Adjusting Your KitchenAid Mixer | Bakepedia Tips

Adjusting Your KitchenAid Mixer

kitchenaid mixers

We love our stand mixers and we work them hard, but even with proper care, sometimes they need an adjustment. With a KitchenAid mixer, it’s all about the contact between the bowl and the attachment, be it the flat beater, balloon whisk or dough hook.

We find the first sign of a possible misalignment appears two different ways. After creaming butter and sugar with the flat beater and proceeding to make the rest of a batter, we find that some unmixed portions are left on the very bottom of the bowl. When beating just 2 or 3 egg whites with a balloon whisk, the attachment may be barely contacting the egg whites in the bottom of the bowl as well. All of this can be addressed. All you need is a dime and a screwdriver.

The dime test can help you determine the adjustment because a its 1/16-inch thickness is the amount of clearance that is proper for the bowl and attachment. And if this sounds crazy, have no fear, this is a KitchenAid-approved approach, so you will not damage your mixer. We offer you directions for both tilt-head and bowl-lift models.

  1. Place a dime in the bottom of a clean bowl attached to your mixer. Situate it in the concave areas, not on the bump in the middle.
  2. Attach your flat beater. Do not use any other attachment.
  3. Turn your mixer on halfway to the “stir” speed – level 5. What you want to see is the beater contacting the dime and moving it around the bowl about ¼ to ½ inch every time it contacts the dime. If it doesn’t touch the dime, then you know your bowl and beater are too far apart from one another. This is usually the adjustment that is needed. If the beater pushes the dime more than ½ inch each time it passes over the coin or pushes the dime up the side of the bowl instead of nudging it forward, then the clearance is too low.
  4. Locate the adjustment screw, which can be turned to raise or lower the beater or bowl.
  5. Unplug your mixer! Very important for safety.
    Adjusting-stand-mixer
  6. For tilt-head models, remove the flat beater, tilt the head back and you will see a screw right where the top and body of the mixer meet, as seen in image above. Take only quarter turns at a time – right for increasing contact, left for creating more space. Perform the dime test and re-adjust as needed. Watch this video for tilt-head models.
  7. For bowl-lift models, remove the flat beater and bowl. Lay the mixer down backwards on a towel so it doesn’t slip. Locate the screw right where the top and body of the mixer meet. Again, take only quarter turns at a time – right for increasing contact, left for creating more space. Perform the dime test and re-adjust as needed. Watch this video for bowl-lift models.
Comments (28)


28 Responses to Adjusting Your KitchenAid Mixer

  1. Linda December 31, 2013 at 7:13 am #

    Thanks so much for this great information. I received my first KA mixer as a wedding gift in 1984. After many years of use the flat beater outer coating was wearing off. I had to send my mixer in to be adjusted, if I had only known this tip then.

    • Profile photo of Dede Wilson
      Dede Wilson December 31, 2013 at 12:06 pm #

      I owned mine for years as well before I learned this trick. It’s like calibrating an oven. Some models you can do yourself and once you learn, it’s so easy. I would consider writing a pot about this except that each oven is different. I guess the tip is to know that this is something that can be DIY!

  2. Debbie January 5, 2014 at 12:59 pm #

    I have a hand mixer and I would so love to win one of these it has been one of my dreams.. I would love the hot pink one!!!!!

  3. Kathy Granger January 5, 2014 at 1:18 pm #

    I do not have a kitchen aid stand mixer but both my daughters do. I really want one but can not afford one . I love all the colors but ny favorite is the tourquise

  4. Stacy McCain January 5, 2014 at 5:05 pm #

    I just Love Kitched Aid thing’s I had the stove ,Ihave the stanmixer for 17 year’ the sam for the foodprossesor. They do the job in the kitchen ,the place I hsve stayed in for 35 year’s.

  5. Sandra January 5, 2014 at 7:36 pm #

    I really am glad you posted this helpful instruction about this adjustment. I’ve needed it for a long time. I have had KA mixers for way over 30 years. I had one of them with a bad switch. I called about repair, but they sent me a new one and had me return it in the same packaging and then they picked it up by UPS at no charge to me. I was so surprised that it encouraged me by several KA products. Recently my mixer leaked a lot of oil, so I called KA and they were charging me a lot of money to just have it checked and then to pay for the repair and it just went on until I could have purchased a new one. That’s disappointing to me enough to just go to another brand.

