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Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buying?

Posted by ablatt (My Page) on
Wed, May 19, 10 at 20:18

I am trying to decide between the Kitchen Aid KSSC48FTS with ice maker inside the freezer vs. KSSC48QVS with in-door ice and water dispenser.

The water and ice dispensing would be a nice feature but I don't want to get it if it will introduce additional refrigerator problems overall.

So the question is, do units with in-door dispensing have more issues than those without?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

My DH & I really liked the clean look of the KitchenAid KSSC48FTS too, but when the salesman went through the pros & cons of each & brought up the possibility of dirty and/or multiple hands in the ice bucket (think parties, holidays, kids, kids' friends, etc.) or someone using a glass to scoop the ice and the glass subsequently breaking in the ice bucket, we were sold on the dispenser and will install that model when the house is complete.

We've only ever had 3 problems with any of our dispensers in the past: 1) an ice cube would get stuck in the column between the ice bucket & the chute and would cause an ice cube traffic jam, 2) an ice cube or two or three would not make it all the way through the chute into the glass and would melt inside the chute resulting in a puddle at the dispenser base and more often than not would spill over onto the floor, 3) some other item in the freezer would fall in the chute between the ice bucket & the dispenser and block it or end up in your glass.

With that being said, the Kitchenaid doesn't have the same chute design like our old fridge had so problem 3 & possibly problem 2 should not apply in this case. I think there are a lot of advantages to the design of the Kitchenaid icemaker in the door and this is definitely one of them. Don't know about problem 1, but it was always easily solved by giving the bucket a good shake or reaching in and removing the offending ice cube. While these issues came up on occasion, they were more of a bothersome nuisance than anything else & easily remedied-no repairman required, definitely nothing to lose sleep over & in our opinion a very small price to pay to keep your ice clean!

Hope this helps some!


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

I have a KA with ice and water in the door and love it. The ice container is in the door so it saves room in the freezer itself. I've had no problems in 8 years but ice makers in general are more repair prone than other fridge components.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

Our KA built-in has the ice container in the door as well. That, and the shelf design/configuration, were big deciding factors in purchasing the KA vs another make/model fridge.

We've had our fridge for almost 3 years and had two leaking/dripping dispenser problems. First one seemed like it might have been a known issue from what I recall. KA sent out two parts for the (authorized) repair-person to replace/install. The second time, last summer, was during a period of unusually high humidty for an extended period of time in the NE/Tri-state region. According to the repair-person, many people were complaining about the same thing happening with their dispensers (not just KA's). He did tighten the flap on the dispenser, since it was not closing tightly, and would "pop" open when closing either door (we have a SXS). This allowed warmer room air up into the freezer for those seconds that the flap remained open. Now, the flap remains closed unless it is dispensing ice, so we should be ok. I LOVE the convenience of having both the ice maker and the ice and water dispensers and would get them again.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

My neighbor has a KA SxS with ice storage in the door. His ice dispensing is in constant state of not working. The dispenser motor works, it's just that the cubes in the storage bin are frozen/stuck into a chunk, jamming any of it from dispensing. He has chiseled the chunk apart, tossed it all out to start over and the problem recurs within a couple/few weeks or so, so he pretty much has given up on having a working ice dispenser. The water dispenser is OK, although a little messy as the drip tray is small and narrow.

My GE Arctica also has ice dispensing issues. The chute flapper gets stuck open as noted above, allowing warm/humid room air to get in. If I forget to poke a finger up the chute to nudge it closed, frost accumulates in the chute which causes ice dispensing to jam. Once the chute is compromised, the only way to clear it is to disassemble some of it for access to clear the frost. That, or blow a hair dryer into the chute from the top and hold the flapper open with a towel below to catch the water as the frost melts.

I've also had several situations of condensation dripping down the door from beneath the trim bezel around the dispenser. This is not a leak from the dispenser itself, it's condensation dripping out from INSIDE the door.

My take on it is that these dispensers are designed for so-called "laboratory" environments and do not work well in area of high temperature and humidity ... and likewise for homeowners who try to be energy-conscious by raising their air conditioning temperature when away from home. My neighbor habitually turns his air conditioning completely off all day while at work. My aforementioned condensation/dripping problem was rampant several years ago when I was working both day and evening jobs. I didn't turn mine off, but raised it to 82F for approx 14 to 16 hrs. I've been working at home for the last several years, so don't raise the A/C temp and haven't had the condensation trouble ... although the chute flapper/chute frosting issue still happens. It has been clogged with frost for the past couple weeks to the point that ice dispensing is unusable, I haven't take the time to clear it.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

I have one of these at my weekend lake place. The ice container in the door constantly seems to have the ice congealed into one large mass. Maybe this is because we aren't there using it every day.

