For some reason, most Bosch refrigerators eventually run into a similar problem – the ice maker stops working. There are countless cases of Bosch refrigerator owners who say they’ve had this problem.
Here’s the good news – after working on used appliances for over a decade now, I can tell you that around 80% of all Bosch refrigerator ice makers that are not working are relatively easy to fix.
If you try each and every one of these solutions, I am extremely confident one of them will work for you.
NOTE: You’ll find Bosch ice makers in two main locations: inside the top of the refrigerator, and/or in the bottom freezer drawer. I’ll provide instructions for each.
Bosch Ice Maker Not Working
If your Bosch ice maker is not working, you need to make sure it is turned on. Fully remove the ice bucket. Next, locate the small power button on the right side of the ice maker and ensure it’s ON. You will see an LED light up, indicating your ice maker has power.
This is always the very first thing you should check!
Confirm ice maker is ON and check temp
Yes, I know, this sounds obvious. But you’d be surprised by how many Bosch ice makers I got working again simply by turning them ON!
Start by locating your ice maker’s ON/OFF button.
NOTE: Depending on which model Bosch refrigerator you own, your ice maker may, or may not have an “ON/OFF” switch, and that’s OK!
On newer models of Bosch refrigerators you’ll see the ON/OFF button for the ice maker hidden on the side of the ice maker, as indicated below.
But regardless of which Bosch model refrigerator you own, just make sure you look for an ice maker ON/OFF button, and ensure it is ON.
If you can’t find a physical ON/OFF button on the ice maker itself, you likely have an ON/OFF button on the display on the front of your refrigerator door!
Or, with the refrigerator doors open, you may find this “display” inside, on the top, or side of the refrigerator.
Simply confirm that your display shows ICE turned ON.
There are several different types of temperature controls depending on the Bosch model refrigerator you own. All of them are fairly straightforward to adjust.
If you can’t change the display, it might be locked. Hold the lock icon for 3 seconds or so and that should unlock your display.
While you’re at the refrigerator display, take a moment to ensure the refrigerator is at, or under 37°F and your freezer temp is at, or under -0°F.
This will allow your ice machine to perform better, especially during summer months when the ground water can reach temps of 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit!
After you make this adjustment, allow your refrigerator 24 hours to adjust.
Ok, now that we’ve made sure your ice maker is actually ON, and your refrigerator/freezer are set to the right temperature, let’s power-cycle it.
Power-cycle ice maker
Power-cycling your Bosch ice maker is another easy, common way to get it working again.
To start, fully remove the ice bucket.
You already located the ON/OFF button in the previous step. Now simply turn the ice maker OFF, wait 10 seconds, then turn it back ON. You should see/hear the ice maker motor attempt to work.
If your Bosch refrigerator doesn’t have an ice maker ON/OFF switch, simply unplug your refrigerator from the wall and wait a full 2 minutes before plugging it back. This will reset your entire refrigerator, including the ice maker.
Ok, now that you’ve successfully power-cycled your ice maker, it’s time to check whether or not the bail arm magnet is dislodged.
Check if bail arm magnet is dislodged
One very common issue with Bosch ice makers is the bail arm magnet becoming dislodged. When this happens, your ice maker thinks the ice bucket is full, and it won’t make any more ice.
To check if this is the issue, you DO NOT have to take the entire ice maker out. You simply need to take out several screws surrounding the face of the ice maker, as well as a single screw on the top of the ice maker face itself.
Once you get the plastic face off, you’ll see part of the ice maker bail arm, outlined by the red box below.
When your Bosch ice box fills up with ice, the bail arm gets pushed up, and the piece outlined above gets pushed back and off of a sensor (as highlighted below). You can see the sensor (circled in green) is revealed when the ice bucket fills up.
There is a magnet on the other side of the bail arm plastic that normally contacts this sensor. When the sensor is not being contacted by the magnet, your Bosch ice maker stops making ice.
Below you can see an example of this magnet becoming dislodged. The magnet, circled in green below, is out of position. It should be attached to the back of the plastic, where the red arrow is pointing.
If you see this magnet in the wrong location, you’ll need to fix it. I recommend using a tiny bit of super glue to fasten the magnet to the back of the plastic bail arm so this doesn’t happen again!
Clear out compacted ice from ice bucket
If, after power-cycling and resetting your Bosch ice maker, it still doesn’t work, it’s time to clear out your ice bucket.
Sometimes, the ice inside the ice bucket becomes compacted – it turns into a solid chunk of ice. This can happen if you’re opening and closing the door often, or if the ice hasn’t been used in awhile.
A chunk of ice can easily obstruct the ice dispenser/shoot, blocking any ice from being ejected.
The easiest thing to do here is take out and empty the ice bucket. Alternatively you could fish around the ice bucket and remove any chunks of ice you find.
Hopefully that frees up the ice maker and it starts working again.
Unblock the ice maker bail arm
Now that you’ve removed any compacted ice from the ice bucket, let’s make sure the bail arm isn’t jammed/blocked.
The bail arm starts in the down position, signaling to your Bosch refrigerator to create more ice. As the ice bucket fills up, the bail arm gets pushed up, signaling to your Bosch refrigerator to stop making ice.
If this bail arm is stuck (pushed up) your refrigerator/freezer will think the ice bucket is full and won’t make any ice!
Note that not all Bosch ice makers have a bail arm! If yours doesn’t, just move ahead.
Also note that depending on your refrigerator model, this component may be a “paddle arm” or IR sensor. While the name and look of all of these differ, their function and purpose are all the same.
