Print Story They don't make them like they used to
By Gedvondur (Mon Aug 13, 2007 at 07:17:51 PM EST) Kitchen, Motorcycle, Slight Retardation (all tags)
Refrigerator woes.  Motorcycle parts people/idiots.

All in a days work.

FOR THE LAST several months, my refrigerator, a 1998 number from Kenmore (made by Whirlpool….btw) has been leaking water into the base of the fridge.  It gets into the crisper drawers, on the bottom of the fridge and all over the shelves.  Today I noticed that this water was a bright NEON yellow/green.  Clearly a mold of an unusual nature had taken hold.

At the end of the work day, I walked from my office into the kitchen, intending to take care of this problem once and for all.  I had a similar problem in an apartment fridge years ago.  It had been an easy fix.  First, a little background on the problem.

Frost free refrigerators occasionally defrost the freezer compartment.  When this happens the frost that is built up melts and runs out of the freezer.  Depending on your model and type, it may run through the refrigerator compartment into a tray that drains to a pan on or near the compressor.  Or it may simply exit via a tube that may or may not be visible on the back of the fridge into a pan on or near the compressor.  The water that collects there then simply evaporates. 

In my old apartment fridge, there was ledge like tray molded into the back of the unit in the refrigerator compartment.  It had a hole in it that lead to a tube down to the tray.  It had become cogged with some kind of gray slime mold.  No problem, I reamed out the tube with a mangled bit of wire clothes hanger and then ran bleach down the tube.  Problem solved.

On this Kenmore, things are not so simple.  There is no tray nor is there a visible tube on the back of the unit.  So I went online.  Sears was a bust; those bastards do post neither the service manual nor the user manual online.  Used my Google-Fu I came across some posts about the same issue.  As it turns out, this tray is actually in the freezer on this model.  Lovely.  It should be noted that I have already taken everything out of the refrigerator portion and cleaned it.  Well, in for a penny, in for a pound. 

I empty the freezer and remove the sliding plastic tray at its bottom.  The tray rides on a big roller tray.  The roller tray is screwed into the bottom of the freezer.  I take it out and remove it.  There is an inch to and inch and a half of ice under there.  Thinking I had this problem dicked, I removed the ice, it came out in two nice big sheets.  One problem.  No hole.  Exploring further I notice a metal tray, encrusted with ice, in the back of the freezer, under the back panel.  To get at it, I had to remove the ice maker, remove the light fixture, unscrew the back panel, and unsnap some ducting. 

And there it was.  The tray had layered ice on it, two inches thick and all under it.  I carefully removed the ice until everything was clear.  Except the hole was frozen shut.  Fixing that required me to pour a little hot water on the plate and then suck it up with a turkey baster.  Very porno.  It took almost 45 minutes to get it clear, and another half an hour to reassemble the freezer.  The whole time, my freezer goods are in a cooler, slowly getting warmer.

On the up side, the fridge and freezer are now shiny clean.  I need to clean out that fridge more often.  I found a jar of Milwaukee pickles that I couldn’t find a date on.  Closer inspection later revealed a faint imprint of a “sell by” date.  Feb 2nd, 2000.  Lovely.  Millennial pickles.  This whole ordeal took on the order of four hours and made me look slightly retarded.  Go Monday!

THE IDIOT JACKASSES that I ordered my motorcycle parts from have finally gotten them into my hands.  A master cylinder kit rebuild kit, two front caliper rebuild kits, and four carb rebuild kits.  It only took them on the order of six weeks and the energy to lie to me at least twice.  If you are gonna shop for older bike parts, I recommend you avoid  Semi-bad web site, terrible customer service, broken promises and lies.  I got what I ordered from them, but never will I order from them again.  Caveat Emptor.

WORK IS CURRENTLY laying the wood to me in a big way.  Long hours and not a lot of time to do anything else (except fuck with my fridge, apparently)  It’s a short term problem and I’m not worried about it, but since having all of July off it is a bit of a rude awakening.  I know, poor baby.

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They don't make them like they used to | 4 comments (4 topical, 0 hidden)
Why Kenmore by BadDoggie (4.00 / 1) #1 Mon Aug 13, 2007 at 10:14:25 PM EST
I don't know how it is these days but it used to be that the appliances sold by Sears under their label had a better guarantee and much better warranty service if necessary. Infuriating if you tried to fix something yourself, yes (at least, pre-Intarwebs), but I never had a Kenmore appliance that ever needed fixing. I miss my microwave oven that lasted more than 13 years. Best user interface on a µwave EVAR. Only 120V, dontchaknow. My parents' washer and dryer lasted more than 20 years (no, not that plunger-type of agitator, just a standard).


OMG WE'RE FUCKED! -- duxup ?

Maybe it's changed, but . . . by slozo (4.00 / 1) #2 Tue Aug 14, 2007 at 03:08:54 AM EST
. . . we got a small washing machine (Kenmore) for about $600, with a one year warranty, and they've been trying to push us to buy this super-duper warranty for 160 bucks (second time I got called a day ago). I mean, are they serious? These warranties are a sucker's game, from what I understand, having gotten advice from buddies who have worked sales.

No, sadly, most of the stock warranties with washers were 1 year. Had to be purchasing some big expensive $2000 unit for a 2 year warranty, it seemed . . .

[ Parent ]
With caution, I'll point out that by greyrat (4.00 / 2) #4 Tue Aug 14, 2007 at 07:35:04 AM EST
We've bought from Sears (with a major appliance account) a number of -- well -- major appliances. We've actually sprung for the extended warranty on a couple items. Because msrat is so awesome, she has consistently managed to warrant appliances that end up breaking or needing adjustment and not warranting appliances that don't break. And the 100 to 150 dollars that the warranty costs is easily offset by the potential cost of parts and labor of a single repair visit. Those extended warranties also get you a yearly visit to maintain the appliance, something that also easily offsets the price of the warranty.

That being said, I agree that extra price warranties are generally a suckers game. We've just been lucky to be able to rape them when they've provided it.

[ Parent ]
Dennis Kirk is reliable by georgeha (4.00 / 1) #3 Tue Aug 14, 2007 at 03:24:54 AM EST
though their website is confusing, and the owner doesn't post pictures of his daughter in a bikini.

They don't make them like they used to | 4 comments (4 topical, 0 hidden)