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Miele Washer Dryer WT2780 - dryer failure, getting a warranty repair


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Well, finally managed to get the dryer part working again - though possibly helped by the fact I still have a couple of years of a 10-year warranty to go.

(I've posted the history leading up to getting this repair elsewhere in this forum -

First of all, I have to say that the Miele warranty repair admin seemed OK - in other words when I phoned them I got through pretty quickly, they found my warranty details and then made an appointment about 10 days away, then did text me the day before as a reminder. So, that part works.

The phone was answered by a nice enough young kid - but he was clearly trained in how to push blame for any washer-dryer failure promptly back to the customer:

After explaining symptoms (no fault code, but no hot air for dry/steam, horrible white gunge being put onto washing in drum during every other wash) he asked me "and are you aware of the Rinse Out Fluff feature?"  Could have been my imagination, but the way it tripped off his tongue meant that he was well used to asking that question and getting a confused 'No?' from the owner (after all, the RoF feature is only mentioned in the middle of the lengthy manual, which probably half the customer base will never bother to read).

"Yes", I said tartly, knowing what was going to be coming next.

"Right... and have you remembered to use it AFTER EVERY DRYING CYCLE?!" - Again, the rising tone in his voice suggested that many of the poor s*ds who answered "Yes" to the first question might have made the mistake of answering "No" to this second question.

I could have wasted a bit of time by reminding him that the language in the Manual regarding the RoF feature was not exactly apocalyptic: "Run the Rinse out fluff
programme before the machine is used again so that fluff cannot be deposited on the next load (e.g. fluff from dark garments being deposited on lighter coloured items) or cause a blockage."
And this just located on p.45 in the manual.

(As we now know, for many Miele Washer/Dryer owners, the RoF feature should really be in red ink, with words along the lines of "Please remember that if you don't use the RoF function immediately after every single use of the drying function, your £2000 machine is likely to break down just after the 2-year warranty expires and cost you upwards of £500 to repair. Your call")

After all the hours wasted researching this fault, I decided to be polite but firm "Yes, every time. And I am well aware that this issue is due to a design fault common in Miele Washer-Driers, whereby soap powder congeals along the hot air system and cannot be cleaned out by the end-user, thus leading to issues with the safety thermostat and other parts."

What was interesting was that as soon I said this, he did not faff around going off to 'ask his supervisor' or similar, but immediately booked the call. It is possible that he and other customer-facing colleagues know the issue with the washer-dryers, and so when confronted with someone who clearly knows it too, they give up trying to blind customers with science.

 

Anyhow, the repair guy duly arrived and fortunately he was not a dud. He was excellent, very efficient, actually able to work on the machine at the same time as discussing it, and very loyal to the company (probably too loyal - he avoided giving too much away about these dryer issues when asked direct questions).

I had been ready for an engineer who simply walked in, reset the thermostat and walked out - but as soon as he stepped through the door he said 'This will take about 2 hours', so I knew that either he was going to do a full dryer system clean out or parts replacement. Turned out to be the latter, i.e. he brought a top element box and fan, and a long plastic oblong duct thing, which I believe connects the heater to the suds container below?

Pleased to say that when he took the various panels off, the machine itself inside looked very clean - which of course it should do after we have religiously bought and used all the various over-priced Miele de-lousers, and given the fact that it has probably only had the equivalent of 3-4 years use, if that.

The key question - how the supposedly intelligent electronics could not detect that the heater was no longer heating and display an error code - was one he couldn't answer, or maybe preferred not to (I assume the real answer is along the lines of "yeah, I know people pay £2k for these machines, but the design guys don't think it worth putting in another temperature sensor that would pick up on the fact that no hot air is coming out during a drying cycle ..."

As someone who generally respects German design, I was still intrigued as to whether this dryer failure issue was just a design flaw in my machine series and older, so asked if the drying system was the same in the new means. "Yes, fortunately!" he answered enthusiastically.

