When Sears delivered my new KitchenAid refrigerator, the delivery
folks adamantly refused to hook up the water supply line because my
line is made of plastic tubing and it is allegedly against their rules
to hook up to plastic tubing because of potential liability for leaks.
They will only hook it up if the existing water line is copper.
So I hooked up the water line myself. I've had this plastic tubing for
20 years now and it has never leaked. However, and for a long time
now, I've noticed that the water pressure for the water dispenser in
my old Kenmore was very low. Its even lower with the new KitchenAid
So my questions are:
1. Is the low flow rate because of my using plastic tubing instead of
copper? I would have preferred to replace it with the same plastic
tubing because of the 15 feet distance from the fridge to the water
pipe down below in the basement in a winding fashion, behind the
drywall ceiling which have to be cut out to get to the water tap.
2. Assuming I replace the tubing with the same plastic tubing, will
that increase my water pressure or do I have to also replace the valve
too? The existing one has this faucet like thin handle that goes into
the joint where the plastic meets the pipe, in addition to the main
water shutoff valve.
3. If I relocate the water tap to another location, how do I
permanently seal off the old tap?
Thanks for any help.
On Apr 28, 8:50 am, "franzen firstname.lastname@example.org"
The flow rate for the same diameter tubing is going to be virtually
I would have preferred to replace it with the same plastic
Unless the tubing is somehow blocked with something, replacing it is
not going to change anything. Now, the valve could be suspect,
especially if it's the saddle type. Have you tried flowing water
into a bucket at the end of the existing tubing, with just a short
piece directly near the valve, etc?
The existing one has this faucet like thin handle that goes into
If it's copper pipe, saddle type valve and accessible, I'd cut the
pipe, remove the valve and replace with two couplings and a short
pipe. If the frig doesn't have a water filter, I'd install an inline
one at the same time.
No appliance company will hook up plastic lines--especially if the
tubing is polyethylene. If you've had it for 20 years with no rupture,
then someone is watching over you, or you're doing enough good deeds
to offset your plumbing skills.
If fails most often right near the compression crimp at the solenoid
valve. That gets the most stress from water hammer when the valve
shuts off. It's also the weakest part since you probably inserted the
ferrule into the end and then tightened the compression nut.
Once it starts leaking you could be looking at MAJOR water damage to
floors and walls. Even though copper is at an all time high, the risk
just isn't worth it to keep using plastic.
As for the pressure, if the saddle valve was a puncture type, I'll bet
the small hole has calcium buildup. Shut off the water, remove the old
saddle valve and snip off the puncture probe (or wiggle it out of the
crimp on the valve stem) and drill the hold larger. Then re-install
the valve and clamp it down. That usually improves water flow and
pressure. (You may need to buy a new saddle valve if the old rubber
gasket has deteriorated. Not sure if you can buy just the gasket.)
On Mon, 28 Apr 2008 05:50:39 -0700 (PDT), "franzen email@example.com"
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