Bad-tasting ice is more than just an unpleasant surprise; it can ruin a favorite beverage.  But before you call for a repair or settle for lukewarm liquids, there are usually simple reasons why your refrigerator ice tastes bad. From a dirty filter to open food containers, the most common causes often have simple solutions.

Refrigerator Ice Tastes Bad? Here’s How to Solve the Problem

While it’s hard to ignore ice with an unpleasant taste, pinpointing the source of the problem can seem challenging. Our troubleshooting tips examine the most likely possibilities refrigerator ice tastes bad, offering DIY solutions you can easily implement.

#1. Replace Your Refrigerator Water Filter

A refrigerator water filter screens out contaminants from your home’s water supply to provide clean drinking water and ice. However, over time, the filter can become clogged with these impurities, and they’ll transfer to your ice and water. At this point, you may notice your refrigerator ice smells bad or has a strange taste. You may also find your ice maker not making ice due to restricted water flow from the clogged filter.

It’s recommended that you replace your refrigerator water filter every 6 months to ensure proper function. However, we suggest replacing it as soon as possible if your water or ice has a bad taste or smell.

Refrigerator water filter indicator light on.

#2. Clean Out Old or Stale Ice from Bin

Unless you entertain frequently or use more than the average amount of ice, there are likely leftover cubes in your ice bin. But did you know that if ice is unused for more than a week, it runs the risk of getting stale? When this happens, it could have an unpleasant taste or odor.

If your ice tastes stale or the ice maker smells like mildew, dispose of the old ice and wash the bin with soap and warm water. If you don’t plan on using your ice for over a week, turn off the ice maker and place the leftover ice in sealed plastic bags. Turn the ice maker back on only when you need fresh ice.

#3. Seal Open Food Containers in Your Freezer

Ice easily absorbs odor from open food containers in the freezer. If your refrigerator ice tastes bad but water is fine, check the freezer for open containers, improperly sealed items, or spills. Dispose of old items that may be spoiled and wipe down the freezer’s interior with a clean cloth and mild cleanser. 

Repeating these steps every 3-4 months can keep your freezer fresh and clean and reduce the risk of bad-smelling ice.

ice maker smells like mildew

#4. Check Your Home Water Supply

When your refrigerator ice tastes bad, sometimes it’s not your refrigerator that’s the problem – it’s your home’s water supply. Pollutants and particles can find their way into your water as it travels underground to your home, giving it a strange taste. Since a standard refrigerator water filter doesn’t remove all of these particles, your ice and water may also taste bad.

If your home has hard water, you may also notice your ice has a mineral or metallic flavor. In these cases, a water softening system or home water filtration system can provide better tasting ice and water.

If your refrigerator ice tastes bad even after these troubleshooting tips, a professional ice maker repair may be the best answer. Call Action Appliance Repair for expert assistance!