Caution regarding Jenn Air appliances

andyhermanMarch 2, 2013

Just a word of caution to anyone considering the purchase of any Jenn Air appliance, specifically with regard to the warranty.

I bought a brand new Jenn Air slide-in electric range from an authorized Jenn Air dealer ($1,999.99). The range was delivered on February 15th 2013. I don't do a ton of cooking so I hadn't used this range all that much (the oven twice and the cooktop itself twice).

So the evening of February 25th I was making pasta and sauce using two of the surface elements. As I was heating the sauce and boiling the water, suddenly a bright flash appeared under the cooktop - similar to that which would be created by an electric arc. A few seconds later, a number of similar flashes appeared under the cooktop and the range went dark.

Since it was later in the evening, I wasn't able to contact the dealer until the next day - Tuesday. I called and told them what had happened and they asked me if I wanted to speak with the service department. I told them no, I wanted to speak with the salesman and I didn't want the unit "repaired" I wanted it replaced. The woman I spoke with was nice enough, but she said they would not be able to replace this unit - it would have to be serviced.

The salesman was not available so I left a voice mail message and sent him an e-mail.

In the meantime, I called Jenn Air Customer Care1-800-JENN-AIR (536-6247) and spoke with a representative. I told her what had happened and she said that Jenn Air would not replace the unit, but would have the dealer send someone out to examine the range and identify a repair option.

I told the Jenn Air rep I didn't want the unit, which had been in my house a total of 9 days when it went dead repaired I wanted it replaced. I spent two grand on this thing and I shouldn't have to be stuck with a "repaired" new Jenn Air product. The rep told me that was Jenn Air's policy.

Later Tuesday, the dealer called and arranged for a serviceman to come out to examine the range. He came yesterday (March 1st). I explained what had happened and he examined the unit. I told him I wanted a NEW range to replace this defective unit and he agreed that if it were him, he would have the exact same position. However, he said that the dealer really had no say in how the problem was resolved and that Jenn Air policy was to only "REPAIR" defective units.

The range now has to have a new user interface, control board, cooktop and electrical harness replaced as there was in fact electrical arcing under the ceran surface. In the meantime, I'm without a range and have no idea when the situation is going to be resolved.

I've already contacted my bank to dispute the two thousand dollar charge and they agreed that I should not have to be stuck with a defective NEW range.

As a contrast, I have an LG washer and dryer pair I purchased at Home Depot. The washer went on the fritz a couple of weeks after it was delivered. Long story short, Home Depot replaced the washer with a new one.

Hmmm, does anyone see a reason why American industry is struggling?

So a word of caution to anyone considering the purchase of any Jenn Air appliance - DON'T!

If anything major goes wrong with your NEW Jenn Air product you're going to be stuck with a repaired unit.

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I'm usually suspicious of first-post complaints, but this one seems legit. Not surprised that policy is to fix and not replace. However at minimum I would have expected to negotiate a no-charge extended warranty.

Our GE range was delivered with a dent in the bottom corner which happened when it was taken off the delivery truck at our home (improper placement on the lift/dolly thing). GE did the repair -- although it took longer than we wanted -- and they gave us a 5 year extended warranty at no charge. And that was just for a cosmetic issue.

At minimum you should expect to negotiate a multi-year extended warranty. You should call back, be calm and unemotional, but very firm. Don't get argumentative with the low-level customer service rep on the line, just calmly ask for the service manager to contact you. If you don't get results from that, ask for the district manager, etc.

And of course, don't start the negotiation saying that you expect an extended warranty ... state that you want the range replaced, explain the inconvenience of not being able to cook on it (stay brief), and that you can't trust that the range won't continue to have issues. At best maybe you WILL get the range replaced, although I highly doubt it, but at worst you should be offered a long-term extended warranty.

My $.02 anyway. Good luck.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 12:52PM
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This isn't specifically a Jenn-Air problem. Many manufacturers would handle this the same way. However, many retailers have a 30-day return policy. They will exchange defective appliances within 30 days. Check your receipt and/or posted store policy. Your dealer may have such a policy that he's trying to evade.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 12:54PM
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One further recommendation: try to have the communication in writing. If it's on the phone and you don't record it, you're screwed if they have to make good on promises.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 1:26PM
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In my original e-mail to the salesman, I noted that with any electrical component there is the potential for problems that aren't the dealer's fault and I understand that.

However, I also believe any dealer should stand behind their product.

I would also agree that an extended warranty could help the situation as there will always be a question as to the long-term reliability of this range, given my issues with it in the first week and a half.

I had always considered Jenn Air to be a higher quality manufacturer and therefore one that would stand behind their products. However, since Jenn Air was purchased by Whirlpool Corporation, I'm sure customer service is less important to them than the bottom line.

