Hi Mike,

It was a pleasure meeting you and your assistant today. The repair to my Bosch dishwasher went much quicker than I expected and everything was well explained to me, for that I am grateful. I appreciate your timely response to my call, your explanations and general all around great customer service. I would not hesitate to use you again or recommend you to my friends.

Thanks again,
Cecelia Hunter
Bonny Doon, CA

Dear Mike,

I just wanted to tell you how pleased I am with the recent work you completed on our Dishwasher. As you no doubt remember, this was a difficult case: we had repeated problems getting the correct parts from the supplier. I was particularly pleased that I was able to delegate the issue to you, let you track it and work it with the same diligence that I would have exercised, and bring it to a speedy and satisfactory conclusion. Follow up of this kind is rare in the appliance repair field. You will be our first choice in the future for all our appliance repair needs and we are passing out your cards to our friends.

Tom Pencek, President
~Service for PROFIT~

Dear Mike,

I want to thank you again for your excellent service fixing our refrigerator. We waited a week after other people were called, to no avail. Then, in order to help us, you came the next day. To add another surprise, you even called us the next day to be sure all was working well. I wish there were more people like you.

Best Regards,
Roger Goodfriend

I heartily recommend Mike Katz of Cool Kat Appliance Repair.

When our freezer developed a defrosting problem and threatened to flood our kitchen, Mike was out to our house in under an hour, replaced the thermostat and cleaned up not only his own work debris, but the considerable amount of water that had accumulated underneath the refrigerator. When the bill came, we literally couldn't believe our eyes on how inexpensive the work was. Mike also took note of the refrigerator's water filter and offered to drop by a replacement as ours was rather seriously out of date. He did this the very next day (saving me an hour's trip downtown) and at far less than I would have paid at the appliance store. When our refrigerator again developed a similar problem a few months down the line, Mike was at my house within half an hour, replaced a different-but-related part and didn't charge me a red cent.

Mike is courteous, cheerful, professional and always cleans up any mess he makes. I feel safe as a woman alone during the day, having Mike in my home and my husband and I are both ecstatic about the quality of work he provides. I highly recommend Mike and Cool Kat Appliance - you can't afford NOT to hire this man for your appliance repair needs!

Maryam Webster
Energy Psychologist & LifeCoach, Saratoga, CA

Hi! I like your website. Perhaps you can help us.

We're in a mobile home that's 20-some years old, but I don't know if this is the original oven. It's a Gaffers & Sattler gas range with pilot lights. The burners work fine, but the oven won't light, even though the pilot is lit. I've done a bit of Googling and have established that it might be a dirty pilot assembly, a faulty thermocouple or thermostat, or a bad safety valve.

What do you think? Is it worth your coming out to look at it, or should we simply bite the bullet and get a new one? My partner is a full-time student, so we're interested in spending as little as possible.

Thanks, Marnie

Hi Marnie,

Thank you for the inquiry, your oven is most likely 20+ years old, and your Googling seems correct, as if the pilot is staying lit, then the safety valve or thermostat are generally at fault. The price of either unit will most likely be in the $60 to $120. price range, and if the required part is no longer available from the manufacturer, then in the case of the thermostat only) may be able to be rebuilt. Some "after market" companies may also still have the parts available. My service charge to come out and test the stove is $40.00, and then my labor rate is $60. per hour. Either part should not take longer than 20 to 40 min. to install, so the repair guesstimate is in the $150 - $200 area.
I will be available for appointments on Tues. or Wed of next week.

If this is a free standing, 30" range...then replacing it with a new one may be your best option, as gas ranges are starting in the $300's, and even some seen on line for less. Most of the new ranges will be pilotless ignition, so much safer and more energy efficient.

Please let me know if I may be of assistance.


Thanks for your honesty! I'm saving your info for future reference, but we'll pass on the repair approach and shop for a new oven instead. How refreshing to do this kind of business through email.


31 July 2004, 11:55 AM

Ever since I moved in, the little cup in my dishwasher that's supposed to spring open halfway through the cycle to release detergent has been broken.

Various things I saw online indicated that all I needed to do was purchase a replacement, but I'd been procrastinating. Then I got a renewal notice from the appliance-insurance company.

I'm not sure how I ended up with appliance insurance; I apparently signed up for it sometime during the house-buying process, though I have no memory of doing so. Anyway, it's time to renew, and my first thought was "Why should I renew? I have no use for this," but my second thought was "I wonder if they handle dishwasher repairs."

So I called 'em, and found out that they do handle dishwashers; also refrigerators (even though I didn't have the fridge when I first signed up for the insurance), ovens, microwaves, etc. Not washers or dryers, though; you have to pay extra for that. But they also claim to handle plumbing and electrical/wiring issues. Someone later pointed out to me that that probably means issues related to appliances—dishwasher-related plumbing issues, but maybe not a stopped-up toilet. Not sure; must ask for more info.

At any rate, I told them about the dishwasher, and a day or two later I got a call from an appliance repair guy. He left a message, and I flaked on returning the call. A few days later, he called again, and we arranged a time for him to come by.

He turned out to be Mike Katz of Cool Kat Appliance Repair. He was friendly and entertaining and knowledgeable; he took off the inside of the front door of the dishwasher, messed around with some stuff, and put it back together, and lo and behold, the broken springy-cup-thing now works!

He then proceeded to tell me that GE dishwashers (like mine) have a design flaw: there's a trap at the bottom, underneath a plastic casing held down by screws, where debris collects. Anything larger than, say, a fingertip (I hope you're taking the fingertips off your plates before washing them) ends up there, instead of being washed out the drain. Furthermore, the trap area is right over where the water sprays out, so the water that's being used to clean your dishes is first going through all the debris left over from previous washings. He showed me the underside of the plastic casing (which only had some mildew-looking dark patches; he said he's seen some cases where it's covered with thick green mold), and then he dug out half a dozen melted bits of plastic bags, and an olive pit, and a plastic bread-bag clip thingy, and some bits of broken glass, and other assorted detritus.

It's possible for dishwasher owners to clean that area out themselves, but it requires a screwdriver and it's hard to reach even after you take the plastic cover off. And apparently GE doesn't tell customers they need to do this regularly.

My dishwasher is probably about 15 years old, but apparently more recent GE models have the same problem.

One other thing he mentioned that I'd never heard before, but that makes sense: he noted that the dishwasher starts out by using whatever water is in the pipes, which may be lukewarm or cold. So if you run the hot water in the sink before running the dishwasher, that increases the percentage of the dishwasher's water that's hot.

email me!