or Connect
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Food & Equipment Reviews › Cooking Equipment Reviews › Refriger/Range Buying advice - Wirlpool vs. Samsung
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Refriger/Range Buying advice - Wirlpool vs. Samsung

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hello All;
I am planning to replace my refrigerator and range within the next month. I have actually been looking around for a seemingly endless time due to the many brands and user reports out there. I was oriignally planning to get a residential commercial range/refrigerator but have since changed my mind to get a high end residential one instead.

My mother tends to like Whirlpool and I like the Samsung refrigerators. What do you think about these two brands ? Samsung may not make Ranges but I know Whirlpool does. I have heard about reliability problems with GE and Maytag.

I want to get the bottom freezer french door model with icemaker.

I have just a few questions ...

1 - What do you think about the brands - Whirlpool and Samsung ?

2 - In a refrigerator, is ice/water through the door more prone to break down when compared to ice/water obtained by opening the door ?

3 - In a range, my mother says that the sides of her current range (Which she bought a few years ago) get very, very hot. Is this normal or should a range provide better insulation to prevent it from getting too hot on the sides ? Is there any way to tell the insulation ability of a range before purchase ?

Thanks for any thoughts/advice you may have.

Tim
post #2 of 17
1 - What do you think about the brands - Whirlpool and Samsung ?


Just to clarify, Samsung does indeed make a limited number of ranges. In both gas and electric. They are very new to the market, perhaps two years or so. They products in my opinion (i am a former appliance repairman) the samsung stuff is an okay product at the lower price range ($700-$1000). They tend to use cheaper components than the other Korean brands, notably LG. Expect above average failure of shelves, handles, hinges, and average life on compressors and electrical parts. They may offer a design or feature that you like, just don't overpay for it. Just remember that for any brand the $700 fridge and the $2000 fridge probably share most of the mechanical parts, ie fan motors, compresser.

Whirlpool on the other hand actually makes Maytag at this time as well as Kitchenaid, Amana, Roper, Jenn-Air and a few others by contract. Their bottom mount fridge is dynamite. Thier top mount and side by side units are of average quality. Expect above average compressor and electronics issues, but above average life of shelves, gaskets, doors, etc. Again don't overpay for a feature or brand name. eg. the maytag sxs fridge is mechanically identicle to the kitchenaid at a fraction of the cost. You end up paying for cosmetics and features. Not a bad thing, but you should know going in.

Be aware that a better factory warranty is worth it's weight in gold, as extended warrantied often don't cover much. so this may make samsung a better choice or vice a versa/

2 - In a refrigerator, is ice/water through the door more prone to break down when compared to ice/water obtained by opening the door ?

The ice maker in the door is a common warranty issue. It is irrelevent weather it is through the door or not. It has the same parts just in a different spot. But having said that it is 75% a water supply line installation issue. If the water line is attached to the house plumbing properly, most problems can be avoided. The key here is to never use a self piercing water valve. You know the ones that bolt on to the outside of a copper pipe and poke a tiny hole in it?

3 - In a range, my mother says that the sides of her current range (Which she bought a few years ago) get very, very hot. Is this normal or should a range provide better insulation to prevent it from getting too hot on the sides ? Is there any way to tell the insulation ability of a range before purchase ?

There is no regulation that i know of that determines the allowable temp on the sides of a range. So this is normalThe thing here is that the amount of insulation in a range, sides or door, is directly dictated by the price of the range. Higher end ranges offer more sound and heat insulation. Some low end ranges have virtually no insulation. More insulation will affect the range in two ways, a cooler outside and a faster recovery time inside the oven during heating cycles.

If you want to make sure you are getting a range with heavier insulation, make sure to get the flagship brand names of a brand ie whirlpool over a roper by whirlpool and spend at least $500.00 other than that there is now way for the average consumer to tell the difference

hope that helps
post #3 of 17
Perhaps this is a silly question, but are you in the U.S.? That may make a difference to some readers. I'm looking to replace my side-by-side GE fridge/freezer in the next couple of years. It has ice and water through the door, and we've never had problems with it in spite of daily use. We have a reverse osmosis water filtration system, so we ran another line to serve as the water source for ice and water.

I'll be reading this thread to hear others' ideas about French door model refrigerators. That's what I want.

I don't need a new range, as I got my new dual fuel GE model less than 2 years ago. I LOVE it. (Disclosure: my husband works for GE, but not in the home products part of the company.)
Moderator Emerita, Welcome Forum
***It is better to ask forgiveness than beg permission.***
Reply
Moderator Emerita, Welcome Forum
***It is better to ask forgiveness than beg permission.***
Reply
post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 
I'm not sure if Mezzaluna is asking if I am from outside the United States or if ryan.brosseau1 is. I can tell ya that I am in the United States.

ryan.brosseau1 - Very helpful response. What you said in #3 regarding the insulation ability of the range makes 100% perfect sense and I will keep that in mind. My mother probably bought the cheapest range she could find so that makes sense that hers may not be that well insulated. I, however am a high-end guy and I will get top-of-the-line so I expect I won't have this difficulty based upon what you said.

Thanks for the tip about avoiding a self piercing water valve. I'll have to remember that.

