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  • Kitchen Remodeling / Search For Appliances

    Post #1 - September 12th, 2008, 9:02 am
    Post #1 - September 12th, 2008, 9:02 am Post #1 - September 12th, 2008, 9:02 am
    So, I think we've settled on not going overboard on super high end. The Miele/Viking options are not completely OFF the table, but we agree that we have to draw the line somewhere, and those super upper end options are just more $ than they'd be worth to US. So anyway, we're going with a double wall oven, sep cooktop combo. Fridge will probably be french door style, not completely sure if we'll go with water/ice in door because of the loss of space. The question is, does anyone have any recent service horror stories with lemons? I can understand if something turns out to be a lemon, but service can take care of that. If the service is a horror, I'd like to stear clear of the brand if possible. TIA if you can share.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #2 - September 12th, 2008, 9:11 am
    Post #2 - September 12th, 2008, 9:11 am Post #2 - September 12th, 2008, 9:11 am
    Observations based on living with my then-new ones for the last 7 years:

    At the time, stainless fridges were pretty much restricted to the high end. We got one of those aftermarket kits where they put stainless on the outside of your black Amana fridge. At first glance, looks as good as stainless. It has been a source of constant dissatisfaction in every other way-- mainly, the door doesn't quite shut right, in a new way every few days. Probably there's no need for such a thing now, but avoid like the plague.

    Another point of disatisfaction with Amana fridge: drawers. Cheap plastic that doesn't fit together all that well. Constantly wrestling with them. I'd shop for solidity in that department.

    The thing that will go out or act weird on modern appliances is the electronic control. My theory is that they really shouldn't be as close to heat and water as they are, no matter how well-sealed. Both oven (GE) and dishwasher (Kitchenaid) have been flaky in this department. The more actual analog dials you have, the better. Kitchenaid dishwasher is recommended for extremely low noise, however (lowest on the market except for a Bosch one that costs a lot more, as I recall).
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  • Post #3 - September 12th, 2008, 9:34 am
    Post #3 - September 12th, 2008, 9:34 am Post #3 - September 12th, 2008, 9:34 am
    If you're going with a pro range, Wolf and Thermador are much better than Viking.
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  • Post #4 - September 12th, 2008, 9:50 am
    Post #4 - September 12th, 2008, 9:50 am Post #4 - September 12th, 2008, 9:50 am
    I like to drool over these appliances:

    http://www.antiqueappliances.com/

    http://www.antiquegasstoves.com/

    :D

    Good luck with the remodel!
    "Baseball is like church. Many attend. Few understand." Leo Durocher
  • Post #5 - September 12th, 2008, 10:36 am
    Post #5 - September 12th, 2008, 10:36 am Post #5 - September 12th, 2008, 10:36 am
    Mike G wrote:...The thing that will go out or act weird on modern appliances is the electronic control. My theory is that they really shouldn't be as close to heat and water as they are, no matter how well-sealed. Both oven (GE) and dishwasher (Kitchenaid) have been flaky in this department. The more actual analog dials you have, the better.


    Although I have no real world experience with this, I had a strong inkling. To me, it's just more stuff that can break.
    In theory, however, it's intriguing. Friends of ours just got a Miele kitchen. The oven has a series of menus to navigate through. I.E. when you select "poultry" you must then select what type of bird, and if the type is not listed, there is another menu entitled "Game Birds." I decided against the miele oven when I selected frozen pizza, and then it prompted me if it was a self rising, or regular crust before taking me to other menus asking me how crispy I'd like the crust. The Kenmore Pro Series 30 inch double wall oven is what I'm leaning towards. It has big knobs, a temperature display (rolling needle type deal,) and a primitive look compared to all those sleek lined blue font color over black display things. Doesn't hurt that I think I've found one on the cheap, also. :wink:
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #6 - September 12th, 2008, 10:39 am
    Post #6 - September 12th, 2008, 10:39 am Post #6 - September 12th, 2008, 10:39 am
    My problems with my Subzero built in have been chronicled HERE.

