water filter for refrigerator

stahleeMarch 26, 2012

I posted this a couple days ago, but I don't see it on here. Anyway, I need to filter the water to my SubZero 550. The water connection is for ice cube maker, which tastes terrible. Since the SubZero doesn't have a filter, I need to add one somewhere.

So I have a couple thoughts. There is a decent amount of room under the fridge where I could add an inline filter. I'm not sure this is a good idea, so I'd like to hear you opinions. The copper line comes up behind the refrigerator with a valve, which I have a PVC line connected to the fridge.

My other thought is I would like to filter drinking water at the sink and maybe my pot filler. So maybe I could install a larger filter and make a small manifold for running some pex lines for each.

Guess I'm in need of some advice what I should do with this setup.

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Seems to me first thing to be learned is what's in your water that you want to filter out. There are quite a number of things can make water taste terrible. Well or city supply?

Be assured there are in-line filters that will do just about anything you want done.....but you have to know what it is that you want done. No sense paying big bucks for a system that isn't needed. No sense paying anything for a guess-it-might-work device that doesn't solve the problem.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 11:39PM
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Just one addition to what asolo said. Do not place an inline filter under your refrigerator. Filters are not "set and forget" items. The cartridges need to be replaced every six months. Placing them in a location where they are difficult to maintain just about guarantees you won't change them, which will result in your family drinking worse water than you started with. Under the sink is fine. In a utility room where you don't have to crawl around to change a filter is better if you have the space and access to run drinking water lines.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 11:32AM
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We are on city water and get a water test report every other year. That said, i still installed a whole house filter in our basement where the main line enters the basemet. Purchased it at one of the big box stores. I change the filter twice a year. Several filter elements to choose from.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 6:18AM
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Same question: What is the purpose of the filtration? Taste?...chlorine?.....particulates?....other contaminants? Or just suspicion of contaminants?

Repeating....no sense spending big bucks on something that won't actually matter to you....nor any amount at all on something that doesn't accomplish what's needed.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 12:46PM
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Sorry I didn't get back sooner, but I was away for a couple days.

Asolo, I'm working on finding somebody that will test my water that's in the area. Our water has a lot of chlorine, at least that's what it tastes and smells like. The ice cubes taste like dirt.

I guess there is more here that I should have asked. I'm also going to purchase a water softener as well, so I'm going to have a water test done. I'd like to get everything that's relevant tested and I'd like to what I need to test for. I was planning to start another thread for this. Guess I'm just struggling finding somebody to do this. I've found somebody that is about 45 miles away that will do the test, but they charge for each individual thing, so I really need to know what you recommend I test for both drinking water and a softener. Do you have any recommendations of other ways I should be looking for somebody to do water tests. Like a state agency I could send a sample to? This place is going to charge a couple hundred dollars to do this, which I'm willing to do. Just want to make sure this is right.

I know this is a water filter thread for drinking water, I could create a separate thread for the softener. If you want me to do that, a list of what I should be tester for in drinking water would be good.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 10:01AM
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"Our water has a lot of chlorine, at least that's what it tastes and smells like. The ice cubes taste like dirt."

I'm going to assume, then, that your primary concern is not "purity" or "safety" per se, but merely that your water tastes bad. There are easy/cheap ways to deal with this. Many (most?) folks take care of it with particulate cartridge filter followed by an activated charcoal cartridge filter both in-line and sized so that the flow-rate through them is barely affected. The particulate filter typically handles whole-house main supply while the charcoal filter is limited to the kitchen (drinking water supply) outlets. The difference in smell and taste can be astonishing. In-line installation, like all plumbing stuff, sort of a pain but not too difficult DIY. Quick and easy for a plumber.

At the high-end, you may want to consider softener plus RO unit. Softener would be for whole-house while RO unit limited, again, to kitchen/drinking-water area. The RO unit itself will have separate charcoal filters incorporated. That's what I have (about 20 years, now) and it is, without a doubt, a superior solution......if you need it (I do) and can take the expense (I can.)

Whether your solution will cheap or expensive depends on what's in the water and how nutso you want to get about it. I'm pretty nutso, but my municipal water supply is really ugly and bad-tasting and I really wanted to put it to bed.

For the softener consideration, hardness testing is cheap and easy. Any hardware store will have DIY test-kits so you can determine how hard your water is and, thereby, whether or not a softener would be something to consider. IMHO, if I had hardness at about three grains or below, I wouldn't bother. Above that, I would. Others have different thresholds of annoyance and opinions about it. My own supply hardness varies from 7 to about 12. "Soft" is zero. Any properly set up softener will give you zero.

If you're serious about it, by all means start with an independent water test. Fall-back position might be to obtain a filter-pitcher that utilizes activated charcoal and see if that handles your taste problem. If it does, you may want to confine yourself to an in-line charcoal cartridge and be done with it.

If you use the search function on this forum, you will find MANY threads about this topic. If you enter "justalurker" you'll find MANY suggestions for water testing. The fellow knows his stuff.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 11:20AM
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If your water tastes of chlorine, am I correct in assuming you have city water? If so, you can request city quarterly water reports. Get reports from the last year or two to see variation. These are fairly complete and will be a good place to start. Then, you will need to test the water at your home for hardness, pH, TDS, iron, free chloramine/free chlorine at minimum. Depending upon the city water analysis, there may be other items you need to test. You can use a hardware store hardness test for a very rough hardness number, but those tests are wildly inaccurate in the hands of first-timers and shouldn't be used to size a softener.

Aside from water analysis, you also need to know:
1. Size of your water supply line into your home.
2. Do you have a convenient drain near the location you wish to install a softener?
3. Flow rate you can achieve. Ideally, you would test from a full-bore spigot near the entrance to the home. Those aren't available in your typical home, so you can test at a bathtub. Use a bucket or large pot for which you know the volume. Open the faucet fully and use a stopwatch to time how long it takes to fill the container. You can calculate gallons per minute from that information.
4. You say your water tastes of dirt. Can you see particles in the water? Is your water clear or colored? Is it clear coming out of the faucet but develop color if left to sit?

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 7:04PM
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I've had this issue also - terrible taste of the water, bitter and sometimes taste of plastic.

It all depends on which supplier you get it from, although some expensive ones are also bad.

Before buying a filter, just see recommendations, and you don't have to add another inline filter, don't give up :)

I've found a good website which explains this point here:


Here is a link that might be useful: refrigerator filters

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 3:59AM
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Lots of test kits out there....

Here is a link that might be useful: One Water Purity Test Kit

    Bookmark   July 23, 2014 at 11:02AM
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