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How To Change The Water Filter On A GE Refrigerator | 10 Step Guide

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Tim Rhodes

Local water treatment plants will cleanse the water only to a certain extent, but knowing how to change the water filter on a GE refrigerator on your own will ensure that you drink the clean and tasty water that you deserve. 

Tap water contains many pollutants, such as lead and chlorine.

The filter present in the refrigerator will help us to remove these pollutants which treatment plants fail to remove.

Refrigerators use an activated carbon filtration system.

Many different types of filters are available in the market to choose from.

Refrigerator water filters are far better than the pitcher water filters which we use at home.

When it comes to changing the water filter on GE refrigerator these steps are important as these filters provide us with clean and healthy water.

Before you continue, check out these most popular water faucet filters:

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  • PUR has been developing innovative technologies for superior water filtration for over 30 years.

Last update on 2023-12-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Brita Tap Water Filter System
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Last update on 2023-12-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


About General Electric(GE) Refrigerators

For more than 25 years, GE appliances have been making people’s lives better.

They have electrified and modernized lives.

They have a wide variety of products produced every year, which include water dispensaries, coffee making refrigerators, ovens, etc.

How Do Refrigerator Filters Work?

Refrigerator water filters contain activated carbon.

The carbon gets compressed to a solid form, as opposed to granular and sand filters.

Such filters also have supplementary media substances in addition to compressed and solid carbon.

This type of filter is called a multimedia filter.

These filters clean water through a physical and chemical process.

Physically, these filters stop the entities which are larger than the water molecule, including dirt, sand, etc. 

Chemically, through adsorption, the charged carbon will pull all the pollutants by making the pollutants break their bonds with water.

The contaminated water goes through activated carbon inside the filters.

This carbon will trap the particles that are present in the water.

The filter can take only remove so many particles before getting replaced.

After a specific time, the filter becomes overused and it can’t filter the water that passes through it.

The carbon inside the water filter filled with contaminants and the water passes through unfiltered.

The result will be polluted water.

The refrigerator filters require replacement and maintenance regularly.

Replacement of the water filter every 3-6 months is required.

Why Do You Need To Change Your Refrigerator Water Filter?

The water that comes from the refrigerator traveled miles of tubing.

The water picks up some bugs and dirt in the traveling process.

So before it reaches our mouth and our stomach, it needs to be cleaned.

Water filters remove so many things such as benzene, chlorine, lead, mercury, pesticides e.t.c.

These things should not float on our drinking water for our health.

There are sure signs we should watch out for if we need to change our water filter.

Some of them are:

  • Floaters on the water are a good indicator of a lousy water filter
  • The taste and smell of the water are nasty
  • The ice maker is not working correctly
  • The dispensing of the water is slower than usual

Features Of The GE Refrigerator Water Filter

General Electric(GE) is one of the top manufacturers of refrigerators, and their water filters are specifically designed to purify water and ice cubes. 

Every water filter of the company is compatible with all the refrigerators.

The GE Smartwater Filter Removes Many Contaminants

The water tastes great and potentially healthy, with all the beneficial minerals.

Essential minerals like fluoride are left behind even after the pollutants get removed.

Eliminates almost all the pollutants that cause a foul smell and odor like lead, mercury, etc.

Heavy metals, parasites, and traces of pesticides and pharmaceuticals get removed.

The GE Smartwater Filter Is NSF Certified

National Sanitation Foundation(NSF), an accredited, independent that tests and certifies products to ensure they meet public health and safety standards endorsed this filter.

The GE Smartwater Filter Has a Long Lifespan

The lifespan of the filter is about six months or filtering of 310 gallons of water.

However, if you find that the water flow has decreased, the filter needs changing.

Which Is The Best GE Smartwater Filter?

GE has got some of the best smart water filters in the market.

We can buy a genuine water filter that is compatible with the refrigerator either from the manufacturer or for a reasonable price online.

