After Sears saw the 4027's washing-performance score, the company contacted LG Electronics USA, which manufactures this front-loader. Having switched manufacturers from Whirlpool to LG and spending two years developing this washer, the folks at Sears weren't pleased with the test results. "We want to give consumers the experience they expect from Kenmore. Fair is not that experience," says Tom DeSalvo, a director of product development for Kenmore.
Our product-information specialist who handles laundry appliances also got a call from Sears, who informed him that LG engineers had determined that the machine had a software problem. That issue was shortening the wash cycle and preventing the rinse cycle from doing its full job, according to Lori Wood, a director of product management for Sears. (The problem stems from an algorithm issue with the software.) In addition to the Kenmore 4027, Kenmore 4044, Kenmore Elite 4051, and Kenmore Elite 4219 are affected by the software issue.
The software on affected units in Sears' warehouses will be reprogrammed, and newly manufactured models will get the corrected software. So if you've ordered one of these washers but haven't received it yet, note that delivery could be delayed by up to two weeks.
If you already own one of the affected models, Sears will contact you via a letter (download a PDF of the letter) to arrange for free replacement of the control board, a part that will be mailed directly to you. The service call should take about 20 minutes. In the meantime, you can continue to use your washer; you could notice detergent residue on your laundry if the rinse cycle doesn't function properly. Sears has also announced that you'll receive a $50 Sears gift card within two weeks of your service visit.
We'll keep you updated as we learn more about these front-loaders, and when our Kenmore 4027 gets fixed, we'll report on the new test results.
1/26/10 UPDATE: Read "With Software Problem Fixed, Kenmore 4027 and LG WM2050CW Front-Loaders Now Earn a CR Best Buy" for details on the updated versions of these washing machines.
washing machines and dryers and see our Inside Consumer Reports Tests Labs posts for details on recently tested washing machines. Also learn more about the cash for clunkers appliance-rebate program.
CR has not tested washing machine 47787 yet. If you have experience with this model, I'd appreciate your report on performance.
I have a Sears Kenmore Elite HE3 (Model 44832201) front load washer - it continually goes off balance creating significant vibration and noise. It does not rebalance itself as indicated in the owner's manual. We have had service here twice and still have not resolved the problem. Is it possible this is also a software issue? Neither service tech made mention of anything like this. Thanks.
Sears is really pushing these machines. I asked the sales person about the issues that I read about here and was told that they had no idea what I was talking about. Needless to say, I am not buying these, until Sears can assure me that the issues have been corrected. So, I am taking my business to another store.
Funny how as soon as Sear's goes away from Whirlpool they start having problems...coincidence i don't think so. All to try to save a buck and now they sacrifice quality. I had the same issue with mine.
I bought a washer dryer from sears and they failed to deliver items on three confirmed dates. Spent hours on the phone with the same incompetent foreigner, magically kept getting same person. She couldnt locate my items, lied to me several times, couldnt find the number to a warehouse, and would hang up on me when I asked for a manager. I ended up on the delivery solutions line where they located the items but couldnt have them shipped for days for some bogus reason, offered me a $50 gift card for my troubles. Never again cant recommend unless you plan on horrible service and multiple lost days of work.
I'm not sure where to ask this so I'll try here. We need a new washer. I love the idea of the front loaders - but I have heard and read about "mold" and mildew problems (with all brands really). A friend who just bought one (an LG) was told by the salesperson that this can happen - and they recommended she thoroughly dry the inside of the unit after finishing laundry - and leave the door open for a couple hours. I can tell you that I don't have the time or patience for that and it probably won't get done in my house. I found some things online - but most were somewhat dated. Anyone with a hectic schedule and toddlers - do you have a front loader? Do you go through this routine post-laundry? Are they really worth the hassle if this is needed?
I just purchased the 4027 front loading washer and only later found out about this problem. Any advice on how to follow up with SEARS to see if this problem will be addressed?
