Most refrigerator manufacturers offer models with automatic ice makers and dispensers for cold water built into the refrigerators’ doors. These dispensers offer convenience because they automatically replenish themselves from the household water supply. But they must be connected to the house plumbing. Hookup kits include flexible tubing and compatible fittings to make the connection.
Most flexible copper refrigerator water lines have an outside diameter of 1/4 inch. Most flexible plastic water lines for refrigerators come with outside diameters of either 1/4 inch or 5/16 inch. Check your refrigerator's owner's manual or the manufacturer's website for the recommended size and type of water line for your unit.
Installing a refrigerator water line involves tapping into the household cold water supply line at a point close to the refrigerator. Many water line kits include a saddle-type shutoff valve that pierces the supply pipe to get water without soldering or cutting the pipe. Alternatively, you can cut the water line and install a soldered or compression tee with a standard water-supply shutoff valve. You run the tubing to the refrigerator, and then you connect one end to the shutoff valve and the other to the refrigerator by tightening compression fittings.