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Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 10:53 AM   #1
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Looking for a New Refrigerator

The 18 year old GE side by side is showing her age. I have been checking Cons. Reports etc. but how about some "real world" experience. I am leaning towards Kenmore or Whirlpool but GE is also a possiblility (CFB where are U?)

Any suggestions from you personal experience?

BTW, we want a side by side with 25 cu ft. of volume. SS exterior (DW concession). Don't need all the bells and whistles (LG model has a LCD TV in the door :) Just your basic fridge.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 11:01 AM   #2
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

we have an LG stainless lrsc26912 TT and so far so good - have had for about 2 years - water/ice in door.

keeps veggies and fruits fresh...enough space for us inside too.

we had a terrible fridge experience prior too - so this one is far and above the previous!
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 11:05 AM   #3
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

We have a Whirlpool side by side that is very well designed. I love the ice maker in the door. We also have the rapid cool space for canned beverages in the door that is quite nice to have. Drinks cool within an hour or so. Ours is the Satin finish that looks like stainless but is much easier to keep clean. That was perfect for me, I love the look of SS but hate the fingerprints....

Actually I have bought two Whirlpool side by sides in the last three years. We replaced a twenty five year old frig with the top of the line Whirlpool and then sold it along with the house two years later. I looked around last year to see what was out there and decided to just buy the newer version of the Whirpool like I had. The only changes were the drink cooler, and you can now fill containers quickly from the door dispenser. I would highly recommend the Whirlpool.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 11:05 AM   #4
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

I think putting one person in a fridge is dangerous enough.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 11:18 AM   #5
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Our 22 year old Whirlpool dishwasher died...we got another Whirlpool.
Our 23 year old Whirlpool washer and dryer were worn out...we got another Whirlpool.
Even though our Whirlpool range hood and cooktop were still fine, we replaced them with new Whirlpool hood and cooktop.

Pattern, huh? And no, no one in our family works for Whirlpool.

In Nov. '06, we replaced our 18 year old WP refrigerator with a new WP Gold Edition. It's a 25 ft side by side. It's wonderful...all kinds of room. It was a little more expensive than the other WP side by sides, but it has a rounded front that really looks nice along with other nice features.

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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 02:16 PM   #6
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

I do my own work, I like Whirlpool stuff.

So I'll pile on about the Whirlpool recommendations. Or a Sears Kenmore that is made by Whirlpool (verify first that the exact Kenmore model is indeed made by Whirlpool, all used to be, some may be made by others now).

Usually can find a Kenmore with same/similar features cheaper than a Whirlpool-branded model, and they make sure that they don't look exactly alike. But quality is the same, it's just up to the buyer which they prefer.

Have had the same 25 cu.ft. top-freezer Kenmore(Whirlpool) fridge for 18 years. Except for replacing the evaporator drip pan a few summers ago, it has been trouble-free. The drip pan developed a pin-hole leak, would get an occasional trickle of water down the back of the inside of the cabinet. There was only one pin-hole, the rest of the steel was solid.
The part cost me <$20 at sears parts online.

Sears has the exploded part diagrams for their products, and also the Whirlpool-named products online. And they have the parts available for both at their Sears parts depots, and also available by mail. Makes it very D-I-Y friendly.

Stainless Steel - Ugh! As Lakerat says, fingerprints!

I have seen some embossed-surface Stainless-Steel appliances lately. Embossed, so it "helps hide" the fingerprints. Go figure.

Painted, no Stainless for us!
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 02:26 PM   #7
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveR
The 18 year old GE side by side is showing her age.
Geez, Steve, anything you buy will pay for itself in two years on the electricity savings alone. You could walk blindfolded into the Sears appliance department waving your credit card in front of you and still pick a winner.

But if you're patient, motivated, and have access to a pickup truck and an equipment dolly, try anything on Craigslist that's Energy Star. You'll pay about 35 cents on the dollar.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 03:30 PM   #8
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Got new Whirlpool refrigerator. dishwasher and stove in May 2000. So far everything is working well.

Things I looked for: freezer on the bottom, shelves not racks, shelves adjustable, everything can be removed and washed.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 05:03 PM   #9
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Thanks for the replies so far. DW is set on Stainless and I am going to make her happy. I know about the fingerprints but with no kids in the house that should be less of a problem. Besides, the adult beverages are all in the refrigerator in the garage.

Seems like there is no one either for or against the GIANT GE. I have been waiting for CFB to chime in with his personal experience which is exactly what I want from posters.

