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Betrayed by Kitchenaid - is it possible that the stand mixer is Not All That?

Can I just say that I have owned the vaunted kitchenaid stand mixer, professional model, for 13 months and it just broke down? I took it into a repairman (warranty ended a month ago, natch), and he said that one of the gears is stripped.

This guy is of the licensed kitchenaid repair people and he says that he almost only deals with the new kitchenaid stand mixers, that the old ones never break down.

I'm so pissed! I also have a 1950s Kenwood A700 (see pic here: http://www.kenwoodworld.com/assets/my...) with all of the attachments.

I bought the Kenwood second hand almost 13 years ago and it NEVER breaks down. And it's over half a century old!

Anyone else let down by their stand mixer? And when did you get it?

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  1. Don't say that! i was super excited that mine just came in the mail from amazon and now you've crushed my spirits. oh well, hopefully this isn't prevalent.

    15 Replies
    1. re: DoctorQuality

      Wow, I'm surprised. KitchenAid usually has a better reputation than it's competitors like Cuisinart. Better warranties and definitely top customer service. I'm surprised they couldn't help you even if out of warranty. I know a lot of problems with the KitchenAid mixers stems from either too much bread use, or not loosening the screw so that the mixer doesn't grind into the bowl...read more about that

      http://www.amazon.com/o/ASIN/B0002Y5X...

      1. re: dysondc18

        dysondc18: "KitchenAid usually has a better reputation than it's competitors like Cuisinart."

        The reputation comes from the days when it was a brand of the Hobart Corporation, through 1986. Whirlpool bought the name (and the styling of the mixer) in 1986 and made KitchenAid the across-the-board brand for its premium offerings, as Maytag did with Jenn-Air and as GE does with Monogram. (Now Whirlpool has acquired Maytag, and the KitchenAid and Jenn-Air lines are merging.) The KitchenAid mixers no longer have any Hobart DNA in them; they are Whirlpool through and through.

        1. re: dysondc18

          Kitchen Aid's overall reputation has been going down the tubes over the past few years. Their appliances are no longer particularly durable and the name is being licensed for all kinds of kitchen junk.

          Cuisinart branded mixers have only been available for a couple of years. They are powerful and well designed. I don't own one (my Kitchen Aid is decades old and going strong), but Cuisinart is the mixer brand I'd buy if I was shopping for a a new mixer today.

          1. re: embee

            I remember Cuisinart having the best food processors, chefs even insisted on them, and then something changed a while back. They got bought out too, they were Japanese but got bought out by an American company I believe, and I heard they were not top of the line anymore, Is this still true? I always avoid Cusinart now.

            1. re: coll

              Cuisinart went bankrupt some years ago and has changed hands a couple of times since then. Kitchen Aid was originally the retail brand of commercial manufacturer Hobart and was built to run forever. It also also changed owners and quality was sacrificed.

              Cuisinart sold the original household food processors (actually rebranded Robo Coupe machines). I still have mine, going strong since the seventies with one steel blade replacement. It has no buttons at all, and it runs almost silently. I was often tempted to replace it with a larger one, but never have.

              Kitchen Aid came out with the first really competitive processors. Kitchen Aid and Cuisinart leapfrogged each other for years, and both brands still perform well, but both now come with quality defects that neither had in the past.

              My (Hobart) Kitchen Aid mixer dates from a similar era. It has never been repaired and has never let me down. Its one annoyance is a tendency to walk across the counter. I'd like to get one of the new paddles that scrapes the bowl during use, but the company which makes it won't ship to Canada.

              Cuisinart's stand mixers are a new design. They are more powerful than Kitchen Aid's and appear to be much better built. I don't have one, but people who do seem to love them. If they follow the normal pattern, quality will start to decline once they get the market share they want.

              1. re: embee

                Luckily I also have a Kitchenaid mixer from the 70s, you can tell by the beautiful beige color. Only problem was I stripped the screws on the base that holds the bowl, but that's just proof of how powerful it is, I go crazy with cookies at Christmas. They send me a new faceplate free, even though it was 30 years later.

                When processors first came out, my husband got me a General Electric (Cusinart was probably too expensive) and it worked great, although really noisy. I just saw the exact same model in a caterer's kitchen, she got it at a yard sale and was saying how great it worked.

                Glad I got most of my appliances back then, and was too cheap to replace since. They don't make 'em like that anymore, for sure!

                1. re: coll

                  Too funny! I have an old one from the 70s (same beige color) and its only repair is also the plate that holds the bowl in place. ...only I had to take mine to a repair shop and pay the whopping $20 to keep it in service for the next 15 years. ;> Oh, and recently the rubber feet have begun deteriorating. KA sent me freebie replacement parts for them even tho it's more than 40 years old.

                  As to the original discussion, I think KA's a mixed bag. My stick blender is a KA and it's the best designed and best operating one I've ever had. It's held up beautifully for at least 6-8 years of heavy use while 2 Brauns burned out in less time.

                  I had a KA blender that burned out. KA replaced it with a refurbished one. I don't remember that they even asked me about a warrantee. They just sent me the replacement. That went on to perform like a workhorse for the best part of another decade. In the end the motor on that was fine but the plastic part that drove the blade broke. I got a replacement part but couldn't disengage the broken one. Domage! It had given good and valuable service.

                  Happy with my KA 9-speed hand mixer too.

