BATTLE GROUND, Wash. -- Two months after Unit 8 first warned you of dangerous dishwashers, we’ve received several complaints of more dishwashers igniting.
Melanie Bryant of Battle Ground said, “When you open it up its charred, melted, you can see the evidence of the fire.”
Wendy Tesulov of Corbett told Unit 8, “My kids saw smoke just billowing out of the dishwasher. We actually smelled burning plastic for hours.”
Bryant dismantled her Kenmore dishwasher to show Unit 8 how it started to burn in the same exact spot previously illustrated in a story with a Milwaukie homeowner.
David Vale said, “They’re dangerous, these are people’s lives we’re talking about.”
Both Vale and Bryant contacted Unit 8 because they said when they called Whirlpool, the company that built their dishwashers, the company denied there was any problem with their dishwashers and didn’t want to take any information from them about the fires.
“They didn't seem concerned that it had caught on fire,” Bryant told Unit 8. “To them it was just another repair issue. They said all they could do is send out a repairman if I paid $129.00 first.”
That frustrated Bryant, who asked to speak to a supervisor. “I wanted to find somebody who would take down the concern or tell me there is a better way to address this than charging me $129 to have someone come out and tell me it caught on fire and it doesn't work anymore.”
“My dishwasher caught on fire. It didn't break or mechanically break down it caught on fire,” Bryant said.
The supervisor then gave her a number to call Sears because the brand on the dishwasher was Kenmore, which is sold by Sears.
Bryant said Sears told her to call Whirlpool because they built the dishwasher.
In a statement to Unit 8, Whirlpool spokesperson Cynthia Soledad said, “We carefully monitor the performance of all our products and evaluate each report of overheating that’s brought to our attention.”
Both Bryant and Vale said they couldn’t get any one to take down their information or offer assistance until KGW’s Unit 8 got involved.
Days after we contacted Whirlpool, both Bryant and Vale received calls from Whirlpool and the company replaced their dishwashers for free.
Tesulov said Whirlpool took down all her information and sent a technician to her Corbett home and after verifying it had over-heated the company replaced her dishwasher.
But what worried Tesulov is that her Whirlpool made dishwasher started to burn when it wasn’t even on. Tesulov said the only way they could get the dishwasher to stop smoking was to turn the electricity off at the breaker box in her garage.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission is investigating these dishwasher fires and encourages anyone that experiences a problem to contact them.
Currently there is no recall on Whirlpool dishwashers that include the brands of Kitchen Aide, Kenmore, Maytag and Whirlpool. Whirlpool said the electronic controls they’re looking into are installed in nearly two million dishwashers.