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Replacing Door Hinge on KitchenAid Side by Side

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The initial symptoms were internal lights (both freezer and fridge) intermittently failing, ice and water dispenser not working, and 'door

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Old 11-24-2017, 06:15 PM
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Default Replacing Door Hinge on KitchenAid Side by Side
Model Number: KSSC42QTS00   Brand: Kitchen Aid   Age: 5 - 10 years   

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The initial symptoms were internal lights (both freezer and fridge) intermittently failing, ice and water dispenser not working, and 'door open' alarm light illuminated. I determined that the door switch on the freezer side was not being depressed due to a detached extension arm (part AP6284656). The door closer cam (part AP6005693) which attaches to the top of the post on the top door hinge (part AP6006923) had come off because the head of the screw that holds it onto the hinge post had been sheared off.
I believe the screw had gradually loosened due to opening and closing the door, allowing the cam to travel upwards to where it wasn't anchored on the square portion of the hinge post, but only on the screw itself. At some point the spring which connects to the extension was strong enough to shear off the top of the screw, leaving the body of the screw stuck inside the hinge post.

While assessing the situation, I looked over at the similar configuration on the fridge door side. I noticed that the cam on the top of the hinge post was somewhat loose, so I used a socket wrench to tighten it down. A few hours later (thankfully I had replaced the upper panel) I heard a sound like a gunshot and discovered that the same thing had happened on the fridge side: the screw head had been sheared off and the spring had shot the extension arm toward the back of the refrigerator in the cavity to the right of the compressor housing.

I ordered two new hinges. Unfortunately, the drawings do not show the screw which fits into the hinges that hold the cams on. When I received the hinges, I went to several hardware stores looking for a screw that fit into the post, and only then discovered, to my surprise, that the inside of the posts on the replacement hinges are not threaded!!

I have no idea how to proceed. Is it possible that both replacement hinges were defective? Or is the screw I'm looking for supposed to be self-tapping?

Just a final comment: I consider it a poor design to have the extension arm that depresses the door switch (very small force) and the function of having the door automatically swing shut (large force) both depend on a very strong spring which is ultimately held in place by a screw of only 1/8" diameter. If I could figure out how to extract the screw bodies from the existing hinges, I could reuse the hinges. But they are too small to use conventional screw extraction tools, which is why I need to replace them.

Thanks in advance for any help.


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