I bought a HE4t Washer [model#110 45087400] in May of 2005. The board went out of it and had to be replaced just a little over a year after purchase (it was replaced under warranty]. Now the tub assembly has failed which consist of 3 parts, two are available, one is supposed to become available on January 30, 2010. The parts are covered under a 10 year warranty, however the labor for the fix is $288.00. The washer has been broken since the end of November 2009, it was two weeks (12/12/09) after our initial call for service, before a repair person could be dispatched. The parts were ordered and the repair was supposed to take place on December 31,2009. I was notified by Sears, (12/30/2009)that the part was on back order and it would be a few days, which turned in to 01/30/2010. I contacted a large wholesale company to see if I could get the parts myself. I was informed by the company that there were 600 of the parts on order from Whirlpool, who was redsigning the part for shipment on Januarey 30, 2010. So it is actually a defective or faulty part that is being redesigned by it's manufacture, yet Sears still wants me to pay a $288.00 service charge for labor.This unit has been nothing but trouble since it was delivered missing the circut boards in both the dryer and the washer. The washer also seems to do lees that an adequate job of cleaning our cloths...maybe the same software problem as on the other models listed above. In any case, I would not recommend this mnodel and I wish consumer reports would check in to the defective part issue.
I have a HE front loading machine. I don't wipe out the inside after using it, but I do leave the door slightly open between uses so it air dries and I've never had a problem with mold. I love my washer and my clothes almost always come out beautifully clean.
Why is there such a disconnect between the models that CR recommends for dryers and the actual user experiences? I need a new dryer and now I'm afraid to buy any of them!
I just wasted 20+ minutes with Sears Blue Crew online about my '07 Kenmore HE4t. Useless. The guy could schedule an appointment or sell me a warranty plan. I was *hoping* that Sears would charge less than the $535 a local repair place wants to replace the boards (*both* of them!) for a "communications error". The error message was F6, which (according to Sears' website) means there may be a problem with the tachometer. In a WASHER? It's not a Ferrari, for crying out loud, it's a washing machine.
I like the idea of front loaders, but between this and the Maytag Admiral which croaked after only 8 years (so much for Maytag) I'm loathe to buy another one. This is not the first time I've had weird error messages on the Kenmore -- the last time, we just rebooted the computer by unplugging the machine and plugging it back in, and saved a couple hundred bucks on a new board, and it worked fine after that until this past weekend.
Here's an update from yesterday. I called Sears' parts department and the control boards are pretty much the price quoted by the repair guy yesterday. I got tranferred to what I can only kindly refer to as "customer non-service"; then to the repairs supervisor who basically lied to me about things, including (effectively) "you can't go higher up the food chain than me", and "oh, since you bought it at an outlet store it was probably a returned machine".
I will *NEVER* buy another Kenmore anything. I went to what turns out to be GE's scratch and dent place in the Pgh area today and looked at a HE top loader that costs less than the repair bill will be.
Anyone have any experience with the HE toploaders? I read some pretty negative reviews of GE in general here, but this is a lower-end model with a dial, rather than all the bells and whistles for which the computer boards go bad which had been pretty much the same problem I had with the Maytag (which was actually a Neptune -- I had a mental block yesterday probably largely having to do with Maytag....)
This is complicated. The main problem is that there has been a sharp decline in the quality of washing machines. They are neither as reliable nor as effective as they have been in the past. They are more energy efficient and they are more electronically sophisticated. The catastrophe with the Kenmore Oasis is just one part of the catastrophe that has struck Whirlpool, which manufactured the Oasis and also now owns Maytag. The Whirlpool Cabrios and the Maytag Bravos are good examples of the decline in quality and increase in price. Most of this gets under CR's radar because they do not evaluate the reliability of washers the way they do with automobiles. LG has certainly made an attempt to improve its product, and it has some impressive design going, but whether its new products will be reliable over time is completely unknown. For the cost, they had better be. In the end, washing machines are a frustration for consumers. The gains made in energy efficiency have not been matched in quality, reliability and effectiveness at washing clothes, with the emphasis on reliability.