There are multiple products in this line to choose from:

GE SmartWater RPWFE Replacement Water Filter

This filter is for the refrigerators that have large, round, and white-colored twist-and-lock filters. 

This filter eliminates almost all the contaminants present in the water

It has a lengthy lifespan(300 gallons or six months) and economical as well.

The installation is easy too.

GE MSWF SmartWater Refrigerator Water Filter (3 Pack)

This model filter will keep the refrigerator-dispenced drinking water crystal clear.

This NSF certified water filter removes all the sediments and the pollutants that are present in the water.

This filter has a long lifespan and it is cost-effective as well.

GE MWF SmartWater Replacement Refrigerator Water Filter Cartridge (2 Pack)

MWF water filter is another excellent offering from General Electric.

It combines effective and comprehensive filtering that removes all the contaminants.

Both cost-effective and long-span life.

 The indicator on the dispenser will turn to red color when the water filter is damaged.

The flow of water also goes down if the filter gets broken.

Touch screen models will display a filter status message.

If the refrigerator does not contain indicators, replace the filter every six months.

Check which type of water filter it is using when you get the signs of a damaged water filter from the refrigerator.

(Note: No need for shutting down the water supply for replacing the filter)

Ten Steps To Replace The MWF Water Filter In Your GE Refrigerator

  1. Locate the filter, look into the upper right corner of the refrigerator
  2. Place a towel underneath the filter as removing the old filter makes some water drip
  3. Turn the filter to the left until it releases
  4. Once the filter is released, take the screen out
  5. Prepare the new filter, fill it with tap water
  6. Position the filter into the holder with the arrow facing out
  7. Now turn the filter to the right until its tight, don’t overtighten
  8. Run roughly one to one and a half gallons through the filter to remove any air in the system
  9. A little water may spurt through the dispenses at the start, be sure to use a large pitcher to collect the water
  10. It’s normal to see water discoloration initially but it will get back to normal after some time

Ten Steps To Replace And Install The RPWFE Water Filter In Your GE Refrigerator

  1. Locate the filter, look into the refrigerator on the upper right corner as some fridges have the filter inside the left door
  2. Begin by placing a towel underneath the filter to capture any dripping water while replacing the filter
  3. Move the old filter to the right until it stops, stop indicates that the filter is ready to be removed; it will not come out if it’s not in this position
  4. Now pull the filter out and don’t twist the cartridge when you pull the filter out
  5. Place the top of the new filter in the holder with the word “front” facing upwards
  6. Now gently push the filter in until it locks up into the holder
  7. Now swing the filter to the left back into the cartridge, if the filter doesn’t swing, double-check whether it’s aligned and engaged correctly and then lose the filter door
  8. Run roughly one to one and a half gallons through the filter to remove any air in the system
  9. A little water may spurt through the dispenses at the start, be sure to use a large pitcher to collect the water
  10. It’s normal to see water discoloration initially, but it will get back to normal after some time

Ten Steps To Replace And Install The MSWF/GSWF Water Filter In Your GE Refrigerator

  1. Locate the filter, look into the upper right corner of the refrigerator
  2. Place a towel underneath the filter to collect any dripping water from removing the old filter
  3. To remove the filter, turn the filter in a counter-clockwise direction until the holder releases the filter and remove the filter cover for a better grip on the filter
  4. After the filter is released, pull out and remove the water filter, if the filter seems difficult to remove then dispense one full glass of water to remove any air in the system
  5. Place the new filter into the holder with the word “front” facing upwards
  6. Now turn the filter in a clockwise direction until it tightens, don’t overtighten it in the process
  7. Fit the filter cover back on top of the new filter
  8. Run roughly one to one and a half gallons through the filter to remove any air in the system
  9. A little water may spurt through the dispenses at the start, be sure to use a large pitcher to collect the water
  10. It’s normal to see water discoloration initially, but it will get back to normal after some time

Advantages Of a Water Filtering System

Depending on the state of your current tap water, the water filter system in the refrigerator will most certainly make the water taste and smell better.

