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christymoose_gw

Fisher & Paykel fridge - should I buy it?

christymoose
11 years ago

After MUCH searching, I finally settled on what I thought was the perfect fridge for my needs and budget: a counter-depth stainless Fisher & Paykel, 17.6 cu. ft. I called our local, very reliable, great-reputation appliance store (where I have bought the other appliances in my kitchen) and asked them how long is the lead time on delivery.

The sales person basically did not want to sell me this fridge. He said they have a lot of problems with the units arriving damaged with dents and they have to send them back. This store will replace a damaged door, but not a damaged cabinet. I asked why would the cabinet have a different warranty from the door? and he said they just found it too much of a pain & expense to keep replacing the cabinets, so that's their policy. I was *very* surprised because this store is well-known in the Boston area for customer service.

I then inquired about the models with a water dispenser in the door (E522BRXU and E522BRXFDU) and he said that despite being currently listed on their website, they will no longer order or carry them because they've had too many problems with the water dispenser. (It is a unique design because it is only water and not ice and thus does not take up room inside).

I am so frustrated, I feel like crying!!! I have spent hours and hours researching what I want, reading reviews online, and I thought I had finally found it. Yes there are some negative reviews for these fridges on the web, but there are some great ones, too, and it's hard to base purchasing decisions solely on the online comments. I really trust this store's opinion so I am crushed at what the salesman said... but at the same time I wonder if they are just sore because they've lost money on shipping problems. If so, that doesn't mean the fridges themselves are necessarily bad appliances.

I dont' know what to think. What would YOU do, would you buy the fridge anyway (somewhere else, of course)?

Thanks!

Comments (40)

  • antss
    11 years ago

    just order it from Sears.

    Upon arrival insist on an inspection and refuse delivery of any unit that has ANY damage.

    I can't fault the store from selling you something that is going to loose them money. Have you considered that it might be their handling of the units that is suspect? If 90% of all FP fridges to all dealers are arriving damaged it wouldn't take long for a suit to figure out how to beef up the packaging material o keep his division from loosing so much $$$.

    Bottom line is if they don't want to sell you a product you don't really have much choice. - Find another dealer.

  • friedajune
    11 years ago

    What is it about the F&P fridge that you like so much? There are many other counterdepth stainless fridges out there, and I have never thought F&P fridges to have unique features like, say, the Mieles, or Thermadors. And it's true, F&P seems to have more complaints than others -though ALL brands have complaints. Without knowing anything about why you like this fridge, I would ask that you review its capacity. Have you seen it in the store? 17.6 cu. ft. is VERY small. Typically people who have this size fridge either have a supplemental fridge in the basement or something, or shop almost daily. You can find more capacity in other counter depth fridges, like the Kitchenaid.

  • christymoose
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    @antss: I am very tempted! However, I've heard that customer service at Sears is the worst in the business. And yes, I have indeed wondered why this one store has such problems with delivery (I didn't read that anywhere else) because you're right, it doesn't make business sense for anyone for the packaging to be so inadequate!

    @akchicago:
    Actually, this F&P fridge surprisingly holds a ton of food. I think it's just a really smart design and efficient use of space. Here is what I am looking for in a fridge: stainless counter depth, bottom-mount freezer, hinged side-opening door for the freezer with individual drawers (as opposed to one big pullout drawer - hate those), and stainless or silver cabinet sides rather than the standard black (because they will show).

    A white version of the F&P fridge was in the beach house we rented this summer. We stored a week's worth of groceries and cooked meals for a family of four (ate in almost every meal), and we didn't even fill it. I also *love* the freezer - specifically, the fact that the door swings open and it has smaller pullout compartments. My experience at the beach caused me to add this feature to my list.

    I got the chance that most consumers don't when considering a purchase: I used it for a whole week and loved it. When I realized that it came in stainless, and after I read so many great reviews about how much food it can fit, I was sold. (I should also add that I shop every week so I don't have to hold a ton of food, and we have a large freezer in the basement so I don't need a big freezer upstairs.)

