The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Kitchen Aid Custumer Service Experience

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molly2004's picture
molly2004

Kitchen Aid Custumer Service Experience

Hi, just thought I'd share my experience for the benefit of those who just ran into problems with their KA.

 I had a KA Ultra Power, purchased about 15 years ago.  Used it on and off through the years, but really cranked up use the last three months or so when I discovered bread baking.  I prefer whole grain breads so have been experimenting with these heavy doughs.  My machine started to smell funny about a month into my bread baking venture and has been sounding funny ever since.

 Last weekend, I basically resigned myself to saying sayonara to an old friend.  I called up KA because I wanted to see if it could be fixed first.   I had planned on getting a Bosch, but the price tag just made me heartsick.  I described to the rep how I had been using my machine.  Even though my machine was 15 years old, the rep said that she was concerned about the smell my machine was emitting.  She offered to replace the machine...granted with a refurbished one, but that's better than having to buy a whole new one outright!  She upgraded me to an Artisan level machine with a choice of colors. 

So for those of you who's KA is konking out and are loathe to get a new machine just yet, give customer service a call.  They might be able to help.

 

Thanks for reading.

 

PaddyL's picture
PaddyL

Wow, that is something else!

cheesecake man's picture
cheesecake man

Molly2004,

Do you know the name of the customer service person that helped you?  I would like to talk to him/her.

My 6 qt mixer went out, it is only 4 1/2 years old, the gear broke while mixing cheesecake batter., This happened about three months ago.  I took it to the local Hobart service center and had them order a new gear.  I am fairly mechanically inclined and installed it myself and knew right away it was incorrect even though it is the correct part number. So, I took the whole machine to the service center to wee if they could fix it.  Come to find out, the new machines have a different motor and the parts do not interchange.  In order to get mine fixed they will have to install a new motor to the tune of over $400.00.

I have called Kitchen Aid customer service twice, once about a month ago and again today, after I read your comments.  They refuse to do anything and have no answer as to why the parts are not available for such a new machine and the people I talked too really did not care.  They only kept referencing the 1 year warranty and said "sorry".  So, if you can direct me to who you talked to I would appreciate it because I really don't want to pay the price for a new machine just in order to get mine fixed.

Cheesecake man (Rick)

molly2004's picture
molly2004

Sorry for the delay in my reply.  I went home to dig through the info I have to see if I wrote her name down.  I did not, I'm sorry.  I'm wracking my brain.  Maybe her name was Amy?  She sounded like a young woman.  Don't know if that helps any.  I'm really sorry I can't be of more help.

Good luck!

dougal's picture
dougal

cheesecake man wrote:
My 6 qt mixer went out, it is only 4 1/2 years old, the gear broke while mixing cheesecake batter...

I took the whole machine to the service center to {s}ee if they could fix it. Come to find out, the new machines have a different motor and the parts do not interchange. In order to get mine fixed they will have to install a new motor to the tune of over $400.00

 

I came across this site a while ago: http://www.mendingshed.com/kitaidparts.html 

If there's something odd about KA's part numbering, it would surely be worth your giving them a (toll free) phone call to see if they can sort you out...  

 

If you are looking for parts it might be worth trying them. (I've never dealt with them - but the downloadable service manual looks like a very good sign to me.)

And hey, anyone that owns a Kichenaid maybe ought to bookmark it - just in case...

ldivall's picture
ldivall

I don't believe that KA is really intended for use as a bread machine.  It works just okay if the dough is light and you are only making one loaf.  I think it just stresses the motor too much.

I've had a Bosch for 30 years.  I absolutely love it.  I raised 5 kids making bread and cookies in that machine.  It looks 30 years old, but it still runs like a charm.  I consider it one of the wisest investments that I ever made...well worth the $350 I spent on it --- many times over!  When you use the Bosch to make bread, you knead the bread for 10 minutes, and it's ready for the final raising in the bread pans!  I don't sell them, just know from experience how wonderful they are.  By the way, I made 4-5 loaves at a time!

molly2004's picture
molly2004

I'm definitely saving up for one.  That way, I can buy it because I'm ready, rather because I'm in distress!  But at least for now, I've got something decent, which is more than I could have said before.

AnnieT's picture
AnnieT

ldivall, I was so happy to read your comments on the Bosch mixer. I have never had a mixer so don't have any way of comparing, but I recently bought a Bosch - if it lasts as well as yours it will "see me out" as my mama used to say! Good to hear some positive feedback. I made a huge batch of ww bread from a recipe I found on a bread site, and the day was pretty warm so I was like the Sorceror's Apprentice with lots of bountiful dough! Do you have a recipe book you recommend? My son and family eat ww bread and I promised to bake for them each week - lots of pb&j sandwiches! A.

ldivall's picture
ldivall

I just use the recipe book that came with my wheat grinder---the magic mill---I grind my own wheat and then make bread.  The book is available through Amazon.com---it'll be old, but the recipes are great---has all kinds of wheat recipes, not just bread.  It's The Magic of Wheat Cookery.  Here's the recipe that I used---and my kids loved it---and anyone who ate it loved it.  I didn't change it.  There are recipes with milk and eggs, but they spoil faster.  This is just a basic all-fiber bread----You can add grains to it to make it a multi-grain bread---you may need to reduce the flour a little.

