8 Reasons the Opal Nugget Ice Maker Isn’t Making Ice

The Opal Nugget Ice Maker is an expensive machine, if you have invested in one you are understandably frustrated if yours isn’t making ice.

Thankfully there is usually a simple explanation. Here we break down the most common reasons why your Opal isn’t working. 

The Opal Nugget Ice Maker will produce its first nuggets of ice in 15-30 minutes. If yours does not produce ice after this time it may be because it is on the incorrect mode. Alternatively, it could be that it has run out of water or the ice chute is blocked.

Opal Nugget Ice Makers are incredible at making soft and chewable nugget ice and it's normal to rely on it to keep your drinks chilled and get through your day. So it can be extremely annoying if it stops working, especially if you don't know why.

Read on for the most common reasons why your Opal nugget ice maker isn’t producing ice and our top tips on how to troubleshoot each problem.

We promise to have you back enjoying those icy nugget chips in no time!

1. It Has Run Out of Water

At the start of the process, the Opal will flush the system with water for approximately 5 minutes. It is normal to hear water running during this process. 

If your ice maker seems loud during the flushing stage this is a sign that it needs more water. 

You may be wondering how long does it take for the Opal Ice Maker to make ice? It can take up to 30 minutes so you may simply need to give it more time. 

However, if your Opal isn't making ice after 30-60 minutes then yes something is definitely wrong. It should not take more than 30 minutes or so to start producing the first nuggets of ice.

Unfortunately the Opal doesn’t come with a water line.

So, if it runs out of water, it will stop working. If the Add Water symbol is lit then this is a key sign that your unit needs some more water before it can start producing ice. 

Solution: Refill and retry. Always ensure your system is filled adequately before the flushing stage. Check for the Add Water light to see if this is the issue.

2. It is in Cleaning mode

If the Opal is in cleaning mode, it won’t produce ice. There are a few ways to check whether your device is in cleaning mode. 

Solution: Look at the app to check the status of the machine or check the front of the device. If it has a round button this will flash yellow. You will need to wait for cleaning mode to finish before you can commence making ice. 

The Opal Ice Maker needs regular cleaning, which can take a long time. This is one of the problems with the Opal Ice Maker but it's better to have a clean ice maker than one that is moldy or making bad tasting ice.

3. It is in Defrosting mode

Similar to cleaning mode, if the ice maker is in defrosting mode, you’ll need to give it a little time before it will start producing ice. 

Your Opal Ice Maker will defrost itself automatically when needed.

If it starts to make a squeaking sound this is often an indicator that ice has started to build up around the mechanisms inside. 

Solution: Wait it out. The defrost cycle can take up to 30-45 minutes, though the dispenser model can complete a defrost in as little as 10-20 minutes.

Click here to learn more about exactly how the Opal Nugget Ice Maker works to make nugget ice. It's a very interesting process and different from other countertop ice makers.

4. The Storage Container Isn’t Inserted Properly

If you have not locked the storage container in place correctly, then this could be the problem. 

It is easy to spot if this is the case because the device will keep turning itself off every five minutes.   

Solution: Ensure you slide the ice box fully into the machine. You may want to take it out, empty it and then place it back in firmly to ensure it is in correctly.

5. Ice Chute Blocked

One reason why your Opal may not be producing ice is because the ice chute is blocked. 

If you have not cleaned your Opal in over a month then it is likely that this is the reason.

Solution: Clean the system.

  • Fill the reservoir with undiluted vinegar to the maximum fill line.
  • Run the cleaning cycle with vinegar three times – this will take approximately 20 minutes.
  • Soak a sponge or cloth with vinegar and place it in the ice chute, let the vinegar soak for 18 hours. This will dissolve hard water deposits (This stage may need to be repeated)
  • Wipe the Opal with clean water to remove vinegar.
  • Clean all the sensors with vinegar then wipe with clean water.
  • After draining the vinegar, run the ‘clean cycle’ three times using fresh water for each rinse.

6. Schedule is Enabled in SmartHQ App 

Another reason why your Opal Ice Maker is not producing ice is because the Schedule feature may be enabled via the SmartHQ™ App. 

You can set your Opal to a particular schedule so it only runs when you want it to (eg. during the day) and not when you don't want it to (eg. At night when you're asleep). This will help it to save power and only make ice when it's needed.

Once Schedule is enabled, your Opal will check to see if it should be ‘on’ or ‘off’ every hour. 

If you manually turn your Opal ‘on’ when it is scheduled to be ‘off’, it will shut down the next time it checks the schedule. 

Solution: Go to the mobile app and disable the schedule. Alternatively you could unplug your Opal, wait a moment, then plug it back in.  

7. Slush Instead of Ice

When the Opal first starts making ice it will have a somewhat slushy consistency – this is normal and it's due to the way nugget ice makers work.

However, after approximately 30 minutes the Opal should be making firm ice nuggets. If yours isn't then this is not normal. 

Solution: If the temperature is warm and your Opal used to make good nuggets of ice then you should try cleaning it. It is likely that minerals have built up inside. 

8. Fault with Machine

If you have tried all the common problems listed here and your system is still not working then consider that there may be a fault with your machine. 

Solution: Try to reset the Ice Maker by unplugging the unit for 3-4 hours. If this doesnt work then consider contacting Customer Support

Luckily the Opal Nugget Ice Maker is backed by a warranty so if you have any serious issues then the company can help you resolve them, provide you with replacement parts or with a complete replacement if it's within the warranty period.

The high quality of this machine plus the warranty and brand reputation (and the great nugget ice cubes it makes) means for many people the Opal Nugget Ice Maker is 100% worth the money.

If you don't yet have an Opal or you want to buy a new one you can check out the latest prices at the link below:

See the latest price of the GE Opal Nugget Ice Maker at Amazon
(or compare to the price of the GE Opal Nugget Ice Maker at Walmart)

GE Profile Opal 2.0 | Countertop Nugget Ice Maker with Side Tank | Ice Machine with WiFi Connectivity | Smart Home Kitchen Essentials | Stainless Steel


As you can see there are many potential reasons why your Opal Nugget Ice Maker is not making ice. 

If it doesn't have enough water then the system will sound very loud during the flushing process and the Add Water symbol will be lit. 

Perhaps the system is in the wrong mode? If it's cleaning or defrosting then it will not make ice, why not download the app so you can easily check if this is the issue? 

If you have the app and have set up a schedule, this may be the problem. Unplug your device or disable your schedule to see if this is what is messing up the system!

You may have a really simple problem like the storage container needs to be inserted fully, if the device keeps turning off after five minutes then this is a clear sign that you need to reinsert the storage container. 

If you keep getting slush or suspect the ice chute is blocked then your system might just need a good clean! Manufacturers guidelines suggest that you should be cleaning the Opal every month, if it's been longer than this then mineral deposits have likely built up inside. 

If none of the solutions above are working then definitely consider contacting Customer Support for assistance.