Biggest drawback I've heard of - from my SIL - was power outage while they were out of town, ice melted and water ran out and damaged their wood floor.

Had I heard that story before I got mine I would not have gotten one.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

Thanks for the replies. I have decided to just go with the model without ice/water in the door. Could be less trouble and my wife likes the look of it better with just a flat panel of stainless steel.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

ice (crushed) and water dispenser is indispensable. how else do you make cocktails?


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

tee-hee pharaoh!


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

I have chosen not to purchase an in-door ice/water dispenser as the research I've read says that they are more prone to problems. I don't want repair problems. I have an over and under now with just the ice in the bottom and I keep a plastic scoop in the tray and use that to dish the ice out. It's easy to see, easy to use and it works great! Good luck with your decision.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

personally i think that they are more trouble then they're worth. look at the refrigerators from the past.. they didn't have those options and they lasted YEARS without a problem. but now, you add ice maker and water dispenser and you're looking at more repairs.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

I have the Thermador freezer and refrigerator Freedom columns. I personally didn't want the through the door icemaking machine and water dispenser, as they are the things most mostly to break down and they also make the beautiful stainless columns look worse. The Thermador freezer comes with an icemaker inside the freezer, but I bought a separate Scotsman icemaking machine anyway and love it. It produces gorgeous crystal clear ice and you never run out.

If you have the room and budget I recommend the Scotsman without reservation.

Greg

Greg


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

I have had a GE SxS with indoor water and ice dispenser for 21 years.

One compressor broke after 10 years. Did not know I was supposed to clean lint underneath the fridge to ventilate properly.

The new one has worked for 11 years now. Makes me a little hesitant to replace for kitchen renovation but don't want old ugly white fridge in new kitchen.

Never had one problem wiht ice maker or dispernser or water dispenser.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

10 years ago, I really wanted the water/ice dispenser so we got it. I will never get another one. What a big mistake. There was alays ice dropped on the hardwood floor. It was hard for me to get the ice without having some drop on the floor. With 2 kids, these are type of things that are hard to "teach" well enough to avoid the problem every single time.

It actually died once and had it repaired. Then it died again with the flap in the open position. We disconnected dispenser and closed the flap so the air would not get into the freezer all the time.

I think a problem with these is that everytime you use it, it lets in room air into the freezer compartment. This causes a large amount of humidity (it has to do with the relative humidity difference between room temperature and freezer compartment) and the water freezes out and causes freezer burn to the food. It's like briefly opening and closing the freezer door everytime you use the ice dispenser.

Many people like them very much but not for me.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

I think a problem with these is that everytime you use it, it lets in room air into the freezer compartment. This causes a large amount of humidity (it has to do with the relative humidity difference between room temperature and freezer compartment) and the water freezes out and causes freezer burn to the food. It's like briefly opening and closing the freezer door everytime you use the ice dispenser.

The problem would be worse opening the freezer door to get ice?

What is the solution? Not getting ice?

That is not an option for me.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

I would never be without one. We're remodeling now, and out faithful KA is going to a friend. But our new GE Profile 42" also has it. My husband NEVER remembers to pick up ice.

I'd rather call a repairman twice a YEAR THAN (if that ever had to happen) have to remind hubby every other week to pick up ice.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

Ice and water dispenser? Indispensable. My wife's number 1 criterion for the fridge was counter depth french door, mine was ice and water dispenser. The LG we settled on has the best dispenser design we found. It is big enough to accommodate a pitcher if need be and has proven very dependable. The convenience of fresh, chilled water and ice without having to open the door and fish around in the ice bin is simply too cool to forego.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

"I think a problem with these is that everytime you use it, it lets in room air into the freezer compartment. This causes a large amount of humidity (it has to do with the relative humidity difference between room temperature and freezer compartment) and the water freezes out and causes freezer burn to the food. It's like briefly opening and closing the freezer door everytime you use the ice dispenser."

One of the sillier paragraphs I've read here. Hardly worth the keystrokes.


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

I currently have the ice and water dispenser in a full depth SS but will do without it in my new FD counter depth. I was concerned about giving up so much space in the refrigerator door and decided I could easily live without it. The new refrigerator will be installed next week and I will be buying a scoop. Good suggestion!


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RE: Are refrigerators with in-door ice/water dispensers worth buy

My DH only asked for one thing crushed ice in the door. Does anyone make a built-in with crushed ice in the door? Im floored that this is not available in the $5,000+ machines but is available in all stand-alone models costing less than half.

Our remodel is a ways off yet, so Im hoping by the time we are ready, someone will have this available.


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