Friday, February 16, 2018

One Instruction Manual For Them All

A while back we started getting puddles under our dishwasher. As far as dishwasher functions go, puddle-creating is not very high on the desirable list. I would have tried to fix it, but I'm not exactly Joe Fix-It.

So, we got ourselves a new dishwasher. It's got some nice features, including, hopefully, a doesn't-leave-puddles-on-the-kitchen-floor feature.

The Wife and I have an unwritten arrangement: she does most of the cooking, and I do most of the dishwashing. Does this make me the greatest husband ever? No. But, it certainly helps keep me off the "worst husband ever" list. (And helps make up for all those times I fart in bed.)

So, since I would be using it a lot, when we got the dishwasher installed I grabbed the instruction manual in order to learn how to properly use it.

The instruction manual for our new dishwasher.
(But wait, why is there a picture of three dishwashers on the cover of my dishwasher manual?)
Unfortunately, when I opened up the manual for our new dishwasher, I found that it was not the manual for just our dishwasher, it was the manual for four different dishwashers (even though only three are pictured on the front cover.)

So, for the instructions to have any meaning for me, I needed to know which of the four models I had. For help with that, there was a handy picture showing the control panel of each model, with each model's number:
Well, that certainly clarifies things!
Well, that doesn't help. For one thing, the model number doesn't appear on the front of the actual dishwasher anywhere, so it's basically gibberish to me. So, I'm left with trying to match what the front of my actual dishwasher looks like with one of the four pictures. It's like something you'd find in a Highlights kid magazine at a dentist's office in 1978! ("One of these things is not like the other!")

For added fun, the model numbers are:
  * "x" can be any number

Wait a second. "X" can be any number? So, basically they've just added algebra to my little problem. Hey, I just want to figure out which dishwasher is mine, I don't want to relive my freshman year college algebra class!

Eventually, I'm able to figure out that the bottom picture is the same as the dishwasher I actually purchased. Hooray for me.

That leads to a little chart telling me which features each of the four dishwasher models actually has.
So many features! So many models! So much confusion!
Each dishwasher model has a little "x" by each dishwasher feature that it offers. And then it again says, "'x' can be any number." Does that mean my dishwasher can have 7 half loads, or 9 child locks? My brain hurts.

Throughout the rest of the instruction manual, it explains how each of these features work, but as it does it keeps repeating the phrase "model dependent," meaning "this is how this feature works if you are lucky enough to have one of the models that has this feature."

This eventually led to several cases of feature-envy when I read about a great dishwasher feature, only to realize that my model doesn't have it. ("What? My model doesn't have the robot arm that loads the dishwasher for you? Dang, I wish I had bought the STARK3AR7xUC* model!")

So, as I read about each feature, I would have to look back to the chart to see if it was a feature my dishwasher actually features. It's very confusing, but it doesn't have to be.

Really, it's pretty simple: I want an instruction manual for only the model that I purchased. I don't want an instruction manual for a bunch of models that I didn't buy!

This shouldn't be that difficult. Just make an individual instruction manual for each separate model. Done. That's all I'm asking for.

That way I can easily figure out which features the dishwasher I bought actually features. (I really hope my dishwasher has the doesn't-leave-puddles-on-the-kitchen-floor feature!)

Edited from a post originally published on 2/26/2016.

No comments:

Post a Comment