This did perplex me a little - I can only assume that most repair guys take the view "sure, the system our machines use gets gunged up and conks even if you do use the RoF feature, but at the end of the day all we need to do is replace these two parts and it is rendered as good as new - and of course Miele customers can afford to pay, otherwise they would not be buying machines that are 2-3 times the price of the competition"

A warning to anyone just about to purchase a new Miele washer/dryer I guess.

 

Some might say that I am being a little harsh, but I know exactly how well cared for this machine has been, and how we have always used the RoF feature after every dry - so heaven help a harassed mum/dad with 4 kids and 12 wash/dries a week and no time to read the manual or use all the various Miele machine cleaning products.

I'd have more respect for Miele if they took two simple steps - #1, move the Rinse Out Fluff instruction to page 1 of the manual or maybe #2 simply build a Rinse Out Fluff cycle into every drying cycle (you open the door, take the dried clothes out, slam the door, it RoFs and then turns off). While we are at it, maybe #3 - spend a Euro or two on putting another over-heat sensor near the heating element that gets gunged up, so that at least the machine gives a reliable error code - I never got the infamous '55' error displayed, which for all I know meant that the fan stopped working but the element was left getting hotter than a nuclear reaction inside my white box.

BTW, out of interest, I downloaded the Manual for their newest, priciest washer-dryer, to see if it had been updated in anway - nope, same wishy-washy text re Rinse Out Fluff, buried deep in the centre.

Fingers crossed that when ours goes again, it is in the week before the expiry of the warranty...

 

Thanks to the various people here who contributed info that enabled me to talk knowledgeably to Service Centre and so secure a decent repair first time around.

J

 

For google: Miele washer dryer WT2780 WT 2780 drying problems issues cold air no 55 error message debris gunge white grey on clothes Waschtrockner lave-linge sechant

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Hello Jayj. I haven't heard of the Rinse Out Fluff instruction. However, I cannot imagine how it could be related to preventing the buildup of lime scale and lint inside the dryer's heating chamber and around the heater. They cannot flush water there. To me the Rinse Out Fluff instruction was only referred to in response to debris getting onto the laundry after a drying cycle. My assumption is such a rinse out fluff cycle would just literally do a quick rinse and try to flush any lint or other deposits out of the drum to stop them depositing on laundry.

The heating chamber at the top for the dryer heater and fan that gets clogged up is unlikely to have a Rinse Out Fluff instruction. If by any chance it did you should be able to see a hose from the water valves leading to that chamber. I cannot see how they would be able to do that and adequately flush it out. Water would get into the fan etc. So if I'm correct then the two issues are separate issues. And it would explain why the instruction is not as you describe prominent at all because it is not related to preventing future breakdown.

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Hi Andy, thanks for getting back.

Believe the RoF function may have been invented by Miele themselves (they have a patent out on it at least). In short, a small amount of water enters the drum and then the machine sloshes it around before spinning the drum at 1600 clockwise, and then after that doing same anti-clockwise. (AEG/Zanussi at least have a similar thing, but much less vigorous than the Miele).

No technician, but I assume that what it does is pick up any dried bits of e.g. towel fluff from the inner drum and outer drum and also maybe the water circulation system and pump the bits out into the drain?

As you say, this is not likely to also clean other bits of the hot air system, e.g. the fan, fan duct or heating element.

Some facts are notable however.

Miele themselves (in the shape of an unpleasant Miele fridge guy I had a few years back, and now the Service Centre) clearly take the view that if RoF is not carried out after every dry, the machine will be damaged and fail. So, either:

1) lint build up in the drum is what they fear will kill the machine (unlikely), or

2) the cycle does something else maintenance-wise (not very likely, given the mechanics and water path involved) or else more cynically,

3) they know that the design of the machine is flawed, that debris build up will happen in the element/fan area and there is no built-in function to clean the debris - but by putting the onus on the customer to do RoF they can blame the customer for what is effectively an un-related design flaw (and charge out-of warranty customers for work arising from the flaw).

Miele are very, very definitely claiming that failure to use RoF is 'related to preventing future breakdown', so even though I suspect it is a load of old tosh, there is definitely an argument for moving the RoF instruction to the front of the manual. (If I was paranoid I might go as far as saying that Miele prefer to leave the instruction mid-manual so that the percentage of customers likely to note and use it would be lower, so the proportion of customers being able to be blamed would be proportionally higher...)