                  Meanwhile, King Arthur's Bakers' Catalogue doesn't even sell the KA stand mixer anymore. I'm sure they were once-upon-a-time in their catalogue but they deny it and say that they much prefer the Viking. If I were buying a machine now I'd take their endorsement seriously.

                  1. re: rainey

                    I'm still using the first stick blender I ever bought, a $20 Braun. It's been about ten years, I'd guess.

                2. re: embee

                  embee, check out the Golda's Kitchen website (based in Mississauga). They have the scraping paddles and ship anywhere in Canada. Here's the link...they are towards the bottom of the page

                  http://www.goldaskitchen.com/merchant...

                  1. re: Sooeygun

                    Thanks for the link. It turns out Cayne's also has that one, which I didn't know about.

                    I'm actually looking for a gizmo called Side Swipe, but this may be a decent alternative.

                    1. re: embee

                      I have the SideSwipe on my 5 qt. mixer and highly recommend it--

                      http://www.sideswipeblade.com/

                        1. re: embee

                          How annoying! They say on their FAQ that they hope to have a Canadian distributor by the Fall, and you can e-mail them to get a notice when they've set that up.

                          1. re: David A. Goldfarb

                            That info was on their website a year ago :-(

                  2. re: embee

                    Hello, My appliances are the same as yours, purxchased in the 70.s also. NEVER a problem. they just keep running. The mixer weighs 27 lbs and is very srurdy. The Cuisinart does everything I ask of it. I was gifted with the large on-but it is the CFP-9 that has mu heart-no buttons, just twist , and it goes. The new thing do not have the quality as the original ones that we have-whoo-hoo-lucky us!

          2. I have had mine for over 10 years with no problems whatsoever, however my Kitchen Aid hand mixer beaters literaly fell apart. The guy at the place where I bought the replacement beaters asked me if I was mixing cement with them since he had never seen that happen.

            1. You may want to look on the Amazon comments and forums...some of the KA (newer) models had plastic in the gear housing instead of metal and they've been causing some problems, namely stripping. My repair guy verified this (I took my new Artisan in for a different issue). Anyway, I *thought* the Professional was switched back to metal housing. Contact KA support because I was pretty sure they were replacing the screwy plastic Professional models.

              I may have this completely garbled since I purchased the Artisan...but it's worth a shot. People have definitely been complaining about newer models but I had thought KA was finally being responsive about it. I had a decent experience with their phone service. Good luck.

              2 Replies
              1. re: hollerhither

                Does the Pro model have plastic gears? That doesn't make any sense (!) when the Artisan is all metal, and I can't imagine them (the gears) stripping.
                The Williams-Sonoma site has a great video of KAs being made--http://www.williams-sonoma.com/produc.... I notice there's a lot of hand pounding and shaping, so even though I've heard almost entirely good reports of KA longevity, I wonder if there could be occasional lemons due to hand-building?
                My Artisan has been absolute brute-strength heaven.

                1. re: lofaso

                  It's not the gears that were plastic - it was the housing - and yes, this happened on Pro models. I'm not sure when they converted back to the metal housing but it was no more than a few years ago.

              2. I'd call KA customer service. They may negotiate. Worth a try.

                7 Replies
                1. re: bear

                  I second that.- give them a call. I had trouble with my "pro" after a year and Kitchenaid replaced it immediately. They were pleasant and easy to deal with.

                  1. re: janeh

                    I third that, no problems with mine, but I've heard about the plastic gear troubles and if you bring it to customer relations, stressing that it's only been 13 months, and present your case in a logical, calm manner they may try to give you satisfaction.

                    1. re: MsDiPesto

                      If you google the plastic gear/gear housing issue, I think you can find the forums where this problem was discussed. If you haven't yet spoken with the KA people, it may help you lay out your case. But from previous posters here, it sounds like even if your issue wasn't directly related to the plastic parts problem, hopefully you should find a helpful ear with the KA people.

                      1. re: flourgirl

                        I just received the $99/no shipping 4 1/2 quart 250 watt from Amazon and the box made a point of the fact that the gears and drive train were all metal.

                        1. re: Raymondo

                          Right - because KA realized they were having a problem with the plastic parts and stopped using them a while back. Also, I'm not sure about this, but I don't believe they used the plastic parts on all models of KA mixers - it may only have been the pro models.

                          1. re: flourgirl

                            Yes, that's what I heard, too. My repair guy specifically commented that I had bought "the right one" with the Artisan (even with my minor assembly problem), but I did see that the Pros now have gone back to the metal parts. I think the OP will have some leverage.

                            1. re: hollerhither

                              So far - knock on wood - I haven't had any problems with my pro and I use it a lot. But I suspect that it may be one of the ones with the plastic parts, just because I think it was manufactured during that time period. Oh well. I'm not going to worry about it. If it breaks down, KA will certainly be hearing from me.

                2. I replaced mine with a whisk, a wooden spoon and a hand-mixer. And I found that I preferred the results when I hand-kneaded bread dough. The tools all fit in a drawer and I have reclaimed a valuable piece of countertop real estate in my tiny kitchen.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: EastBayMike

                    I actually prefer hand kneading bread dough too. What I usually do is start it with the stand mixer and finish it by hand. And if I didn't have a place to store my stand mixer, I could manage quite fine with a hand mixer as well - in fact I have one and use it frequently for things like whipping egg whites etc., when I don't feel like dragging the stand mixer off the wire shelf where it's stored. (I don't have much counter space - it can't stay on the counter when i'm not using it.)