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How to install an icemaker water supply line over concrete floor?

I just bought a house with a concrete slab floor (no under-floor access, built in 1972). After closing, I found out the refrigerator icemaker doesn't work because it has no water supply. Upon further investigation, the nearest water source is the kitchen sink, which is on the wall opposite the refrigerator, about 8 feet away. The kitchen is U-shaped, sink on one leg of U, refrigerator on opposite leg, with a doorway at the bottom of the U. I have thought of 4 methods, listed in order of difficulty, easiest first, best permanent solution last, and would appreciate somebody listing some better alternatives.

(1) Buy a rectangular 5-gallon plastic water tank (about 12'' X 12'' x 4'' high) x and set on top of refrigerator. Connect it to the icemaker, and refill once every 2 or 3 weeks. Reset the icemaker ejector timer to offset the low water pressure. Easiest, but least desirable solution.

(2) Cut holes in the sheetrock walls behind the frig and underneath the sink. Run PVC conduit (necessary for replacing the line when it freezes as it surely will eventually) up the sink wall into the attic, across the attic, and down into the frig wall. Pull a plastic or copper supply line into the conduit. When it freezes, I can pull it out and pull in a new one.

(3) Cut the same wall holes, but cut additional temporary access holes in the doorway wall, and run the tubing completely inside the walls and above the doorway. Advantage is the line is less likely to freeze in the interior walls, disadvantage is the extra holes that will have to be refinished and repapered.

(4) Remove some vinyl floor tiles, get a concrete saw and saw a 1'' wide x 2'' or 3'' deep trench across the 8' wide floor. Install 3/4'' PVC conduit with 45-degree bend on each end, grout and finish to original floor level, pull in copper tubing, connect it up, buy new floor tiles if a match can be found, otherwise replace all tiles in kitchen. I think this is best long-term solution, but I hesitate to tackle the dusty noisy concrete sawing. Holes in the walls will still probably be necessary to get the trench far enough back against the walls. There is a small risk also of sawing into the existing water lines.

Anyone have some additional options?

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Posted on Jan 20, 2009


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