You want to make sure nothing is blocking these from doing their jobs of checking how much ice is in the bucket!
And for ice makers with the bail arm and paddle arms, ensure the arms are down/in the resting position! If the arm is lifted, your ice maker won’t make ice.
Keep in mind that each of these components may look a bit different depending on where the ice maker is located in your refrigerator! For example, the IR sensors in a freezer ice maker look a bit different than the sensors on a door ice maker.
Make sure water is on
Next, you’ll want to go ahead and double check that your water is turned on. You need water to make ice after-all!
If your Bosch refrigerator has a water dispenser, the easiest way to check if the water is ON and working is to simply fill up a glass with water.
If the dispenser doesn’t dispense any water, you have a problem!
There are few possible reasons why your refrigerator isn’t dispensing water. The first is a closed home water supply valve. Make sure this valve is connected, and in the OPEN position.
Once you’ve confirmed this valve is open, double check that there are no kinks in the refrigerator water lines.
Finally, water won’t dispense from the refrigerator if the fridge thinks one or more of the doors is open. Make sure nothing is blocking the doors from closing, then test the push switch on each door.
When this switch is pushed and held in, the light on that side of the refrigerator should turn off. If it doesn’t, this may indicate a loose connection underneath the top door hinge.
NOTE: if there isn’t a push switch on the door, it’s likely magnetic. You can still activate it by holding a magnet over that section of the door frame.
Check water pressure and change water filter
Now that we know the water is on, we need to confirm that the water pressure is sufficient.
Water pressure is critical when it comes to making ice! We’re looking for between 20-120 PSI without a water filter, and 40-120 PSI with a water filter installed.
Instead of hiring a plumber or technician, you can go to Home Depot or Lowe’s and purchase an affordable pressure gauge.
Simply connect this gauge to an outdoor water spigot, and see what kind of pressure (PSI) your home is getting!
Keep in mind that water filters can have a big impact on the water pressure your ice maker is receiving. That’s because Bosch manufactures their water filters to precisely control the feed rate of water into the ice maker.
During the ice making process, the ice maker water valve is only opened for a moment, just long enough to fill the ice tray. If the water pressure is off, even by a little bit, you could experience problems.
If your water filter is older than 6 months, consider replacing it. Over time, minerals from the water supply can build up inside the filter and partially, or fully clog it.
I also suggest you avoid any after market water filters. After market filters are unlikely to have the correct specs, and may impact your Bosch refrigerator’s ability to create ice.
If you do end up replacing the water filter, make sure you purge any excess air built up in the lines by filling up a few cups of water from the refrigerator door.
Finally, in rare cases, the water inlet valve/pump from the back, bottom of your Bosch refrigerator can fail. If it does, you may get low water pressure, or no water at all.
Defrost ice maker fill tube
Speaking of water pressure, it’s possible the water flow to your ice maker is low, or fully blocked due to a frozen fill tube.
The “fill tube” is just the tube that fills up the ice tray with water.
You’ll want to find where the water enters your ice maker (location will vary depending on model) and ensure that this fill tube is not frozen or obstructed in any way.
If it is frozen, try using a hair dryer to thaw it out. Be careful not to get the tube or any other component of the ice maker too hot as it may melt/deform it.
Refrigerator isn’t getting cold enough
It’s also possible that your Bosch refrigerator simply isn’t getting cool enough.
There are a number of steps you can take if your refrigerator is not getting cold enough to produce ice:
- Confirm that the power outlet is working
- Unplug refrigerator for 2 minutes before plugging back
- Lower the temperature setting
- Check that the refrigerator and freezer doors are closing fully
- Clean off the condenser vent and coils
- Make sure the condenser fan is working
- Check if the compressor relay failed
- Confirm that the defrost heater is working
- Make sure the defrost thermostat is working
- Check if the evaporator fan is working
- Unclog the defrost drain
You can click the link just above this list for a more detailed break down of each step.
How to order Bosch refrigerator replacement parts
Hopefully you were able to discover exactly what’s causing your Bosch ice maker not to work.
If you found a bad or defective part, you’ll need to replace it.
Depending on your refrigerator model, the model number may be located in a handful of different spots.
Look on the inside of the refrigerator and the freezer. You should eventually find a sticker with all the details regarding your appliance.
You’ll want to take down the exact model number of your refrigerator.
Finally, type that model number into Sears Parts Direct and locate the exact part you need.
Bosch refrigerator user manual
Now that you have your Bosch refrigerator model number, you can type it into the search bar of Bosch.com and pull up the user manual from your fridge.
The user manual will likely have some additional, model specific troubleshooting steps you can try in addition to what I’ve described here.
If your Bosch ice maker is still not working, you’ll likely need to replace the entire ice making unit.
Unfortunately, these types of fixes typically require a trained professional. I’d start by contacting Bosch support.
You can reach them at 1-800-944-2904.
You can also schedule time online for a certified service technician to come directly to you. In some cases, your warranty will cover the entire cost!
When your Bosch ice maker is not working, there are several proven ways to fix it:
- Confirm ice maker is ON
- Set refrigerator temperature to 37°F and the freezer to -0°F
- Turn ice maker OFF and then back ON again
- Check if bail arm magnet is dislodged
- Clear out compacted ice from ice bin
- Unblock bail arm, paddle arm or IR sensors
- Make sure water is ON and pressure is between 40-120 PSI
- Replace water filter if it is more than 6 months old
- Defrost ice maker fill tube
- Investigate why your appliance isn’t getting cold enough
If you discover a faulty part, simply order a replacement.
If none of these fixes work, your best bet is to hire a certified technician to come and take a look.