The Dangers of Not Changing a Refrigerator Water Filter

If you use your refrigerator as a source for water via the filter, then you must know that it can get dirty, it can get unhealthy, and it can potentially lead to many problems. 

And no, it’s not an insignificant issue. On the contrary, the sooner you find out why you need to change your filter, the sooner you will be back to drinking the cleanest, healthiest water possible.

In this article, we will cover the dangers of not changing the refrigerator water filter.

What Happens If You Don’t Change the Filter?

Before we get into the actual dangers of not changing the filter, let’s cover what will generally happen.

Refrigerator Expires Sooner

From not changing your refrigerator water filter, you invite a host of various bacteria and chemicals that are not good for the body, but they are not good for the refrigerator either. 

Failing to change the filter will prevent chemical buildup in the water supply and ice machine, which will start to deteriorate the functionality of your fridge. Wearing it down by decreasing water flow, and potentially leaking into other parts of the container.

Bad Tasting Water

Another important feature of a filter is the elimination of poor-tasting partitions within the water. If you don’t change the filter, your water will have a sulfuric/metallic taste to it.

In order to ensure you get the best tasting water out of the refrigerator, you have to get a quality filter and make sure to change them at equal intervals. Not only does good tasting water taste good, but it also makes your hydration a more enjoyable experience.

The Actual Dangers of Not Changing the Refrigerator Water Filter

Now that we’ve covered the general issues that arise with not changing a water filter, we can now take a look at the dangers that it poses to your health. A water filter serves the purpose of removing odor, impurities, and chemicals. In order to do this, it uses a combination of carbon filtration and sediment.

The water supply that reaches your refrigerator travels a large distance before it arrives at the destination of the dispensers. When it travels through the pipes and other areas, it can be introduced to deteriorating pipes, sewage, medication, manufacturing waste, etc. 

In order to prevent these different contaminants from being in your drinking water, a quality filter will participate in removing volatile organic compounds, lead, chlorine, and much more.

If you avoid changing your filter regularly, several of these issues can occur, which poses a great danger to you and your family:


When a filter exceeds its functional capacity, it will no longer be able to filter out the carbon particles in the water. Hence, carbon will enter the water in excessive amounts, which is not good for your health.


As the filter wears down, it won’t be able to stop bacteria from entering your drinking water. As bacteria grows, it multiplies on exponential levels, especially if the carbon level is already high. 

Because of the bacterial amount, you can get very sick. Experiencing a wide variety of illnesses, starting with gastrointestinal disease, flu symptoms, etc.


Chlorine helps in disinfecting our water in the pipes, but it can also burn your throat, and wear down the mucus in your body. 

Not to mention, nobody wants chlorine tasting water. A filter does a good job at removing it, but if your filter is old – you’ll likely be able to taste and smell the odor of chlorine.


Lead has debilitating effects on the brain, heart, kidneys, and ears. Your water supply should not contain any traces of lead, so a quality filter is paramount to your health.


Volatile organic compounds include pesticides, insecticides, herbicides – all of which can easily enter your drinking water when traveling from the supplier. And you don’t want those in your water.


Mercury damages the kidneys, brain, and developing fetus in pregnant women. In general, mercury cannot be found in quantities that would cause such harm in your water. But a filter will make sure to remove it completely. 


Asbestos, a material primarily found in insulation and construction, has a way of getting into the water via various channels. Not to mention, it can often be accompanied by pollution, piping erosion, and industrial waste. Asbestos has significant damaging effects on the respiratory system. 

How Often Should I Change the Filter?

First and foremost, it’s important to have a great filter. But how often you need to change it depends on a multitude of factors, such as the make and model of your fridge, the quality of your tap water, and how often you actually use the water from the filter. 

If you visit the website of your fridge provider, they usually have general recommendations of filter changing frequency. For instance, it’s regularly variably between 3 to 6 months. We recommend 6 months as a general rule, but if you use more or less water than the average person, then that time will fluctuate up or down.

Change That Filter

Now that you understand the critical dangers of not changing the refrigerator water filter, you’ll be in the know when it comes time to swap out your filter.

If you’re looking for a great replacement water filter that matches your fridge make and model, you should check our large selection of refrigerator filters at great prices. We also offer adjustable filter change reminders that will tell you exactly when it’s time to swap out the filter, so you won’t have to worry about remembering ever again.