A happy woman again!

I will confess to missing my trusty Kitchen Aid while she has been out of commission since Thanksgiving. She is my kitchen workhorse and frankly I work her hard. I am pretty sure I did not realize how hard I worked her until she was not there to work anymore. I would think of something I wanted to make only to remember that I could not unless I was doing it by hand. 
Now, in all fairness I probably could do it by hand. In some crazy life that is not mine. In my reality that is blasphemis crazy talk. Anyone that mentions it receives the immediate stern look, you know the one that goes with the implied “are you insane?” line of questioning. 
In all fairness, this is reality that is well known as I make it no secret that I am lazy in the kitchen. This means that I will not go out of my way to do labor intensive work even for my infamous cookies. I am known for my cookies because of my Kitchen Aid. She and I are in this together. We are a team. She, Penzeys Spices, and I – we all work together. 
That is part of the slump this week. My trip to Penzeys Spices did not even perk me up. It usually does. Saturday I had a bag full of goodies and nothing to make with it. Now I must confess that not everything in the bag was intended for the mixer, but I am also known for making my mixer do some things that ordinary people would not dream of doing. 
Nonetheless, my Kitchen Aid was plagued by some faulty parts. 
These are the parts that went bad. This is the Speed Control Board (switch) and the Sensor Cord. I am not entirely sure what all the Sensor Cord does but it is closely coupled to the function of the Speed Control Board. Mine was very loose inside my mixer and when I was messing around with my Speed Control Board and jiggled the Sensor Cord just a little the mixer did funny things, including speed up and shut off entirely. So after some consultation with the lady on the phone where I finally decided to order the parts from, these were the parts I decided to replace. 
After several YouTube videos and finding the Maintenance and Repair Manual online, I had already narrowed it down to the Speed Control Board. I had already taken the mixer apart by the time I had called the parts place. I knew it was not the gears that were the problem. I had seen all the gears on YouTube so I knew what they should have looked like when I took the mixer apart and I had seen pictures of new ones in the parts images on the various stores online. Mine were all still intact and perfectly fine under my unskilled eye. 
I was pretty certain that my Speed Control Board was the problem. The fact that the mixer did turn on was pretty evident that it was not the motor itself. This was good news as far as I was concerned. The problem I had was figuring out which board was the correct board. I had never fixed anything like this before. I figured I was only out the cost of the parts at best and out of the cost of the mixer at worst. Worst case scenario I was buying a replacement mixer. I was already looking at doing that any way if I could not get this thing to work up to my specifications again. I will be honest with you if it cannot handle a batch of rolls, it is out of here. I ask it to do way more than that on a regular basis and it is just going to have to keep up or it will be on the replacement line faster than I can say Kitchen Aid again. 
So after shopping online and finding that there were at least two possible boards that went into my mixer but they were about the same price and finding that no one would guarantee delivery for 4-6 weeks, I started looking around for local options. Unfortunately, there were not any options locally. At least not that I could get on the phone to answer questions – yea or nay as to if they had parts for my model of Kitchen Aid. 
I ended up calling The Mending Shed and I am happy that I did. Not only were they helpful and friendly on the phone. They sent it out via 2-3 day Priority US Mail at an affordable rate ($6.95). The lady that I first spoke to was helpful but was not the Kitchen Aid “expert” so she transferred me to the lady that was the person that handles the Kitchen Aid sales on a regular basis. This person was excellent in the way of customer service. I explained to her what my problem was. I explained to her what I had found online and how I had seen the two different boards and how I did not know which one was the right one so I was calling because I wanted to make sure I got the right parts. She then started asking different questions. Since I had my mixer apart on the counter in front of me, it was really easy to answer all those questions. It was things like how many cables the board had, what the numbers were on the board, what the sensor cable was doing, etc. She even asked if I had taken a look at my gears. I had. Just general things like that. 
It was through her line of questioning that we finally narrowed it down specifically to the Speed control board and also the Sensor Cable. They just wear out. Mine were caked in flour and other grime from years of wear and and heavy use. 
I can say that now that I have taken it apart and put it back together, I am happy that I did. I now know to take it apart and clean the inside around all the seams once in a while. I also know to open her up and just blow the dusting of flour out of her once in a while. She picks up a lot of dirt and grime from the many hours that she ends up running over the years. I never thought about it because I keep her so clean on the outside. 
The best part about the whole experience though – less than $40 in parts and she runs like new! At least that is what she sounds like right now. She turns on right away and she gears all the way up. I will let you all know when I try to make cookies tomorrow afternoon for Kyle to take to Young Mens. 
I can honestly say that I have never been so happy to see her working as I was today when I put her back together. Oh how I missed her…welcome back my trusty Kitchen Aid. Here are to many more years of baking bliss ahead. We have many more thousands and thousands of dozen cookies ahead of us. May they always be as tasty and sweet as the moment when I turned you on this afternoon.

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