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How to Remove Calcium Deposits from a Refrigerator Water Dispenser

PVC pipe full of calcium deposits and corrosion

Not all water is stain free. We are not talking about water spots either. Unfortunately, some areas of the country have what is called hard water. When you have to use hard water in your fridge dispensers, there is a build-up that takes place.

This build-up is called calcium deposit and it can interfere with the water dispenser’s operation. When the build-up occurs, you need to take the right steps to clean it up. To learn how to do this simple task, just keep reading our article. It has the information you need to be successful.

One Major Key Step You Need to Take

Blue and red cleaning solution bottle on a yellow background

This isn’t for the calcium deposit removal. Rather this key step refers to removing all traces of the cleanser you use to clean up the calcium deposit. The reason it is a major step is that you are cleaning an area of your fridge that transports water for you to drink or put in ice cubes.

Even trace residue of the cleansers you use can alter the taste of the water, etc., or harm your health. That is why it is vital that you clean the cleansers completely after you have removed all evidence of the calcium build-up.


Two Methods to Use

This task is more time-consuming than anything else. Make sure you have enough time on hand to get the job done right. The toughest part will be those hard-to-reach spots where water can get to at any time.

1. The Vinegar Method

Vinegar in a glass bottle in front of a green sponge, white scrub brush, and yellow cleaning cloth

Step one would be to moisten a clean cloth with vinegar and lay it on all exposed parts of your dispensing system. This can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours depending on how thick the deposits are.

Or you can remove the trays and different dispensing parts and soak them in vinegar for a while. Place the vinegar in a pot or dish large enough to hold the parts and be submerged at the same time.

Once the soaking time has expired, use an old toothbrush to scrub the parts clean. One tip, an electric toothbrush will make this task even easier. When you are done, rinse well.

You can use a moistened cloth or run underwater and then dry well. The key will be to remove all vinegar residue when you are done.

2. The Chemical Method

Variety of cleaning solution bottles on a white background

There are products that you can buy in the store that are designed to handle calcium deposits very quickly. Their price varies and so do the instructions so make sure you read the labels carefully.

The first step is not to overdo it. Since you are using chemicals, a minimal amount is best and easiest to remove all traces. For tiny areas, you can use a cotton ball, or Q-tip-like item and spread the chemicals over the affected area.

Then use a cloth to wipe down the larger areas. Once you have coated all the parts, let the chemicals set and this may take up to an hour to get done. When that time is up, use another clean, soft cloth to wipe away any calcium and chemical residue.

Next, use an old toothbrush to scrub the parts clean using a little more of the chemicals. After you have finished scrubbing, rinse very well with warm water and use clean clothes to wipe anything that remains away.

Then, when that is done, mix some dishwashing soap with water and moisten a soft cloth with the solution. Wipe down the parts completely in order to remove any remaining chemical particles.

If you are not sure you got all the chemicals off or there is still some calcium deposit remaining, then repeat as necessary. Rinse once again very thoroughly. When you are sure all the chemicals have been removed, you can use the dispenser parts again.

Two Tips to Help You

Salt being added by the bucket full to a water softener

Tip 1 – To avoid this problem and the cleaning it takes to get the dispenser ready for action again, buy a water softener or a water conditioning device. These may cost some money but it does save you the headache that comes with hard water usage.

Tip 2 – An electric toothbrush can really get into those small areas where larger toothbrushes and cloths cannot go. If you have one in your home, it is an excellent cleaning device

No matter where you live, or what device you use, cleaning is always going to be a part of ownership. Make sure you learn the proper methods of cleaning up calcium deposits left by hard water. It takes more time than energy but once you are done, you know your drinking water is safe again.

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