Here's How Often You Should Replace Your Refrigerator Water Filter

Refrigerators with water dispensers are incredibly convenient, allowing you to easily grab a glass of filtered, ice-cold water whenever you want. This is a great alternative to a Brita filter jug, for example, as you won't have to wait for the filtered water nor will you have to spend time filling it up. Then there's the added benefit of not needing ice cube trays. That being said, refrigerator filtering systems require some maintenance. Mainly, replacing the water filter.

Some modern refrigerators have a display screen that will tell you when the filter needs replaced, but not all. Even those that do may be faulty and inaccurate. An old water filter isn't just ineffective, but it can be dangerous. According to The Seattle Times, expired water filters can contaminate your water with bacteria, metals, and chemicals, and drinking this water can cause headaches, stomach pains, fever, and even kidney failure. This is why you should be vigilant in regularly replacing your water filters. Luckily, it's relatively easy.

Replace the water filter twice a year

To avoid contamination and subsequent sickness, The Seattle Times recommends replacing your water filter at least every six months. While this may seem like a hassle, it's worth it to prevent serious health issues. Plus, it's incredibly easy.

Before replacing your fridge's water filter, you need to know a couple of things, including what kind of filter your fridge needs. According to Home Depot, most refrigerators use carbon filtration, but some use ion exchange or reverse osmosis. Consult your owner's manual, check the existing filter, or do a quick internet search to confirm.

Next, you'll need to know where the filter is located. Most are inside the fridge and are accompanied by a clear indicator. If not, double check your owner's manual or look online. It will likely be a twist-on filter or push-in filter. Twist-on filters, as the name suggests, twist on and off. To install, simply twist off the old one and twist on the new one until it clicks into place. Push-in filters simply need to be pushed in and out for removal and installation. If you have a filter connected to your water line, you may need to consult a professional.