Viking Corporation - Viking Appliances-I will never buy another Viking product because of poor quality and customer service.

Posted on Friday, September 21st, 2012 at 4:40pm CDT by Dean D.

Company: Viking Corporation

Location: US

Category: Appliances, Equipment, Tools

December 16, 2011

Fred Carl

CEO

Viking Corporation

111 Front Street

Greenwood, Mississippi 38930

Dear Mr. Carl,

I am writing you this letter to make you aware of the quality control, R&D and customer service issues that you have with your products and within your company. As you read this letter, you will see that I have purchased quite a few of your products and have owned eight homes which exposed me to many brands. I also cook almost every night. Unfortunately, my Viking appliances have been the worst appliance purchases I have ever made. The issues I have with my Viking appliances are what I would expect from a much cheaper brand. With the money I spent on your products, I expected your products to be of commercial grade and able to hold up to repeated use. Based on the blogs all over the internet, I can see that my issues are in line with a lot of other folks. I have outlined the issues of each Viking product that I have owned for your review.

Viking 54? gas Grill (bought in 2005-Texas/used through 7/8/2008)-This item was a fire hazard waiting to happen (we used it 3-4 days per week). The grates that redirected the grease down to the grease pan were poorly designed. It was shaped in a V with round holes the size of a pencil eraser. The holes would clog and the grease and droppings would stay in the V. This forced me to clean them weekly to reduce the risk of fire (hardly ever had to clean the grease pan). Even after a thorough cleaning, you could not leave the hood down for extended time (even on Low) or you would have a fire (my wife and post owner blew the knobs off the grill?fortunately no one was in front of the grill at the time). I would never buy another Viking grill. The grates were a poor design. Weber and Wolfe have a much better design.

Viking Dishwasher DFB450 (Serial # 031109D00003895) (Serial# 031109D00003878) installed 7/14/2009 (I have two of them)-First, the technology in the mother board creates more problems than the benefits. After trying to reset the dishwashers by holding down the buttons (in manual) I can only get it to work occasionally. I do not know of too many people that enjoy pulling out the manual to decipher the many error codes your dishwasher has. There has got to be a better way to let the customer know what to do when an error light flashes. At least once per month I have to flip the circuit breaker to each dishwasher to reset it (this cost me $75 for an appliance technician to show me this). I have never had this issue with the other 7 brands I have owned.

There is no indicator light to let you know the dishes have been cleaned (i.e., green light next to the blue running light. Since the dishwashers do not clean well all the time (we rinse our dishes off before putting them in the dishwasher) we end up running them again. Enclosed is a plastic clip that snaps in and holds a wire shelf for long spoons, knifes etc. All four clips are the same design thus preventing a snug fit causing the shelf to constantly fall/come undone. One of my clips broke (clip in itself is a bad design) and guess how much your company wanted to charge me to replace it? You can?t buy the clip; you have to buy the entire rack for $360 plus tax and shipping. You talk about putting the screws to your customer. Would you be happy if your clip broke and you could not replace it for a reasonable price? After about an hour on the phone with customer service, they finally authorized a new rack to be sent to me. How much did that cost you for the part and an angry customer? There is another plastic part (U- shaped) that snaps on to the right side of the dishwasher that also continually falls off. Again, this is what I would expect from the cheap brands not a Viking.

My two and a half year old dishwasher (031109000003895) needs a new heater/wire harness (part#016403-000/P870612). This is something that is not needed by most dishwashers until much later in their life cycle (never had this issue with any of my previous 7 dishwashers including the one we owned in Texas for nearly 10 years). Also, when the non-Viking technician came out to look at my problem (popping the circuit breaker) he noticed a wire that had been crimped badly which he thought was the cause to the circuit popping. After running the dishwasher and watching until it popped, it was determined that the heater was bad. Was the poor quality (crimped wire) the reason my heater went out? After arguing with your customer service department, I am having a Viking Technician (Lakeview) come out to tell me why the wire is crimped and how it would affect other parts to my dishwasher. Unless he is a certified electric engineer, his word is not any better than the other technician. Unless this is covered by Viking, I am being given a $500 price to fix it. Before I throw that kind of money at a Viking product, I will replace it with another brand. Lakeview fixed the issue prior to me sending you this letter. Covered by Viking because of a bad Harness. My last dishwasher of 10 years was a Kitchen Aid and I never had it serviced. We used it every day not every other day (have two) like this dishwasher.

Viking 6 burner stove with griddle VGRC6056GDSS (Serial # 050609C00015117) installed 7/14/2009-First time I used the griddle, one side did not heat up and one of the control knobs did not work. Viking replaced both. The convection switch keeps popping out due to a poor design. Should have a nut on the back side to hold it in place instead of a cheap plastic catch. My wife and daughters were baking Christmas cookies in 2009 and had to open the windows (Chicago) to cool down the kitchen. After looking at the stove, I noticed one oven door stuck out more than the other one. A non- Viking technician came out and replaced the hinges and made other adjustments. We have not had that problem again when baking Christmas Cookies. I won?t even touch on the clicking noise from burners not in use and the sound of the gas being blown-sounds like wind in the oven blowing out the flame. Again, this gets back to my letter?s theme-?this is what I expect from a cheap brand? not a $13,000 Viking product. After reading hundreds of blogs on the internet, I have a feeling the worst is yet to come. My last stove and oven (10 years) was a Jennair and I never had it serviced.

