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So, I asked this question over on iFixit three days ago, and haven't gotten anything back from them; so I'm bringing it over here mostly as-is because Stack Exchange at least responds. Hopefully I have the right community for this; nothing else seemed close enough.

We have a GE Microwave, model PVM9195DF1WW, at our old house, and the timer button has broken; it gets stuck under the outer panel when pressed. After taking apart the panel casing, we found that the problem stemmed from a broken spring; each button on this component has two plastic bars that function as springs to pop the button back up after it's pressed, and one of the springs had broken. The specific part is seen in front of Part 103 in this diagram; this site lists the part as a SWITCH PCB, ASM. The "ASM" part seems to mean assembly, which as I understand it means both the circuit board with the actual buttons and the plastic cover with the button faces. I only want the plastic cover, because presumably it would be less expensive, and I also wouldn't end up with a loose electrical component that I don't need. Is there any way to get only the plastic piece?

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    Highly doubtful. Perhaps you could find a real spring of the appropriate size and affix it to the back of your button. – topshot Sep 28 '16 at 22:57
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Unfortunately most appliance repair parts are assemblies, especially when you get into control panels.

Partially because its hard to inventory and sell the hundred pieces that make up just the buttons on your microwave vs just selling the entire section to replace.

Also because its faster to replace the whole assembly. Its made to be taken out and replaced. The individual pieces of it were not. For the DIY people who don't mind spending an hour carefully prying plastic clips apart and replacing the button, the smaller parts would be nice. But for the repair guy who just wants to get it done fast and move on to the next job, replacing the whole panel makes sense.

Besides, if that button broke, odds are there are others that have seen the same strain over the years and are close to failing too.

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