Harry bought a KitchenAid oven back in 2006, but he doesn’t use his oven very much. He was deployed in the military, and hasn’t even been home for much of the time that he’s owned the appliance. Cleaning his house in preparation for his upcoming wedding, he tried out the oven’s self-cleaning feature for the first time. This turned out to be a bad idea.
Yes, he can get the oven fixed for less than a new oven would cost, but that isn’t the point. Harry doesn’t understand why a known defect in an essential home appliance is something that a customer has to take care of himself.
I noticed that the oven has a self cleaning feature, and me being a guy thought, hey, multitask! I can put the self cleaning on and mop the floors in the meantime. So about 4 hours later I decided to take a lunch break and check on the stove. The stove was off, all of the power to the unit was dead and the oven door remained locked. I searched the internet for help and ended up finding pretty much that this is a widely known flaw with Kitchen Aid/Whirlpool appliances. To sum up what happens the oven heats up so much that the thermal breaker melts and trips. Since it’s not a resettable breaker you have to buy a new one and install it.
This is the first time that I have ever used the self cleaning feature. Even though I purchased the oven back in 2006 I have been deployed overseas for around 4 1/2 years so the oven just sat in my house.
Harry contacted KitchenAid to see whether they knew anything about ovens shutting down after running the self-cleaning cycle. What? No way. They had never heard of it, even though Harry found hundreds of similar complaints online about other appliances in the Whirlpool family.
“I would not have used the self cleaning feature on a brand new oven within a few months of purchase, and with all of my deployments the oven hasn’t had a lot of use, so I never had a need to use the self cleaning feature,” he pointed out in his e-mail to Consumerist. He bought a whole suite of KitchenAid appliances for his home, even a microwave and stand mixer: he wonders, why won’t the company respect his loyalty and at least send him the $50 replacement part that would make his oven door open again?
KitchenAid has a very responsive Twitter presence, which might provide some help. KitchenAid is a division of Whirlpool, so the executive customer service information for Whirlpool that we published a few years ago might help if you’re dealing with a similar problem.