Broken dishwasher a headache for couple

September 7, 2012 10:21:36 PM PDT
If your brand new appliance suddenly breaks down, should you demand a replacement? One Bay Area couple had no fewer than 15 repairs on their new dishwasher.

It was a year of complete frustration for a couple from San Rafael. Their new dishwasher had to be taken apart three times and then it just died. That's when they came to 7 On Your Side for help.

Grace Geraghty says new KitchenAid dishwasher used to clean her dishes to a shine.

So why is her husband washing dishes by hand? Grace says it's been a vicious cycle.

"I was really at the end of my rope because it's not a cheap dishwasher," she said.

The couple bought it last year for $800 and it was working perfectly at first. Seven months later, there was a problem.

"It wouldn't drain; there was always water down on the bottom," Grace said.

A KitchenAid repairman came out and told the couple to use less soap. Simple enough, except it didn't help.

Another repairman came. That one said to run some vinegar through a cycle. That didn't help either.

So, another repairman came. That one said use more soap and run the hot water first.

"Soon they're going to tell me to stand on my left foot, turn the hot water tap on, put less soap, do the vinegar wash, I mean this is crazy," Grace said.

Dishes were coming out dirty, so another repairman took apart the whole machine and put it back together. After that, the dishwasher blew a fuse. So did Grace.

By summer, their dishwasher had gone through 15 repairs. Grace had to skip work each time to wait for repair people. Then the final blow -- it went totally dead.

The warranty company was about to send another repairman. Grace wanted to barricade the doors.

"I said, 'What do you mean you're going to come out?' I said no more, it's dead as a doornail now," she said.

Grace contacted seven on your side. We contacted kitchen-aid and sure enough the company came through, offering the couple a brand new dishwasher.

KitchenAid said, "After review, we believe this should have been elevated sooner and we apologize to Ms. Geraghty. Once we were alerted of the issue, we were happy to replace her dishwasher."

State law requires manufacturers to repair defective products that are under warranty, and if they can't be repaired after a reasonable number of attempts, the consumer can get a refund or replacement.


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