Report: #128466

Complaint Review: Sears Appliances And Service

  • Submitted: Fri, January 21, 2005
  • Updated: Mon, August 14, 2006
  • Reported By: Bethlehem Georgia
  • Sears Appliances And Service
    2511 Sullivan Road
    College Park, Georgia

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2 weeks after the warranty (54 weeks after purchase) the timer on our Kenmore "Elite" washer started stalling during the cycle. It is intermitant. Used to be a washer would last many years. Not a Kenmore these days. The service technician gave us the estimate of $274.59. That is about half the cost of the washer. We paid the service call and sent him away. The part price quote was 156.63, and thier website price is $120.49. Needless to say, we are (after almost 40 years) NOT Sears customers anymore.

If they cared to look up how much we have spent with Sears, tools, lawn tractor, etc, etc, you will see it's quite a bit. I fully intend to post this note online, so others might avoid Sears in the future. Sears products are DESIGNED to last just past the warranty period. Seems more money is made on extended warranties than one would guess.

Bethlehem, Georgia
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/21/2005 06:52 PM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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Updates & Rebuttals


#1 Consumer Comment

Sears selling junk!

AUTHOR: Rick - (U.S.A.)

Next time go to an appliance store where they know their product lines and appreciate their customers. In reading your Rip off Report experience with Sears, it makes me wonder about the company's reorganization efforts in the last few years, in that they are now selling low end junk.

I quit shopping at Sears. Sears is now selling lower quality products to maximize their profits. Great profits for the company excecutives but leave the customers with a bunch of junk.
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#2 Author of original report

Clarification to rebuttals by ORIGINAL complaintant

AUTHOR: Kim - (U.S.A.)

As the originator of this complaint, I would like to clarify in response to the latest rebuttal. At the time of the washer's breakdown I told Sears on the telephone that the timer was not functioning properly and asked them to BRING the TIMER when they came. The technician spent 20 minutes "trouble-shooting" the machine and then told us, "The timer is bad, and I will have to order the part." He did NOT bring the timer as requested. Yes, multiple trips can result... when this kind of attention to customers is paid. The bottom line is that with shipping, handling and installation the machine was fixed by me for half the price quoted by Sears Service, and less than 30 minutes of my time was used. I have spent much more time on this complaint than I did to repair the 52-week-old appliance. BUT, it is worth it if others avoid Sears.
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#3 UPDATE Employee

staying informed

AUTHOR: Nicholas - (U.S.A.)

To the original author,i am sorry for you experience with sears. the price you quoted from the website does not include shipping and handling also if a consumer(you)purchases this part with the intent to install it yourself..there is no warranty on that part. the price the sears technician gives you for labor is a flat rate charge. the part is premium priced part delivered to your house at time of service, even if he has to order the part you pay no shipping and handling for that part nor do you pay 2 trip charges if the technician has to come back. when the timer is installed and the job is completed you have a 90 day warranty on parts and labor.

the technician probably did not explain this to you. i am sorry that he did not and i hope you change your perception of sears we are not here as you say sears in my opinion bend over backwards for their customers. so i am sorry for your experience
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#4 Consumer Comment

Your range "computer" may have died because of

AUTHOR: Thomas - (U.S.A.)

a power line fluctuation, i.e. a brownout or even a complete loss of power. When the power is restored after however-short a loss of power there can be a spike that sends your range's computer to computer heaven.

Our power line went dead many times in the very early AM for 6 years, which finally caused our GE double wall oven's $250 control to die. GE replaced it. I knew about the power interruptions because for many mornings I had to reset the power monitor in the side-by-side frige, and the numerous appliance clocks all forgot the time.
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#5 Consumer Comment

Consumer Comment to faulty Sears appliances

AUTHOR: Janet - (U.S.A.)

We live in a throw-away society now it seems. We bought Kenmore appliances when we moved into our new home in 2002. It does SEEM that in this computer age we live in that a signal is sent to the manufacturer as soon as the warranty expires and the appliance fails! I know this is not the case in reality but that's how it seems. The computer panel on the Kenmore "Elite" Electric Convection/Range we bought in 2002 has gone out 3 times at a cost of $300 per computerized panel. The oven is useless without the controls. The first two times I had a warranty but now I'm looking for a new range. It was a $1600 range which I bought new on sale at Sears for about $1000. I agree that appliances just aren't what they used to be. Now it's nearly impossible to find a new stove/range without a computer on it. Why do the manufacturers insist on making these products that fail so fast when they used to last for years? I expect the answer is to keep us spending money. I did buy the extended warranty or I would have had to replace my oven sooner. But when the warranty came up for renewal again it was $185 for one year! I don't think so.
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#6 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Warranties - you're wrong, Joe Sears buys its appliances from the manufacturers on a "no-warranty" basis

AUTHOR: John - (U.S.A.)