Viking Refrigerator DFSB483 (serial # 051508R00010392)-Hinges replaced to support the custom wood covers. If Viking is going to sell a refrigerator with custom built in capabilities, your R&D team should have accounted for weight greater than the heaviest wood cover. Heavy duty hinges should have been the norm not the afterthought.

Warming Drawer DFWD101 (serial number hidden behind custom cover)-My wife left the warming drawer on high for three days and it caused the custom wood cover to separate where it had been glued ($100 replacement). I realize that leaving the warmer on was my wife?s fault. However, your R&D department should have realized that a custom cover would hide the control knob thus out of site out of mind. My last warming drawer had a timer which shut off the unit after a period of time. I ended up getting thermal heat foil and placing it between the warming drawer and the custom cover. I assure you that it will not be the last time my wife or other Viking customers leave the warming drawer on. Again, with the amount of money the Viking warming drawer cost versus other brands, your customers should not have to worry about these things. I would not have purchased the drawer if it wasn?t for the discount we received by buying all Viking. I had a feeling this purchase would come back and bite me and it did?to the tune of $100 and a lot of leg work to get the cover fixed and prevent future issues.

Viking Microwave DMOS200 (Serial # 05772W205079)-Over heated and caused the glass plate to break and the tri-wheels to melt. I replaced the glass plate and the Tri wheels for around $30 but the turn motor was destroyed. Viking replaced the motor at no cost to me. The problem was due to a sensor not responding to the issue. I was told by the technician that there were several sensors. We were lucky we caught it before a fire broke out. Is this a Quality Control issue or a fluke?

Viking Dishwasher DFVD042-no issues to date because we hardly use it. It?s in the basement bar and we use it two to six times a year.

Viking customer service-After spending a lot of time on the phone with your customer service about the enclosed part, I was told that Viking would send me a new rack at no cost. Three weeks went by and I called customer service again. I was told that an Email was sent to Lakeview. I called Lakeview and they had no record of the Email. I called back customer service and they informed me that they would resend the request. The next day I called Lakeview and they still had no record of the request. I called your customer service again and had them copy me on the third request (which I never received). The whole point is that I had to do all the follow up, do your employees job and waste my time (not to mention Lakeview?s). Your customer service team should have put me on hold or a conference call and resolved this issue on the spot.

I called customer service about the heater element on my dishwasher and they gave me the cookie cutter response that it was out of warranty. I explained the crimped wire and all the other issues I had with Viking products and that I was very upset because I would have to pay a Viking technician to come out to dispute the observation of a reliable technician that I used and had already paid for. I was told that Lakeview would call me to set up an appointment. After not hearing from Lakeview for 30 plus hours, I called your customer service again to find out when I could expect a call (I needed it fixed with Christmas coming up and knowing I was going to have lots of guests). I was informed to call Lakeview directly. Again, an already unhappy customer was asked to do your employees? job and waste more of my time. After leaving a message with Lakeview to call me, I received a call 60 hours after I had my initial call to your customer service department. After talking with your customer service department, I get the feeling they are there to do a 9-5 job and after they hit send, they are relieved from all obligations related to that call. There is no sense of urgency to take care of an irate customer. Maybe this is the norm within Viking?s customer service department because the internet blogs and the issues I have with my purchases tell me you have a lot of irate customers.

Lake view does a good job.

As you can see, I have had to deal with several issues concerning your products. To say the least, I am a very unhappy customer and will be very reluctant to buy another Viking Product. I am also informing everyone I know about the Viking quality and customer service issues. I wrote this letter in hopes that you are not aware of the quality issues your brand is having as well as the lack of vision by your R&D department. I just don?t understand why your company would risk the loss of customers over the cheap parts you are designing and putting on your expensive products. Being an owner of a company myself, I just don?t get it.

Best regards,

Dean

Viking reponse- "I am sorry for your troubles" generic letter. They mispelled my last name and told me they would contact me. I wrote them another letter in August 2012, reminding them that I was still waiting. They sent me the same response but called this time. The perosn helping me would not tell me the flashing light codes so I got them out of a manual. How pathetic!

Since the letter, one dishwasher had the mother board replaced $175 labor. The other dishwasher had to have a new gasket reinstalled to keep the sensors from turning off the dishwasher at a cost of $275-labor & parts. Why should I ever have a problem with a rubber gasket on a $1700 machine that is less than three years old? Ice maker water ine froze-replaced with a new and improved ruber line $220 Parts & labor. How long have ice makers been around?


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