How Refrigerator Water Filter Indicator Works? (In-depth)

If you’re obsessing over your new refrigerator then, with many easter eggs, you might have found a little LED light on the refrigerator display screen. Or, maybe it’s the first time you’ve noticed this new indicator light on your refrigerator which is blinking red. Let’s understand what exactly is it for.

Here’s how Refrigerator Water Filter Indicator Light Works

Refrigerator water filter indicator light is a small LED light that appears on the display of modern refrigerators which indicates the condition of your water filter. This light is mainly of three colors: Green (or No light) means your refrigerator water filter is running OK, Orange light means the water filter is approaching its usage limit, Red light means the water filter needs to be changed immediately.

However, this refrigerator water filter indicator doesn’t actually check your water filter, sometimes the light appears even when everything is OK. So, you need to understand in-depth when you should be concerned about refrigerator water filter lights & when not.

That’s exactly why this article is all about. Read on!

Refrigerator Water Filter Indicator Light

What is The Use of Refrigerator Water Filter Indicator Light?

A refrigerator water filter is something that most of the houses in the United States have in common. Any fridge that dispenses ice or cold water has an inbuilt filter that ensures the water is clean and safe to consume.

Water filters, on the other hand, are not indestructible. People frequently overlook that their refrigerator water filters have a certain duration to work properly after which it needs to be changed.

But the question is, even if you’re aware that your refrigerator’s water filter has to be replaced when the best time to do so is?

And for this purpose, we have a Refrigerator water filter indicator light in our refrigerator water filter systems! The water filter cartridge on the dispenser on Refrigerator Water Filters has a “replace filter” indicator light. This light indicates the need to change your filter; if the filter light on your refrigerator turns red, it’s time to replace the refrigerator water filter.

When to Change Water Filter in Refrigerator

A refrigerator water filter indicator light is very helpful in determining when to change your refrigerator water filter. But, keep in mind that it is a timed indicator, it’s gonna show those indicator lights according to the fridge’s internal settings no matter whether your water filter is healthy or not. Or, even if it’s totally useless.

Also, for many refrigerators, the refrigerator water filter indicator light is not even there. So, here are quick ways to inspect whether your refrigerator water filter is totally OK or not –

  • If water from the refrigerator has some odor or foul smell then you need to change your water filter
  • If water from your refrigerator has some deposits or color. Or, if it is blurry then you need to change your refrigerator’s water filter immediately
  • If the water tastes very different than usual and starting to have a more pronounced taste & smell then your water filter is approaching its limit.
  • If you feel full & bloated after drinking water for the whole day then there can be some heavy metals & mineral deposits that your refrigerator water filter is not able to filter out as efficiently now, so, it’s a good idea to inspect the water filter inside your fridge.

Check out our complete article on how to know when my water filter is expired to know all the symptoms. Also, if you’ve recently changed your water filter, but the refrigerator water filter indicator light is still red then you don’t need to change it again but read the below sections to know how to fix this issue.

How to Check If My Refrigerator Water Filter Indicator Light is Working Fine?

It is essential to know your refrigerator water indicator is working fine. This is how a correctly working light functions in most water filter refrigerators:

  • This light will turn orange to indicate that the filter needs to be replaced shortly.
  • When the replace filter indicator light becomes red, the filter indicated immediate replacement.
  • Green (or no light): Either the light will go out or turn green. Both vary on what brand of refrigerator you are using. Check the manual for further reference

If your filter needs a change, the light will display red, but if your light has not turned red and the followings signs are seen in your water, it might be that it is not working.

Check for signs stated below. If any of these feels right and your light indicator has not turned red, it might be that the light needs a check.

  • Water that is dispensed has a sour or weird taste
  • Ice has an unusual odor
  • Dispensed water has a languid flow
  • The Ice Is Getting Smaller
  • Water or Ice with Black Specs due to carbon leak
  • Water or Ice Has a Murky Appearance
  • It has been more than 8-9 months of using the filter

Why My Refrigerator Water Filter Indicator Light is not working?

Press and hold the “Reset Filter” button and wait till the red light turns off after changing the filter. Either the light will go out, or it will become green. The red light will remain on if you do not hold the button in place. Additionally, if you have the control for an extended time, the light may turn off and then on.

If this has not solved your problem, maybe then it’s something technical. In this case, you might need an expert to resolve it. Call your service provider in this case.

Reasons Why Refrigerator Water Filter Indicator Light is Still ON

The refrigerator filter light many a time remains on/ red even after the new filter has been placed.

Now you might think the filter is malfunctioning. But a water filter’s chances of malfunctioning are rare. Instead, the most typical cause for your Water filter indicator light to be still on is that it needs a reset.

If the new water filter was installed successfully, but the filter light is still on. Here is why!

First, if the new water filter is installed correctly and still light on, make sure the filter is securely fastened to the fridge, and there are no leaks.

The second reason why your indicator is still on is, it needs a reset. It is necessary to inform the refrigerator that a new filter has been inserted since not every refrigerator water filter has an automatic system to keep a check. You will have to reset the water filter manually to indicate to the refrigerator that a new filter has been inserted.

Let us see how you can reset the light!

How to Reset Water Filter Light?

After changing the filter, you need to now reset your indicator. Follow these steps to reset refrigerator water filter indicator light – 

  • Locate the multi-function button(s) that control the filter indicator on your display.
  • Then, until the light changes, press and hold the button(s). and hold the “Reset Water Filter” button in your refrigerator water filter until the red light turns off.
  • Some models’ lights will go out, while others may glow green; either is normal.

The red light will remain on if you do not hold the button in place. The light will also go off and then turn back on if you hold the pad in for a long time.

If this also does not help in the red light turning off or green, we recommended that you get it checked by a technical expert or call your service provider.

Here is a list of some most used refrigerator water filters list and how to reset them-

  • Amana – Hold down the “Dispenser Lock” and “Auto” buttons (which resemble a padlock) until the water filter light flashes.
  • Whirlpool – Press the “Light” option, which looks like a miniature plunger and is typically located around the top or bottom of the door where it closes, 5-6 times.
  • Frigidaire – Hold and press the “Reset” button. This will flash the indicator light.
  • Maytag – Hold the “Light” and “Lock” buttons together till the filter light flashes.
  • General Electric (GE) – For about 8-10 seconds, press and hold the “Reset” button.
  • Hotpoint – For about 8-10 seconds, press and hold the “Reset” pad.
  • Samsung – For 3-5 seconds, press and hold the “Child Lock” and “Ice Type” buttons simultaneously.
  • Kitchen Aid – quickly press and release the “Light” button 5 times.

water filter


You’ve read this article through so, you now know that if your refrigerator water filter indicator light is appearing red then though mostly it means you need to change your refrigerator water filter but not always.

It has also a possibility of malfunctioning and it can also show false positive signs due to incorrect settings, incorrect adjustment, or simply just because you haven’t reset your refrigerator’s indicator light. However, you now know how to make it correct. So, now go ahead and do the needful but wait, check out these important articles about refrigerator water filter that we really think you need to read –

Other Important Water Filter Articles

Disha Verma is a Mass Media student from International School of Business & Media (ISBM). She lives in Maharastra, India and loves to write articles about Internet & Social Media. When she is not writing, you can find her hanging out with friends in the coffee shop downstreet or reading novels in the society park.