Liebherr 30 inch/1650: Quality Issues?

stei7141February 23, 2008

We have been considering getting the Liebherr 1650, the 30" built-in refrigerator/freezer. We've seen it in person several times and were underwhelmed by the sturdiness of the interior. However, all the positive comments about Liebherrs on gardenweb convinced us to keep it on our short list for refrigerators.

Recently, I was searching the web looking for reviews of Liebherrs, and I came across the first negative ones re: quality I've seen. One reviewer was on his second refrigerator and was very unhappy (that's an understatement) with the quality of the interior. He also wrote that the refrigerator door had just fallen off! Another reviewer said the hinge on the top door broke after seven months and that the part was not covered under the warranty.

As I said, I know that people on this forum are generally pleased with their Liebherrs, but these recent reviews have given us pause. Have any Liebherr owners experienced similar issues with their refrigerators? We are now concerned about moving forward with a Liebherr. Thank you.

Here is a link that might be useful: Reviews of Liebherr 1650

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Hi Stei,

I read the negative reviews and all I can say is ...yeah...sure...right...whatever.

I have a 30". The handles are great. The form is beautiful. It is the best refrigerator I have ever owned.

And for what it is worth, I am a former Sub Zero owner.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2008 at 5:22PM
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We have the 30 inch also, and we love it. However, we've only been using it since last October.
We did have to have the ice maker fixed as it was apparently overfilling. (fixed at no charge).
We liked this refrigerator better than the SZ. We were worried that it would be too small, but for 2 people it's perfect.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2008 at 8:04PM
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I have had mine for about 2 years without a problem.

I don't understand the comments about the hinges on the handle and I am not even sure what hinges are being talked about unless they mean the curved SS structure that the handle is secured to but that doesn't look like a hinge to me so I dunno. If that what the review is referring to I don't see how that could just break without significant impact or trauma.

What concerns do you have about the interior?

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 12:23AM
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I just reread that first review. The poster says that in both units delivered the interior looked like a bomb went off inside. I wonder if the problem is being caused by the delivery people since both units looked damaged inside. Also if the door fell off---it sounds like it wasn't put on correctly. I still don't know what hinges are on the door handle of the 30 inch built in.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 12:36AM
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jerrod6: That's exactly what I thought when I first read the review, that the refrigerator had been damaged during delivery. I recall that the last time we had a refrigerator delivered, the shelves and bins were taped down and therefore, in theory, couldn't have moved around in transit.

When I've looked at the interior of the Liebherr display model, it struck me that it's a bit more flimsy than other refrigerators (like the Thermador Freedom line) on the floor. The wire door racks and the plastic bins just don't seem as well made. That was simply my impression, but since we don't tend to bash things up in our refrigerators, I imagine the Liebherr would hold up fine. You can see why those reviews made us wonder, though. I think I need to go back to the store and try to figure out what the hinge issue is all about. Thanks for your input. Lisa

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 9:47AM
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Many people that have seen my Liebherr always comment on the wire shelves and think that they would not be functional. The glass shelves are not very thick but they are so functional and they work with tons of stuff loaded on them. I think the fridge does not look like what people are used to. Not having thick plastic everywhere makes that inside of this fridge more functional than my prebious fridge and my friends Sub Zero 36". I really love my fridge:-) I have no issues with the hinges and I have had it for more than 2years.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 11:33AM
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When I saw the Liebherr a couple of weeks ago I commented to the sales person that I thought the plastic bins in the freezer looked "cheap". His comment was that it's the way all the European refrigerators are manufactured and also makes it more energy efficient. I have no idea if that's true, but just thought I'd let you know. I can't imagine that the quality of those plastic bins is any less than other brands. These are pretty much the first negatives I've seen on this frig.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 12:24PM
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Jean Popowitz

We've had this model since November and we are extremely happy with it. The last new refrigerator I had (in a previous home) was a Jenn-Aire which was a piece of junk (loose handles, plastic bins on doors broke off, frozen produce). We love the simplicity of the interior and find it far more sturdy than any refrigerator we've previously owned. The interior is very easy to clean. As far as exterior hinges and handles, I can't imagine what the complaint is other than the OP must have had transit damage. We're just the two of us at home now, but when the family was home at the holidays, everybody loved the way the handles worked and thought they were well engineered. A friend, who is redoing her appliances, was so taken with ours that she's in line to purchase the 36" when it comes out in the summer.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 12:28PM
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We just received our 30" Liebherr a couple of days ago. Unfortunately, something must have fallen against the side of the crate during transit as there was a gash in the cardboard and two pretty significant dings on the right side of the fridge. We were offered either a little cash or a replacement fridge, so we took the replacement. It's supposed to arrive on Friday and they will handle the removal of the old unit and installation of the new one.