    This weekend we replaced our 10 year old Maytag dishwasher with a Bosch that is a vast improvement in terms of sound and environmental friendliness. We purchased it at ABT for around $700 installed including scrapping our old one. So far it is terrific and a nice upgrade from my leaky Maytag.
  • Post #7 - September 12th, 2008, 10:47 am
    Post #7 - September 12th, 2008, 10:47 am Post #7 - September 12th, 2008, 10:47 am
    I really love my Fisher & Paykel refrigerator from Abt Appliances. It's a choice I made in an attempt to live greener, and the quality outstrips any fridge I've had. I'm not sure that they make the larger size you are looking for, but at Abt you can find anything your heart desires. The service has been flawless over the 20 years I've been their customer. They even got me a brand new refrigerator when the one I had lost its icemaker and a whole new door was required to fix it--even though the warranty had expired. Without their expertise, I might have assumed there was no alternative but to replace the door at my own expense- which came to just under the cost of a whole new refrigerator. I got a terrific deal on a floor model stove there as well. Check 'em out.
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  • Post #8 - September 12th, 2008, 11:17 am
    Post #8 - September 12th, 2008, 11:17 am Post #8 - September 12th, 2008, 11:17 am
    Spent a good two hours at Abt last weekend, thank you so much for the input. Haven't really reasarch the F&P brand, but have seen that name popping up in different places.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #9 - September 12th, 2008, 11:21 am
    Post #9 - September 12th, 2008, 11:21 am Post #9 - September 12th, 2008, 11:21 am
    Seebee, have you checked out Consumer Reports? They have excellent reliability ratings & advice on kitchen remodels.

    www.consumerreports.org
    "Baseball is like church. Many attend. Few understand." Leo Durocher
  • Post #10 - September 12th, 2008, 12:16 pm
    Post #10 - September 12th, 2008, 12:16 pm Post #10 - September 12th, 2008, 12:16 pm
    I've been avoiding having to pay for CR, (the SO, and I were laughing this am about how cheap we are that we have second thoughts about subscribing to CR- it's $5.95, and we're about to blow through damn near, well, I don't even like to say the number) but yes, I will prolly break down and do it.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #11 - September 12th, 2008, 12:32 pm
    Post #11 - September 12th, 2008, 12:32 pm Post #11 - September 12th, 2008, 12:32 pm
    I think it is well worth it, I'm looking at the range results (July 08) right now, and some of the findings are rather surprising. Here are some of the basics (minus graphics and such) from their report, but I would encourage you to shell out the bucks to get full access as their criteria and yours may be different. They have a refrigerator report from April 08, and an updated report on dishwashers from August 08. I think it's $20 for 1 year of full online access and you sure get a lot for that $20, I refer to it before I buy anything. Then again, I was the only 16 yo kid I knew with my own CR subscription. :)

    Excerpt from Consumer Reports July 08 article on Ranges - CR's Quick Recommendations:

    You can find a high-performing gas range without spending a bundle. Several models we tested costing $500 to $1,000 outperformed ranges costing $1,500 or more. Many moderately priced models also offer stainless steel or stainless-steel trim, high-power burners, and other features. Spending more than $1,000 generally buys extras such as an additional oven or warming drawer, convection, burners rated at 15,000 Btu/hr. and higher, and a fifth burner. More money also gets you more stylish design and possibly heavier construction.

    But more high-heat burners doesn't always translate into better cooking or better performance in the long run. Pro-style models such as DCS, Dacor, and Viking have been among the lower scorers in past tests. And less-pricey ranges outperform the 36-inch Thermador Pro Grand PG366BS, $5,900, and dual-fuel Kenmore (Sears) Pro 7962, $6,300, from our latest report. But these two 36-inch ranges performed best among the big pro-style ranges we tested. Note that neither is a CR Quick Pick.

    The Ratings list models by overall performance. Quick Picks highlights models that deliver performance and value.


    Quick Picks

    Top gas ranges:

    • GE Profile PGB910SEM[SS] , $1800
    • Hotpoint RGB745WEH[WW] , $500, CR Best Buy
    • Frigidaire Gallery GLGF386D[S] , $1000


    The GE Profile PGB910SEM[SS] blends performance and style. The low-priced Hotpoint RGB745WEH[WW] broils superbly, while the Frigidaire Gallery GLGF386D[S] includes convection. Also consider the Jenn-Air JGR8890AD[P], $2,150 and Maytag Gemini MGR6775BD[S], $1,450 if you value dual ovens and are willing to live with uninspired baking and broiling, especially for the Maytag model.
    If you want a dual-fuel or pro-style model:

    • Bosch HDS71[5]2 , $2000
    • GE Profile J2B918WEK[WW] , $1700
    • Kenmore (Sears) Elite 7946[3] , $1800