 

I know you may consider it a bit dramatic to describe this as a 'design flaw' but I have had washer-dryers since they were first invented, including cheapo Indesit and slightly less cheap Zanussi metal drum models which involved condenser drying, but had no 'RoF' function at all. Both lasted 10 years, with no failure - whereas Miele users are reporting this type of failure happening around 2+ years (obviously dependent on usage). Where's the explanation for that?

(wacky thought - could it be to do with the fact that Miele offer a 'Steam' function, which might mean that unlike non-steam dryers, their kit potentially allows a water source into the dryer system?)

From all my research spent on this subject (see other long thread), I think your previous analysis of the issue is likely to be along the right lines - namely that somehow, someway steam/water containing detergent/lint manages to make its way back up the heating channels, and so eventually build up around the element box, heater fan, and heater duct at the back of the machine. Hence the engineer coming armed with all of that to replace.

The $64,000 question is... why does it happen in the Miele (and for all I know other modern machines) but not in older, less technologically sophisticated machines?

Also, what is a bit of a mystery is how warm air being forced out through the vents around the porthole and into the drum somehow at the same time allows the steam/water/detergent/lint  combination to still travel back in the opposite direction? Or maybe the gunge combination only gets lifted into the warm air system when the machine is not drying?

(I have to say I find it quite astounding that even just an anonymous present or ex-Miele engineer never shows up in these forums to give us an explanation about these kind of things!! As I said, I did try to ask my good Miele guy, but he was so loyal he avoided giving any hard facts).

Again, no engineer myself, but from what I saw of the interior of the machine (and having seen other posts) it looks as though the heater air duct at the back of the machine (which comes after the fan, which comes after the element box, which is connected to the vents in the porthole area of the drum) goes to something at the bottom of the machine, under the drum.

Never sure what a 'suds container' is, but would that be likely connected to the heater air duct?

Otherwise not even sure why there is a duct at the back of the machine to do with the hot air bit - my Indesit just had the bit 'old-style woman's hair dryer bit' lying horizontally under the lid of the machine, and presumably relied on air entering the machine from the open underside area.

 

I don't think we'll get to unravel the Mystery of Miele Drying System Problems until someone, somwhere explains what that rear heater duct is connected to - because until we do, we don't know where the exact source of the gunge causing the failure of the dryer system actually is!

(and unfortunately it  may be that the models built around the introduction of the WT2780 differ in their drying system somewhat from earlier models like the WT945 - but not sure about that. Otherwise I would have gladly slipped a tenner to someone to strip down and photograph a vintage Miele washer-dryer and put us all out of our misery!!!)

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  • 9 months later...

Hi, I have had the same problem with my WT2870. I have not yet gone to the full trouble of taking out the dryer fan etc, and the dryer element is currently not working (I must get round to doing this in the next few days due to the weather). When it was in warranty, the engineer came out twice to fix it, the first time he did the thermostat reset (the little black button on the cut out), and cleaned out any fluff he could see around the fan at the back of the machine through opening the top of the hot air box, he did the same the second time (it was just outside of warranty at the time, but only a few months after the first fix, so free of charge) and he said it was a design fault on the machines, and that in reality it would be better to buy a separate tumble dryer. His view was that the fan/condenser located at the back right of the machine does not have a fluff guard, like a normal tumble dryer, and therefore the fluff out programme is required after every use, as well as the extra water option, on a regular basis and certainly after any heavy garments that produce significant fluff.

The manual also states that you should do a regular 90 degree wash (every 6 weeks or so) which also cleans out any wash powder residue.

When you use the fluff out programme, it actually diverts water into the heater box (set of rubber pipes and diverter valve on the back left hand side), down into the fan, through the condenser and out to the waste, while spinning the fan to clean this all out. Extra water just means it does it for longer with more water.

We quoted a £500 bill to get to the fan and the connecting tubes down into the waste replaced.

