and daily water usage.

Signs that you need a new refrigerator water filter are:

  • Your filter’s water flow rate has slowed significantly
  • Your water quality has worsened, or your water smells odd or looks dirty
  • The filter change indicator light is flashing (if there is one)

Check your user manual if you’re unsure how often your filter needs to be replaced.

๐Ÿ”ฉ What To Do With an Old Fridge Filter

Most old filter cartridges can be recycled, so don’t just trash your filters once they’ve been used.

Some manufacturers offer recycling programs, allowing you to collect your old filters and send them back for an incentive (usually a free new filter).

๐Ÿค” Do You Have to Use A Fridge Water Filter?

Wondering whether it’s okay to remove the filter from your refrigerator without replacing it with a new one?

Most refrigerators work with or without water filters. That means you can remove the filter cartridge and still have access to cold drinking water from the water dispenser and ice from the ice maker. The only difference is that the water won’t be filtered.

๐Ÿ“Œ If you’re concerned about your water quality, we recommend installing some kind of filter along your water line (whether that’s a whole home filter or an under-sink system). But it’s not essential to use a refrigerator filter.

โ” How to Remove Refrigerator Water Filter: FAQ

Do you have to shut off the water to change a refrigerator water filter?

No. Most built-in fridge filters automatically shut off the water supply as you remove them. You can place a towel beneath the filter housing to prevent small leaks, though. If you have an in-line filter (that’s installed somewhere along your water line between your kitchen sink and your fridge), you’ll need to shut off the water at your kitchen sink to replace the filter.

What happens if you drink water from an old fridge filter?

If you drink water from an old fridge filter, the best-case scenario is that your water will simply taste untreated due to poor-quality filtration. At worst, you might get sick from drinking bacteria, which accumulates inside old filters that haven’t been replaced.

How do you get a stuck water filter out of a Whirlpool refrigerator?

If your Whirlpool refrigerator water filter is stuck, try pushing the filter while you push the button to release the filter . You could also press the filter back in and push the button again. Take the bottom grill out of the fridge to give you better access.

How do you remove a water filter from a Frigidaire refrigerator?

To remove a water filter from a Frigidaire refrigerator, open the refrigerator door and locate the filter housing (usually in the upper right corner of the filter). Push the filter housing in. You’ll hear a click as the housing opens. From there, you can simply pull the filter out.

How do you change the filter on a side-by-side refrigerator?

To change the filter on a side-by-side refrigerator, locate the water filter compartment (this may be at the back of the fridge or inside one of the refrigerators in a corner). Remove shelving if needed to make replacing the water filter easier. Open the water filter cover and twist or click the filter to release it. Place the new filter into the compartment and twist or click it to secure it in place. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to prime the filter and reset the filter change light (if there is one).