Side-by-Side Refrigerator Drain Tube

Refrigerators with automatic defrost have a drain tube that carries water from the defrost cycle to a fixed drain pan under the refrigerator.


The usual evidence of a clogged drain in a side-by-side is the discovery of ice under the bottom basket in the freezer compartment. You may also see a puddle of water on the floor when it runs out the freezer door.


Some side-by-side models have the defrost drain hole located on the back wall of the freezer, just up from where the floor slopes up to the back, in the center. In some models it is behind a plastic panel held in place by a screw. Remove screw and panel, and the drain hole will be visible.


If the drain tube is clogged it can be cleaned or flushed out on most models. If the drain tube can be cleaned on your model without service, instructions will be in the Owner's Manual. Download a copy of the Owner's Manual.

  • Allow ice accumulation to thaw and inspect lower rear interior of freezer.
  • Flush out the drain hole with a solution of 1 tsp. baking soda and 2 cups of hot tap water in a meat/turkey (bulb) baster. When clear, you will hear water running down into the drain pan below.
  • Once the drain has been cleared by using the procedure in this text, this condition can be prevented from recurring by pouring a solution of baking soda (one teaspoon) and two cups hot (not boiling water into drain opening once or twice a year.

For service, please schedule an appointment with GE Appliances Factory Service.