The latest on Samsung and Bosch?

JHZR2August 29, 2014

Hi,

Were shopping appliances for a kitchen refurbishment, and have been doing a lot of research.

We were of the mind (at first at least) of going with a Bosch dishwasher, and then we saw their slide-in stove. They don't offer a counter-depth refrigerator with french doors and ice, so we started looking and Samsung seems to offer some great elements that none of the others we have been able to see (not many CD refrigerators out there to see).

In our research we caught up with some folks who recently redid their kitchen, and got all new appliances, of which they got a matched set of all Samsung, and couldn't say enough good about them.

But most review rankings IMO often bring out just the worst, and often can't be trusted for alignment to the specific product Im looking at. So...

Obviously Bosch has a great name in dishwashers. But what about other stuff? Like the actual Bosch-made (not the lower end ones apparently made by Electrolux) ranges? Are they reliable? Good? High quality?

Similarly, I know Samsung gets high JD Power marks, but how do their refrigerators, dishwashers and ranges stand up in terms of reliability and quality?

Granted, our 7 year old GE refrigerator has needed service twice, but our 60 year old GE electric range has needed nothing, ditto for our 20+ year old Kitchen Aid dishwasher. It seems like all new appliances are showing lack of reliability and issues with common things like melting knobs, bad circuit boards and broken ice machines.

But at the end of the day, are the full range of appliances from Bosch or Samsung anything to write home for, or to avoid? Are we better off saying to forget matching stuff and buy brand x for a range, brand y for a dishwasher, and brand z for a refrigerator?

Even CR and online reviews are confusing, so hoping the smart folks on here can help shed some updated insight. Ive enjoyed reading all the discussion from older threads Ive brought up by search. Thanks!

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hvtech42

>Are we better off saying to forget matching stuff and buy brand x for a range, brand y for a dishwasher, and brand z for a refrigerator?

Yep! Nobody makes the best of everything.

>Obviously Bosch has a great name in dishwashers. But what about other stuff? Like the actual Bosch-made (not the lower end ones apparently made by Electrolux) ranges? Are they reliable? Good? High quality?

Their latest generation of slide ins are brand new and unproven, but Bosch has been making ranges since 2001 and feedback on the older ones seemed good overall. I would take a Bosch range over a Samsung. The biggest complaints I see about Samsung are that technical info is locked down and harder to get than other brands, making service more of a pain when you need it.

Just within those brands, I'd get a Bosch DW and Samsung fridge along with the Bosch range. I have seen bad reviews about Samsung DW's, seen them in person and wasn't impressed, plus Consumer Reports does not have nice things to say about their reliability. Samsung ranges I haven't read much of anything about. I know there are a few people who bought their induction and liked it.

If you decide to look at other brands, here would be my recommendations on appliances to research in addition to the ones already discussed:

Counter Depth FD with dispenser: GE, KitchenAid

Range: Electrolux, Frigidaire, GE

Dishwasher: KitchenAid, Maytag, Asko, Miele

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 1:22AM
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JHZR2

Thanks very much for the detailed response!

This is all very confusing, I suppose first because of the (admittedly stupid) desire to have all handles match from an aesthetic point of view, but also because of the CR reports, and the fact that we are stuck with a counter-depth refrigerator...

For example, the brands you mentioned for CD refrigerators, assuming that reliability is on par with all the CR results for bottom freezer, FD refrigerators, all are worse than Samsung - GE and KitchenAid are 15% repairs while Samsung is 13% (I know, this may not be a statistically significant result, but for the sake of argument, let's say it is).

For ranges, its tough to identify against Samsung and Bosch, but for gas ranges, Frigidaire and GE are the best, so I get that, and they are also at the top for electric variants, which implies to me that even their circuit boards and other things outside the heating element of choice is good. Then again, Samsung is rated for electric, and is 1% off from Frigidaire...

Dishwashers show Bosch and Miele at the top (with Whirlpool in-between, whom you don't mention). But Maytag and Kitchenaid are far behind, twice as many repairs as Bosch!! And Samsung, just since I asked about them at the start, is worse off than that! So are KitchenAid (which we currently have and is super reliable) and Maytag really worth considering for a trouble-free kitchen? Why not Whirlpool?

That's why talking with someone like yourself is so valuable. You obviously have some basis for recommending what you are, and because of potential issues with the way CR reports, as well as what I've read regarding issues with stuff (for example, Bosch and Samsung dishwashers get dinged by uninformed users because of the inability to do heated dry with an element).

And, even a company like Samsung, maybe mores for a company like samsung, who is trying for market share but has some bad marks, should be continuously improving their engineering, which can't possibly be reflected by CR reliability rankings OR reviews online at retailers, from customers who only have owned their stuff a few weeks.