    Our extensive tests have revealed no clear benefits to dual-fuel ranges. But if you want one of those models, consider the Bosch HDS71[5]2 and Kenmore (Sears) Elite 7946 [3] for their broiling performance, the GE Profile J2B918WEK[WW] for its faster cooktop heating. Pro-style ranges have been a poor value overall. But if you want a pro-style range, consider the Thermador Pro Grand PG366B[S], $5,900, for its fine performance, the lower-priced Frigidaire Professional PLGF659E[C], $2,100, if you're willing to trade some oven space for a lower price.
    "Baseball is like church. Many attend. Few understand." Leo Durocher
  • Post #12 - September 12th, 2008, 12:36 pm
    Post #12 - September 12th, 2008, 12:36 pm Post #12 - September 12th, 2008, 12:36 pm
    seebee wrote:I've been avoiding having to pay for CR, (the SO, and I were laughing this am about how cheap we are that we have second thoughts about subscribing to CR- it's $5.95, and we're about to blow through damn near, well, I don't even like to say the number) but yes, I will prolly break down and do it.

    We usually subscribe when we have a question and then unsubscribe right away (damn those automatic debits!) I will say this, excellent though their recommendations are, I've almost given up on them after finding that the item most recommended is no longer being made in a number of situations. I've had the same issue with CI magazine, as well.

    However, the "things to look for" feature that both websites offer is generally excellent.
  • Post #13 - September 12th, 2008, 1:06 pm
    Post #13 - September 12th, 2008, 1:06 pm Post #13 - September 12th, 2008, 1:06 pm
    Just an FYI, ABT has a 12% off everything coupon for their 72nd Anniversary.

    We got KitchenAid applicances a year ago and really like them. I have never gotten so much enjoyment from a microwave!

    Jamie
  • Post #14 - September 12th, 2008, 1:57 pm
    Post #14 - September 12th, 2008, 1:57 pm Post #14 - September 12th, 2008, 1:57 pm
    Check out Bosch if you are thinking of Miele. Similar quality, much lower price.
    Leek

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  • Post #15 - September 12th, 2008, 2:57 pm
    Post #15 - September 12th, 2008, 2:57 pm Post #15 - September 12th, 2008, 2:57 pm
    The house I moved into 4 years ago had its kitchen remodeled maybe a year or two prior. A couple of observations:

    GE Profile side by side refrigerator - freezer side door seals began failing last year

    Bosch dishwasher - love it

    The kitchen has a Dacor wall oven, microwave and slide in range (don't believe Dacor makes the range anymore). The electronic readouts on the range and micro have gone wonky at times, the timers are annoying to set. The range is woefully underpowered - my old condo's GE electric ceramic top was much better.
  • Post #16 - September 12th, 2008, 3:37 pm
    Post #16 - September 12th, 2008, 3:37 pm Post #16 - September 12th, 2008, 3:37 pm
    My husband and I are in the middle of a huge kitchen remodel (complete gut). We have already purchased a Fisher&Paykel fridge and are been thrilled with it.

    I have done a ton of research on other items but have not purchased anything because I don't have a place to store them right now. But a few that I have read very good things about...
    Bluestar ranges. 22k BTU!! Trage Bros has a working one on display.
    Bertazzoni range... great looking and price point. Not the incredcible BTU rating as the Bluestar but do I really need it?
    Dishwasher drawers by Fisher&Paykel. I have heard them work and they are as quiet as Bosch DW. But a tad pricier.

    There is a great message board that discusses kitchen remodels like everyone here discusses food and restaurants. I have learned a lot from that site.
    Christina~~
  • Post #17 - September 12th, 2008, 3:59 pm
    Post #17 - September 12th, 2008, 3:59 pm Post #17 - September 12th, 2008, 3:59 pm
    I'm sure I can do a simple search, and find a few appliance forums. Care to share which one you like, Xpi6tiva?
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #18 - September 12th, 2008, 4:12 pm
    Post #18 - September 12th, 2008, 4:12 pm Post #18 - September 12th, 2008, 4:12 pm
    Watch the Euro stuff: reliability is often a lot lower, according to Consumer Reports.
    I've been very happy with Whirlpool dishwashers, GE Ovens. GE has some high-style stuff too, offsetting the need for the Eurostuff.

    On the other hand, my Thermador cooktop has been terrific: you won't see much of anything wider than 30" from the standard US manufacturers.
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  • Post #19 - September 12th, 2008, 5:00 pm
    Post #19 - September 12th, 2008, 5:00 pm Post #19 - September 12th, 2008, 5:00 pm
    JoelF wrote:Watch the Euro stuff: reliability is often a lot lower, according to Consumer Reports.


