Thread Number: 83812  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
KDS18 Loud Buzzing Sound
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Post# 1081696   7/20/2020 at 00:22 (977 days old) by Braniff720 (97068)        

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Hi everyone I have a KDS18 / Kitchenaid Superba that I have been using for about 1.5 years and I love it. A couple days ago though it started making this loud buzzing noise, and seems to be happening whenever there is rinsing or draining action happening. The sound seems to be coming from below, behind the kick panel somewhere, and is pretty steady although today it did not sound quite as loud. It sounds a lot like a timer alarm from an old stove - just a simple loud buzz. Everything else seems to be working fine. It seems I read somewhere about a timer below the tub behind the kick panel but I cannot find that post now. Any insights/guidance would be greatly appreciated!

Post# 1081703 , Reply# 1   7/20/2020 at 03:35 (977 days old) by toploader55 (Massachusetts Sand Bar, Cape Cod)        

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Start with replacing the Drain Solenoid valve.

Post# 1081760 , Reply# 2   7/20/2020 at 19:11 (976 days old) by bigalsf (Salt Lake City)        

You mentioned the noise happens when it's rinsing & draining. Is it only happening when it drains, or does it happen while the water is recirculating as well?

If only when draining then, yes, the drain valve would be the culprit. This is a fairly easy repair if your mechanically adept. It's located behind the lower access panel. If you are unsure how to proceed you can download the service manual from the Ephemera section.

If the noise occurs during the entire washing/rinsing operation than it is most likely something caught inside the pump, or the pump itself needs repair. If that's the case you would have to take the wash arm support and pump top off to inspect. Not terribly complicated and is accomplished through the inside of the tub, not from underneath. Again, the service manual is your best reference.

Let us know and we can guide you.

Post# 1081778 , Reply# 3   7/20/2020 at 22:59 (976 days old) by Braniff720 (97068)        

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Hi thank you - yes it seems to be during the entire washing/rinsing operation. I took the lower panel off today and just watched and tried to listen with an automotive stethescope. The buzzing seems to occur at all times the pump is spinning as far as I can tell by looking. Using the stethescope I was not able to hear it any louder from the solenoid. I did take off the lower support assembly, down to the impeller and took off the impeller but did not find anything down there, however, I did find some broken clear glass up against the strainers. I guess I should check again for debris. Is it possible that something has lodged into the motor as far down as below the impeller? Of course I have also wondering if it is the pump bearings, but the sound is not a whining or squealing like bearings going out, and it seemed to start so suddenly.

Post# 1081779 , Reply# 4   7/20/2020 at 23:12 (976 days old) by Ultramatic (New York City)        

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I have the same issue with my KDS-58. It's intermittent though. Some wash cycles, the high pitch whine starts, then vanishes. Other times it never happens at all. It washes fine, no leaks.

Post# 1081783 , Reply# 5   7/21/2020 at 00:26 (976 days old) by Braniff720 (97068)        

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Just a quick update, I took it down to the impeller again, and in fact went down to the "cover - inlet" (part no c115681 on parts diagram) and found a couple piece of what appeared to be porcelain from a plate or bowl. At first I thought it was just dried soap scum but it is a glass of some type. Anyway I put it back together, started it, and in the prewash cycle it immediately made the buzzing sound again, and then a knocking sound that seemed to come from the flexible drain hose on right side of pump (as you face the pump.) I immediately stopped the cycle. I also noticed some leaking on the left side of the pump but could not tell where it was coming from exactly. This stopped when I stopped the cycle. It's never leaked before. Maybe I just didn't tighten something correctly or I put it back together incorrectly. I did notice the impeller did not spin this time when I reinstalled it, and I thought it had before because I had to hold it with a counter before.

Anyway enough for tonight, it is way past my bed time lol. I'll tear into it again tomorrow.

Post# 1081785 , Reply# 6   7/21/2020 at 01:11 (976 days old) by bigalsf (Salt Lake City)        

The broken pieces of china/porcelain are probably what was causing the buzzing sound. It is possible for some small pieces of broken glass/china to work their way into the pump innards. Did you remove both the wash impeller and drain impeller? If so, did you put the shim washers back in the same order? If you did not than that is probably what is causing the new problem. Those shims provide the proper clearance for the wash impeller to rotate inside the pump housing. If they are not put back in the correct order it can allow the wash impeller to drag against the pump housing.

Also, if you removed the drain impeller and did not put it back properly you may have dislodged the O-ring which sits in a channel at the top of the drain impeller. It is held in place by the wash impeller when it mates to the top of the drain impeller. If not properly seated it can allow water to seep down the motor shaft and leak out through a channel (weep hole) built into the motor housing. You may also have inadvertently damaged the shaft seal, which would cause the same type of leak.

The noise you heard in the drain hose was probably a piece of the glass/china being pumped out from the force of the drain pump.

My suggestion at this point is to tear the pump down again and replace the drain impeller and shaft seal (this kit is still available from parts retailers, or on eBay) following the instructions in the service manual. If you want to chance it you can put everything back together without replacing any parts; if it works great! But my experience with these machines leads me to recommend that the shaft seal & drain impeller be replaced.