Sears buys its appliances from the manufacturers on a "no-warranty" basis - Sears honours the manufacturers' warranty using their own personnel, and receives no reimbursement for warranty repair, the exceptions being where the manufacturer has issued a "service flash/bulletin" or an official recall. In this particular case, the technician should have used some discretion and covered this as "just out of warranty" - he/she does have the power to do that, and I would have handled it that way.
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#7 Author of original report

What about MY original complaint? ...A follow-up!

AUTHOR: Kim - (U.S.A.)

My complaint was the one that started this thread. I still have NOT (nor do I now expect to) heard from Sears on my original complaint. That being that the cost of repairs was quoted at about half the cost of the washer, and that the price quoted by Sears Service for the defective timer was $20 HIGHER than on Sears' own web site.

I found that timer cheaper still on an independent parts site, and installed it in 15 minutes time.
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#8 Consumer Comment

WHAT????? ALL Sears white goods are sold by the manufacturer with warranties

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

Russell.....what you are saying is completely false. ALL Sears white goods are sold by the manufacturer with warranties.Larry.... These goods are put through thousands of hours of testing. I do not know if you consider slamming doors and lids, turning on and off and running them in extreme conditions for what amounts to several years (consistantly) perfect conditions???

Also, the reason Sears began to lose market share had to do with the fact other BIG chains got into the market. Look up some facts.....Sears is still the leader, and owns half of the entire share of appliances (and they do not even have the most stores.)For every one failure there are thousands that do not. These odds are still very good. Even for Two disgruntled ex-employees!

It does not matter where you shop, you can buy the same goods just about anywhere for the same price. When it is all said and done Sears still has the LARGEST SERVICE ORGANIZATION in the U.S. No one can match. They have to meet certification standards of 99.8%.
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#9 UPDATE EX-employee responds

why the quality is gone

AUTHOR: Russell - (U.S.A.)

i worked for sears service for 22 years. i was fired after a failed 200 to 200 tie/loss union organizing the 80's sears started losing market share of appliance sales to other "shore up" sales & profits sears buyers started to buy the products with no warranty from the manufacturers.this lead to less quality control since the manufacturers had no liability for part failures.this was the beginning of the end of quality & customer service...i could go on but this is the gist of the current problem.pencil pushers with no foresight making decisions that cost the entire future of a once great company.
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..the whirlpool corp sold its service division to sears in my appinion to avoid its company loses do to the fact that it produces sub standard appliances which include its microwaves (over the counter . may be a fire hazzard ) its dishwashers (may cause a fire) its ranges (they just don't work- won't bake direct spark models ) the dryers (cuts off before the clothes are dry- even heat models)whirl pool only has one product that in my appinion is worth the money and thats its standard topload washer.
However not all kenmore appliances are made by whirlpool so the consumer really should ask more questions about what they are about to buy and where it came from who made it and yes i to believed for a very long time that if i bought it from Sears i was buying quality goods but Sears nolonger demands that its suppliers produce the kind of merchandise it was once know for.

Now comes the good part , as a service tech with 23 years in service i and others like myself have complained deeply to management for the protection of our customers (because you see my face when the unit breaks)please give us the required information to correct the customers complaints and there is no reply esspecially from whirlpool so as of last year the techs who really love what they do have trained themselves from trial and error but without any info from the maker no repair can be truely done correctly.
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#11 UPDATE Employee

Absolutely Absurd...

AUTHOR: Justin - (U.S.A.)

This is absurd. I am an Appliance sales associate, and know for a fact that the appliances are NOT designed to fail after the warranty period. In fact, your Kenmore washer is manufactured by Whirlpool Coorporation, which has consistently rated number one by Consumer Reports for their service track record and lack of required service calls. Try talking to your local store manager and see if there is anything he can do to help you out.
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