Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Dishwasher Fun

The handle on our Maytag dishwasher broke for the 2nd time the other day...

The above is the first handle, note how all the hinge pins sheared off...

The above is the 2nd handle. Notice the redesign with a dowel pin molded into the handle for the broken hinge pin. Unfortunately they used some tiny supports for the pin in the mold that left small holes in the plastic - which were akin to perforations and led to the handle breaking again, and the pin on the right actually pulling out (and probably getting sucked into the pump, but I haven't heard any bad noises as yet)

I laid out the bits of a piece of aluminum that weren't the handle and milled them away

This was more like machine assisted sculpting than precision machining...

I then laboriously filed away all the bits that were not a handle.

And believe it or not I made a handle that snapped into place and works great!

Felice just got back with a replacement handle from our local and wonderful appliance store. I won't install it unless the aluminum one fails. Notice this is a third design, with only one large hole for pin support (one assumes the pin was supported also in the mold at the end where it sticks out) on each side. I'll have to make a real drawing of this in case I ever have to make another one. I wish Maytag had worked out the bugs in the design before selling me the washer...

Henry has some Matzoh ball soup.

Henry hunts eggs indoors as it was hailing all day. Notice the seasonal Easter basket.

Here's a good DIY CNC site.

Who knew so many Japanese soldiers ended up in Russia? You could make a good movie out of this story.


MerryL said...

Hi Nick,

I googled for "broken handle maytag dishwasher" and ended up here. The handle on my maytag dishwasher broke this morning and I had a hard time even rescuing my dishes. I have a couple of questions for you--is it difficult to replace the handle?(on some other websites, they talked about having to remove the door liner) and also, I have discovered that I may not even need to replace it. If I pull hard enough, the dishwasher will open up. I just don't want to mess it up any more than it already is.


Felice Luftschein said...

Hi Merry,
I noticed the first time that the door would work, even if I had to open and close it by using a lot of force. That said, I would call up your local Maytag repair place and see how much it costs to have a qualified guy come and replace it.

You have to remove the door liner (fastened with a bunch of torx screws) and then remove the wiring to the two switches connected to the handle (that tell when door is latched). You then have to use pliers to squeeze the handle so that you can wiggle the old handle out and the new one in. It's one of those things that once you have done it it's easy, but it is hard to describe. Don't try fixing it until you have a replacement handle, as you won't be able to use it without the handle...

If you have more questions just email me at

MerryL said...

Hi Nick,

Thank you for your response. I'll call Maytag on Monday.