So why the crap design, my opinion is that this is also to do with the Steam function.... This is a hypothesis, but I think when you select Steam, it heats up the drying element and injects water which provides the steam....

R

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Very interesting - and helping to make this thread a must-read for Miele Washer Dryer owners - even newer ones, since according to my engineer (who was too discreet to admit the stuff you heard) the newer machines use the SAME system...

As I mentioned, I never had any issues with my first Indesit washer/dryer 20 odd years ago (fluff filter), nor the subsequent Zanussi (no rinse out fluff option) and they did far more drying. So I think his analysis is spot on.

I didn't even realise you could use the Extra Water option with Rinse Out Fluff, but now do it.

And yes, I suspect the Steam option is also connected somehow, as that refused to work along with Drying when mine packed up.

Given German design and German manufacture, does seem unusally illogical. But then Miele is a family company, and they are ofter the most resistant to change in my experience.  Given they are making money hand over fist, I guess reworking their washer/dryers is not uppermost in their minds.

Given the cost is £2k so £1.5k higher than their cheapest washing machine, you might think that Miele would have allocated a few design hours to solving all this.  Very annoying  - if the Miele finally busts (coming to end of 10 year paid for warranty) and I get a £500 bill, I would be tempted just to opt for a Bosch washer/dryer, since Bosch seem to have a good balance between price, performance and longevity.

What I find continually annoying is the 'Designed for 20 years' claim by Miele - even Ikea give 5 year warranties on their washing machines as a matter of course, so a bit rich for Miele to be too scared to even give 3 years on their machines. And Which? - who seem to have a love affair with Miele - continualy fail to take repair costs into account when rating appliances. If they did so, Miele would not top the league tables IMHO.

 

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Jayj, you have spured me on last night to fix my drying issue..... so I took apart the machine and cleaned out all of the dirt/fluff.... here are some photos.....

There are a number of videos to open the top of the machine, but once inside, if you open up the silver box this is were the heating elements are. There are three 30torx screws holding this down, and it is also sealed. You will need some heat resistant silicon sealant (say from Halfords) to reseal. Note that it is hinged on the right hand side. You can see all the dirt/soap scum etc inside mine. To open, undo the three torx and then using a long blades flat screwdriver carefully leverage up on the left hand side.

I tried to clean it out, but given the amount of dirt it was impossible so I removed it instead.... Note that I put a sponge down the slot at the back.... don’t want to drop anything down into the fan and the bottom of the drum.

In the second picture you can see the pipe work that sprays water down into the fan during the de-fluff programme.

I have some more pictures but can’t upload them due to size of posts.

In the end I took out both the fan and the heater box, cleaned them all, out them back together. It took about 5 hours and I did not cut my arms (must have been lucky). It was actually much more straight forwards than I had read which is why I had been putting it off quite frankly.

What I did notice in my washer is that there is a lot of pitting and general corrosion of the aluminium parts. My washer is 11 years old. The house has a salt water softener and it would be difficult/impossible to get unsoftened water to were the washing machine is. I suspect that this is related to the corrosion.

I will past some other photos in a second update.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Here are some more photos....

the first is with both the fan box and the hot air box. They do both come out fairly easily, the fan box just pushes into the back of the drum, but remember to retrieve the rubber, slightly square seal, and reseat properly.

In terms of access, if you tilt the machine then the drum moves giving you access to various bolts etc without having to take too much apart.

Lastly, I use little pictures and cardboard and push the screws through as I remove them so I know where they go back and in what order. Here are all the screws you need to remove to get to the control panel, front and right hand slide cover off, as well the heater box and fan box out.

Thx

R

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  • 10 months later...

Hi R - a very late reply, somehow I managed to miss your latest really useful posts (especially the photos).

My 2780 is coming to the end of the 10-yr warranty shortly, and has already developed a 2nd annoying fault - somehow the hot air is now circulating inside the machine, because there is hot air coming out of the gap around the soap dispenser and condensation pooling behind the display.  I'm guessing that the previous Miele guy (who was very good overall) may have failed to secure a hose or something at the end of the long visit, as it started just after then. Not had time to organise another visit, and the machine only gets used once a week and not always for drying.

