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June 17, 2015


Sally Schmidt

I think appliances now have a built-in aggravation sensor that stops just short of driving you totally nuts (or broke). I knew there was trouble when you said safe, solid Sears. I replaced all my appliances with new ones from Sears almost 2 years ago. The dishwasher was a brand new model (warning warning) and cleans better than any other dishwasher I have ever had. Now if they had only designed it with something sturdier than little plastic pieces on the top rack that keep breaking. 3 service calls = 1 replacement dishwasher, 1 service call and counting now on that one. The repairman didn't use the parts the call center mailed to me because they weren't necessary since he could "bend it back into place." Good plan - if I want to see him every 3 weeks. This is the only time I have felt the additional warranty was worth it. ;-(


Why does buying appliances have to be so difficult?

Here's our story (the short version): We purchased a new washer and dryer from Sears. Front loading, so we were told by friends to make sure we got the pedestals. So we did. Day of delivery on the washer (dryer was being the next day - ??@*%), no pedestals but delivery man said both pedestals would come with the dryer. No problem. Dryer arrives next day, with only one pedestal. We call the store: "can't help you, call the offices." Offices: "We are going to have to send someone out to examine your house to make sure the pedestal is not there"

WHAT!!!! Us: "Is there some underground pedestal ring I am unaware of? And if I was part of such a ring, would I be stupid enough to keep it in my house when I know you want to come to the house 'checking' for it."

Needless to say, this went to the upper echelons of Sears management, the Better Business Bureau, and we'll never buy from Sears again. (Remember, this was the short version, there were many other issues both before AND after this part).

Karen in Ohio

Our dishwasher has not worked for over a month now, and I can't bring myself to go through this process yet. I know it's going to be as painful as yours was, Elaine.

Luckily, we don't have granite countertops! There are an awful lot of incompetent boobs out there posing as "installers", I fear. Talk about a "dead end job", though. Hint, hint.

Hank Phillippi Ryan

Appliance stories. AHHHHHHHH.

When something breaks , I say to Jonathan-let's wait. It might fix itself. Sometimes it does!

Elaine Viets

My condolences, Sally. My parents alwasy bought their appliances from Sears, and they worked for years. (So did the appliances.) What's gone wrong? Why has it become so complicated?

Elaine Viets

Here in Florida pedestal rings sell them out of the backs of trucks, Kristopher. Geez, I didn't even know about pedestals, and now I don't want to.

Elaine Viets

I think installers are like consultants, Karen. Anyone can say they're an installer. Maybe it's better to give your handyman relative a six-pack.

Elaine Viets

We're waiting for our TV to fix itself, Hank, but so far it hasn't come back from the dead. Meanwhile, I watch TV when I work out in the condo gym. Much healthier.

Marcia Talley

When appliances don't work in our house, there are two steps. Unplug it, plug it back it. If that doesn't work, the next step is percussive maintenance. Whop it once upside the head.

There must be some sort of rule -- appliances here seem to die in threes. I have a new fridge and a new washer and dryer. The dishwasher is limping along. I expect either that or the stove will be the next to go.

My experience with hhgregg has been 100% satisfactory. Delivery and installation of the washer and dryer was fast, efficient and free. The installer even telephoned the next day to make sure everything was working for me. When the dishwasher dies, I'll be going back to them.

Elaine Viets

Percussive maintenance works well with computers, Marcia, but when I walloped the dishwasher one of the washer blades fell off.

Charlaine Harris

I just realized this morning that my Cuisinart coffee maker has worked for over four years. That's a record for me, and I am convinced now that it will break every second. I am trying not to let it see the fear in my eyes.

Elaine Viets

Coffeemamkers are like people, Charlaine. If you remind them of their age, they start feeling aches and pains. Treat your coffeemakers as if it is fresh out of the box and it will last much longer.

Donna Wms

We have an appliance repairman who claims he is retired, but he continues to take jobs because he is teaching his grandson the trade. He repaired our water heater, but took it out and reinstalled it at no charge because he wouldn't leave a house with an improperly installed water heater and the boy needed the practice. Today he spent quite a bit of time determining that it was just the heated drying switch on the dishwasher - the heating elements worked. Not worth fixing - he told us to just open the door and let the dishes air dry. I get a repair, a safe house and good advice for a $65 trip charge. Comes time to get a new appliance, I hope he still hasn't figured out how to retire.

Phyllis Brown

I think probably we have all been through similar experiences-- several times. The one that's frustrating me right now is my purchase of a window AC unit from Lowes 2 years ago. It came with a 2-year open replacement warrantee. When I started having problems with it last fall, I called the store. The manager told me that they didn't carry AC units anytime except early summer, so none of their stores had any in stock. He promised to try to find one and call me. Of course he never did. Now they won't replace the malfunctioning one because its warrantee has (only just) expired! Oh, and by the way, the purchase price was supposed to include installation, but Lowes found excuses for not doing it, and I had to pay someone to install my AC.


Now I'm happy I know how to install a dishwasher all by myself--with only 5 trips to Home Depot. Home Depot here is remarkably nice about taking back all the wrong parts you buy that don't really fit the way you thought they would. (Only took 12 hours, and a little cursing, well maybe a lot of cursing--but 12 hours, and no installation fees). Now if I can just figure out the dead microwave above the stove. I'd be more worried if I didn't have a perfectly good microwave that I moved here with taking up prime counter real estate right next to the stove.

Elaine Viets

Repair people like the man you have are rare indeed, Donna. I hope he's passed his work ethic on to his family. Too bad his type aren't rewarded by the big box companies.

Elaine Viets

Thanks for the warning, Phyllis. Another reason to shop -- and buy -- local.

Elaine Viets

The lesson here is shop local and buy local. Ask your friends for reliable locally owned stores.
Our TV died and now I'm wondering where I'm going to get a new one. Fortney's doesn't sell TVs.

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