You beat me to this post... I don't know how many people remember Goldstar products, but they were always the absolute bottom of the pile...
LG is a South Korean company that was reborn at about the same time as Samsung... They both started out making very cheap products that were basically all crap. They figured out in the mid 90's that they could make better quality products and end up making more money... The problem was, they had a well deserved reputation of making shoddy products.
LG has spent a lot of money on their "Life's Good" campaign, so much so that probably 9 out of 10 people in the US have no idea that the company is really named "Lucky Goldstar"
On the one hand, it's disheartening to see that our places have been reversed; it is now the American products that are generally regarded as inferior... (If they still exist, anyway. There are no American companies actually manufacturing consumer TV's, stereo's, camera's, small kitchen appliances, etc.) There are a few very high end manufacturers of expensive kitchen appliances, but the stuff that average Americans buy is quickly turning out to be made elsewhere... Which is insane... The labor rate in Korea is very nearly as high as it is in America for factory workers, and then they have to ship their products to the opposite side of the planet...
On the other hand, if American companies start to build high quality products, they can have a resurgence. I sure hope Whirlpool figures that out before they go out of business... (Maytag Neptune washer and dryer? Made by Samsung...)
LG had produced very good appliances in the previous years, say from 1995 to 2010... but lately...
I've seen some examples that show they are following the foolish practices of their american competitors. I've bought an LG microwave oven which design was certainly, undoubtely, surely made by monkeys of the worst class!
It does NOT produce the power that is specified in the box or the tag on the back side, requiring a full 60 to 70 seconds to heat a medium size cup of coffe... but the design of the exterior is where this monkey team excelled: the door is finished in a totally reflective, mirrorlike finish that makes IMPOSSIBLE to be able to see anything inside the oven during operation. Even trying to see it in a dark room is an exercise in futility, due to the very dim lightbulb inside being totally wrongly placed (most of it's very dim light is thrown up, away from the rotating plate) and the "stylish" door mirror finish! Frequently, when trying to cook some food, it happens that the extremely slow, undepowered oven makes people think it needs more and more time, but then one looses concentration and the result is overheated food, splattered all inside the oven, due to one being totally impeded to see how the cooking is progressing. Maybe this oven is better to be used as a vanity mirror than to cook! amclaussen.
P.D.: I've tested two other units of the same model, all them produce less Microwave power than indicated, so it has to be a design flaw.
I would really like to find a way for this kind of feedback to be presented to the manufacturer. It does little in the way of helping them if we only gripe about their designs. Here we have a large and varied collection of Engineers, Designers and Users that are willing to offer good and potentially actionable feedback on the design work of some of the largest and most important firms in the world.
Perhaps we can start collecting an email address or some contact information so that these posts and the responses can be forwarded to the manufacturer for comment and or action.
Ivan: You're right. Public discussion is more likely to get a meaningful response (even though it hasn't worked on this site yet). My experience has been that if you write to them directly, you get a form letter in return. "Thank you for your correspondence..."
Great idea Ivan but, in my experience, it's like trying to teach a pig to sing: it doesn't work and it annoys the heck out of the pig! A great example is an Amana gas range I bought a few years ago (primarily because it was a slide-in model with no upright rear control panel). After only a few months of use some trim vents (for the oven) at the back crumbled away. Did they not think the vent would get very hot - enough to seriously embrittle the plastic - with an oven running at 400 degrees? Even worse, the first time I cleaned the stainless steel range-top, with some 409 spray for degreasing (as I routinely use after frying anything), wiping the surface not only removed the grease but all the silkscreen legends for the burner controls! How much extra could it have cost to use a good epoxy paint? As others have said, it not a reliability issue, it's just plain stupid design. Letters of complaint to Amana were never responded to. I've found that manufacturers seem to have an immense amount of (largely undeserved) ego ... as well as a "not invented here" attitude about anything that hints of an improvement. Based on my experience with this range, and equally annoying design flaws in an Amana bottom-freezer refrigerator, I'll NEVER even consider buying an Amana product again. Even the marketing weasels should be concerned about this! But most consumers are as apathetic about bad products as they are with their politics, so I guess they largely deserve what they get. But I for one believe everyone should be a complainer ... and at every opportunity!
DON'T waste your collective breaths and/or the electrons to get messages to the "manufacturers". The e-mails will be directed to the "bean counters' offices, wherein they will be summarily dismissed into the electron circular file!!!!! It's ALL about profits, NOT quality or functionality or reliability!
Attempts to get he manufacturer attention are all wasted efforts, but if you keep informing all of your friends, coworkers, relatives, strangers walking in the store in the appliances area, in a word: everybody; at least one can inflict some damage to that arrogant company that sold us that awful design!
Historically I think manufacturers have given a great deal of focus to magazines and other groups that have "ranked" there products because they saw a great deal of consumers that were using these tools to determine what to buy. As more and more consumers move to using blogs and internet sites for communicating about the quality of products and which products to buy, it will not be long before comanies will start to review this material just as much if not more than traditional print. Just look at the struggle traditional new media is having as more and more people get their news on the internet instead of the newspaper.
I have a GE French-door bottom-freezer refrigerator - and the ice has been jamming. I never thought of the night light - thanks for the posting!! Here's another design issue with GE - a standard size cup does not fit in the water dispensor (seriously) - only a kid's half cup.
I checked, and found this: http://www.measuredup.com/ It might be that there are many more, this was only what I found with a quick search.
It seems this site is dedicated to collecting consumer complaints, letting the companies know about and responding to it. The site claims that some companies are using it.
With the internet providing more useful and ready access to information it is helpful I think in the long run to formalize these kinds of experience. It provides a way for consumers to get product information and gauge a companies support efforts before making a purchase if the consumers are smart enough. It also provides a way for manufacturers to obtain feedback and act on it in a way to prevent or at least mitigate to some degree any negative feedback from the consumers.
Oh to have a manufacturer that wiil build something to last and give you a 5 or even 10 yr warranty !!, as many of you have said you still have the fridges and washers that you first bought when you got married etc. I woul dgladly pay x2 for soemthing that gave me 10yr warranty... the saving of your time and energy having to continually contact and have fixed and even in some cases remodel a kitchen due to differnt sizes etc.
Oh pls can a company do this... even the top end Wolf, Miele etc do not have these sorts of warranties but they still charge x2 !!. Oh please can some one create a company that can actually use "old" technology to make things last !!.
We have a Miele dishwasher that is now 14 years old... Still works as well as the day we bought it, and it has never broke down...
We remodeled out kitchen, and my wife wanted to dump all the white and put in stainless steel... (Black granite; the white stuff looked bad) The Miele just got a new faceplate and control panel. It was a couple hundred bucks, but there was no way I wanted to dump that dishwasher... It's awesome, so quiet we can't hear it when we watch TV in the family room right next to the kitchen...
When I installed it, I took out the GE Profile dishwasher that had broken down several times... Leaked all over the floor once when the pump crapped out, replaced control panel because the plastic touch buttons cracked and shorted out. The dish racks were bent up, cracked and rusting. Cheap P.O.S. I carried that GE out by myself and even opened the slider holding it with one hand... It weighed maybe 70 pounds. (Probably less... I'm 6'4" but I'm no gym rat...)
The Miele on the other hand is a freaking tank. I had to get my older son to help me get it in the house, it was way too heavy to lift...
I don't remember what that GE said exactly, but it had some slogan about how super quiet it was supposed to be on the front of it... We always used the timer to have it go off after we went upstairs to bed, because it was way too loud to have it run while we were watching TV...
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