This betterness is the number one reason why people opt for an in-house refrigerator water filtering dispenser.

All the pollutants, mud, dirt, and human-made chemicals that get into the tap water will get removed, making the water smell and taste better.

Carbon Filtering Is The Most Advanced And Effective Process

The refrigerator dispensing system’s carbon filtering process got built upon the combination of both osmosis and distillation.

This combination makes it to cleanse water to its purest state.

This filtering process also makes the water to retain its minerals for our health.

This multimedia filtering is also a faster process when compared with osmosis and distillation.

Ease Of Use

The ease with which we can get purified and healthy water increase with the refrigerator dispensing system.

As we have seen above, the replacement and installation of a new water filter are also straightforward.

In The Long Run, These Systems Are Cost And Energy-Efficient

The refrigerator water dispensing system will give not only healthy and pure water, but these also help in reducing energy consumption.

The use of a water bottle made with plastic gets decreased which helps save the environment as well as reduce the cost of buying them and storing them.

The drinking of this healthy water will reduce the risk of health diseases.

Disadvantages Of a Water Filtering System

The installation and plumbing costs for the appliance are a little more when compared to other water filtering systems.

In the long term, these costs are compensated by energy consumption, reduction, and plastic bottle usage reduction.

Fluoride Removal

If the water filter removes all the chemicals, it will also be eliminating fluoride, which is an essential element.

Many cities intentionally put fluoride into the water to protect our teeth.

Removing fluoride means you have to make more dental appointments. 

Prolonged Carbon Exposure

If the filter used in the refrigerator is not useful or damaged, this will lead to prolonged exposure of water to activated carbon.

This exposure will lead to a change in the taste and smell of the water.

Replace the filter as soon as you see the change in taste and the smell of the water.

Beware Of The Substandard Water Filters

Carbon filters are useful because the permeability of the material allows the water through it while stopping the pollutants and impurities.

Low-quality water filters are risky.

They don’t catch as many impurities.

The manufacturing of these filters also has the risk of inducing pollutants into the filter.

The risks for drinking water from low-standard water filters include exposure to micro-organisms such as coliform and salmonella, which cause deadly diseases.

Water that gets exposed to such filters for a more extended period will see a significant change in the color taste and smell.

Different Types Of Water Filtering Systems Other Than Activated Carbon Method


This process includes heating water and turning it into steam in one chamber and them condensing it back into liquid form in another compartment.

The heat applied to the water will kill all the bacteria, viruses, and other deadly micro-organisms.

The distillation method often takes the form of either solar distillation or multi-stage flash distillation, both of which are relatively large and sophisticated systems. 

We can buy distilled water in bottles which will increase the plastic consumption and also a bit costly in the long run.


In this process, the water moves through a fibrous membrane which consists of microscopic holes.

These are most suited for large-scale industrial uses.

They can remove the dissolved contaminants in the water.

Reverse Osmosis

RO method uses a series of different filters to purify the water.

The name itself suggests that it reverses the natural process of osmosis and the water gets sent from the highly concentrated solution to a low concentrated one.

The high up-front costs and maintenance costs are a big drawback for this process.

Ultraviolet Filtration

UV filtration is not a very common process.

This process uses UV radiation to kill the micro-organisms, bacteria, and viruses present in the water.

This process is expensive to install, but the maintenance cost and energy consumption will be meager.

They don’t remove all the contaminants.

Infrared Filtration

Infrared Filtration is a relatively new process.

The water gets passed through Infrared radiation which kills some of the viruses and bacteria.

IR is not a very active process because it can’t remove all the contaminants.

Infrared unlike UV filtration can soften the water.

Hard water is the water that is high in calcium and magnesium, clogs the pipes more often.

Water Ionization

Water Ionization is a process that purifies the water by increasing its PH value.

Through electrolysis, water gets separated into acidic and alkaline streams.

The system then treats the alkaline water stream to get pure water out.