My point in making this post was simply to let people know that you can't always rely on a company's perceived quality/reputation - today that is the least of their concerns.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 1:34PM
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I agree, your dealer should be helping you deal with Jenn Air. Good luck with the credit card dispute, sounds like your last option.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 1:50PM
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Here is a photo of the actual range - when it was working.

I live in an area that doesn't have natural gas and considered a dual fuel range. However, the price to run a propane line and get propane service would have added another $1,000.00 and I just decided that wasn't worth it to me.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 1:55PM
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I really think it is all about where you buy. Our brand new Kitchenaid range has a broken induction hob. We did not want a brand new but defective unit so we asked Lowes to exchange the unit. It was a very simple process that required no begging or pleading on our end. Our new range will be delivered soon and the old one will be picked up, repaired and sold at a discounted price at Lowes.

We didn't even bother calling the manufacturer because I know their answer would be repair, repair, repair. I totally agree with your position. If the manufacturer did such a crappy job building that unit, who knows what the future could hold. I hope you get a fair resolution.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 2:01PM
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I do understand how you feel, and I might feel the same way. However, consider a potential counterargument: It may be that a unit on which a real, live, qualified human services, checks, and replaces all suspect parts will be more reliable than a robotically assembled new unit.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 2:07PM
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I think its to bad companies now will not stand behind a product better then this. 9 days in my house I would be so so upset. Did you ask to speak to manager of where you bought it? Tell them you have a big mouth and will spread word they do not stand behind what they sell.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2013 at 1:33AM
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What does it say in your original warranty? Does it mention repair only? Isn't there a lemon law for this very situation. You can also file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau in your state. JennAir will be notified and then then mediate the problem for you. You can also file a complaint against the store that sold it to you if their return policy isn't stated on the receipt. Every store needs to state their return policy on the receipt. You have every right to return or exchange defective merchandise.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2013 at 7:55AM
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The warranty for most is REPAIR only. There's nothing about replacement. At all. That's fairly standard anymore for any of the Whirltag conglomerate products. Which is just another black mark against them in my book. I've never thought they deserved the positive reputation that somehow they seem to have.

"For one year from the date of purchase, when this major appliance is operated and maintained according to instructions attached to or
furnished with the product, Jenn-Air brand of Whirlpool Corporation or Whirlpool Canada LP (hereafter “Jenn-Air”) will pay for factory
specified parts and repair labor to correct defects in materials or workmanship. Service must be provided by a Jenn-Air designated
service company. This limited warranty is valid only in the United States or Canada and applies only when the major appliance is used
in the country in which it was purchased. Outside the 50 United States and Canada, this limited warranty does not apply. Proof of
original purchase date is required to obtain service under this limited warranty.


This post was edited by live_wire_oak on Sun, Mar 3, 13 at 9:43

    Bookmark   March 3, 2013 at 9:40AM
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Our last home - a brand new condo, came with Whirlpool dishwasher. It was 13 months old when the motherboard died- 1 month out of warranty. Whirlpool would do nothing, and the part was $250 labor was $150. The original cost of the dishwasher would have been about the same! They wouldn't even offer me a coupon or anything. Since it was through the builder I couldn't go to a store to deal with. I was so angry and I even wrote a letter to Whirlpool, which they "acknowledged" but still did nothing to rectify.

So, I will do everything I can to avoid buying anything by this conglomerate company again - Whirlpool, Maytag, Jenn Aire etc. Does anyone have a full list of the subsidiaries?

I am sorry for your experience, though I agree with the other poster that it is possible that the repaired unit might end up more reliable than another new one. Definitely insist on the free extended warranty! It might be difficult to negotiate now that you've stopped payment.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 1:41PM
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Thanks for posting this. I'd want a new range too. Sorry for your troubles.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 2:44PM
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So finally after 3 weeks with no range, Jenn Air/Whirlpool sent out the replacement parts - not the new range I wanted.

I'm still waiting to find out what Discover is going to do about the charge, but in the meantime, I was cooking this morning and noticed there was no "Hot Surface" indicator anywhere on this "replacement" cooktop Jenn Air/Whirlpool had installed?

I guess they (Jenn Air and Whirlpool) assumed/hoped/figured I wouldn't notice they had replaced the original cooktop that had the "Hot Surface" indicators with one that didn't!!! What a bunch of a-holes!!! So they figured not only wouldn't they replace this range with a new one, but they would screw me by replacing the cooktop with a cheaper one probably from one of their other "low end" or discontinued product lines!

Anyone who buys any appliance from Jenn Air/Whirlpool should definitely consider if this is a good idea!

I called Standard TV and Appliance in Portland, where I bought this piece of crap and left a message for their service department since they are closed on Sundays.

