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Repairing a Cordless Electric Percolator (similar to an electric kettle)

Picture of Repairing a Cordless Electric Percolator (similar to an electric kettle)
Problem: Cuisinart 12-cup electric cordless percolator (PER-12C) stopped perking coffee.

Symptoms: At first it started making weaker and weaker coffee. We thought it was the grinds. We thought the basket was clogged. On day, it just didn't perk at all.

Solution: Fix it! This Instructable explains how we got it back into working order by opening it up, replacing a thermal cut-off (like a fuse or switch), and reassembling it. Now it makes coffee again!

Note: This Instructable might also be applied to cordless electric kettles, as I think they may work in a similar fashion.

The items you'll need are:

- Multi-meter
- Phillips screw drivers
- Replacement parts (in this case, a thermal cut-off)
- Soldering iron and solder
- Needle-nose pliers
- Thermal paste (may not be needed if the thermocouples aren't disturbed)
- Crazy glue (if you brake a plastic piece like I did)

Special thanks to Robin and Paul, is was a team effort to fix this puppy!
 
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Step 1: How the Percolator Coffee Maker Works

As far as I can tell, this electric percolator appears to work in this manner:

- The pot sits on top of the power base, and once connected to an electric outlet, electricity moves from the power base to a conductive metal "cup" in the pot. The resistance heats the water, bringing it to a boil.
- Once boiling, bubbles of gaseous water force hot liquid water up the pump tube, and it rains down on the basket filled with coffee grinds (this is the "perking" action).
- The perking cycle is completed when an appropriate temperature is reached, and the boiling is stopped. This is the important point. It is here that a thermal cut-off trips and tells the machine to stop boiling (it will later reset itself so that coffee can be brewed again).
- The heating switches to a "warming" mode.
- A little orange light comes on to tell you it's coffee time!

This may not be entirely accurate, I am open to corrections on the workings of this machine!
kangoes4 years ago
 Where can i buy a new or old kettle base only?
roccaways (author)  kangoes3 years ago
I know you can buy that part from the Cuisinart website as a replacement part. Or at least, you used to be able to.
cuisinart3 years ago
Where can i buy a new heating element assembly
roccaways (author)  cuisinart3 years ago
You could probably get the part at an electronic shop. Also, please note that this fixed lasted for awhile, but eventually the coffee maker gave up again. It never actually stopped (which is what happened the first time), but the quality of coffee-making became inconsistent once again. About 50% of the time it wouldn't really finish brewing and the coffee would taste poor. From what I've read, mine is not the only machine to do this. I would never by this coffee maker again. I wish you better luck in your repairs than me!
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