    • Profile photo of Dede Wilson
      Dede Wilson January 6, 2014 at 10:20 am #

      I would reach out again. Maybe call the 800# and ask for a supervisor. It never hurts to try!

  6. Susan January 6, 2014 at 9:46 am #

    Thank-you! I’ve had this mixer for about 5 years, and now it finally works right!! I have avoided using it very much, because of that problem.

  7. Kirsten/ComfortablyDomestic January 7, 2014 at 1:32 pm #

    I adjusted my mixer this morning, and now it works like a champ! Thank you for sharing such a great tip!

  8. Rebecca January 18, 2014 at 4:49 pm #

    I have adjusted the screw as far as it will go and there is still too much space between the bowl and the beater. Now what?

    • Profile photo of Dede Wilson
      Dede Wilson January 19, 2014 at 8:42 am #

      Now is the time to call customer service. Let them know you already tried the adjustment. I will be curious to see what they say. Let us know!

    • Profile photo of Marsha Mailloux
      Marsha Mailloux December 15, 2015 at 12:31 am #

      I too have the same problem, I have turned the screw to the maximum and it still won’t touch the dime, ingredients not getting mixed in the bottom…did you find a solution?

      • Profile photo of Fezzick
        Fezzick March 17, 2016 at 6:26 pm #

        See my post below…the adjustment is made by accessing a nut located inside the body of the unit.

  9. Profile photo of Julia
    Julia March 22, 2014 at 9:55 pm #

    The internet saves the day again! I was going crazy adjusting my new mixer, turning the screw what I thought was a lot with seemingly no results. Then I found the dime test. Wouldn’t you know it took 1-1/2 whole turns from the factory setting to get that dime to move! Thanks!

    • Profile photo of Dede Wilson
      Dede Wilson March 23, 2014 at 2:58 pm #

      So glad we were of help! Once you do it, it is so easy!

  10. Profile photo of Sandy Mc
    Sandy Mc April 20, 2014 at 11:56 am #

    So I found this blog and figured out this is why the coating is coming off my flat beater! I think i probably have to replace the beater… still not sure i have the adjustment right though, every once in a while the dime flips up – so sounds like it still isn’t right??

    • Profile photo of Dede Wilson
      Dede Wilson April 21, 2014 at 8:51 am #

      Hi Sandy, yes it sounds like yours is a bit tight. I have had the same issue over the years with bits of the beater coating coming off. Why not order an all-metal one? They offer non-coated ones that they refer to as ““burnished”“. Make sure to buy the right one for your model mixer.

      • Profile photo of Sandy Mc
        Sandy Mc April 21, 2014 at 5:08 pm #

        Yes, I debated between the two for quite some time. I read a lot of comments about the ‘burnished’ version getting ruined if it soaks in bowl of hot water too long or, heaven forbid, it goes through the dishwasher cycle – so I decided to just get another coated one and keep trying to adjust till I get it right – it sure isn’t hard too do and I really appreciate the video posted to show what it is supposed to look like. I think I am getting close! thanks for your quick response.. great new site to add to my bookmarks!

  11. Profile photo of Claire Wright
    Claire Wright September 18, 2015 at 5:25 am #

    How often should you need to do this? I have had my KitchenAid mixer for about a year and a half and had endless problems with it – it’s been in to KA customer service for review twice where they adjusted the height and sent it back (we had already done it one of these times!). Even after their adjustments, each time it has started jumping and moving independently after the catch comes loose after just a few weeks of them adjusting it! This is after making just a couple of loaves of normal bread! They are still insisting that it must simply need adjusting, but I’m starting to wonder why I spent all this money on a KA mixer if it’s going to need adjusting after every few loaves! Is this normal or could it be that the catch on mine is actually faulty??

