Wolf: Replacement vs. refund?

rockmanorMarch 19, 2009

For those of you who've had problems with Wolf ranges, how many replacements have been installed and when (if ever) did Wolf offer you a refund? I read one post in which Wolf refunded the cost of the range plus delivery & installation costs, so that the owner could purchase another range of her choice. It wasn't clear how many replacements she'd already been through with Wolf.

The replacement range that Wolf sent out in December is exhibiting the same problems as the one it replaced (flaking interior.) While it doesn't yet have the large bare patches that the first range developed, I think it's just a matter of time. Meanwhile, it caused an injury which has me typing with one hand. I've already heard from the company's insurance rep. and a service tech came to take photos, so Wolf has certainly been responsive.

My understanding is that Wolf intends to replace this range after testing the next one. My concern is that the flaking off of the porcelain gets worse with each cleaning cycle, so they'd probably need to run it several times to be reasonably confident.

As much as I like my 48" DF, I am annoyed at being without usable ovens yet again. I am not looking forward to the hassle of another removal and installation. Our hardwood floor was damaged during the previous delivery, which I did not mention to Wolf at the time because I was just relieved to have a range before Christmas (as it was, I had to buy a birthday cake for one of my children.) Maybe it's just general fatigue from all of the other problems with our new house, but this has gotten very old very quickly. It seems that accepting a replacement is inevitable this time, but if the third range has problems, I'll expect a check instead. What I'll find to replace the Wolf is another headache.

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It was another problem, other than the flaking interior, that caused injury, I'm assuming?

I have NO idea if this will be of any help at all, and isn't a direct answer to your question, but I thought I'd share something I heard this week. I'm having my Fisher & Paykel oven replaced because the blue porcelain coating inside is chipping and pitting after self-clean. While chatting with the repair tech who was in my home on Thursday, he mentioned that Bosch was the first to have blue interiors and they have a patent on their process and/or makeup of the coating itself. He said theirs are the only ones he's never had to replace because of flaking, that the others who have copied the blue color haven't been able to replicate the durability of Bosch's.

He was surprised to hear of Wolf replacing a range for that issue, and told me of his experience taking a Wolf range apart into pieces -'until about all that was left in place was the legs'- in order to replace the oven cavity for one of his customers.

The good news is that the 2 different techs I've spoken to, from 2 different repair firms, have assured me that it in no way affects the oven performance, reliability, or longevity, it's just a cosmetic issue. I think if I get an oven it shouldn't look all beat up inside within a year, so I went ahead and OK'd the replacement, but it's good to know that if it happens again when I'm out of warranty, it's only the appearance and nothing of vital importance that will affect my use of the oven.

Best wishes.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2009 at 3:19PM
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I have an Electrolux oven and the blue enamel was flaking. I have gotten my oven replaced. I think it is a serious issue to have blue shards of enamel (glass) flying around in the oven, especially with the convection fan on. I also do not think it is just a cosmetic issue. It protects the underlying metal from corrosion and makes the oven easier to clean.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2009 at 5:41PM
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The 2 separate techs and the company assured me that the metal would not degrade or have a problem. Cast iron pans last forever without a coating, so this should, too?

I also never had shards of anything flying around in my situation. The only time I had any issue was with the very hot temps of the self-clean, and anything loose was wiped away with the ash. The problem did not change or get worse any time in between cleanings.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2009 at 6:44PM
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As a matter of fact, a blue porcelain shard did cause the injury. When I was wiping out the ash, a piece pierced my hand, going quite deep into the flesh. When I tried to extract it with tweezers, it broke off. I made several other attempts to get to it, then finally went to my doctor as I was concerned about possible infection (besides, it hurt like the dickens.) The dr. injected a local anesthetic & cut into the hand in order to remove the rest of the shard. She expressed surprised at its length. It's still painful and shows signs of infection, despite the topical antibiotic, so I may need to return to the doctor next week for an oral antibiotic. In the future, I'll be sure to wear heavy, lined, Playtex gloves.

As with Wekick, I don't care for the idea of finding bits of blue in my food. With the previous range, I found some small bits of the porcelain on top of the cover of a casserole pan; at least it was covered. That range's problem with flaking worsened over time.

The day after the incident with the larger oven, I ran the cleaning cycle for the smaller one (this was only the second time for each.) I opened the door as soon as it unlocked, and saw what looked like small filaments, approx. 1" - 2" lengths of fine clear thread, floating around. When I asked a Wolf rep, she agreed that they might be from some fiberglass insulation that had escaped being sealed up during assembly. Having just recently used the convection setting to bake pizza in that oven, I was disturbed at the thought of that stuff ending up as one of the toppings.

I am pleased that Wolf has been responsive. When they learned that no one in our area had ever replaced oven liners before, I was told that they would not require me to permit an inexperienced tech to practice on my original range. I was impressed that Wolf offered to replace it once they received photos of the oven interiors. This time, I've been assured that multiple cleaning cycles will be run on the next range before it's shipped out, so am now more hopeful that there won't be any more problems. However, it's still an inconvenience (loss of use of the ovens is bad enough, without the other hassles & the painful hand), so I really want the third one to be trouble-free.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2009 at 12:09AM
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Yikes, that sounds far worse than what I experienced! I am glad Wolf is helping you, but I'm sorry you've experienced this more than once. I hope you get a range soon that doesn't do this. How are they addressing the injury? I'm sure you'd hope that prompts them to work more diligently on solving this problem...not just for you, but in the manufacturing process.

The other day the techs came to install my new oven, but the oven they showed up with was just like mine, while I was expecting the new model that has the black interior. I refused delivery of that and hope the black interior doesn't have the problem, although I never before suspected the color as being the problem.

Thanks for sharing this. I had never thought about the possibility of pieces coming off onto food before you two mentioned it.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2009 at 2:18PM
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So you can imagine if you swallowed a shard even very small, and if you nicked your intestine and infection set up, that could be very bad. The tinier the particles, the more likely they are to be drifting around. I don't know what to tell you about continuing to deal with Wolf except they do seem to be responsive. Not all manufactures are. Electrolux also seems to be pretty responsive as well, although the dealer's service department not so much. Rockmanor I cannot agree with you more how frustrating it is to have to deal with new appliances that have problems and injury on top of that. It is amazing to me more people don't complain when appliances don't work or have a problem. I had a Dacor oven before this one and talked to several people with similar ovens. They all said they didn't work right and some had called to have someone look at it but were told "that was the best we can do" and they just let that ride. One set of ovens was in a cooking school.
Thanks for posting about you Wolf range. I will put mine through a couple of cleaning cycles this week and make sure it is not flaking. I haven't used it as much until the Electrolux started flaking and if I did, I just wiped it out.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2009 at 2:25PM
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