Thermomix Saga

I recently ran into some problems with my Thermomix, whom I affectionately call my German boyfriend. I even gave him a name.

Those on my Facebook will know that I adore Magnus. I constantly rave about how sexy and how much better he has made my life. He has brought my cooking to new heights and made me almost a domestic goddess.

So on Sunday, while I was trying to make some bread, Magnus shorted. In fact, the entire power in my house shorted. I had to reset. I tried to start him up again, and the same thing happened. So I poured out the ingredients and kneaded the dough by hand. Needless to say, they came out shit.

I texted my sales rep, who first checked what I did, then asked the standard questions of whether I overused, whether I put the bowl in while it was wet etc. I did not. I love my boyfriend to bits.

I mean, this kind of thing you cannot lie. It\’s like bringing your mobile phone which is under warranty to the shop and say you don\’t know why it is ruined when you took good care of it, then they open up and find that it\’s drenched on the inside. It just makes you look very, very stupid.

She recommended that I contact the HQ for a diagnosis. I texted them on FB and the cust serv responded very quickly. I applaud her dedication because it was a Sunday night when I asked the question. She could have just ignored me until Tuesday which was the official working hours.

She asked me to try plugging the unit into a different socket. I did. My whole house plugged into darkness. I even took the video for her to show her at which point. Then she asked me to try with a different bowl, which I politely declined. I am not going to try until the unit completely burns out or explodes into a ball of fire. Then warranty is confirmed moot. Respecting my decision, she made an appointment for me and I brought the unit down.

Today I brought the unit down.

The cust serv, a different lady, set up my unit using her plug, and said, \”Let\’s test this.\” I held my breath.

Miraculously, the unit didn\’t short the entire place. Instead, an error message came out, which I didn\’t register properly in my state of shock. She saw the error code and expertly realized it was the bowl\’s problem. She took out my bowl and dismantled it. Upon examination, she found something off. She pointed out to me very quickly the damaged part. But I believe because of the 1m rule, she couldn\’t come too close to me, she went off with my unit to the technician in a small room to ask him to confirm the problem.

Then she went off to the store to grab a new bowl. She also brought out another bowl to test. The unit worked fine. Later the technician confirmed something from inside the room and yes, my bowl was spoilt.

I asked her what was the diagnosis, She said, \”Wear and tear.\”

Huh? I proceeded to tell her my unit is under one year. How does wear and tear set in so quickly? She shrugged and said, \”Maybe overheat, maybe you didn\’t use it properly.\”

I asked her how can a unit overheat when the temperature is controlled by the machine?

She said, \”Then maybe you put the bowl in when it\’s not completely dried.\”

I got annoyed. Why so many maybe? So what exactly is the problem?

Wear and tear.

I took a deep breath. There is no point raising my voice because I can clearly see the lady getting wary, especially when she told me the new bowl will be $200.

I asked her why is it not under warranty?

We do not have a warranty for wear and tear.

W.O.W

I could definitely see that my conversation to this lady has ended. She is not in the position to offer me any sympathy, answer any further questions about the warranty, or try to get me some discount etc. She\’s just there to do her job.

In my experience, the more I ask, the more upset I\’ll get. Then the next thing I know, maybe the security in the building will be asked to usher me to my car. Since I was already upset and not in the right state of mind, I paid for the bowl and left.

One mistake I made which I regretted, was that I did not snap pictures of the damaged part of my bowl before it disappeared into the technician\’s room. I also didn\’t take it back. I should have. Since I already paid for a new bowl, that old bowl cannot be repaired, I should be allowed to take it back. Hindsight is always 20/20.

I got home, composed myself and wrote a long Facebook post to caution my friends who bought the Thermie under my influence, or already owned one, that wear-and-tear is not covered under the warranty.

Actually, now, I don\’t know what the warranty covers, if that\’s the case. Because it can always be ricocheted to you to say you have used it wrongly, thus causing this and that.

My friends, maybe some panicked, shared my post and got the attention of their sales rep. The stories that circulated after that was insane. Like how I abused my machine, did not tell the complete story, etc etc. It got so bad that the cust serv who first attended to me via Facebook called me on my phone.

She managed to dig up the one and only post which I wrote on Thermomix Truly Asian on Jan 11 about my burnt bowl and attributed the cause of my bowl\’s malfunction to it.

Here is the said post.

I asked for help on how to remove the burnt portion without scratching my precious.

I was in a competitive mood then and I wanted to show my dad how I could make pineapple tarts without chopping the pineapples and standing over the stove to cook for hours, stirring and stirring.

The awesome thing about Magnus, the selling point, was that he was an independent fella. Just turn the knobs to the correct setting, then leave the machine to do his thing and you go do your thing. I loved it.

I followed a tried and tested recipe on Thermomix Truly Asian.

My pineapple jam came out delicious, but it also came with that burnt portion. Thus I asked in the helpful community how to deal with it.

I got a lot of helpful responses.

No one really told me I was doomed, that I probably have damaged my bowl for good, and possibly my unit. I bet those poor souls who offered me the solutions didn\’t know too.

I followed their methods but I didn\’t manage to get everything out.