 Ionizing water is a bit expensive process when compared to other methods. 

Choosing The Right Filtration Method

There are so many filtration methods that are available in the market.

It is often difficult to choose one process to fulfill your needs and requirements.

One should take buying the filtration systems because they provide many advantages to health and also save the environment to a great extent.

No one kind of filter is superior to other filters.

Choose the filter that fulfills all the parameters like the tap water situation, cost of the filtration system, etc.

If the interest is only in getting better-tasting water, then opt for the filter with a cheaper, smaller charcoal filtering system.

If the filter has usage in largescale, opt for the filter with more cost and better technology like reverse osmosis.

Whatever the parameters may be there is a filter that is available for every situation.

The Dispenser Is a Cost-Effective And Eco-Friendly Choice

Dispensers focus on the efficiency of time and energy.

Thanks to removing of transporting and storing vast amounts of water bottles.

The use of plastic bottles gets significantly reduced by using the dispensary water, which will result in less environmental pollution.

Depending on the size of the business you can cut up to 30-70% of the expenses by using dispensers.

Switching to dispensers in business places such as offices will not only improve the health and safety of the workers, it will also show the willingness to reduce the usage of plastic.

By making the change we are improving the health and saving the environment at the same time. 

Things To Consider While Installing a Water Dispenser

Plumbing installation, required for a refrigerator with a water and ice dispensing system.

Check the budget and human resources required for the installation of the appliance with the plumbing system.

Ice dispenser reduces the freezer capacity of the refrigerator.

This trade-off is worth it for the people staying in hot climates and people who like entertainment often.

Have extra freezer storage somewhere else in the house.

If the quality of the water needs to be improved, then refrigerators with water filters and dispensers are the right choice.

Drinking from plastic bottles may not give the advantages given by the refrigerator.

If the local water source is a lake or a well, then Filtration is needed to remove the sediment accumulating in the dispenser.

Dispensers get designed for a quick glass of water.

Many of the refrigerators don’t have the room to accommodate water bottles.

The quick water dispensing will help in reducing water spills.

These features will increase the energy consumption.

These features will reduce the opening of the fridge doors many times, which will decrease energy consumption.

Dispensers will also help in reducing water wastage if you are paying per gallon.

Here are some of the most popular clean water products on the market:

FIJI Natural Artesian Bottled Water 500 mL / 16.9 Fl Ounce (Pack of 24)
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FIJI Natural Artesian Bottled Water 500 mL / 16.9 Fl Ounce (Pack of 24)
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  • Double Electrolytes: FIJI Water has more than double the electrolytes as the top premium bottled water brands for a...
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Ehm Ultra Premium Alkaline Water Filter Pitcher - 3.8L, Activated Carbon Filter- BPA Free, Healthy,...
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Ehm Ultra Premium Alkaline Water Filter Pitcher - 3.8L, Activated Carbon Filter- BPA Free, Healthy,...
  • SUPREME FAST FILTRATION: The fast adsorption speed and free flow design ensures extra fast and steady filtration, the...
  • DESIGNED FOR EFFICIENCY: This EHM Alkaline Water Pitcher is designed so that it is 100% user friendly and easy to...
  • PREMIUM QUALITY: When it comes to our EHM Alkaline Water Pitchers, we make a point of using nothing but the finest...
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Last update on 2023-12-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Final Thoughts

Tap water is mostly not good as it contains many harmful sediments, pesticides, bacteria, and unwanted chemicals.

Changing the water filter on GE refrigerator provides a solution for filtering this tap water and by knowing how to change the water filter on a GE refrigerator you will be sure that you are drinking clean, healthy water. 

These refrigerators use activated carbon as the filtering system.

This process cleans the water both physically and chemically.

Usually, the change is done every six months or for 31 gallons of water.

Check the type of filter that fits into your GE refrigerator and chose the replacement process.

The refrigerator water dispensing system is also a significant advantage in terms of cost-effectiveness and energy consumption reduction.

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