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(301) 504-0580 Ext. 1193
February 15, 1993
Release # 93-042

Sears Kenmore Dishwashers Recalled for Potential Fire Hazard

PRODUCT: Sears Kenmore dishwashers sold after February 1990.

PROBLEM: The dishwasher's timer may catch fire. There have been 30 reports of timer failures due to shorting out and overheating. Four units have developed fires resulting in smoke damage to the surrounding countertops and cabinets.

WHAT TO DO: Consumers with affected dishwashers should immediately stop using them and call 1-800-998-8470 to arrange for free repair.

WASHINGTON,DC -- In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Sears Merchandise Group is voluntarily contacting customers regarding 21 Kenmore dishwasher models sold in the last three years that could experience a timer failure that may result in a fire hazard. Sears is providing free service to correct the problem.

Currently, 30 units of about 400,000 units sold have experienced timer failures due to shorting out and overheating. To date, four units have developed fires which resulted in smoke damage to the surrounding countertop and cabinets. Sears has no reports of injuries due to the fires or timer failures.

Sears said it is working closely with its source, Frigidaire Company, the manufacturer of the dishwasher and the supplier of the necessary new parts, to respond as quickly as possible to customer requests. Sears will be using additional technicians for service calls.

On February 6, Sears began sending letters to more than 300,000 customers who purchased one of the affected Kenmore dishwasher models made between February 1990 and October 1992. Sears is asking customers who have not yet received letters to check the model of their dishwasher against the list below. Owners of listed models should discontinue using the dishwasher immediately and turn the power off or unlatch the dishwasher's door until serviced. Sears is asking customers to call toll- free, 1-800-998-8470 for free service. Owners should have the model and serial numbers on hand when calling. Model and serial numbers are on the inside right door seal of the dishwasher's tub.

The problem stems from the possibility of units developing an internal leak that may cause the dishwasher's timer mechanism to short out and overheat. Under certain circumstances, an overheated timer can cause a fire. To correct the problem, a Sears service technician will install new parts and inspect and replace other components as needed in the dishwasher door. Service will be done at no cost to the customer.

Consumers who bought Kenmore dishwashers after February 1990 should check the model and serial numbers of their dishwasher against the list below.

The following models are affected:

587.1400090 ALL
587.1400190 ALL
587.1400890 ALL
587.1400990 ALL
587.1440090 ALL
587.1440590 ALL
587.1469089 ALL
587.1469589 ALL
587.1510590 ALL
587.1511590 14912690492 THRU 15753461092
587.1530590 ALL
587.1540590 ALL
587.1541590 14056531191 THRU 15764571092
587.1550590 ALL
587.1551590 14056581191 THRU 15752861092
587.1574590 13637650991 THRU 15692691092
587.1630590 ALL
587.1640590 ALL
587.1641590 14203401291 THRU 15843721092
587.1650590 ALL
587.1651590 14186181191 THRU 15556951092

CPSC is announcing this recall as part of its mission to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury and death associated with consumer products. The Commission's objective is to reduce the estimated 28.5 million injuries and 21,600 deaths associated each year with the 15,000 different types of consumer products under CPSC's jurisdiction.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission protects the public from the unreasonable risk of injury or death from 15,000 types of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury and for information on CPSC's fax-on-demand service, call CPSC's hotline at (800) 638-2772 or CPSC's teletypewriter at (800) 638-8270. To order a press release through fax-on-demand, call (301) 504-0051 from the handset of your fax machine and enter the release number. Consumers can report product hazards to