Can I Run My Samsung Refrigerator Without the Water Filter?

Can I Run My Samsung Refrigerator Without The Water Filter

Cool water and an ice machine are a refreshing luxury. Refrigerators that dispense water or ice are usually equipped with a water filter to ensure the water is safe and clean.

If you are in a position where you want to use your fridge without a water filter or are unable to get a replacement water filter, you may be wondering if you can still run your fridge without the water filter.

Most Samsung refrigerators can run without a water filter because they have a rotary valve to let the water bypass the filter. Some Samsung refrigerators require a filter bypass plug to operate without the filter in place.

If you are happy with the taste and smell of your current water, you might choose not to use the Samsung water filter. This post will explore in more detail your options for using or bypassing the water filter in your Samsung refrigerator.

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How a Samsung Refrigerator Runs Without a Water Filter

Most Samsung refrigerators have water dispensers and ice makers that make your life more convenient. These refrigerators have an inline water filter to remove chlorine and other impurities that can give your water a bad taste.

Many people do not want to use the refrigerator filter that comes with their Samsung unit. There might be a few reasons why you didn’t opt for the water filter system in your fridge.

  • Is your water is already filtered using a superior filtration system?
  • Or are you simply happy with the water quality as it is?

Some people choose to stop using the filter system because they don’t want to continuously change the water filter, while others are unable to get a replacement but still want to use the fridge and water until they can get a new one.

Most Samsung fridges don’t need the water filter in place to keep the cool water and fresh ice flowing, so you can continue to enjoy those features.

Newer models usually have a bypass system that allows them to continue operating if the filter is removed or not locked in place. If the fridge does not have an automatic filter bypass system, you will need a filter bypass plug that is suitable for your model.

Determining if Your Fridge Has an Automatic Filter Bypass System.

It is really easy to check whether your fridge has an automatic filter bypass system in place.

  • Start by removing your water filter from the fridge.
  • Next check to see if your water dispenser and ice maker continue to work when the filter has been removed.
  • If they still work after removing the filter, then your fridge has an automatic filter bypass system.
  • If the water dispenser and ice machine stop working, then you will need to get a filter bypass plug.

The Refrigerator Requires a Filter Bypass Plug

Fortunately, a Samsung filter bypass plug is cheap and easy to install if you need one. The plug allows you to use your water dispenser and ice machine without a filter. By communicating with the refrigerator’s control system, this device alerts it that the proper device is hooked up. As a result, components such as the water and ice systems can function as usual.

The water filter bypass plug will only fit certain models of Samsung fridge. To see if your model is compatible, you need to check it before purchasing the product.

What Kind of Water Filtration System Do Samsung Refrigerators Use?

Samsung refrigerators use a carbon water filtration system. Carbon filtration systems work by absorption. Granular activated carbon systems work by absorption. Activated carbon has a slight electro-positive charge. Negative ions in impurities are attracted to this charge and absorbed by the carbon

The carbon filtration systems used in refrigerators and ice machines are known as point-of-use filters. That means that the filter is in place just before the point where the water is dispensed.

What Do Samsung Water Filters Remove

A carbon filtration system is particularly effective at removing volatile organic compounds from water. They are effective at removing unwanted odors and tastes from water. They will also remove chlorine and sediment from water.

According to the Samsung website a Samsung water filter is capable of removing chlorine, lead, mercy, pesticides, herbicides, and pharmaceuticals. 

Samsung Water filters are certified by NSF you can check the effectiveness of the water filter you are using according to their rating system.

What Refrigerator Filters Do Not Remove

Refrigerator filters do not remove sodium, nitrates, and fluorides. A reverse osmosis system is required for the removal of these compounds.  Refrigerator filters are also ineffective at removing PFAS chemicals from the water.

Reverse osmosis filtration systems are in general effective at removing these types of contaminants.

A reverse osmosis system will often use a high-quality carbon filter first then a membrane to separate the water from harmful elements. A reverse Osmosis system that uses a multi-stage filtration system that includes high-quality carbon filtering is often the most effective way to filter water.

If your home already uses this system, it makes sense to bypass your water filter system in your fridge as your water will already be of high quality.

Samsung Water Filter Light

You may have noticed your fridge has a water filter light.

Samsung recommends that you change your water filter every six months. The water filter light on the refrigerator will turn red when the water filter has been in place for 6 months.

If you have not used your water dispenser that frequently you may decide you do not need to change it after 6 months. You may want to bypass the filter or reset the water filter light to stop it from blinking red.

You can find information on how to reset the water filter light on different models of Samsung refrigerators here.


In conclusion, you can run your Samsung refrigerator without the water filter as generally they have a built-in water filter bypass for ease of use. If they do not have the water bypass valve, you will need to buy and install a water filter bypass plug. This device will allow you to still use the water and ice machine when the filter is not in place.

Chief Guru

Richard Boch is a chemical engineer responsible for designing water filtration systems for industrial and residential customers. He has more than 20 years of experience with ion exchange, activated carbon, and reverse osmosis. Richard's expertise has made him a go-to source for municipalities and businesses looking to improve their water quality. When he's not working, Richard enjoys spending time with his wife and two young children. You can also follow him on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

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