Naturally, the service department didn't call me back so I called them this AM. They had to check with their "service Manager and eventually called me back saying that Jenn Air changed the cooktop and no longer offers one with the "Hot Surface" indicator.

That is BS because if you go on their web site and pull up the Slide-in Electric range (not downdraft) it specifically shows the "Hot Surface" elements (Jenn Air photo attached). If you go into a Jenn Air dealer and look at the range, you will also see that they ALL have the Hot Surface elements and if you download the "Use and Care Manual" for this range (I would have attached a PDF of the specific page but you can only attach one image) it specifically talks about the Hot Surface indicator light.

As far as I'm concerned Jenn Air is nothing but garbage - as is Whirlpool!

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 5:21PM
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That's one good thing about the big box stores, their return policies can be better. I'm not sure if it always happens with appliances, but it seems sometimes even that is not a problem.

I would pursue getting a replacement for that lemon! That is terrible to have to accept. No responsibility. Hopefully your cc will step in, if no one else remedies. They can take their lemon back and sell as refurbished, but shouldn't be allowed to do that to you who is paying for new.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 5:39PM
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I would also want a brand new appliance, especially after it could have easily started a fire, (and I would take the time to get that info to the proper govt safety agency), I would let Jenn-air/Whirlpool know you are doing that too!!!

Having said that, in the interest of "Full Disclosure", live wire oak should take the time to read the SZ/Wolf warranty and Miele, and post them up here like he did for Whirlpool, failure to do so, "TO ME"!!!!!! is just a "Cheap shot" and Whirlpool, and yep we know you don't like them "lwo"

Both SZ/Wolf as well as Miele Warranty state the warrranty is for repair, and Wolf mentions no exceptions, while Miele does say You must contact their USA headquarters with a "Written dispute" before any further action is taken, as far as replacement of an appliance, (Paraphrasing)and then that "Headquarters"will evaluate the claim.

We have seen this one in action, a couple of years ago without a refund or replacement being made.

So I do agree , this is a shooddy way of doing business, but let's tell it like it is, MOST of the appliances companies have the same "Basic Written warranty policy" but in some cases, they are not as "Hard nosed" about it, as is Jenn-air, in this case.

Pretty stupid of them, both that and their hidden prices, (Like Wolf/SZ used to do. I don't think either of these 2 policies, "Hard Nosed" and hiding prices are going to help them achieve their goal of being a "Prominent Player" in the "Premium Appliance Market!


    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 6:07PM
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We had a similar issue with a Whirlpool made (KitchenAid) dishwasher. They were awful to deal with, and so we won't be buying any more of their crap.

Replaced it with a Miele that is absolutely FANTASTIC.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 6:18PM
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Holly- Kay

Oh crud! I am so sorry that this happened to you and also sorry that I made the decision to buy JennAir if this is the customer non service that I can expect. I purchased a double convection oven, refrigerator, and an induction cook top. My cabinets aren't installed yet but I already paid half of the cost and pay the rest upon delivery. I am hoping that the distributor that I am working with will be helpful if I have a similar issue. It just amazes me that a company doesn't have better common sense, in the day of the internet and forums, than to offer anything other than stellar customer service.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 6:44PM
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A similar situation happened to me with a KA dishwasher. After the sixth failed repair, KA finally replaced it.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 6:46PM
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OK Andyherman, here's what I would do.

We were able to help a poster with a somewhat similar problem,
(but not a Whirlpool , as I recall), get a brand new replacement appliance.

I suggested that the tread we were all chatting in about his unfortunate experience, be emailed to the manufacturer and or distributor. He did, and in a couple of days He had a brand new appliance!!

They would have to really have marketing people with their "Heads in the sand" not to recognize that anyone who now googles "Jenn-air" is more than likely going to run across this thread, sooo "Put the Ball in their court" YEP!!!!! It's time to play "HARD BALL", best of luck with it!!!

I wished I could find the post I was talking about, but right now I can't even recall the appliance---Maybe somebody else does?

Also you should post or cross post this in the Appliance forum, as there are at least a couple of folks there thinking about buying Jenn-air, One is thinking about buying the whole "Jenn-air Suite" of appliances!


    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 6:49PM
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This post sort of ties in with the earlier Jenn-Air post, as both Jenn-Air and KitchenAid are manufactured by Whirlpool. Remember that name - WHIRLPOOL.

So I bought a whole KitchenAid package last August - a fridge, stove, hood, dishwasher. The fridge has an outside H2O and ice dispenser. There's a nifty electronic reading that reports how much water is dispensed, in ounces.

I noticed that an 8 oz. reading on the fridge was really dispensing a tad over 4 ounces. Hmmm....I thought, not a big deal but I should call while it's still under warranty and get this fixed.

The first repairman came out and said I needed a new "something or other" and he promptly ordered it. The part arrived in less than a week. The second repairman came out to install it and said I never needed the part in the first place.

