A European research study has slammed some of the biggest kitchen appliance brands in the world claiming that their products can break down 10 times more often. Among those brands slammed are Hoover, Whirlpool and Smeg brands.
The European study of more than 18,000 white goods was conducted by Warranty Direct who sent questionaires to 9,895 customers. The response rate was 37.6%.
The study found that upmarket brands, including Smeg and Hoover, are less reliable than much cheaper fridges, washing machines and dishwashers. In one case, nearly half of all Whirlpool washing machines broke down after 12 months.
Researchers warned shoppers to buy carefully in the run-up to Christmas when spending on appliances. Experts said households could face repair bills of up to $500 just months after buying a new washing machine. Some fridge freezers sell for more than $5,000, but the study found that one in eight is expected to break down within a year, compared to fewer than one in 50 of the cheaper models made by the likes of Zanussi, the report claims.
Washer-dryer combinations were the poorest performing, with one in four breaking down within a year. Washing machines were almost as bad with one in five failing in the first 12 months.
Duncan McClure Fisher, the firm’s spokesman, said: “The analysis highlights that expensive does not always guarantee reliability.” Cheap washing machines, around $300 cheaper than comparable Hoover appliances, proved four times more reliable than those made by Hoover – two in five of which had faults in the first year.
Ariston and LG were almost as bad, according to the research. One in five Hoover brand tumble driers are expected to suffer a fault in the first 12 months, compared to seven per cent of low cost machines. Almost a third of Smeg dishwashers, some costing over $1500 broke down in their first year.
Bosch was one of the most reliable models with fewer than one in 10 breaking down.
The study also examined repair costs, revealing that one in five washing machines were expected to break down in their first year, with an average repair cost of $350 but the maximum cost could be $1200.
Mr McClure Fisher said: “Consumers should never take out a manufacturer or shop extended warranty for years two and three of their white good’s life. The one-year manufacturer warranty and the Sales of Goods Act offers plenty of protection.”
Smarthouse noted that the research has been conducted by a Company who have a vested interest in selling extended warranties. They have also failed to reveal individual customers who have made the claims.