Check out my pins.

Do your pins look like my pins? If they do, maybe your countdown timer has started. I don\’t know. Maybe these pins look perfectly fine. I\’m not the expert.

Anyway, I didn\’t want to scrub it out for the fear of scratching my thermie, so I put it aside. I also didn\’t want to cook with this because that burnt portion might have accumulated a lot of the detergent and nonsense I put in to try to wash it out.

I used a new bowl after that day.

Yes, I am indulgent. I bought 2 mixing bowls. My husband already gave me a lot of shit about it, so you keep your judgement to yourself.

So, back to helpful FB cust serv who took the trouble to check with the technician what\’s wrong with my mixing bowl. The technician took pictures of blackened pins and melted stuff for her.

I haven\’t had the chance to stop the poor lady that it was not the bowl I used for pineapple jam but I let her continue.

She said that was what the service counter lady meant when she tried to explain overheating to me.

Firstly, blackened pins, the lady would have widened her eyes and said OHHHHH THERE! YOU SEE ALL THE PINS ARE BLACK!

I\’m also not blind. When she opened the bowl up, there were no black pins. She had to examine the thing to see something off at the side, which she wasn\’t sure and went in to check with the technician if that was the problem.

The technician also didn\’t come out of his room to tell me, look at your blackened pins.

So I corrected the FB CS politely that that was not the bowl I used for the said pineapple jam. The one I burnt is at home.

THEN she went on to explain how I could have damaged my unit using recipes that are not \”endorsed\” by thermomix. It was lengthy explanation, but in short, it\’s like some people might have abused their pots too and put that recipes that abuse their pots and i stupidly follow. She asked me if I remembered which recipe I used.

I told her it was so long ago, which caught me by surprise frankly. But I applaud her effort to dig up my \”dirt\”. Anyway, if she could dig up my post, she could dig up the recipe because I posted in my link when someone in the FB group asked.

That person in the FB group examined the recipe I posted, then helpfully told me, that 1kg of pineapple is not 1kg after I peel it. Maybe I have put in less than 1kg of pineapple thus the burn?

I did not take offense at being treated like an imbecile, because after all, she was trying to help. I knew what I was doing. I followed the recipe to a tee because I was going to SHOW my father that Magnus was the boss. Of course I had to eat the humble pie that day.
Anyway, the FB CS told me using Varoma for thermomix for an extended period of time without 250g of liquid is going to damage the pot, but since it\’s not the same pot which I used, maybe I have already damaged my unit. Or maybe I have been consistently cooking using wrong recipes thus accumulated the damages.
To which I asked.
Why wasn\’t there a warning in the first place when I bought the Thermomix that I can only cook using Thermomix cookbooks? Even Cookidoo, Thermomix recipe communities, consist of unendorsed, unvetted recipes submited by users.

If you own a thermomix, you\’ll know one of the selling points of the Thermie, is the thousands of recipes you can find online. Strike that out NOW. Or abuse your thermomix at your own risk. You should only refer to those recipes after you become a MasterChef, with knowledge like you can only use Varoma towards the end of the cooking, and always have 250g of liquid when you are using Varoma. If you don\’t know, you better not try anything funny.

Fortunately, I already owned 5 Thermomix endorsed cookbooks recommended to me by my sales rep. I will stick to them only from now on.

FB CS sensed my displeasure, offered a 50% discount or cookbooks which I declined. I already accepted my responsibility in damaging the mixing bowl. I do not see the need for all these discounts. I also do not see the need of having more sales rep coming to my house after the covid to teach me how to cook using my Thermomix.

In the first place, wasn\’t it supposed to be idiot-proof?  Was that also one of the selling points?

This is not a smear campaign. It\’s a cautionary tale to all those who own thermomix units. Your sales rep may have caught wind of my FB post and try to tell you stories about how I abused my unit, that my FB post did not reflect the whole picture.

Sad to say, they are all correct. I do not know which of the unendorsed forum, facebook and cookidoo recipes I have used that have led to the eventual demise of my mixing bowl, and get this,

Thermomix is not responsible for any of those recipes, even in cookidoo, facebook or recipe community which is hosted by them.

I need to emphasize that you are using those recipes at your own risk.

Your warranty is moot the day you start to use those recipes wrongly or try to be clever and tweak the recipe without an expert\’s knowledge of the machine.

My advice is, since you paid so much for it, check with your sales rep before you cook those stuff. Get them to endorse those recipes for you before you try them.

Treat your Thermomix like the expensive, fragile thing that it is, with the same respect as you would give your LV handbags or your Pradas. I mean those handbags are expensive because they are made of extremely durable material right? Yet they are treated with more love and care than those cheap, not durable handbags. Your thermomix is no difference from your 2K handbags. Better not anyhow use it.

That said, I still love Magnus. It\’s just that he\’s not the person (appliance) I thought he was. I thought he was fun and adventurous. Turns out, he\’s husband material.

I might have already damaged my main unit so I\’m going to try to prolong the usage of it by cooking only stuff stated in the 5 cookbooks I bought from now on.

Good luck to the rest of you.

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