So with regards to #1, by bottom mount frige, you're referring to the models with the bottom mount freezer, right ? And you think they're great?

As a previous appliance repairman, can you share with us the brands that you consider most reliable (Ie. those needing the least repairs) and the brands we should stay away from (Those needing the most repairs) ? or are there different brands when considering a range and a refrigerator ?

Thanks.

Tim
post #5 of 17
Whirlpool also makes Sear's Kenmore line. I love their french door refrig and cannot wait until my refrig breaks so that I can get it
post #6 of 17
FYI i am currently in the USA but my service career was in Canada, and about 95% of the appliance product is the same.

A couple of things:

1, Yes a bottom mount is the unit with the freezer door under the fridge door, a top mount is the standard fridge with the freezer door on top, hope that is more clear

2, Sears Kenmore is not all made by Whirlpool, even for a given product. In fact some of their bottom mounts are made by LG, some are Whirlpool. It's sometimes hard for a consumer to tell.

3, Yes, I have found that the whirlpool bottom mount is in general a good unit. It is actually for reference sake, designed and made by Amana, which now through corporate buy outs is owned by whirlpool. This unit has proven to be quite reliable top to bottom, good shelving , doors, hinges, sealed system etc. Of course mileage may vary. The LG unit is also pretty good, maybe even a tad bit better.

And no offense to Mezulluna, but historically the GE designed products have been pretty repair prone. I say GE deisgned, because they do make their own bottom mount, but have recently been selling a number of LG made fridges under their label. GE no longer owns GE home appliance, they simply licence the name to MABE Inc. Again mileage may vary, some people swear by GE.

4, French door models from every manufacturer, to the best of my knowledge, are the exact same functional machine as the equivalent bottom mount unit, but with different doors. In fact most on most of them you could (at much expense) swap the doors from one to the other and no one would be the wiser. in other words a french door unit is just a bottom mount with funny doors.

5, wtdedula, my favorites while i was servicing ( and there may be new stuff now)

fridge- sub zero, leibherr, LG, Maytag/ Amana/ Whirlpool bottom mount (these 3 are all functionally the same and , only differ in options and price)

Stove- Wolf, Miele (cooktops and wall ovens only), Maytag/ Amana (may not be available anymore as whirlpool has bought them out), Frigidaire (some of their mid range stuff is a good value)

Stuff i always saw as repair prone or cheaply made- Again MILEAGE MAY VARY!!!

fridge- GE, Frigidaire , Kitchenaid (just a very very expensive whirlpool in most cases), Samsung, Haier

Stove- Viking, GE, Frigidaire (the cheap stuff is too cheap and the expensive stuff is too expensive for what you get), thermador

there are others but this post is already way too long. Again you'll find differing opinions online, even here. Some people love there Viking stove, I have never met one of them.
post #7 of 17
FWIW: We recently, after a long search, bought a new fridge, and finally went with an LG made Kenmore unit. French doors, freezer on the bottom, ice/water in door, etc. We've been very happy with it. But, then again, I've become very enamoured of LG appliances.

As to who makes Kenmore: I don't know if this is common, but our local Sears people will tell me who built any particular model. Just last week, for instance, I replaced a microwave with a Kenmore Elite model, and had no trouble finding out the manufacturer's name. So the trick is to just ask.

Ryan: Question on the water installation. Considering that the manufacturers recommend the self-piercing valves, and that most plumbers will install the water line to the fridge that way, why do you recommend against them?
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
post #8 of 17
KYHeirloomer:
Actually to the contrary, the manufactures almost never recomend a self piercing water valve. They will however often recommend a non-self-piercing saddle valve. The difference is that the self-piercing saddle valve only pokes a tiny hole that often gets plugged up with mineral deposits and debris. The hole is barely large enough to start with and one reduced in size causes stress to the water valves and ice makers. Things like hollow ice cubes and burnt out water valves are common due to the reduced available water volume.

A NON-self-piercing saddle valve looks identical to the self-piercing variety but you have to drill a 1/4" hole in the line you are attaching the valve to. Therfore you end up with proper water flow. But all saddle valves tend to leak prematurely and the handles often rust off.

The best solution is to install a ball valve that is either soldered on or uses a compression fitting. It is the least likely to leak and the least likely to have the handle seize open in the future. And of course avoid hooking up to water filtration systems if possible, they often reduce water flow and volume causing the same problems as the self-piercing valves.

And in my experience it is not really common for the sales person at any store to know who makes what. But certainly beneficial to both parties if they do.
post #9 of 17
Ryan, you're a treasure trove of information! Buying from a repair professional's viewpoint is my ideal. I take absolutely no offense about GE; my husband works in their medical equipment (GE Healthcare) business, never in appliances or consumer products. :)

Add me to the list of those who didn't like theirs. I dumped it for my GE dual fuel range. :thumb:

While we make most of our buying decision by starting with Consumer Reports. But we never make a decision based on one single viewpoint. Your knowledge is gold, so we'll include that when the time comes if you don't mind. ;)
Moderator Emerita, Welcome Forum
***It is better to ask forgiveness than beg permission.***
Reply
Moderator Emerita, Welcome Forum
***It is better to ask forgiveness than beg permission.***
Reply
post #10 of 17
Mezzuluna: Thanks for the kind words, most of my family members are tired of hearing about this stuff! And good luck with your GE range.

