Troubleshoot the problem before calling service repair

Marion

Premium Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2014
Messages
6
Location
North Carolina
I have a one year old Maytag french door, bottom freezor stainless steel refrigerator that stopped making ice 3 days ago. Water dispenser worked fine. I called the 800 # on my manual to make sure I had not reset something by mistake. After almost 30 minutes on the phone with someone who had to keep putting me on hold to ask someone for the answer, I was told I would need a service repair. The 'repairman' came this morning, opened the freezor door, took the tray out, and said I needed a new icemaker @ $300. No troubleshooting the voltage, checking if the water line was frozen, no feeling inside the maker for lodged cubes. I didn't buy it and sent him huffing on his way. I did a little internet research, took the ice bucket out and stuck my hand back into the tray. There was a lodged cube in the very back. I removed it, returned the tray, and the ice maker is making ice without problems. I called the service company ADVANCED APPLIANCE SERVICES and reported the lack of troubleshooting yet eagerness to replace the entire ice maker. As I expected, I heard how many years this young kid had under his belt doing service repairs. I suspect he's had more years selling parts for commission than repairing.

And I have ice and my $300.
 

rickgburton

Appliance Tech - Moderator
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35,613
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Murray, Utah 84107, United States
There was a lodged cube in the very back. I removed it, returned the tray, and the ice maker is making ice without problems.
Other members that have had problems with service companies or suspect them of being less than honest have posted their experience here for others. If a tech is shady or incompetent, I'll be the first to say so. At the same time I'll be one of the first to defend him if I think he's getting a bad rap. That's what I'm about to do now.

That style ice maker has been around for a long time. The same ice maker is used by many manufactures in their refrigerators. If a problem with one of the parts in a refrigerator shows up enough times the manufacturer will issue a service flash to all its authorized service companies and parts distributors. In the last few years two have been released on that style ice maker. One service flash is the wrong heater installed in some ice makers. This caused the ejector rake and guide to warp slightly. Ice cubes get jammed in the rake or between the rake and guide. The recommended repair is to replace the ice maker. The other service flash is about the plastic coating on the mold assembly. With use, the plastic coating would crack and water would get inside the coating. That caused the coating to deteriorate which also caused ice cubes to jam stopping the ice maker. Recommended repair: replace the ice maker.

It's very easy to see both those issues without having to "test" anything. I see both of those problems all the time and I'm on this side of 60 with bad eyes. I have 30 years under my belt and ice makers are not the only repair/problem I can spot without doing any testing. It comes from knowing your job and knowing how the parts work on an appliance. That's as far as I will go to defend your tech. I don't know what he saw, if anything, or if in fact he was just trying to sell you a new ice maker. If that's what he saw and the reason he said the ice maker needs to be replaced, I would ask him why he didn't clear the ice cube and explain that to you.

My point is, some appliance techs are very good at what they do and don't always need to do any testing to diagnose an appliance problem.

rickgburton
Ricks Appliance Repair
 

Marion

Premium Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2014
Messages
6
Location
North Carolina
I know what he saw....parts and commission. I called him on his mobile to tell him the icemaker was working. He hung up on me. As for 'service flashes' that dictate repair, old school experience and common sense should be foremost. Or would it be better to remove the icemaker and THEN find nothing but a stuck cube. Ooops. I don't consider simply running a hand inside the icemaker and rakes a "test", just common sense.

I hope the medical profession never resorts to "service flashes" for diagnosis.
 

rickgburton

Appliance Tech - Moderator
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Murray, Utah 84107, United States
WOW, you really don't get it, do you? Service flashes that dictate repair? Old school common sense? Medical Profession?
 

rickgburton

Appliance Tech - Moderator
Staff member
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Messages
35,613
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Murray, Utah 84107, United States
You think everyone is out to screw you. When a service tech comes over , you probably stand in his back pocket so you can watch every move, convinced that given a chance he'll sell you parts you don't need or God forbid cheat you out of five minutes of labor. You need to look at the big picture. You're mad at the tech, you're mad at his company, you're mad at Maytag, you're mad at the person on the other end of the 800 number, and now you're mad at me. You missed my point completely but now I see why. All this anger for an ice maker that's already fixed and working and to my knowledge didn't cost you anything. Now I'm thinking you might be right about that tech and ice maker.
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Econo Appliance

Appliance Tech
Joined
Jan 30, 2007
Messages
151
Location
San Diego CA
Rick makes some good points - it sounds like you jumped into your repair experience with the expectation of being ripped off. I don't blame you - this is the nature of the industry. The majority of appliance repair companies are a joke. The manufacturers are even worse. With a precedent like this, even the most honest, professional, and dedicated repair companies will have the occasional customer that truly believes they were ripped-off.

If the problem *really* was just a lodged cube, I would wait 2 or 3 weeks to see what happens. Simply dislodging an ice cube doesn't rule out a weak or failing icemaker. If everything still works perfectly after about three weeks, I would explain & ask for a refund on service fee. If the problem reoccurs, I would replace the icemaker and apologize to the tech.

Let us know what happens, and good luck.
 
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