We will also be replacing the dishwaser at the same time which is at least 15 years old. It too will be stainless to match the other stuff (duh!). The microwave is a brand new Whirlpool the oven/cooktop was replaced with a new GE slide in oven; which saved us $800 and also got DW the bigger oven that is higher off the ground (less bending over) and the burner arrangement she wanted but was not offered in a Whirlpool.

Thanks
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 05:06 PM   #10
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Avoid GE at all costs. :P

Buy Whirlpool. My appliance repair guy who came over more than six times to work on the GE fridge said that whirlpool bends over backwards to resolve customer problems. GE wanted me to just bend over.

Just to recap that experience, GE spent more than six months attempting to repair a fridge that wouldnt get cold enough. Once they'd replaced everything except the cabinet and the power plug, the repairman deduced that there was probably a pinched wire somewhere inside the cabinet, which of course is full of foamy insulation stuff they put in after the wiring is pulled, so no way to trace that. Ask them to replace it, he said. Later I got a voicemail from the guy saying that the regional manager didnt want him to come to my house to repair the two parts of the fridge that he broke while trying to repair it...they'd send me the parts and I should figure out how to install the fiber optic lighting and top shelf bracket myself. :P

GE offered to replace the unit, if I paid them a fee. To replace an in-warranty refrigerator they couldnt repair. After going as far up the food chain and going after anyone and everyone that might resolve this, I finally bought a new whirlpool and called all the consumer affairs groups. Finally some months later, a state of california consumers division something-or-other got them to replace the fridge for free. I now have the very nicest garage refrigerator in the western united states.

Many Kenmores are made by whirlpool. You may very well find a whirlpool you like and in the next aisle, a kenmore that looks suspiciously identical. In some cases, sears either dumbs down or spiffs up a particular model, and the differences may not be visible, so you may not be seeing a completely apples to apples comparison.

Whirlpool also makes kitchenaid and kirkland/costco appliances. Some good bargains at costco if you dont mind hauling it home yourself. Just remember, if you push a fridge over on its side for transport to allow it 24 hours before plugging it in once its set back upright.

Many GE products are made by LG. :P

Check the sears web site for any sears outlets (check the 'sears locations' and pick 'outlet centers' or whatever its called); these have closeouts, floor models, scratch and dents...all with original factory warranties and often at half price.

Also check out the sears clearance web site for regional clearance items...click on the 'sears outlet' button near the top right part of the header bar on the sears web site.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 05:43 PM   #11
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveR
Thanks for the replies so far. DW is set on Stainless and I am going to make her happy. I know about the fingerprints but with no kids in the house that should be less of a problem.
Seems like there is no one either for or against the GIANT GE. I have been waiting for CFB to chime in with his personal experience which is exactly what I want from posters.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveR
BTW, we want a side by side with 25 cu ft. of volume. SS exterior (DW concession). Don't need all the bells and whistles (LG model has a LCD TV in the door :) Just your basic fridge.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Avoid GE at all costs. :P
Sorry, TH, I'm goin' to the Dark Side on this one.

Steve, we bought a GE Profile™ Energy Star® 25.5 Cu. Ft. Stainless off Craigslist last month. We call it "Fridgezilla".

It has 20% more storage space than our six-year-old stripped-down over-under GE, a less-efficient side-by-side layout, and an ice/water dispenser yet uses only 77% as much energy. (Rated at 618 KWHr/year, we're seeing about 680 KWHr/year after a month's use.) It sticks way out from the counter, fits our 36" hole with nothing left over, and I have to get on tiptoes to look on top of it. It has nearly 300W of internal lights that sear your retinas if you open it at night. It has its own filter on the water line. It even has an over-the-top LED light in the water dispenser (comes on when you use it) and an optional door alarm. This is by far the best fridge we've ever owned. It's so ridiculously opulent that I'm embarrassed to use it, but it's saving us at least $3/month on our electric bill and we'll probably sell it in a few years for a smaller/more efficient model.

A lot of the internal volume is wasted on pull-out freezer drawers, tilting door trays, split-level shelving, and other gadgets, so it doesn't hold much more food than our old 20.6 cu ft fridge. The icemaker has totally eliminated the arguing over who should have filled the ice cube trays. The exterior front is stainless but the sides are magnetic metal so we can still use refrigerator magnets for our grocery list. It comes with a bottle of stainless-steel cleaner so you can spiff it up once and then just touch the handles from then on. Its full-power output will chill-shock a carload of groceries but the compressor & fans are both variable-speed that use less energy to cool it back down when it's only a degree or two warm. The exhaust is in the front, a nice warm surprise to bare feet on a cold morning. The fridge is as close to "silent" as any refrigerator I've ever seen. It's inaudible outside the kitchen and barely noticeable even at full blast standing next to it.