    So all of those reasons are why I want this particular fridge. I am just worried now, given the push-back from the store. Here's another, related question: should I get the model that does not have the water dispenser in the door, to at least avoid *that* set of problems? (The model at the beach did not have a dispenser and it did not annoy me as I would have predicted.) This probably warrants a separate post: just how necessary is an external water dispenser?

  • eandhl
    11 years ago

    You are right about it holding a ton of food. We went from refrig with bottom drawer freezer 23 Cu FT to the F&P -- I kept the refrig that came with the house expecting to use it as a back up. It has been 2 1/2 yrs and we haven't needed it. Also not one problem with the F&P. Other than going to the expensive Sub Zero or Leibher it was the only bottom freezer, counter depth without ice/water which is what we wanted. Initially I wanted the pull out drawer but couldn't have everything and now I love this freezer with separate compartments.

  • christymoose
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    @eandhl: Oh that's so good to hear! Quick question: why did you choose not to have ice/water? I can understand not wanting ice (too many repair issues) but the new F&P models have just water in the door, which takes up NO space inside, so it's seemingly awesome. However, this is the feature that the store told me was so problematic they are not going to carry those models anymore.

    What do you do when you want filtered water? Do you just keep a Britta inside the fridge? I guess after living with water in the door for so long (we have ice, too, but I never use it) it is hard for me to get my head around not having it.

  • friedajune
    11 years ago

    Regarding your question about the water dispenser in the door - it sounds like you already know that the water dispenser is the thing most prone to breakage in a fridge. Also it takes up room. Alternatively, you could forego the water in the fridge door, and instead install at your sink a water filter/chiller to get cold filtered water. I do not know brands, but if you are interested, do a search on this forum, or post a separate thread asking about them.

  • artemis78
    11 years ago

    We're getting the white one w/o ice and water specifically because I had read of problems with those features (but honestly I would say 90% of the problems I read about with all fridges were ice/water related!)But since ours is against our bedroom wall, I didn't want a noisy problematic icemaker. Also, we rarely use ice, so not a biggie---one of the big selling points was the handy rack for ice trays in the freezer, though. (Where we live there is excellent tap water so we are a tap-only household---thus water wasn't an issue one way or the other.)

    I might believe them on the cabinets being dented just because our Sears Outlet has so many of them with that problem...on the upside, the Sears Outlet is a good place to buy this refrigerator if you don't care about a dented cabinet. ;) We have lots of retailers in the SF Bay Area who sell the fridge happily, though, so there can't be *that* many issues that they're losing money on. Not replacing a damaged cabinet is somewhat appalling, though. I've never heard of a store with that policy!

    There are other counterdepth fridges out there, but the only two that we liked as much as this one (KitchenAid w/ SatinGlide and Electrolux) were ~$1K more expensive, so we're giving the F+P a spin.

  • maggiecp3
    11 years ago

    With that much negative information I would not buy the F&P refrigerator. I am also looking for a counter-depth, narrow refrigerator and I am trying not to spend my entire appliance budget because I also need to purchase a new stove and dishwasher soon.

    Does anyone know about the Subzero 700tci refrigerator?

    Thanks

  • inox
    11 years ago

    Here is the first hit on "Subzero 700tc" at Google. Three horror stories, which you can find about anything if you look hard enough:

    Here is a link that might be useful: Subzero 700tci at A J Madison

  • antss
    11 years ago

    RE: Sears - true their service doesn't light it up, but then your #1 store isn't exactly making me feel warm and fuzzy. If the FP shows up damaged at your house what are you going to do????? With Sears, you'll have a lot of leverage returning it, and the have deep pockets ( well, deeper than store # 1 anyway). With store #1 you are SOL if the left side has a dent in it - they told you it's very possible and they will not do anything about it - AND - you agreed to it upon ordering.

    RE: water in door - FORGET IT - you've got enough to worry about with this one.

    RE: 700 series SubZero- nice units though they are showing their age and due for a replacement in the near future. I have one and if I needed another today , I seriously consider the Miele 30" over under before the 700tci.
    There are several 700 series threads around here just do a search.