Good luck & keep us posted.

Post# 1082019 , Reply# 7   7/22/2020 at 16:58 (974 days old) by Braniff720 (97068)        
Tear-down with pics!

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Okay I finally got around to this again after taking a day off lol. Here is the tear-down, I took a pic of each step. First one is just with the wash arm and large metal strainer lifted off. Second is with the lower support arm off, next is a closer-up, next is with pump impeller off and a few pics of the wash pump impeller. Between the top retaining screw and the top of the wash pump impeller are two thin washers, then a thicker spacer. I just kept all this together. I saw no other washers or etc with the wash impeller. I took a few closeups of the impeller. For the last few pieces I am a bit unclear from my diagram manual what they are called, but my very last picture has everything I removed lined up.

One thing I noticed, and hopefully you can see it from the next-to-the-last pic, is the soft rubberish out ring, which does not appear to be in good shape. There is also some corrosion around it that I picked at a little and hopefully that is not what caused the leak. Either way I am thinking I should replace that part and use some refinishing underneath it (the marine stuff or por15 etc) but am not sure what part the rubberish ring is on the diagram. Oh I am using diagram PL-13843.

I do have a kit 240366, and I notice it has a larger strainer-type blue part than I presently have. The kit does not come with any instructions but seems to have things I am missing from my machine, although it also seems to be the kit for the drain impeller, which I have not removed.

Next I am going to check all the hoses for debris, but also any guidance on what parts I might need greatly appreciated.

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Post# 1082051 , Reply# 8   7/22/2020 at 22:14 (974 days old) by bigalsf (Salt Lake City)        
Tear down

Thanks for the pics. Well the O-Ring you are referring to is the pump to tub gasket, and you definitely have some rust issues in the sump area. They could very well be causing the leak. The o-ring I was referring to is at the top area of the drain impeller. Did you remove that in your initial tear down? If so, you may have inadvertently dislodged it from it's sealing position. It is small and fits over the motor shaft and into the top of the drain impeller. It is held in place by the shim washers which are placed on top of it (you can see them in pics 11 & 12). If that o-ring is not positioned correctly it will allow the water to leak as described. Also, under the drain impeller is the main shaft seal. It is two parts: the spring loaded seal pressed into the pump body and the mating carbon ring inside the bottom of the drain impeller. If either of those pieces was nicked or dislodged from position it will also allow water to leak out down the motor shaft. Even if you did not remove the drain impeller, removing the wash impeller releases the pressure on the shaft seal and can cause the o-ring &/or seal to malfunction (especially on a dishwasher this age) You will need to do some fairly extensive work on the sump area as well. You will need to remove the pump & motor from the machine; the pump to tub gasket will also come out with this assembly. You will also have to remove the heating element in order to address the rust spots around the mounts (an achilles heel of these machines). POR 15 will work fine to address the rust issues. You will also need to purchase a shaft seal kit (part # 4162139) which includes a new coarse strainer assembly (the blue piece you are missing). The pump gasket is part # KitchenAid part # D-115716 (which i’m unable to locate on-line; it may have a new Whirlpool # associated with it). I could not find any info on the kit # you referenced. Can you post a pic of that? Do you have the service manual to help you proceed? If not I highly recommend downloading it so you’ll have a guide to help you.

Post# 1082054 , Reply# 9   7/22/2020 at 22:27 (974 days old) by bigalsf (Salt Lake City)        
Shaft seal kit

Ok,  I found the kit # you referred to.  The part # I referenced above is the new part number (see info below)


Part Number 4162139 (AP3102067) replaces 240366


Post# 1082059 , Reply# 10   7/22/2020 at 23:28 (974 days old) by Braniff720 (97068)        

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Just a quick update - I think I found the culprit in the drain solenoid valve after all. Pic attached of the piece of debris next to what is left of my retirement account for visual reference. It's metal and I think it was a clip from packaging I opened near some dirty dishes apparently. I'm guessing it was making the buzzing noise and then the rattle/knock as it worked forward to the solenoid where it lodged. All seems well for now (quiet and no leak), but I still want to sort out the seals and etc.

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Post# 1082141 , Reply# 11   7/23/2020 at 22:15 (973 days old) by Braniff720 (97068)        

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Thanks bigalsf and everyone for your help! Bigalsf you asked if I removed the O-ring at the top of the drain impeller and I did not. In fact I didn't mess with anything that fits onto the drain impeller shaft.

In kit 240366, at least according to the parts diagram, I have the "washer spring (impeller)," the O ring that goes on top of the drain impeller, and shims 20-23.

What I actually have in my kit 240366 (see pics) seems a bit different, as it includes the coarse strainer (which I installed already), a spring washer that looks more like it would fit the drain impeller, a drain impeller with what looks like a carbon ring already attached at the bottom, and two conical washers, perhaps they are two of the shims? I actually have two 240366 kits and they both have the same parts.

As a result I am quite confused as to what I need but if I am taking everything out to POR15 the corrosion, I figure I might as well replace these things too. I think I have found the larger pump gasket (d115716), but it seems I am still missing other parts including the gauges for the shims. Is there another kit that includes the gauge and other small parts?

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