Buying a range is a complete crapshoot I think
We've spent so much time visiting stores, talking to salespeople and reps, and researching online, yet we have not found one range that clearly says to us, "I am what you are looking for as far as performance, reliability, and service." I don't think there is one out there, and I am amazed that such costly products seem to have so many problems. When we have purchased cars or cameras, after some research it becomes quite clear what is best. In ranges it just doesn't seem to be this way.
I want something other than stainless, so this does limit my possibilities a bit more than most people's. The $4,400 for a 30" RNB is about the top of my price limit; this is only a cooking appliance after all.
Viking--forget it because of reliability and service. Initially I though that perhaps people on this forum were being too harsh and were referring to problems from years ago. More research on the current state of affairs convinced us to stay away.
Wolf--only comes in stainless, but I just had a very experienced repairman tell me that since they became part of SubZero they are a PIA.
Bluestar--still have pretty hot doors. Don't know if all of those issues like exploding broilers that I have read about have been taken care of.
American Range--seems like an intriguing product, but we can't get straight answers from their website, their rep or the salespeople about exactly what we'd be buying. Seems like the company just doesn't have their act together yet as far as dealing with residential sales.
Aga--we looked at these as a niche market item that seems to be okay, but the cooking ability of the Legacy (what we were looking at because we found a floor model) and the build quality is lacking in comparison to some other things we've seen.
Bertazonni--I just started looking at them (only on the web), and it seems like they probably have issues too.
It is looking like this purchase is going to end up being a decision that is "least worst" of the bunch type buy.
And, the other thing that is amazing to me in comparison to all other things we buy is the price fixing on ranges.
Is this the same experience others have had?