BTW: I know it's often hard for a consumer to tell, but Comsumer's Reports is often way off the mark. I have seen in the same issue where two identical products under different brand names get vastly different ratings.
Consider if you were to give a GMC pickup truck an A+ rating but a Chevrolet Pickup truck an F rating. The two products are so similar in every way, how could there be such a discrepancy.

But like you said, more than one opinion is always the way to go. And feel free to ask me questions, I will answer what I can.
post #11 of 17
I have always used Service managers/repair people for a guide; they are an absolute treasure trove of information. Thank you Ryan.

My comment is about Samsung, three years ago we made the terrible decision to buy a Samsung Front loading washer and matching dryer. I will be brief, the washer has been nightmares from day 1, leaking water from the soap container, rusty fronts, it will run for hours at a time, sometimes won’t drain, etc.

I had multiple warranty repair calls, wrote several letters, and have spoken to Samsung at least 20 times on the telephone. My last communication actually came from the VP of Customer service and he told me to “stop calling, there was nothing they could or would do, these were design faults (yes he said that) and I should replace the washer.”

With a customer service attitude of screw you, I will never buy another Samsung product again in my life.
post #12 of 17
According to my fridge and a/c man and as well as talking to others the fridge to beat now is LG. Their quality is very high and very low repair rate.
I can tell you aviod Maytag,as all it is is trouble. As far as stoves ???
CHEFED
Reply
CHEFED
Reply
post #13 of 17
hotchpotch:
Unfortunately, I'm not surprised about your experience with your samsung washer. Maytag was selling a samsung 24" frontload labelled as their own for a while and it was nothing but the trouble you described.


ED:
The maytag comment is a little unfair, mostly because it all depends on who actually built the maytag in question. Most original maytag designs are pretty good for the money. the stuff they farm out however is entirely deserving of your criticism. And of course now that whirlpool owns maytag some of the product has changed once again. The hard part of course is that the average comsumer can't tell one from the other. Heck, even technitians rarely are told of product changes until we see it in someones house for the first time.

I do agree whole heartedly with you about the LG product, Their Fridges are tops right now, as is their laundry. Their ranges are decent but their dishwasher are garbage.
post #14 of 17

I am in the market for a smoothtop electric range, and above the range microwave...in WHITE! and maybe also a white fridge (while I'm at it)...... very conflicted about my choices...Lowes salesperson says that Whirlpool  is the most reliable range, but "The Haggler" column in the New York Times 2 weeks ago said the Whirlpool customer service is the worst....any insights or suggestions for me? I want the appliances for a winter home in Florida, for 4 months a year, so dont need the highest of the high, but dont want junk either. HELP!!!!   GE? Whirlpool? Frigidaire? Samsung? thanks!

post #15 of 17

Maybe Whirlpool has improved their ranges since 20 years ago.  I have not been happy with mine,  especially since I was spoiled by the Kenmore that I loved. (HubbyDearest wanted to "try something different"... whoa...why did I let that happen?  He doesn't cook!  But I digress.  I'd had my range less than 2 years when the rarely-used oven malfunctioned.  Bad thermostat.  Expecting that there was a decent warrantee on the thing,  I called Whirlpoo.  I was told that the only warrantee left was on the KNOBS, which have lifetime coverage.  How comforting to know that I will never have to pay for a new knob.  crazy.gif

 

I'll have a new induction range with convection oven in our new home (now under construction).  All the appliances will be the GE Profile series.  No OTR microwave,  though.  Too many safety issues for me.  Plus, I'd rather have a range hood that really works,  and a light that really lights up the cooktop. 

"The pressure's on...let's cook something!"
 
Reply
"The pressure's on...let's cook something!"
 
Reply
post #16 of 17

When I worked at Sears in the late 80s, the top of the line Kenmore's were Whirlpools. At that time, Kenmore got first choice of new features before Whirlpool could feature them under their brand. 

post #17 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by phatch View Post

When I worked at Sears in the late 80s, the top of the line Kenmore's were Whirlpools. At that time, Kenmore got first choice of new features before Whirlpool could feature them under their brand. 

I know....seems odd that I could love my Kenmore range (circa 1971),  probably made by Whirlpoo,  and dislike the Whirlpoo range we bought in 1994.  But it's true.  The Kenmore range met all my expectations,  performed beautifully, and never gave me any grief.  The other one has not been nearly as good.  A few years ago,  we happened to acquire another identical range from a gal that was giving it away.  Ours was much better in appearance (cleaner, fewer dents and scratches),  so we stripped the second one for parts.  That was a real blessing, because two of my cooktop burners had started heating only on one side instead of the full circle. 

"The pressure's on...let's cook something!"
 
Reply
"The pressure's on...let's cook something!"
 
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cooking Equipment Reviews
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Food & Equipment Reviews › Cooking Equipment Reviews › Refriger/Range Buying advice - Wirlpool vs. Samsung