    • Profile photo of Dede Wilson
      Dede Wilson September 18, 2015 at 7:36 am #

      Oh My. Sounds like a lemon to me. If I were in your position, I would call again and keep asking to go up the ladder to a supervisor’s supervisor. They should have your record of adjustments. It isn’t “normal” and I would say this isn’t the kind of quality you expected or understand these units to possess…lemons occur with cars, really any type of appliance or electrical item…I would make a hard bid for a replacement. Squeaky wheel…calm but firm…

      • Profile photo of Claire Wright
        Claire Wright September 18, 2015 at 4:23 pm #

        Thank you. We’ve been pushing them a bit because we just don’t see how it can be anything but a faulty machine. At one point they were suggesting we re-adjust before every loaf, which totally defeats the time-and-energy-saving point of getting a stand mixer in the first place! I think we just need to keep pushing them until they accept something is wrong! How often do you usually need to adjust a working mixer?

        • Profile photo of Dede Wilson
          Dede Wilson September 18, 2015 at 6:13 pm #

          Oh honey you ain’t gonna want to hear this but even with the Test Kitchen being as crazy as it is, I only adjust it maybe 1x a year!!!!! You need to press them and press then hard(er).

  12. Profile photo of Fezzick
    Fezzick March 17, 2016 at 6:22 pm #

    For all those who have either the Original Hobart (pre-90’s) or the Professional 600’s the screw you can see from the front of the unit (above the armature when the bowl is in the ‘down’ position) will NOT make the adjustment.

    You must lay the unit on it’s side or back to access a 7/16″ nut from within the body of the unit. As you look at the nut, turning it clockwise will shorten the distance between the attachments and the bowl, while turning counter-clockwise will increase the gap.

    I hope this helps…seemed to be something that was not very readily available online and most descriptions were either of a different unit or suggested turning the flat-head screw that rests just above the armature. The same screw which many here had clearly attempted to turn and all mentioned that it would only turn a 1/2-turn at most before stopping – at which point, unfortunately, you returned the unit for another rather than KitchenAid support giving you the correct information.

    I hope this helps.

    • Profile photo of Marsha Mailloux
      Marsha Mailloux March 17, 2016 at 8:31 pm #

      H Fezzick, thank you for your response regarding adjusting the bowl height on a pro 600, however I don’t know which nut you are referring to. Could you please tell me where or how percisely do I find this nut? Doineed to remove the metal band and top cover or is the nut visible from outside? Thank you, I greatly appreciate your help, as it is I am not enjoying my mixer much.

  13. Profile photo of Marsha Mailloux
    Marsha Mailloux March 17, 2016 at 8:30 pm #

    H Fezzick, thank you for your response regarding adjusting the bowl height on a pro 600, however I don’t know which nut you are referring to. Could you please tell me where or how percisely do I find this nut? Doineed to remove the metal band and top cover or is the nut visible from outside? Thank you, I greatly appreciate your help, as it is I am not enjoying my mixer much.

  14. Profile photo of Louisa Reddekopp
    Louisa Reddekopp July 21, 2016 at 2:07 pm #

    I have the Kitchen Aid professional 600 and my beater isn’t reaching the bottom of the bowl. I turned the machine on its side and on the very bottom are three screws holding the platform piece on. Remove these and the platform will com off and you will see up inside the mixer stand. the screw you need to adjust is in there. Im off to find a socket that will fit so I can adjust mine!

    • Profile photo of Glenn Funk
      Glenn Funk July 21, 2016 at 5:29 pm #

      I have the Kitchen Aid professional 600 and my beater isn’t reaching the bottom of the bowl in a new unit, I just lowered the bowl and there the screw to turn is exposed. I turned it a hair a little at a time to the left until the dime in the bowl moved like very slight with each pass. If the adjustment does not work for you on a KA Pro 600 KP26M1X model something is wrong. I did the adjustment with KA on the phone. See this link below also.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ocnETNExLc0

      • Profile photo of Glenn Funk
        Glenn Funk July 21, 2016 at 7:37 pm #

        Some people using odd ways to adjust there mixer, I mean page 12 in your KA manual is there for a reason, Turning bolts or nuts and taking out screws is crazy, If you need to do all that you need a mixer repair. My old lady is happy. I’m only talking about the Pro 600 model KP26’s. The 6QT 575watt model.