I'll have to ask for  new display and control panel obviously, as the steam will have caused some sort of issue no doubt.

Slightly concerned about your corrosion comments due to water softener - I religiously add one of their water softening tablets to any wash at 60 or above, so not happy if that could actually be causing a problem down the line? As a nervous Miele owner (with their servicing prices, who wouldn't be...) I also always use their IntenseClean and Decalc powders at least 3 times a year. Plus only use Miele detergent etc.

As mentioned previously, the 2780 washer dryer is actually exceptionally good at what it does - washing and drying - and so anything that will keep it going at minimum cost for the next few years would be great. In other words, a repair that I could do rather than having to donate £500+ to Miele to get their wretched hot air system deloused/replaced.

Have looked at the manuals for their newer models, and from a brief glance it looked to me like their control systems were getting less user-friendly, not more. For example, the 20 min quick was on the 2780 is great - yet the newer models seem to start at 60 min. Could be wrong.

Incidentally, whilst looking at the comments on a US site, I noticed that someone said that at some point they needed to make space at one of their German factories, and so manufacture of some washer/dryers was moved to Czechoslovakia. Then moved back apparently.  From a brand reputation point of view I was surprised to note that their cheapest vac is now made in China, a step I would have thought that a family-owned brand like theirs would never have taken.

BTW, love your cardboard nut storage suggestion, will do that myself.

J

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p,s, during the engineer's last visit, he used the IR software update thingy.  One result of this is that the Rinse Out Fluff now seems... less effective than before, i.e. IMHO it seemed to spin faster and use more water. Amusingly, whoever programmed the update was less than thorough - previously the countdown timer was perfect for the RoF procedure i.e. when it hit 0.00 it was all over.

Now it does nothing at all for the first minute or so, then when it goes to 0.00 the machine keeps operating for another 2 mins. Though sadly without -0.02 being shown...

I'd love to be a fly on the wall of the Miele executive floor - I suspect it is becoming a dysfunctional company making money hand over fist but with increasingly dumb decisions being taken (including bean-counter cost cutting). Very few companies seem to be able to get to the summit of excellence and stay there, complacency always seems to set in. Not a fan of Amazon's working practices, but at least their attitude so far is 'The Customer is Always Right' - which seems to be the opposite of Miele UK's attitude (and amazingly also in the US apparently).

And dear Lord, please can someone stop them spouting that 'Miele is designed for 20 years rubbish! Either put up the same 5-year parts/labour warranty that Ikea offer on their rebadged Whirlpool etc. stuff, or shut up! Having had a fridge/freezer that conked totally at 2yrs 3 months, and the 2780 that started playing up not so long after, the only Miele appliance that hasn't needed repair has been the dishwasher (which is also an excellent machine performance-wise).

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On 05/01/2021 at 11:22, DIYCamp said:

Lastly, I use little pictures and cardboard and push the screws through as I remove them so I know where they go back and in what order.

Genius 

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Without pictures it is hard to know, but I guess the leak will probably be coming from the wide rubber hose that connects to the top of the drum, just inside the door, to the heater box. The drum moves around quite a lot and if the rubber is not seated properly/secured then it can come off. Easy to fix if this is correct. I would suggest you do not use the machine AT ALL, as even when it is just washing you do not want moist air circulating inside the machine.

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Thanks for the steer DIY - to be honest it is one of those things that I have put on my to-do-list (the one that sits and stares at me day in, day out...) but you've made me sit up and take notice - so shall organise the Miele warranty call.

Shall report back.

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p.s. I remember that the Miele warranty was a new-for-old, i.e. if cannot be repaired/parts not available, then you got a new like-for-like.

Would be interesting to see if they ever honour it - when I call them, I shall explain that the control panel is now damaged (given the display has condensation in it, I assume the PCB is also likely to fail) and they can fork out the £400 (?) parts cost themselves to fix. They'll probably say the hose worked loose due to movement but given the 2780 is 100kg and on a level concrete floor, difficult. It also passes the neat '£1 coin doesn't fall over during spin' trick.