    BTW - don't know what your budget is but those two are way more than the FP we're talking about here. In the $7-8 grand range.

  • eandhl
    11 years ago

    christymoose, we once owned an early ice/water SXS refrig. It was nothing but trouble and I donated it just to get rid of it. I think about germs in the line too. We have a filter that comes from out well to our water tank so all water coming into our house is filtered.

  • segesta
    11 years ago

    I am "this close" to buying this same refrigerator. Why? Because most counter depth refrigerators are tall tall tall. I don't have 80+ inches under my cabinet. This is the only one that is short enough to replace my old, short 22 cf KitchenAid refrigerator.

    But to the original poster's problem: sounds like the issue is between the retailer and the delivery company. Try a different seller.

  • christymoose
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Thanks everyone, for such helpful opinions, I love this forum! You are making my decisions much easier. I am going to get the model without the ice/water, and I'm going to get it somewhere else, from a store that WILL replace a damaged cabinet (still can't believe the #1 store won't do that!).

    Now my only decision is flat front/handle (E522BRXFD) vs. curved front/handle (E522BRX). Local showrooms have the curved front but not the flat front, so I can't get a look in person at both options. Can anyone share pictures from their own kitchen?

    @inox: why did you choose the curved version, does it look nicer? Thanks for the link, BTW, I think I will call that store.

  • christymoose
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    In case anyone is interested, I just called the #1 store to please justify their [non]return policy on the fridge cabinets. This is what they said:

    -F&P ships their products from New Zealand on a boat, wrapped only in plastic (?!). The stainless steel is a bit thinner than normal, and without adequate padding, it gets dented easily.

    -F&P will not accept this store's returned product when the reason is denting (why not?).

    -This store can order new doors and sometimes F&P will exchange those, but F&P will not exchange cabinets. Frequently the replacement doors are dented too, and by the time the store has returned and ordered a replacement door for the THIRD time, it's taken 8 or 9 months and F&P will no longer accept responsibility or pay for the replacement.

    -I asked, "um, don't you inspect the appliances when they come in from the boat?" He said no, they don't come directly to the store; they come to the group distributor warehouse, who later ships to the store. Apparently the warehouse does not inspect, either. The store said that the fridges are wrapped in white, not clear, plastic and it is impossible to see if anything is dented until you totally unwrap it.

    -The store said they have lost a ton of money on damaged products because F&P is so terrible about accepting returns, and if ANY other manufacturer made the same kind of fridge, the store would stop carrying F&P altogether.

    This story makes business sense... but it seems a little strange to me because before artemis 78's comment above (thank you, artemis 78!) none of the negative reviews I read about this fridge mentioned denting. I wonder if the problem is at the group distributor's warehouse. Artemis 78, do you live in the Boston area, LOL?

  • dadoes
    11 years ago

    "Wrapped in plastic" doesn't necessarily mean the unit is bare without any padding. Friend of mine had his KA SxS delivered in said fashion ... wrapped in heavy plastic, BUT with large styrofoam pads on the top and bottom inside the wrapping. Sounds like transport and warehouse personnel are mishandling the items.

  • antss
    11 years ago

    "ships their products from New Zealand on a boat, wrapped only in plastic "

    rubbish - I'm looking at a single DishDrawer right now and while it is wrapped in plastic, that plastic is covering a formfitted styrofoam case that nests the dishwasher perfectly. I imagine the fridges have something similar.

    Just think about that statement for a minute, do you honestly think a company would place valuable appliances in a shipping container wrapped ONLY in plastic? Come on, if you're going to be that stupid, why not save a few bucks a eliminate the plastic too. You could then garner tons of Green Points and tout your co. as them most environmentally friendly one out there!

    believe artemis is west coast

  • artemis78
    11 years ago

    Yep, I'm West Coast---which may be significant if they're shipping from NZ. Much closer to us, and probably no trucking to speak of seeing that we live a few minutes from one of the biggest container ports in the U.S. So they may in fact have fewer oops to get dented. (Still, as far as I know none of the stores here would refuse to replace a dented one---and one store reports liking them specifically b/c they find F&P easy to deal with for problems. Hmmm...)