He said the reading was off because my water pressure was low. So apparently, the water is not actually 'measured', but 'guesstimated' by the time the button is depressed, based on an average water pressure.

I thought it was a stupid thing to have a measurement reading when it really doesn't measure anything. My water pressure is good to fair.

So I shrugged it off and forgot about it.

Until I received a bill for $90 for a service visit that wasn't covered under warranty. I called the service company and Whirlpool (who I think is ultimately responsible for this charge) and both companies insisted that I had to pay this bill.

I guess I was supposed to know how Whirlpool engineered their product. I am beyond fuming on this. Remember the name - Whirlpool, Jenn-Air, KitchenAid.

If anyone has contact info for someone from Whirlpool/KitchenAid who actually gives a damn about my dilemma, please share it with me.

I still find it hard to believe they expect me to pay this bill.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 7:31PM
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Try sending an email here first,

They are also on facebook, etc etc.


    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 7:48PM
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You can also get on a program called linkedin.

That is where all the "Big Shots" hang out.

It is a free program, I got on it because a local Cadillac dealer ripped me off to replace an 8 year old battery in my Cadillac Allante.

The last place I took it, (before the Cadillac dealer), charged about $65 for the battery, the installation was free and it took them 5 minutes.

Cadillac charged me $350, and it took them 3 hours to change it, even though I made an appointment.

Anyway, I joined Linkedin , as I saw the President of that Cadillac Dealership hung out there, and I was going to show him the email I sent to his dealership, (so far I haven't).

Guess who also hangs out in linkedin?
The North American Marketing Manager for Whirlpool!
He has the responsibility of both the KA and JA brands.

Click the helpful link at the bottom to see for yourselves.


Here is a link that might be useful: Who's Who at Whirlpool/Jenn-Air

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 8:19PM
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Having said that, in the interest of "Full Disclosure", live wire oak should take the time to read the SZ/Wolf warranty and Miele, and post them up here like he did for Whirlpool, failure to do so, "TO ME"!!!!!! is just a "Cheap shot" and Whirlpool, and yep we know you don't like them "lwo"

Dodge, what the heck is this supposed to mean? How could it, in any way on Earth, be construed as a cheap shot for LWO to helpfully post the relevant JennAir warranty? Why should she "take the time" to read and post the completely irrelevant Subzero and Miele warranty information? This makes no sense....

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 11:38PM
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Angie, the reason I suggested that "Full Disclosure" be made, is one "Could" get the idea that only Whirlpool has the kind of "written warranty" , (that is for repair of the appliance, not replacement.)

So a reader buys one of the other brands, maybe even going over their budget to buy a "More Premium Brand", thinking if they have a problem, the appliance will be replaced without trying to repair it first.

It breaks, they call, out come the repair guys---So why not let the readers here know, That "Repair First" is pretty much the "Norm" for the appliance industry @ this point in time.

Some companies, SZ/Wolf, NXR, Capital have not been as "Hard Nosed" following that written policy, as is Jenn-Air, at least in this instance.

Also , Please Note The emphasis I put on "To Me", I'm not saying I'm right or live wire oak is wrong, I just, perhaps read here posts wrong, but I got the idea, from the post that only Whirlpool has such a lousy written warranty, which unfortunately, is NOT the case.


    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 9:38AM
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The OP should not let this go -- write, write, write letters, not emails, to all the CEOs involved. And don't stop until you get your money back or a replacement. Who wants an extended warranty on a lemon?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 10:08AM
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I'm gonna "Heed your advice" pigeen, and get hold of the Caddy Dealership President, today on "Linlked in".

I think emails are not all that bad, either, "chances are", more folks at the Corporate level see it. The secretary sees it and gasps, more than likely she tells others, "Others get curious". A letter can easily be "Round filed", Yea I know an email can be deleted too, but not before somebody sees it, and more than likely tells others about it.


    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 10:38AM
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Seems like the complaint should be with the dealer, not the manufacturer. There was no mystery going into the purchase about what steps the manufacturer would take to fix any problems. Whether or not the dealer takes returns, or identical replacements, is another story.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 10:40AM
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The thing about an honest- to- goodness letter is that the receiver knows that you are really mad and really serious. It has always worked for me. Good luck!

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 3:08PM
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After considering Angie_DIY, post, She is right, and I should NOT have used the term "Cheap Shot", nor should I have "Assumed" what your intent on that post was.

I'm sure it was like all the rest of us,
"To Help As Much as Possible"

We appreciate your posts and I will havta keep my
"big noisy fingers" more securely connected to the brain, in future post, as none of us here want to discourage others from posting here!

Anyway, very sorry about my post!

Dodge slinks off to take some of his "Senility Pills".


    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 4:30PM
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