Lawsuit Investigation: Is Your Dishwasher Leaking Due to a Heating Element Defect?
Last Updated on February 3, 2023
At A Glance
- This Alert Affects:
- Whirlpool, KitchenAid and Maytag dishwasher owners who have experienced leaks with their appliances or received a letter about a free upgrade to fix this issue.
- What’s Going On?
- Attorneys working with ClassAction.org are investigating whether a defect related to the heating element is causing the dishwashers to leak and whether a class action lawsuit could be filed to provide a true fix for the problem.
- How Could a Class Action Lawsuit Help?
- A class action lawsuit could help consumers get some money back for their appliances and property damage caused by a leaking dishwasher.
- Were the Dishwashers Recalled?
- No. Rather than recall the dishwashers, Whirlpool reportedly sent vague letters telling consumers to take advantage of a “free upgrade” to help prevent leaks that could lead to property damage.
- What You Can Do
- If you’ve experienced leaking with your Whirlpool, KitchenAid or Maytag dishwasher or received the “free upgrade” letter, fill out the form on this page and share your story. You may be able to help get a class action lawsuit started.
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org are investigating whether a defect related to the heating elements in certain Whirlpool, KitchenAid and Maytag dishwashers is causing the appliances to leak.
They have reason to suspect the manufacturer knows about the problem and is trying to quietly fix it by sending vague letters and postcards offering a free upgrade. (You can see examples here and here.)
Attorneys believe, however, that the letters don’t convey the urgency of the problem, which could cause property damage, and are unlikely to spur consumers into action. Now, they’re investigating whether a class action could be filed to provide a more adequate remedy to consumers.
Did your Whirlpool, KitchenAid or Maytag dishwasher leak? Did you receive one of the notices described above? If so, fill out the form on this page and tell us about it. You may be owed money back from the manufacturer.
Which Dishwashers Are Affected?
The postcards and letters sent to consumers indicated that Whirlpool, Maytag and KitchenAid dishwasher models with the following serial numbers were eligible for a “free upgrade” to help prevent “a leak that could lead to water damage.”
- F94601001 – F95299999
- FX0100000 – FX5299999
- FA0100000 – FA1301402
How Can I Find My Dishwasher’s Serial Number?
You can typically find your dishwasher’s serial number somewhere on the appliance. Whirlpool advises dishwasher owners to look for their serial number on the inside of the dishwasher on the rim, while Maytag tells consumers to look on the upper left corner of the appliance, or the underside of the control panel, as pictured here. KitchenAid’s website tells consumers to look on the left edge of the dishwasher’s door for their serial number.
What’s the Issue with the Heating Element?
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org are looking into whether two parts of the heating element system – namely, the brass bushings and rubber seals – are failing to seal off water as intended, causing leaks that can damage nearby flooring, cabinets and other property.
Were the Dishwashers Recalled?
No. Notably, the letters sent to consumers were not recall notices. In fact, one letter sent to Costco members stated in bold that “this is not a product safety recall.”
The postcards instructed consumers to “act now for free service” and stated that, without the upgrade, the dishwashers could potentially start leaking. Attorneys believe that the letters do not have the same urgency as an official recall notice would. They suspect some consumers will not take advantage of the free upgrade – or potentially wait on service – resulting in failure of the dishwashers and potential property damage from leaking water.
Complaints from Dishwasher Owners
Below you’ll find a sample of complaints posted online about the dishwashers [sic throughout, emphasis ours]:
[W]e discovered water under our wood floors in early Dec. Over $30k damage and entire first floor flooring has to be replaced and possibly our kitchen cupboards. Been a nightmare with Whirlpool…the supposed culprit part, the Tub was backordered with no ETA in sight…The tech came today, after waiting two weeks for an appt, to install the new tub only to be told the heat element needs to be replaced, also on backorder and no ETA in sight…So we sit and wait for the part to come in, then more weeks for install. We are at nearly 2 months without dishwasher with more time to wait.”
— sparksals, ApplianceBlog.com
If anyone got this letter, get on it right away. Service tech just replaced the heating element on our dishwasher as part of a recall and said the ends had completely corroded away, leaving the seals unsupported (and thus…. Leaking).”
— Rinoki21, Tech Sideline
It's been over a month since our dishwasher broke and ruined part of our kitchen floor, but it looks like we'll finally get someone from Whirlpool out here tomorrow to fix the dishwasher. Whether we'll be able to get them to pay anything for the water damage is another issue.”
— 980eb75e, Reddit.com
How Could a Class Action Lawsuit Help?
A class action lawsuit could help consumers get back money for property damage and for owning a potentially defective product. A successful case could also force the manufacturer to issue a formal recall regarding the heating element.
If you’ve received a letter about your dishwasher or experienced leaks, learn more about your rights by filling out the form on this page. It doesn’t cost anything to get in touch or to speak to an attorney.
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