Thanks again for your insight and time.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 10:50AM
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hvtech42

"For example, the brands you mentioned for CD refrigerators, assuming that reliability is on par with all the CR results for bottom freezer, FD refrigerators, all are worse than Samsung - GE and KitchenAid are 15% repairs while Samsung is 13% (I know, this may not be a statistically significant result, but for the sake of argument, let's say it is)"

Consumer Reports reliability scores can sometimes be interesting but in this particular study of counter depth french door fridges with dispenser, the survey is worthless. Differences of less than five points are statistically insignificant, and in this case all the brands are within 5 points of each other! For fridges, Whirlpool, Maytag, Amana, KitchenAid, and JennAir are the same.

"Dishwashers show Bosch and Miele at the top (with Whirlpool in-between, whom you don't mention). But Maytag and Kitchenaid are far behind, twice as many repairs as Bosch!! And Samsung, just since I asked about them at the start, is worse off than that! So are KitchenAid (which we currently have and is super reliable) and Maytag really worth considering for a trouble-free kitchen? Why not Whirlpool?"

Dishwashers are a different story. While Whirlpool, Maytag, and KitchenAid are made in the same factory, they actually use completely different wash systems. Whirlpool has the worst in my opinion, both in terms of performance and longevity. Maytag has a traditional "American style" wash system with a grinder in the bottom, so no filter to clean. They also have the most powerful motor and the highest water pressure, which is a plus. KitchenAid has switched to a traditional "European style" wash system with a filter instead of a grinder. While it operates on a similar principle to the Whirlpool wash system, the motor is much better quality in my opinion. Plus it's more energy efficient.

An appliance store in my region of the country did their own dishwasher reliability study based on service calls on what they sold and their results differed completely from Consumer Reports. It is interesting to read - I wish I could do a similar survey with my own company's sales and repairs, but they focus on service and used appliances so it wouldn't really work. I would not put too much weight on those surveys, they just don't agree with my experiences.

The European brands are also excellent choices, though they tend to be more expensive to repair (especially Miele). I would say of all the dishwashers, Maytag is the best value. It would be my pick in the $600-700 option instead of the cheapo Bosch "Ascenta". If you step up into the $700-1000 range, I would consider Bosch. $1000+ I would only buy Miele because they are just built better.

But I think if you want to keep it simple with the brands - the Samsung-Bosch-Bosch setup I mentioned earlier would be a good choice - I would buy that package for myself.

However the most important thing to consider before you buy is not how reliable it will be, it's how easy will it be to get service. Even the most well-built and reliable brands break, and you need to have someone nearby who knows how to fix them. Not having an authorized servicer would be enough to drive me to another brand. Taking service alone into consideration, GE, Whirlpool built and Electrolux built appliances win because they are relatively open with their technical info, parts can be had almost anywhere, and almost everyone knows how to work on them.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 12:36PM
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muchocheko

we made the mistake of going with all bosch appliances when we redid our kitchen. About 2 years later, our microwave broke. It would cost more to fix than to buy a new one of a different model. Just last week (a little less than 4 years later) our fridge doesn't cool. There is an ice buildup at the back preventing it from reading the proper temp, or something like that.
Bosch customer service has been less than helpful. I don't expect appliances to last forever, but I was hoping that for as much as I paid, they would last a lot longer than this.

My advice is to avoid Bosch.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2014 at 2:59PM
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nancyocean

I bought a Bosch dishwasher after hearing all the good things about them, but it never would work right, and had an error code after about 30 minutes. The Bosch guy who took two weeks to come out said that it wasn't installed right, that even though the book says hose has to be 20 inches or whatever off the ground straight up, it needed an additional two inches more than the book said, or it wouldn't drain right. He said get it installed right and then he'd come back. No thank you sir, it was installed according to the book and if that isn't good enough we don't want it. Thankfully Lowes took it back and replaced it with a Kitchen Aid which I love. Do a search on stinky Bosch dishwashers and you will find that this drainage issue is very prevalent. If you have a shallow sink, you might be able to install the dishwasher the way Bosch recommends, (plus the extra two inches) but otherwise you might have problems and their customer service is pathetic. Manufactures often hit a home run on a product and then change something about it and the new product is a dud. Buy from a reputable store and get their warranty. Lowes have great prices on warranties. Buying the latest model isn't always a good idea, you don't know if it's really been tested yet. I love my Samsung refrig, but wouldn't be able to say it was dependable for at least another year.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2014 at 4:29PM
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hvtech42

>About 2 years later, our microwave broke. It would cost more to fix than to buy a new one of a different model.