With any luck they'll say they no longer stock, so hello a new machine. In the case of my just-over-2-years-old fridge-freezer they had to replace it for new (mainly because the very odd service guy - the one who smirked at my 2780 and said "they always fail due to fluff gunge up" - attacked the inside rear of the fridge-freezer with the sharp end of a screwdriver, whilst talking on the phone to a colleague to find out what could be the problem).

Though I'm guessing they may also just have reconditioned parts in stock as well.

At the time I bought, they often offered 10yr extended warranties even for Washer-Dryers - would be interesting to know if they still do, and what the cost is now.  Just looked at how much I paid in  2012 and it was £399, more than I thought (though I had got the 2780 for £1080 via Comet, which was at a discount and just months before Miele arbitrarily decided to up the list price to £1500.  Funnily enough, in searching for this info I now have a lovely marketing photo from 2012 in front of me showing 'housewives' ecstatically throwing petals in the air under the strapline "Wunderbar! Miele Washer Dryers are designed and tested to last 20 years". Yeah, right - I could believe that of their washers, what with the steel drums etc, but their lovely washer-dryer technology is definitely flawed.

p.p.s. have been tempted to take lid off the machine before, but not sure how intelligent the sensors are - i.e. is there a microswitch that can log the date and time that the top was removed (i.e. not by a service guy)?

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Someone contacted me recently who had a 10 year guarantee on their Miele washing machine. It was still almost 6 months under the 10 year guarantee and the drum bearings failed. But Miele refused to repair it saying it was beyond economic repair. They only offered him the following -

Miele has offered 50% contribution on an equivalent model costing £1700 and that only if I buy at the full RRP from their website. If I choose a cheaper model (as I cannot afford £850) then their contribution is still 50% of the lower cost, an advantage in value to Miele. There is no contribution if I decide to buy another make. How unfair and restrictive is this?

I have to say that this strikes me as disgraceful when Miele still proudly boast that their washing machines are designed to last for 20 years. Sadly I've heard too many stories like this about Miele. Maybe they are struggling to keep up their amazingly high standards at prices people will pay.

At the end of the day Miele keep telling a lot of customers that their Miele appliances too expensive to repair and beyond economic repair when they are nowhere near 20 years old. This should be an anathema to Miele. They should not accept this on any level because surely it is the signs of the slow demise of their success and status.

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Hi Andy,

Interesting story there - have to say I'm not surprised about Miele UK given the research I did reading the various customer stories when my own WT2780 started playing up. Usually I'd say it was the old story - Euro end of the mother ship giving great service, UK end giving lousy service due to poor management at our end. However it is really interesting reading the stories even from Miele US, home of great customer service.

(Btw, a couple of days ago I thought I'd check out how Miele were doing on TrustPilot. As I said, last time I looked the vast majority of stories were of the horrific variety. Turns out Miele UK must have realised that this looked bad, because now there are swathes of (suspiciously short!) 'Miele came and were wonderful' reviews. Very odd distribution - usually if a company is ok, you get lots of 5's and 4's, then it tapers down through 3, 2 and of course 1 star reviews. However in Miele UK's case, the 1's are almost as big as the 5's.  One (5*) reviewer did mention that Miele had been hounding them to put a review in - so I suspect Miele are being a bit cute - maybe sifting through their CRM system, pulling out people with in-warranty repairs where everything went ok, and asking (only) them to respond). Mind you, I also looked at the Bosch reviews, and they were pretty bad).

Regarding the warranty, fortunately I am a bit OCD about paperwork so I have the original warranty, together with (I'm pretty sure) the phrase along the lines of "if uneconomic to repair... offered an equivalent model FOC". I'll have to check!*

Regarding the psychology of all this, time and time again I've seen companies seen as 'up-market, aspirational' end up behaving in ways that would make Aldi blush. I well remember purchasing a spare part for my Miele hoover, and being sent the wrong one. When I phoned them, they confirmed they'd sent the wrong part - but wanted me to send it back at my expense. Needless to say I just laughed down the phone, and they let me keep it whilst sending out the new one.