We've seen retail prices between $2600-$3000. We're told that it was sold at Sears and I think we've seen it at Lowe's. There's also a slightly smaller counter-depth model in the high $3000s and an over-under model (don't know the price).

There's no home show or firesale on earth that could have persuaded me to buy the thing. I doubt we'd buy it again because you can probably find a smaller stainless-steel fridge for about $1500 with similar Energy Star efficiency. However we bought ours from a total whacko (a girl version of Tommy Chong) who wanted $750 plus another $50 delivered. I'm still wondering if we bought stolen goods but we didn't leave any fingerprints behind and we have an alibi...

So, if that's what DW is looking for then I think you'll make her happy.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 06:04 PM   #12
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Nords and CFB,

Thanks, as always, for the candid feedback. If we get a chance on Sunday we will hit Sears and see what they have to offer. Craigslist is an option but not my first choice. Used appliances give me nightmares. I like full warranties and somebody to call when the door falls off. (Don't ask!)

If I spend $1500-2000 on an appliance I want a local sales man and service department within arms reach. Buying second hand would eliminate that for me.

BTW, the microwave is great. It is a 2 cu ft model that goes over the cooktop. It is a microwave, convection and broiling oven in one. We broiled some pork chops in it the other night and they came out very jucy and tender. It will also nuke something in record time! Oh, and it does brownies to perfection...who needs a real oven? Well, actually we do on family gatherings...that 27 # turkey has to go somewhere.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 06:06 PM   #13
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

My 20 year old GE frig is still working fine. We are looking for a replacement. Whirlpool is a good brand. We prefer a 21 cu feet and bigger top-freezer model since you can store more food than a side-by-side model with the same volume, albeit a side-by-side looks better and that you do not bend over to access the frig section.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 06:10 PM   #14
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Quote:
If I spend $1500-2000 on an appliance I want a local sales man and service department within arms reach. Buying second hand would eliminate that for me.
There are outlet stores that sell appliance with minor dent at 20% to 50% discounts. They would deliver and service them also.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 08:03 PM   #15
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

DW works for GE so we get good prices from the company store. Our GE is OK but the ice maker was slower than the Whirlpool that I used to have.
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 08:46 PM   #16
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Well, of course i can't find the web site now, but for those who want a "different" sort of fridge and you live in a place that has a winter--there's a guy who built a room adjoining his kitchen. The inner portion of the room serves as a walk-in fridge. Outside of this on each wall an in the roof is a tank holding a few hundred gallons of water, with thick foam insulation outside that. In the water is a heat-pipe (with ammonia as the working fluid, I think, though R-134 would also work). The heat pipe connects to a large plate heat exchanger outside his house. In the winter months he opens a valve and the heat pipe moves heat from the water jacket around his walk-in fridge to the outside. The whole mass freezes solid in a few months, and is thick enough to keep his food cold all through the warmer months.

Zero energy use, and someting you can show off to your friends. Go for it Steve!

We bought our fridge from a big Sears closeout center in Columbus, OH. It had an original warrantee and was 1/2 the price of same thing purchased at Sears. They had some stainless steel units, but there's a bigger choice in plain white.

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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 10:15 PM   #17
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
yet uses only 77% as much energy
Mine was very energy efficient. Probably had a lot to do with only running down to 45 degrees. :

In truth, I always liked GE appliances fine until this experience. I had one of their custom refrigerators in my mcmansion and other than having the same odd 'space wasting' setup that Nords describes, it worked fine for 8 years.

However, the GE phone system that (until I discovered the secret word) absolutely prevented you from ever speaking to a person and the 'screw you' attitude I got when they couldnt fix it...well...I cant abide by that in a service provider. Had they simply replaced it when the service guy threw his hands up, most of it would have been forgiven.

To be fully fair, the sears service people in my area suck plenty. They couldnt figure out what was wrong with my new kenmore dishwasher, but I figured it out in about 10 minutes and fixed it with a cheap part I bought from some wholesaler online.

Total number of dishwashers I've ever tried to fix: 1.

Total number of dishwashers I've successfully fixed: 1.

I must be a natural. :
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-16-2007, 11:29 PM   #18
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

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Total number of dishwashers I've ever tried to fix: 1.
Total number of dishwashers I've successfully fixed: 1.
I must be a natural. :
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator
Old 02-17-2007, 07:51 AM   #19
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Re: Looking for a New Refrigerator

So no prison terms, facial tattoos or ear biting?

Dang.
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