Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Spreading the bad words about Gaggenau

Last week, my fickle Gaggenau fridge that refused to be fixed finally died a sudden, yet not completely unexpected death. It’s been months in the works. First too warm, then too cold, and when it finally reached the right temperature, it kept on tripping the circuit.

I am convinced that the repairmen who made at least ten trips in the doomed attempt to repair the fridge had somehow caused this. When they couldn’t find a way to keep the temperature in the fridge compartment above zero they blocked off more than half the airway between the freezer and fridge, stopping the cold air from flowing into the fridge. This had to have caused the refrigerator to overwork itself, adding load to the circuit. But let’s not put all the blames on the repair guys. They did dutifully show up at my house every time I called them in, even though it often takes three days and twice as many phone calls.

The one I blame for this ordeal is Gaggenau. Have you ever heard of a refrigerator (a damned expensive one at that) breaking in less than three years (only two of which in use)? For three months I lived like an obsessed maniac who kept three thermometers in one fridge. I checked them in the morning when I had my breakfast, I checked them at night before I went to bed, and countless times in between whenever I opened the fridge to get something out. Does that sound like a normal life to you? Yet the Gaggenau distributor in Singapore did nothing to help. The problem is that Gaggenau switched local representation some time after our condo was built so the company that originally imported the fridge no longer wants anything to do with me while the new importer claimed that since they did not sell the fridge to the developer, it’s not their problem either. They might be able to get away with it had their product kept on going like the energizer bunny, but what was I supposed to do when I won the Gaggenau piece of crap award and ended up with apparently the only fridge that had malfunctioned in the entire condo? So you see why when the fridge finally broke it was as if a heavy load had been taken off my shoulders. No more constant monitoring of the temperature, no more opening and closing the fridge door at the speed of lightening to avoid overheating, and no more worrying about eggs getting frozen or ice melting into a lump in the ice dispenser. Sure, we’re a couple of thousand dollars poorer, but you can’t put a price tag on your mental health, can you?

Of course, this is not the end of the losing battle with Gaggenau. The entire kitchen is outfitted with their products, from oven to microwave to stove. Recently I tried to change the filter in the exhaust fan but was told that Gaggenau no longer imports it. I guess I’ll have to live with a smelly filter and pray that no other appliances will break while we live here. The lack of follow-up service really amazes me. Does Gaggenau not realize that people are actually going to live here and use their appliances for at least the next thirty years? Did they think their appliances wouldn’t need any kind of maintenance during that time? Or maybe the real explanation is that Gaggenau only cares about getting the big fat paycheck that comes with big contracts with developers and couldn’t care less about little people like us who are the actual end consumers. One thing I do know is that I am never buying any Gaggenau products, ever, by choice or otherwise. So there!

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Lynn, great site of yours, I am impressed! Yummy pictures. Regards from Dubai, Chris

Amrita said...

I am sorry to hear about the refrigerator :(

andreamonni said...

I ended up on your blog while doing my periodical Amedei web search and I also read this post.

What happened to you doesn't surprise me, it's the perfect example of how all companies are focused on the short term and on closing the deal only. After service is never a worry.

Lynn said...

Chris, Amrita and Andrea, thanks for the support. I know it's definitely not just Gaggenau that does this. The sad thing is that there is little the consumer can do...

Lynn said...

A woman called me the other day and said she found my blog while googling for gaggenau fridge. She decided to go with Miele instead. Ooooohooo! I would like to think that my post had something to do with that decision =o)

Anonymous said...

I am having a similar experiece with a Gaggenau Steamer. I have had the product for 15 months and have had no less than 7 service calls and it has never worked since the day it was installed. I'm not sure when or if it will ever work or be replaced. My $20 Black and Decker Steamer has been working flawlessly for years and I'm glad I never tossed it out in the move for the new Gaggenau miracle steamer!!! I will never purchase another Gaggenau/Bosch or any of this companies products. I hope that anyone who reads these experiences will do proper research before purchasing from this manufacturer. A 2-year warranty is only a warranty if they actually fix or replace the product.

Aitku said...

Thank you. We have a 14 year-old Gaggenau fridge that needs replacing. Your tale influences me more than the 14 years the last one lasted. We do however have a 34 years old Sony Trinitron TV that I cannot bear to replace!

Lynn said...

I think the older, or less complicated Gaggenau products probably do work better. basically, the more computer chips, the less sturdy these things are! My gaggenau dishwasher, oven, and kitchen hood all work very well, but the microwave goes haywire if I don't shut off the main supply after each use. it's a royal pain!

Dr. Z said...

Gaggenau is the worst company when it comes to service. I had problems with my cooktop - it just could not reach the required cooking temperature. It was luke warm. I called Gaggenau (USA) and the tech suggested believe it or not to place a pot with cold water on it to solve the problem. My new gas cooktop (Vario 200) was leaking. No help from Gaggenau. My ventilation hood just stopped working out of the blue. Again, no help. Service centers in USA with which Gaggenau has contracts for service have people who have no clue about Gaggenau products. When they come they usually see it for the first time in their life. I also have a few Miele products - another German company. This is different story. They will do everything possible to solve the problem over the phone by guiding you step by step. When I needed repair by a skilled technician they sent two technicians (Miele emplyees) who traveled 160 miles in Florida to fix my coffee maker.

Kelvin said...

Nice brand, nice products but terrible service. As I write this, I am still waiting for Gaggenau Singapore to repair my fridge which has been down since 9 April 2012. Service is really really bad and all the service manager Andy tells my wife is we will get back which never happens. My kitchen is completely Gaggenau from hood, microwave, 2 ovens, fridge, 4 dominos. What a mistake.