    We consulted CR before our dishwasher purchase. They seemed to like several Bosch models. One thing about CR is that price is a big factor in getting the "recommended" designation. They might sometimes suggest a lesser performing but cheaper model over a much more expensive but higher performing model. We looked at Miele but the salesman we use said that they were no better then the Bosch units in terms of noise and environmental factors and start well over $1000 for the cheapest model before install.
  • Post #20 - September 13th, 2008, 10:10 pm
    Post #20 - September 13th, 2008, 10:10 pm Post #20 - September 13th, 2008, 10:10 pm
    We purchased a Miele dishwasher 5 years ago. While I love the sleek appearance and the fact that it is far quieter than any dishwasher I've ever had, I would hesitate to buy one again. It cleans well, and the silverware rack on top is great, but the drain has a tendency to jam. There is a little water wheel under the drain screen...if any debris catches in this wheel, the dishwasher will not operate. You need to bail out the dirty water, and then pop out a little valve in order to access this wheel. The valve is always very very difficult to get out, a problem made even more frustrating because it is very slippery when wet. Even though I rinse my dishes, this happens to me several times a year. It is maddening to go thru the bailing process only to see that something as small as a chopped pecan jammed the darn thing up. The worst is popcorn....I cringe whenever my husband makes it b/c if a stray unpopped kernel ends up in the machine, it is sure to jam. I've never had trouble like this with any other dishwasher. Perhaps their design has changed since I purchased mine, but I see no reason to ever buy a Miele again when there are so many other similar options now.

    I have a Wolf range which is also 5 years old. Aside from some under warranty service the first year we got it, last week was the first time in 4 years that it has needed repairs. Thank goodness, b/c it took 2 calls and $750 to get it working properly again. It is $120 just to have them walk in the door. Anyway, I asked both technicians what they thought of Viking vs. Wolf ranges and they said Wolf was the better choice. As for a fridge, I have a SubZero and love it. Never had any problems and the drawers are wonderful....they glide better than drawers in furniture I own! The only thing I would change is that when you close the door, you have to wait a minute or so before you can open it again. It's almost like it locks. I guess it has something to do with the seal, but maybe that's why it keeps food so nicely. As my kids get older, I'm also learning that it helps keep them from constantly opening and closing the fridge!
  • Post #21 - September 14th, 2008, 12:35 pm
    Post #21 - September 14th, 2008, 12:35 pm Post #21 - September 14th, 2008, 12:35 pm
    tavogels wrote: but the drain has a tendency to jam.


    An important point about all of the European brands of dishwasher as opposed to American. They do not have a food grinder. They have a strainer which if not regularly cleaned will back up
  • Post #22 - September 14th, 2008, 2:47 pm
    Post #22 - September 14th, 2008, 2:47 pm Post #22 - September 14th, 2008, 2:47 pm
    My two GE Profile electric (yes! electric) ranges (one in KC, one in Montreal) have been, and reamain, a delight. And man! talk about firepower!! Those babies put out some HEAT!

    IMHO, KitchenAide is the way to go with dishwashers, altho' the F&P Drawers is pretty kühl! Some friends went with a bunch of F&P appliances recently, and are thrilled. He's a bigtime engineer and is totally impressed with the F&P engineering. (I think the washing machine hits a million or a zillion RPMs in the spin cycle--it sounds like the Millenium Falcon going into warp drive.)

    Geo
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  • Post #23 - September 14th, 2008, 7:22 pm
    Post #23 - September 14th, 2008, 7:22 pm Post #23 - September 14th, 2008, 7:22 pm
    Gotta agree that Kitchenaid is the way to go with dishwashers. I have 2 Bosch dishwashers at my office, I have had to replace both of them in 4 years. They don't clean well and don't heat water worth a damn. The service guys that have cone to work on them curse Bosch. I have a KitchenAid at home and it kicks ass.
  • Post #24 - September 14th, 2008, 8:39 pm
    Post #24 - September 14th, 2008, 8:39 pm Post #24 - September 14th, 2008, 8:39 pm
    One reason I can't recommend German washing appliances comes from their design constraints. Central water heating—geysers, to use a Brit term—pretty much doesn't exist in Europe. Germany in particular uses instant-on real-time water heaters, usually electric, but some gas ones exist too [talk about sounding like a rocket blasting off!]. Hence German (and most European) washing appliances have water heaters on-board. And, as dukesdad remarks, they don't do a good job heating water. Since our design constraints are quite different—we heat water remotely and pipe it into the appliance—we can omit the on-board water heater, and torque that water heater up to scorch if we want to wash in really really hot water.

    And, for those who are counting, having an on-board water heater is just one more (and this time a pricey) thing to go wrong.