That aside, everything looks great to us. We've stuffed the thing full of food and none of the racks or drawers seem at all stressed or strained. Doors and electronics work perfectly.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 3:56PM
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Initially one thing I did notice about the interior is the plainness of it. I think Jaedwards called it simplicity which is a much better way to describe it.

My previous unit had thick plastic frames outlining the shelves and also had frames outlining other things. Some of the lines inside were very curvy. With this unit most of the lines are straight and there are not a lot of frames around anything except the stainless steel frames around the shelves. So this look may take a bit to get use to but as Jaedwards also mentioned this thing is easy to clean - no bits of food stuck in corners - not a series of complicated bins to unhook and re-hook to clean the thing(this is good because I am not much of a clean freak). Most times I stand in front of the open unit with a paper towel and wipe it down.

If you don't like the sealed bins in the freezer you can take them out and use the glass shelves that are between them. Again easy to clean but a different look than what we usually see.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 9:10PM
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What are the options for 29-32" wide counterdepth fridge? I see the Liebherr 1650 and SubZero 611. Other options? Considerations?

    Bookmark   March 9, 2008 at 11:14AM
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Can't wait to see the Liebherr 36" supposedly due out any time. Anyone know where you can see these up close?

    Bookmark   March 10, 2008 at 3:21PM
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I just saw one at the Arch Digest Home Show in NYC - beautiful - I am seriously considering the 36" (w/french door design) It does not come with the BioFresh feature but it does have 2 compressors - I was planning on the SZ650 over/under but may seriously get this instead - still pricey tho - the integrated SS retails for $7540, I could get it for $6000 +$200 delivery

    Bookmark   March 26, 2008 at 2:02PM
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Another Liebherr 30 inch owner here. I imported mine from Canada six years ago (hard to believe). It has been entirely trouble free and it is still silent. The only slight issue is that the condensation drain hole can get gunky and back up. I clean it with a q-tip every once in a while. And it is still the one appliance in the house that draws attention from visitors. People cross the room so that they can touch it! And yes, the interior is high quality and perfectly organized. Love this thing!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2008 at 11:24AM
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I've had my Liebherr running since July and it's wonderful. As others have noted, it's easy to clean, it stores a remarkable amount of stuff, and keeps my perishables fresher than I'm used to (in other words, the zucchini has to be in the 'frig for a very, very, long time before it turns to something unmentionable). Personally, I think it's built like a tank! I had a party a few weeks ago and the refrigerator generated more interest than any other appliance in my new kitchen. In fact, one of my guests was in the process of a remodel and cancelled the order on her SubZero the next day and ordered a Liebherr.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2008 at 4:11PM
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Loriley: Could you please let us know your opinion on the 36" (w/french door design) that you saw? We are looking at buying this model for our new kitchen, but we are uncomfortable because we have not seen it ourselves. Could you let us know how they designed the freezer drawers? Any advice will be appreciated.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2008 at 8:39AM
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Our new 30" Liebherr is finally ready for use. We are questioning why the top shelf is in two pieces. What is the advantage of this and how can we use the other half as there is only one set of support brackets?

    Bookmark   September 13, 2010 at 5:59PM
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I have had a Liebherr 1650 for the past 3 years. I have had nothing but trouble with it. The ice maker broke twice, the freezer door does not shut properly, and now that my door hinges were replaced due to a recall, my freezer does not work and the food that was in it has thawed. The service person sent by Liebherr will not answer the phone. I will never ever buy another Liebherr again.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 7:58PM
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I have had my Liebherr since 2005. It worked great, at first, but over the past 6 months, it has been a nightmare dealing with the unit, the warranty company, and the repairmen. The problems started with a loud humming noise, doors that would actually seal shut and require 2 adults to pull it open, and worse of all: FREEZING. Every thing in the fridge, including bottles of high alcohol content wine, froze solid.

The warranty company ignored my calls for 2 weeks, claiming that there was no one in my area (a metropolis) that could service the fridge. With one Google search, I informed them of 2 companies within a 20 mile radius. They told me which company to use and washed their hands of me.

The repairman took a week to come out and then informed me that the internal control knob was broken; it would have to be ordered from Germany. Two weeks later, I had to call to see if it had arrived. They too dodged my calls and it took yet another week to set up another appointment. When that day finally came around, the repairman canceled and didn't show up for another 2 weeks. It took him 30 minutes to fix the control knob. It took less than 12 hours for it to break again.

I am left in the dark as to when the repair company will come back. In the mean time, I have to rely on a 30 year old fridge in my garage.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2011 at 5:43PM
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