I think it is something to do with them ending up realy feeling a little too smug, a little too 'we're the best, so let customers come to us, not the other way round'. You'd imagine these companies would soon fail, but for some reason brand names really take a longt time to tank if they have once been aspirational, so the profits really can just keep on climbing.

There must be many people like me who now hesitate to recommend Miele, so one would assume some sort of slow snowball effect.  I tell people about my dishwasher which has been just fine and very reliable, myjust out of warranty fridge-freezer that died (lots of customers have had same experience I see) but which fortunately had a 10-yr warranty - and of course the whole washer-dryer saga.

I explain just how expensive Miele parts and service are, how variable the quality of servicing seems to be (I had that great guy last time), how in theory their washing machines should be a cut above because of the steel drum and the great suspension, but how their washer-dryers (even their new ones) appear to have a badly designed fluff-capture system which ends up in a £500 repair, potentially within 3 years if used often.

And I always point out that Miele say their machines are designed to last 20 years - but only guarantee for 2 years (whilst Ikea guarantee new-for-old for 5 years, FOC).

I'll report back on how I get on with my repair!!

*Uh-oh. Just looked at my Miele dishwasher guarantee, and annoyingly the text is far more (deliberately) vague than I remembered - and might explain your anecdote: "3. If the machine is beyond economic repair, Miele Great Britain reserves the right to reimburse the customers to the appropriate current value of their
machine in lieu of repair, or to provide a new model of equal value. If the current market value of the appliance is reimbursed by Miele, the certificate
becomes invalid. If the machine is replaced, the remaining period of cover provided by the certificate is transferred to the new unit."

"reimburse the customers to the appropriate current value of their
machine in lieu of repair" - I'm now wondering if my rationale for the warranty was that 'at least the machine will last 10 years at no extra cost' and I didn't fret about not receiving a new model if the older one expired near the end. Having said that, from memory most other manufacturer warranties (I think) simply say new-for-old. After all, it is what home insurance policies do, no? And the policy was not cheap in itself - would have bought a new Indesit washer-dryer (and that was the make of my first W-D, and it never broke down once!.

Oh well, let's see what happens. If they did offer 50% off a new WD, that would bring the cost down to min. £750, so around the price of a Bosch. However, given the number of Miele WD owners where the fluff issue starts 2-3 years in (so after the end of the warranty) leading to potentially £500 service bills...

 

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Miele used to do their own insurance but maybe they have farmed it out to a 3rd party and it is them that refuses to pay once prices get to a certain point? I think the problem with the way Miele are dealing with this is that if something is still under guarantee and it breaks down it should not cost you a penny. It is under guarantee. So only giving a certain percentage and forcing you to pay several hundred pounds out for a new one is very unacceptable and not what anyone should expect.

I too think that there is a danger that a company like Miele could easily become very arrogant and overconfident because at the end of the day they are constantly told that they are the best in the world.

 

I've always been a big fan of Miele. I spent a long time trying to persuade many people who would never have dreamt of buying Miele to invest in one, but I've come to realise over relatively recent years that you need to be pretty well off and have plenty of money to become one of their customers.

I just recently bought a Miele oven for £559. It only came with one wire shelf, a second shelf was solid and also served as a grill pan. My wife wanted a second wire shelf, a simple wire shelf but Miele wanted £90 for it. A quick check on Google showed that I could have bought an entire new oven from a budget brand for £119!

Now clearly there is a world of difference between the budget brand and a Miele but how is it possible that you could buy a complete brand-new oven for just £30 more than what Miele wanted for a simple wire shelf? There is no way that a wire shelf is worth £90 even on a product that cost £559. As it happened I use my brain, I checked the measurement of a wire shelf on the Neff website and it was the same. So I bought one from Neff for £29. I don't doubt for a second that the Miele one will be technically better quality but Miele can be guilty of over engineering many parts resulting in them being unacceptably expensive.

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Hi Andy, been away - but found paper copies of guarantee for WD, shall post later.