  • christymoose
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    @antss: No, I didn't believe it when he told me, it does sound stupid. Of course there must be SOME kind of padding (thus my ??). I think he was just trying to make it sound like his store is totally blameless.

    I just talked to the store in Rhode Island (Wickford) that inox recommended. Unfortunately they don't deliver to Boston, but they gave me the name of a store closer to me that does.

    They also had some insight into the first store's policy: some stores - and they were very surprised to hear that it was this particular store - get their appliances from buying centers, who use "common carriers" like FedEx and others to ship the products from the West coast port to the local store's warehouse. If a dent, etc. is caused by a common carrier, the store must take it up with them; the manufacturer is absolved of all responsibility. Since the store has no recourse of action with F&P, and they must deal instead with FedEx or whomever, I can understand (from experience) why they choose not to do this.

    The Wickford store in Rhode Island said THEY deal directly with F&P, and although dings are not unheard of on these fridges since the stainless steel is thinner, Wickford will always get F&P to replace them if damaged upon delivery.

    On another note, turns out I will have to buy one of the models with an external water dispenser, because my husband INSISTS on an internal ice maker, and the other F&P models only have ice trays. SIGH. However, we will not hook up the external water dispenser, so at least we'll avoid those problems.

  • inox
    11 years ago

    I am pleased to see that you were at least able to get some good information.

    I liked the Fisher & Paykel with the curved door because it looked less boxy in photographs I had seen online. It did not disappoint in person.

    FedEx Ground once left two Herman Miller chairs in my driveway, with rain threatening. At first I thought that I was fortunate that the chairs were not stolen, but after seeing how badly crushed one of the boxes was, I figured that anyone passing by would assume the boxes were empty, and perhaps being prepared for recycling.

    Here is a link that might be useful: In case you missed this thread

  • gryane
    11 years ago

    I am planning on getting this fridge - actually two of them and setting them up side by side. I will be purchasing them from a local scratch and dent that happens to get a regular supply of these models - probably due to the denting situation being discussed here. I have read good reviews of this fridge on this forum and elsewhere.

  • jennifer42
    11 years ago

    Sorry to barge in, but might I ask how you are getting this at Sears? I called both regular sears and sears outlet and they said they do not carry it (southern california).

  • artemis78
    11 years ago

    The Northern California Sears Outlets have a bunch of them (although they are not listed online in the inventory---you have to go there in person)....I don't remember seeing it at the regular Sears, but honestly ours only has maybe 20% of the refrigerators they carry so we gave up looking there.

  • jennifer42
    11 years ago

    Thanks artemis!

  • jennifer42
    11 years ago

    Thanks artemis!

  • dufflove
    11 years ago

    I bought one of these from ajmadison.com w/o water or ice about a year and a half ago. It came as a box on a small wooden pallet with styrofoam case inside. Only dent in it is the one I put in the door myself and I have to agree with an earlier post -- this thing holds a ton of food.

  • jennifer42
    11 years ago

    Thanks artemis!

  • antss
    11 years ago

    Sears distribution and outlets in Atlanta have FP displays in them, I simply assumed that reg. Sears carried them too. Perhaps their Great Indoors branch carries the line.

  • cannes
    11 years ago

    I'm probably too late to warn you to avoid this refrigerator like the plague. We chose it because of it's size (didn't want a monstrous fridge in small kitchen), nearly counter depth, and price. We chose the flat front with water dispenser.

    We've owned it for a bit over two years. My husband swears it had to have been dropped before being delivered. It's impossible to level it. When we try to level the feet so it doesn't wobble, the actual fridge and it's doors are no longer plumb. Oh, it's so wonky and beyond frustrating!

    On top of that, the water panel display quit. We called someone out(thank goodness for the extended warranty) to replace it but he while installing it, he bent it. Ordered another but the wrong part arrived. We've pretty much given up on this piece of crap.
    I keep eyeing the liebherrs. Maybe one day my husband will be so fed up with our F&P, he'll just say "ok". Girls can dream.

