Model #KUDS01FLWH1, the customer complained that the door seemed very heavy when they would open it and if the door didn't get latched, would have a nasty habit of falling open by itself. After a few times of running into the door with their shins, it was time to get this thing fixed.
The doors on the Kitchenaid line of dishwasher use a spring and link assembly to counterbalance the weight of the doors, and because the internal panels of these doors are stainless steel, they tend to be a bit on the heavy side. The link is made up of a small rope with plastic connectors on either end to connect to the door hinge and spring. This link will wrap around a set of pulleys (one of which is stationary) near the front of the frame allowing the rotational movement of the door hinge to translate into a horizontal pull on the spring. The spring is then connected to the rear of the dishwasher frame and remains in place with just a small amount of tension applied.
The most common failure of the door link is the end connecting to the door spring breaks and allows the rope to pull loose, or the link just breaks at one of the ends due to the constant tension and bending when run through the pulley system. Once the first link breaks, the customer will notice the door uncomfortably heavy when opened much like this customer did. I replaced both links with the parts from the new door link kit which contains a new set of pulleys and two links that have a red strand (see part link image) woven into the rope to indicate the new vs the old style link.
The new style link (more photos can be seen on this post Noisy Door on Kitchenaid Dishwasher) has an added benefit of being wrapped tighter than the original links to help prevent dirt and debris from getting stuck within the strands of the rope resulting in extra friction as it moves past the stationary pulley. It is this friction that causes the link to drag when the door is opened or closed and make a very noticeable harmonic spring noise. Often the solution used to stop this noise is to apply a lubricant to the pulley to allow it to slide better, but the long term result will be extra dirt being attracted by the grease or oil that is applied. The better solution would be to do a quick replacement using the new style links and keep them clean from the start.
Once the link kit was installed, the door works just fine again, and because both links were replaced, the door should only open when the handle is pulled.
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