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Why Your Maytag Refrigerator Ice Smells & Tastes Bad

Share this expert tip!

While bad-tasting refrigerator ice is hard to ignore, figuring out why can pose an equal challenge. Why does your Maytag refrigerator ice have a strange smell? Improperly stored food can give ice a bad smell or taste. Learn more common causes and how to clean your refrigerator and ice maker when Maytag refrigerator ice smells bad.

Stop Odor at the Source When Your Maytag Refrigerator Ice Smells 

While there are several possible causes when your Maytag refrigerator ice smells and tastes bad, most have a DIY fix. From poor water quality to improper food storage, here’s how to pinpoint the cause for odor and banish it with a thorough cleaning.

Poor Water Quality

If the water that supplies your ice maker has a bad taste or smell it’s going to result in bad-tasting cubes. Refrigerator ice may smell or taste strange if your water supply has a high amount of chemicals or contaminants. Hard water with a high mineral content can also affect the taste of ice.

If you suspect that your water supply is responsible when your Maytag refrigerator ice smells bad, have it professionally tested. A home filtration system or water softener may be able to improve the water quality.

Improper Food Storage

What if your ice tastes bad but water is fine? Food that’s improperly stored could be the problem. Ice can easily absorb food odor from items that are open or insufficiently wrapped. Always make sure stored food is properly contained to prevent ice from absorbing odors. 

refrigerator ice tastes bad

Photo Credit: Maytag

Water Filter Requires Replacement

Maytag recommends that you replace refrigerator water filter every 6 months to avoid clogs that can affect the taste of water and ice. Refrigerator ice tastes bad if the filter is too clogged to remove impurities from your home water supply.

If the filter is incorrectly installed or a non-OEM filter brand is used, it may be unable to sufficiently screen out contaminants. Refer to your user manual to ensure that the right filter is used and installed correctly.

ice maker smells like mildew

Photo Credit: Maytag

Water System Must Be Flushed

It’s necessary to flush the water system after every filter change or if the refrigerator is newly installed. Flushing eliminates any lingering contaminants in the water line after a clogged filter is replaced or after the refrigerator is assembled and packaged.

Flush the system by alternately holding and releasing the water dispenser button for 5 seconds. You may need to dispense and dispose of up to 3 gallons of water to properly flush the water lines. It’s also recommended to dispose of the first batch of ice after the refrigerator is newly installed.

How to Clean the Refrigerator and Ice Maker to Eliminate Odor

While these tips can help pinpoint why your ice smells bad, it can still absorb lingering odor after the problem is solved. A thorough cleaning can eliminate bad smells and prevent their return.

Here’s how to clean your refrigerator and ice maker to remove bad smells:

  • Unplug your refrigerator and remove all stored items.
  • Remove the crisper drawers, shelves and ice bin and hand wash in warm, soapy water. Rinse and dry thoroughly.
  • Wipe down the refrigerator and freezer interiors with warm, soapy water or a mild cleanser.
  • Dip a clean cloth in warm, soapy water and wipe down the ice maker’s exterior components.
  • Rinse and dry interior walls and ice maker.
  • Replace the drawers, shelves and ice bin and restore power to the refrigerator.
  • For persistent odor, or if your ice maker smells like mildew, make a solution of equal parts vinegar and water. Wipe down the interiors, bins, shelving and ice maker with a cloth dipped in the solution before rinsing and drying.

Repeat this process on a monthly basis to prevent odor from affecting the taste and smell of ice.

If bad-smelling ice persists or you find your ice maker not dispensing properly, it may be time for a professional assessment. Contact Service Care Appliance Repair to eliminate odor and restore ice maker function!



Toxey McDavid

Owner, Service Care

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