  • mythsrs
    11 years ago

    I bought the flat front F&P with water dispenser through Lowes 3 years ago. The reason was because of the size...the only one that would fit the space without going to a much more expensive Sub-Zero. It arrived with a dent on the side, but is covered by the cabinets. Lowes gave me 15% off. I probably could have gotten more off, but I did not want the hassle of waiting for another refrigerator. I have had no problems with it at all, but then again, it was for a second home. My sister bought the same model 9 months ago, and so far no problems. No dents in hers. The steel is much more fragile than most. I have another very slight dent, barely seen in the front now. This could be a problem if you are not careful.

  • Dave and Karen
    7 years ago

    I am thinking about purchasing a F&P 33" counter-depth fridge and would really appreciate hearing from others who have this fridge. We're looking at the RF170ADX4 french door/flat front and the RF170WDLX4. Some reviews from a few years ago talk about noisy DC compressors. I wonder if that has improved with newer models. Any comments and advice would be very welcome!!!

  • ottlane
    7 years ago

    I'm also interested in updated reviews...

  • Yasmín
    6 years ago

    Lurking for reviews on any newer model of fp fridge. I have my eye on the built-in series which is significantly less Han any other integrated model I have found. Sub zero is an amazing matching, cool that it's also a family owned AND American company but it sure is expensive! Thanks!

  • cupofkindnessgw
    5 years ago

    Any updates on the FP fridge without water/ice? Also, what is the texture of the white finish RF201 series counter-depth fridges? Thank you!

  • bgair85
    4 years ago

    I have a five year old Fisher Paykel fridge / freezer on bottom drawer type at my Cabin in Point Roberts Washington and has lost the compressor and the power module after 5 years what a waste of time and money. Size is good but it is not reliable and over priced when it only lasts five years

  • HU-140818142
    last year

    We have had an absolute NIGHTMARE experience with a F&P flat front, counter depth, stainless fridge. If it wasn’t so infuriating, it would be funny, especially if it wasn’t happening to you. it started making very strange noises a week before the 2 year warrantee expired. Sounded just like a car revving it’s engine. This was over 2 years ago now and it still isn’t fixed. This company does not stand behind their product, period. Their technician has made us feel like we were insane for thinking this wasn’t a normal sound. Lying to our faces about the most basic of issues and previous visits. Cancelled appointments, lost paperwork, wrong parts ordered, etc etc etc. it was been a complete farce of after sale customer service and support. We have every e-mail and paper document, countless video and audio files of this fridge making these crazy sounds and yet...... here we are.....just today..... the 3rd cancelled appointment this month alone by the local F&P service rep...... yep, you guessed it...... after waiting at home since 7am this morning for the scheduled service. Do NOT buy this brand. It’s simply not worth the incredible hassel you will face if anything breaks.... with, or without a warrantee.

  • HU-444767858
    6 months ago

    I bought a Fisher & Paykel fridge, believing the reviews indicating that it was a quality product, I was so wrong. Within a year the fridge had developed a high pitched whistle that goes right through you, even in the next room. A Fisher & Paykel authorised technician came and told us that this was a common fault with Fisher & Paykel fridges and it would cost 400+ to repair. Fisher & Paykel refused to honour their warranty as we had moved from the country of purchase, even though they have a support presence in our country. An expensive lesson learned, our old Bosch fridge was a third of the price and lasted 12+ years, this one looked good and lasted less than a year, I suggest that you don't make the same mistake.

  • likestonehomes
    2 months ago

    @HU-444767858 What model no did you purchase? we are thinking of the Quad door model.

  • Yasmín
    2 months ago

    We did end up with the integrated model, two fridge drawers above a freezer drawer with a couple of slide outs. So far so good for us, keeps our food cold/frozen and looks awesome. We also went with the F&P dishdrawers. Best of luck to everyone and thanks to all who gave their personal feedback and experiences! ✌🏽

  • artemis78
    2 months ago

    @Yasmín, I am so envious of your range!! (And thanks for the review--insanely we have still not bought ours, all these years later, so still helpful!)