Level of DifficultyVery Difficult
Time to do repairMore than 2 hours
Age of Appliance1 - 4 years
First I removed the 14.3 tons of freezer contents, closed the water valve, shut off the juice, and removed the freezer bins, the freezer door and the three screws that held the element in place. After bringing in 397 hand tools from my garage inventory, I loosened the unit and, after extensive evaluation, I finally disconnected the wiring connector from its freezer rear wall connector counterpart. You ain't gonna believe the rest of my story--of total ineptitude by an experienced fix-it-yourself dummy.
I searched the internet for a replacement ice maker and found it at partselect.com. I called Sears to ask if I could add my refrigerator to my existing appliance repair account. Sears said sure--it would cost me only one arm, three toes and one grandchild. I abruptly declined their magnanimous offer—I don’t give up my arms and toes so easily.
I visited the local Maytag repair parts and service retailer, who advised they didn't do parts anymore. Expecting their repair price would be greater than Sears, I resorted to partselect.com. I called them to be assured what I was buying was not mistakenly a 747 Landing Gear. On the afternoon (West Coast) of 4/28/10, I ordered (via internet) one PS21215123 Ice Maker Assy. Much to my pleasant surprise, it arrived via FedEX on 4/30/10 (no freight charges to me).
My repair/replacement efforts were hampered by the effects of my right rotator cuff surgery a few months before and major left wrist surgery two months ago to remove fractured bones and torn ligaments.
Undaunted by my physical handicaps, I forged forward. After re-installing the unit, I turned the water supply and electricity back on. It was graveyard dead. I wisely then bought two bags of ice as an interim solution to the severe needs of my wife and me for our daily chilled evening cocktails. I removed the unit, checked it out and re-installed it. I bought two more bags of ice. All the while, I turned the water and electricity off and on as required by reasonable safety standards. High tediousness!
Several more home maintenance tasks then arose for Sergeant Super Fixer, but I returned to the ice maker problem on 4/8/10. Last chance--remove the device and insure there was no frozen ice in the inlet tube--or call the local partsless repairman. No ice found, but I did learn the wiring connector to the unit was awry--no contact! While explaining that to my wife, I realized the two upper mounting screws were intended to be partially installed into the freezer wall to accommodate the unit's slotted mounting holes! Then, tighten the screws. Oh my God! During my 143 installations and removals, I had installed those screws blindly--using the (handicapped) skills of my right and left hands without any benefit of direct eyesight.
I returned to my challenging project this morning (4/9/10), fully utilizing all the expertise I had gained yesterday. Fifteen minutes of amusing effort! Turn on the juice! Turn on the water!Two hours later, ice cubes were dropping into the bin like rhinoceros bisquits in the jungle.
Hallelujah! I now am free for the next challenge!
HINT: Put a bed pillow (an old one, or your wife's) in the freezer compartment to soften the harshness of its cold metal on your back, if you use the "crawl in on your back" approach.