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #25 - September 24th, 2008, 7:53 am
    Post #25 - September 24th, 2008, 7:53 am Post #25 - September 24th, 2008, 7:53 am
    Found a great deal on a Fisher and Paykel double wall oven.
    Wondering if anyone has any experience with these things? Several online reviews I've come across so far claim that each time you use the self clean mode, the oven will be shot, and need a service call. Not sure if the issue has been addressed by the company (reviews were from 07 mostly.)
    Just wondering. The deal is about 50% off.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #26 - September 24th, 2008, 8:16 am
    Post #26 - September 24th, 2008, 8:16 am Post #26 - September 24th, 2008, 8:16 am
    seebee wrote:Several online reviews I've come across so far claim that each time you use the self clean mode, the oven will be shot, and need a service call. Not sure if the issue has been addressed by the company (reviews were from 07 mostly.)
    Just wondering. The deal is about 50% off.


    A few years ago, my Kitchen-Aid oven went haywire after the self-clean mode was initiated after Thanksgiving dinner. The service person advised I should use this feature minimally after making the repair, which made me suspect the integrity of the repair. Knowing there are warranties on repair jobs, I immediately put the oven to self-clean mode after he left. Oven popped off as I suspected it would. Very likely the service company offered their retribution to me: they didn't have the parts need until after Christmas. However this repair stuck and I have been happy ever since.

    Fisher-Paykal has a local office on Higgins Road I have driven past, you may want to ask them:

    Fisher Paykal
    2445 E Higgins Rd
    Elk Grove Village, IL 60007
    (847) 258-7300
    Cathy2

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  • Post #27 - September 24th, 2008, 8:28 am
    Post #27 - September 24th, 2008, 8:28 am Post #27 - September 24th, 2008, 8:28 am
    When we built our house 4 years ago I got to choose the appliances I wanted(since I do all the cooking). We wanted the stove/oven to be gas(suffered with electric for 15 years as a renter) everything to be stainless, and all appliances made by the same manufacturer. We went with Fridaire, a 5 burner stove top with a convection oven, a fridge with the freezer on top, and a stainless dishwasher. All purchased from Lowes, and all delivered together(with our washer and dryer).

    I love my stove, and the kitchen appliances in general. The only issue we had was during last years storms, a power surge knocked out a relay for the compressor for the fridge. Had it repaired, and it has been solid.
    Last edited by jimswside on September 24th, 2008, 8:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #28 - September 24th, 2008, 8:38 am
    Post #28 - September 24th, 2008, 8:38 am Post #28 - September 24th, 2008, 8:38 am
    I had a Kitchen Aid double wall convection oven that also blew after using the self-clean, just a week out of warranty and I did get them to fix it. Our new-ish Dacor is ok, I hate the control panel and wish I'd researched that a little better. I never ever use the timer because it is so annoying. Also, I've had so much trouble with the temperature probe (several repairs, visits, changing my cooking style, using the probe AFTEr the thing is in the oven, etc.) that I simply no longer use it. And that's a pisser.

    I have a KA diswasher that I chose specifically because of the grinder, I think it cleans ok, isn't great and over the years has gotten louder. The KA side by side fridge is still ok, knock wood, will probably replace that with a F&P when the time comes.

    And my Wolf range is spectacular, I love it. I have 4 burners with a griddle and a grill. I get excessive smoke that ensues from using the grill (thus causing me to use it only infrequently) and the cleanup is horrible. I think I'd get a griddle again (also not easy to clean but I consider it "seasoned" LOL) but not the grill.

    Abt is the only way to go around here IMO. As for the anniversary discount, they pretty much discount everything there, all you have to do is ask.
  • Post #29 - October 5th, 2008, 8:45 pm
    Post #29 - October 5th, 2008, 8:45 pm Post #29 - October 5th, 2008, 8:45 pm
    so, after hemming and hawing, back and forth-ing, pro-ing and con-ing, electrolux, ge, and kitchenaid are the top three (in that order.) We'll probably match the cooktop, oven, hood, and dishwasher - fridge can be anything goes since we are leaning towards electrolux for the other stuff, and Electrolux does NOT make a fridge we are interested in.

    Any insider knowledge on Electrolux products?
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #30 - October 13th, 2008, 7:59 pm
    Post #30 - October 13th, 2008, 7:59 pm Post #30 - October 13th, 2008, 7:59 pm
    Does the food grinder feature really matter?
    Trying to narrow down my choices between European and American made. Haven't had a DW in quite a few years, so I can't say one way or another which one's for me.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.

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