 Foolproof Whole Wheat Bread

2Tbl dry yeast    1/2 c. warm water   5 cups hot tap water (you don't want this too hot---it'll kill the yeast or make the bread taste yeasty---I just run it across my wrist---if it's too hot for my wrist, it's too hot for the bread.    1 Tbl. salt   2/3 cup oil   2/3 cup honey or raw sugar (I always used honey)---measure the oil first and then measure the honey in the same measuring cup, the honey will slide out of the measuring cup.   About 12 cups whole wheat flour.  Never add all the flour that it calls for.  All flours have a different protein content.  When you are kneading by hand, you will use less flour than when you are using a machine.  You'll get used to how the bread should look.  I stop adding flour when it starts to be like cookie dough and starts to pull away from the sides of the mixing bowl----it'll still be a little sticky to the touch, but it won't be a big dry mass, either.  As it kneads, it becomes elastic and it's so smooth and soft when it's ready for the pans.  You are going to LOVE this.  In fact, I think I'll go make a batch right now!   I usually clean up while the dough is mixing and when I've put the bread in the pans I'm all finished in the kitchen.  Easy, easy, easy.  Oh, back to the recipe----sprinkle yeast in 2/ cups warm water---let stand 10-15 minuts (1 Tbsl sugar in yeast will help it work faster)  Combine hot tap water (if you use hot water, add the flour and all other ingredients except the yeast, this will cook down the water enough that it won't kill the yeast---if the dough isn't warm enough, it will take longer to rise---that's the reason for the warm tap water) and 7 cups wheat flour in the mixer bowl.  Mix on low speed until blended.  (Use the spring-loaded position (turn to the left) to keep from spilling the flour and water from the bowl.  Add salt, oil, honey or raw sugar.  Continue to mix until well blended.  Add 2 cups flour to mixture.  Add prepared yeast to mixture and blend thoroughly.  You must not combine the yeast directly with the oil---something to do with chemistry---just add the yeast after the oil has mixed with the flour---Add 3-4 cups more flour to mixture.  Knead for 10 minues.  Oil hands.  Remove dough from mixer 1/4 at a time.  Mold into loaves on oiled counter (I have found that it really doesnt matter how you mold the dough, you can just punch it into the loaf pan, as it rises it will round out and be beautiful!  Oil top of loaves if soft crust is desired.  Cover loaves with damp cloth.  Let rise 1/3 in bulk for approximately 35 minutes.  Bake at 350 degree for 40-45 minutes.  Remove from pans.  Put on rack to cool.  Brush tops with butter or oil.  High altitudes (over 4,000 ft) bake at 450 for 8 min and then 350 for 40 min.

I also have an enriched white bread recipe that my kids loved---especially for sandwiches.  I got this from a friend who had a health food restaurant---they made sandwiches with this bread.

3/4 c. warm water    2 Tblsp. yeast     2 2/3 cups warm water   3 Tblsp oil   1 Tblsp salt    1/4 c. sugar or honey   1/4 cup wheat germ   5 cups enriched white flour.  Bake at 350 degrees F. 35-40 minutes (I found it cooked 30-35 minutes---just watch those last few minutes.)  Brush top with egg white and water---sprinkle with parmesan or sesame seeds.  good stuff

 The wheat cookbook has some hints for wheat and its use----I'll put that in a separate posting.   Enjoy---Linda

AnnieT's picture
AnnieT

Linda, many thanks for posting your recipe and such detailed instructions. I will check Amazon for the book - oh no, another bread book! I only have SAF instant yeast and I guess I would add it to some of the flour? I will buy a new bag of ww flour and give it a try, thanks again, A.

Oldcampcook's picture
Oldcampcook

I bought a used Bosch Universal mixer through Ebay about 8 months ago and I couldn't be happier.

I use it weekly to mix anywhere from 10 to 20 loaves of bread.  I even overloaded it once with 12 cups of flour one time and had no problem.  My usual batches are 6 cups of flour.

I find the clean up pretty easy.  The dough hook and the bowl come clean with minimum effort.

Bob

niceguy1129's picture
niceguy1129

I bought a Bosch Universal several months ago. My wife and I make a lot of bread for farmer's markets, etc. We gave up on our KA and have been totally pleased with the Bosch. I found mine on-line for $400 new. It has not missed a beat. We mix five loaves of bread dough at a time and will often make 20-30 loaves per day. I could never have done this with my Professional KA. Make the investment, it is well worth it!

Mike Avery's picture
Mike Avery

I used to do the farmers market thing and baked over 200 loaves a night.  Without a mixer.  The 30 quart mixer I'd been using died.

 

Using the stretch and fold technique I describe at http://www.sourdoughhome.com/stretchandfold.html I am able to make batches of 21 to 22 loaves at a time with no problem.  A few times I went to 27, but the mixing and rising tubs really weren't large enough.  Usually I'd to 10 batches a night.  Whether I made full sized batched depended on the market and how active it was.

 

Making 20 to 30 loaves a day in a small mixer is really more than the mixer wants to do.  The KA, Bosch and even the DLX are not designed for this sort of use.  If you have the oven capacity, I'll strongly recommend trying the stretch and fold.

 

Mike

 

Plannerjohn's picture
Plannerjohn

I've had similar experiences with KA customer service.  I had to call them twice after purchasing my artisan mixer and both times they were extremely knowledgeable about the product, eager to help, and generous with their service beyond what any reasonable person could expect.   To be more specific, when the lock mechanism on my mixer head broke they provided the following services:


Mailed me a brand new mixer of the same color


Told me to repackage the old mixer in the new mixer's box, then paid for fed-ex to come by and pick it up from my house.  They even gave me 30 days to do this so I could make sure the replacement mixer worked out just fine.


They also restarted the 1 year warranty from the date of receipt of the new mixer.


Since then i've bought more KA appliances due in part to my experience with their customer service people.