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warnergt

Kenmore Refrigerator - bottom of door collapsed?

66 posts in this topic

I have a Sears Kenmore Elite side by side refrigerator (106.54202300). It is about one year old. I just noticed that the refrigerator door sits lower than the freezer door. An inspection reveals that the bottom mount on the door appears to be pushed up into the door. The plastic trim on the bottom of the door is cracked where this bottom plate (which connects to the hinge) pushed through it.

Do I need a whole new door? I can't help wondering if this was damage done during shipping or installation by Sears. I just don't know. The door is designed to hold gallon jugs and we don't even use it for that. That is, I don't believe

that we are putting more weight on the door than it was designed for.

What should I do?

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Need appliance parts? Call 877-803-7957 now!

I just priced a new door on sears.com.

L2255525W (2255525W) $525.49.

Dandy. I paid $1550 for it 14 months ago.

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Could just be a door cam or thimble.  Are you able to post a picture for us?

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Here is a picture of the bad door.

baddoor.jpg

Here is a picture of the good door.

gooddoor.jpg

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Nice pictures.

   May be more serious that I originally thought.  Has the right side of the metal door stop gone up inside the fresh food door?

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No, Jedi, He most deffinitely has some major door problem - Not just the cam.

Look at the picture, see that crack up the side? and only half the cam visible, the other half is up inside the door now.

If this was a Whirlpool branded product instead of a Whirlpool with the Kenmore name, Whirlpool would probably take care of that for you no charge but since you have to deal with Sears, GOOD LUCK. (I would be doing some major bitching to them if I where you, this shouldn't have broken like this unless you have an ape or very large kids swinging from the door)

If you end up fixing it, DON'T buy the part from Sears, save yourself about a $100.00 and order from RepairClinic CLICK HERE

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When these first came out, we were getting complaints about the doors being "uneven" (one higher than the other). What we were told was that there was a spring inside the refrigerator door which would adjust depending on the weight being stored in it. This looks like something may have gone seriously wrong in there - one of the drawbacks of "FIP" doors is the inability to deal with the actual problem other than by total replacement.

As an ex-Sears tech, I'd endorse Willie's advice - bitch early and bitch often;) You should be able to get them to make some kind of concession, probably they'll eat the cost of the part if you pay a labour charge (about $150).

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Here are some pictures of the damage. You can see that

where the bottom plastic pushed in, there is only foam

inside the door. The bottom plastic panel only hold

the metal door up at the edges. And the hinge plate

presses right in the middle of the plastic panel.

It's not a great design.

thedamage.jpg

thedamage2.jpg

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Here is my solution. It is not elegant but it works and

saves me the cost of a new door. I figured that the

problem was that the pressure was not distributed well.

So, I fabricated a plate to distribute the pressure.

It's a Rube Goldberg design but it works, nobody sees

it and it saved me a lot of money.

thesolution.jpg

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Wow, great pics, and even better repair!  Nice job!  :party:

And thanks for posting that.  This thread is definitely one of the selected threads for anyone else's benefit.  I'm sure this will be an emerging issue on this refrigerator.

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Excellent repair job guy!!!!!!!

Is that door bottom just made out of plastic????

Are Whirlpool products be designed like crap now too?

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Yes, the door bottom is merely plastic. In the picture

with the cam and hinge plate removed, you can see that

beyond the plastic bottom is just insulating foam.

From what I can see, the plastic bottom only really

supports the door where the door metal sides meet the

plastic base at the edges. But, and here's the problem,

the plastic bottom is supported in its middle by the hinge

plate. This puts a lot of shear stress on the plastic

bottom.

On this refrigerator model, the door is designed to

hold four gallon-size milk jugs. I think this would

be roughly 32 pounds. Plus, there are two more

shelves. The door should be able to hold a good

bit of weight but that doesn't appear to be the case.

This ability to stowe milk jugs on the door was a selling

point when we purchased the refrigerator. Ironically,

we don't actually put milk jugs on our door but I'm

sure that other consumers do.

I'm still trying to think of ways this could have been

an installation problem. I don't think that is likely.

I could imagine an inept installer lifting up on the

door but I don't see any way why/how he would put

excessive downward force on the door. Plus, we never

noticed the door was lower than the other until very

recently. I have to believe this is a design

deficiency. Hopefully, my experience and quick fix

will help others as their refrigerators experience the

same problem.

The fabricated plate does make the door sit a wee bit

high but it is barely noticeable. I'm no machinist;

I'm sure others could fabricate a nicer plate than

mine. I made my plate by taking a piece of angle iron

(left over from my garage door installation), hammering

it flat and cutting it to fit with a hacksaw. I used

a drill to create holes where the screws go.

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Still got to commend you on a job well done, doesn't look bad at all and probably any of use "Master Appliantologist" wouldn't have done it much differently if we where to try and save the door and not just sell a new expensive door.

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My door on Kenmore Elite side by side has also collapsed. Fridge is 1.5 years old.  It looks just like the picture. Any luck with Sears taking care of the problem?

 

 

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My suggestion (as an ex-Sears Tech) is to raise holy hell  :yikes:. I'd even print this out to show that you're not the only person with this issue.

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could this whirlpool tech sheet have anything to do with the doors collapsing?

UD13_RP002.pdf

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It seems that the Whirlpool tech sheet applies to botom-mounted fridge but not to side by side fridge.

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Might be missing this support or something like it in the side x side also. Seems like something to help stiffen door is not installed got to believe whirlpool wouldn't build a weak door like this on purpose

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Amazingly, tonite I found the exact same problem with my Whirlpool GS6SHEXN refrigerator.   Fortunately it is still under warranty.  WIll be interesting to see how Whirlpool handles this...

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Have similar issues with failing (falling) door.  Have been told to record complaint at the following website:

http://www.cpsc.gov/

It is from this source that product recalls are initiated.

 

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I also have a kenmore side bye side that has done the exact same thing. Sears service blamed it on my recent move to fl. and that i must have been ruff with it.

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I detect an emerging issue on this one. Whirlpool will be coming out with a service bulletin on it in six months. Probably not a recall since it's not a health and safety issue.

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This can be a safety issue. If door continues to lower due to the bottom hinge collapsing into the foam in the bottom of the door then the door can become disengaged from the top hinge (3/4 inch metal post). If this were to happen the door can fall off and crush whoever is by it (kids and pets). YIKES.  This appears to apply to both Kenmore Elite Side by Side and Whirlpool Gold Conquest Side by Side.

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[user=0]BoBBy[/user] wrote:

Amazingly, tonite I found the exact same problem with my Whirlpool GS6SHEXN refrigerator.   Fortunately it is still under warranty.  WIll be interesting to see how Whirlpool handles this...

The service technician made it out today to check this out.  Said he'd have to order a new door.  Also said he's seen this once before.  I wrote an email to Whirlpool about this too.  I think a door should last and not break like this certainly due to what appears to be a manufacturing flaw.  At $500+ for a door, what would happen when this goes out of warranty.  I know there is some sort of consumer protection law about how items have an implied lifetime.  A door may indeed come under that category, especially for a mechanical defect such as this.  We'll see...

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