I've been casually shopping for drip pans and grates for a couple of months now. I realize these aren't exactly glamorous items, but ever since I moved about four months ago, my rangetop has been bugging me. The range itself works just fine, but the previous owner wasn't kind to the grates and drip pans. They're as clean as I can get them, but they're still pretty beat up and chipped. I honestly didn't think it was going to be that hard to find replacement parts, but it certainly wasn't as easy as I'd hoped.
Since it's a Kenmore range, I started in the logical place: Sears.com and its Parts Direct site. But I quickly found the problem that would dog my quest: I can read only part of the model number on the range's label, and from what I can tell, my model has been discontinued. I spent an hour trying to figure out a similar model on Sears.com, but gave up. And even once you identify your model, you're forced to look at schematic drawings of the range to identify the part number you need.
The next site I tried was ApplianceHelp.com, a site that only sells parts for major appliances. This site sells Kenmore range parts, among other brands, but it all starts with the model number -- if you don't have that, you're out of luck.
Next up: AppliancePartsPros.com. This site was an improvement over both the Sears site and ApplianceHelp.com since it gave me a way to search without a model number. It only took two clicks to get the the "burner grates and drip pans" section under gas ranges. But only 24 parts were listed; it looked like there was one drip pan that would work, but my range has three sizes of burners (one small, two medium and one large). Plus none of the available grates looked like mine.
I finally found what I needed at RepairClinic.com. This site definitely has the cleanest-looking interface among the four sites, and straight off you're given two ways to search -- by model number or by appliance type. Three clicks and I had filtered by range type and brand, and had found the drip-pan section -- with more than 200 types of drip pans. The photos are large and clear, so I was able to skim results by skipping through the photos. And lo, there was my drip pan.
Both RepairClinic.com and AppliancePartsPro.com include photos of each part on top of a lined grid; each square in the grid represents one square inch -- so you use the photo to get an an accurate picture of the part's size. But I preferred the larger photos at RepairClinic.com. A couple things would have made it even easier; since my range has three sizes of burners, it would have been nice to see all of the available sizes for each style of drip pan all together; instead, I had to keep skimming photos until I found each of the sizes I needed. And I can see that each color is listed separately; it would have been nice to see all the available colors. A set of four drip pans here is going to cost me $76. RepairClinic.com has my burner grates too, but at $119 each, I think I'm going to try to refinish the ones I have.
My experience at RepairClinic.com was so nice that I started looking for stuff I didn't even need, like a lint filter for my dryer and one of those plastic roller rings for my microwave plate (found them both). Anyone else use RepairClinic.com? Let us know what you think and if you had any problems.