Bosch does not make microwaves, they import them from China like almost everyone else. Microwaves are disposable: they're almost always cheaper to replace than to repair. You don't give any details about the specific one you had trouble with, but I'm assuming you got an expensive built-in model. Lesson for next time: instead of a built in microwave, make an alcove in your cabinetry that you can stick any old $150 microwave into.

>Just last week (a little less than 4 years later) our fridge doesn't cool. There is an ice buildup at the back preventing it from reading the proper temp, or something like that.
Bosch customer service has been less than helpful.

Stuff breaks. It doesn't sound like your fridge has been a lemon, a non-major malfunction in 4 years on any appliance is nothing alarming. As for customer service, what were you expecting them to do? Repair it for free even though it is years out of warranty? What makes your situation so special that you think you deserve that treatment other customers wouldn't get?

Again, you give no information about the particular fridge you have, but freestanding refrigeration is Bosch's weak point because they outsource it as well. The french doors are rebadged Whirlpools, which are good units but you're paying a price premium for the Bosch logo on the front. The side by sides used to be imported from Daewoo in Mexico, now they are imported from China. Let's just say the reviews on those, erm, haven't been too great.

>My advice is to avoid Bosch.

My advice is to avoid appliance packages of any kind because you will never get the most for your dollar. If you'd done your research like the OP is doing, you would have known that the Bosch DW and cooking were good choices (interestingly enough, those are the two you apparently didn't have problems with) and you would have gone elsewhere for your microwave and fridge.

I don't even know why I bothered wasting the time to write that post as most of these people visit forums once and never come back since they rarely have anything else to contribute.

This post was edited by hvtech42 on Sun, Aug 31, 14 at 16:58

    Bookmark   August 31, 2014 at 4:56PM
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JHZR2

I appreciate reading your insight to this poster!

    Bookmark   September 1, 2014 at 12:07PM
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muchocheko

Hey man, I was just giving my two cents. I don't pretend to be an expert on appliances like you apparently are, just expressing my opinions.

Also, you call the refrigerator not cooling a "non-major malfunction"? Don't know what you use your fridge for, but mine is supposed to keep food cold.

Just trying warn off the original poster from Bosch. I have had problems with their stove as well, just no major malfunctions.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2014 at 2:11PM
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hvtech42

One issue in the first 5 years of operation doesn't really say anything about your particular model, much less the brand as a whole. If it failed over and over again, and I saw many owners of the same model reporting the same issue, that would be a different story. Overall, Bosch appliances don't strike me as being worse than other appliances made currently.

I'm sorry to respond to your post that way but being in the industry and monitoring this forum, I see complaints like that about EVERY brand - Whirlpool, KitchenAid, Frigidaire, GE, Bosch, you name it - even higher end brands known for better quality like SubZero, Wolf, and Miele. It honestly gets tiring after a while. If someone were to heed the advice of ALL these posts - that would mean cooking over a fire, keeping food cool in an icebox, and washing the dishes and laundry by hand.

If you are going to complain about appliances, it's best to be specific. Say what models the appliances were that broke. Quality often varies between model with different product lines of a manufacturer being made in completely different parts of the world. Say what went wrong with them and how many times. It may seem like too much information that nobody really cares about - but it can be useful in spotting trends.

This post was edited by hvtech42 on Tue, Sep 2, 14 at 20:52

    Bookmark   September 2, 2014 at 5:43PM
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alex9179

Hvtech addressed your concerns very well. I'll just add that NO ONE notices/comments on the fact that my handles don't match. There's an excellent chance that you won't notice after a short time, either ;)

I advise getting the best appliance, for the individual job, that you can afford. I have Bosch d/w & induction top, Electrolux all fridge, Kenmore upright freezer around the corner from the fridge, Gaggenau wall oven, Breville toaster oven, Oster m/w. All perform as expected or beyond. The one thing I probably won't replace when it goes is the m/w. It works fine, but I only use it to reheat coffee these days.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2014 at 9:51AM
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muchocheko

Understand your point about being specific about models/brands. That didn't occur to me when I posted, I was just pissed off at Bosch.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2014 at 12:28PM
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eandhl

My Bosch DW in my last hous had one issue, I called Bosch direct. They took my word for it and 24 hours later they had a repair man replace the door hinges. 5 yrs later doing this kitchen another Bosch DW was the one appliance I immediately bought. Our DD bought a KA DW ABOUT 2 1/2 yrs ago, after several repairs she asked for a replacement. KA said no it was cheaper to continue replacing the control board. Warranty covered the part but she paid a service call & took a day off from work every time. After 1 1/2 yrs she gave up, bought a Bosch, no problems.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2014 at 1:11PM
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javaman44

I highly recommend the Bosch 500 series DW and the 800 series electric slide-in range.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2014 at 5:14PM
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