>>I've come to realise over relatively recent years that you need to be pretty well off and have plenty of money to become one of their customers<< - yes, my view now also.

It used to be the case (well, at least 30+ years ago) that if you decided to fork out a bit more for a 'quality brand', then you could expect to get extra longevity and reliability as a result. So, often cheaper in the long run. That was my opinion when I forked out for Miele stuff c.10 years ago.  Which? magazine also had glowing reports, though that may have been more to do with their previous MD ...

However kit that conks fatally after just 2.5 years (fridge/freezer) or conks not much after that due to lousy design of key components (WD) thereby requiring either full re-purchase or £500+ repair cost makes one dubious about forking out extra.

>>There is no way that a wire shelf is worth £90 even on a product that cost £559<< - exactly. This policy nowadays of Miele "thinking of a number and then tripling it" when it comes to spare parts seems to me to be yet another indicator of overweening arrogance.

I've seen this happen at other premium brands. They do something with a cost price of say £100, then flog it for £400. Plenty of punters cough up, especially if the brand has a long history and did used to produce only quality kit (Miele) so they unilaterally decide to whack it up to £550 (Their washer dryers went up from £1200 to £1500 overnight).

Which isn't so bad, but now they just see punters as easily fleeced dopes. So they begin to cut back on quality as well - meaning that they can now do a cost of £70, with a sell-price of £550. Even better!

I remember a jeweller friend of the family who flogged Omega watches (amongst other brands) in the 80's saying that he'd never buy one as the innards were cr*p. (they may be fine now, but clearly he was of the view that quality had been reduced for the sake of increased profits - in those days you couldn't open a newspaper without a full page ad of Omega hitting you in the face).

At the end of the day, if you are a manufacturer you either have pride in your product and (provided the wolf is not at the door and sales are healthy) so are committed to keeping quality the same or better, and also investing in innovation...

... or you see the business as basically a big Excel spreadsheet, with the sole aim being increased revenue, profits and margins. Beancounters, in other words.

What surprises me about Miele is that they are a private, family owned company - so they have no need to go down the latter route, unlike shareholder-owned public companies. If they are doing so, then it is because the company philosophy has been corrupted.

The MBAs have probably taken over, rather like the Daleks... what they really need is a bit of wake-up-call i.e.  their public profile suddenly taking a hit. Keep meaning to look at the German StiftungWarentest (their Which?)  - would be interesting to see if they take a less reverential attitude to Miele nowadays.

Would be lovely if someone with a 3-yr old conked machine sued them over the 'designed for 20 years service' thing - they quote it all the time, and few in the media ever query it.

 

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Sorry, meant to add that Ebac seem an interesting firm.  They don't do washer-dryers (yet) but I really like the design of their controls.

Not a steel outer drum - but can be taken apart if something gets stuck inbetween.

Also, the bloke who runs the firm has a lot of fighting spirit - didn't just take Which rating lying down, which kind of makes me grin.

Worth visiting page if not been: https://www.ebac.com/why-buy-an-ebac-washing-machine/

What's your verdict on them?

 

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Hi there. Yes Ebac seem a very interesting company. I did have contact with one of their managers who got in touch with me a few years ago, but he ended up leaving. I've seen features on the news featuring their founder who seems like an extremely genuine man and deserves great success. However, whilst laudable, I do hope that his promise to always have them manufactured in the UK is doable.

I think it is possible to achieve something like that but only if the public really buy into the fact that they are British, and that that not only benefits Britain but benefits the individual customer who invests in them too. I can only assume that they would have to cost more than the competitors because I don't think it's possible to compete on price with companies that have their products made considerably cheaper in China.

It reminds me in a way of John Lewis (who by all accounts are really struggling for this last several years) in that they were putting themselves up as being the best retailer (which I believe they were), but at the same time constantly advertising that they will match any price - and therefore never knowingly undersold. I can't think of anything more crazy than deliberately doing things in a much better and more expensive manner in order to be the best, but at the same time trying to compete on price with all of the other companies that are cutting corners left right and centre.

So I do love what Ebak are doing and hope that they succeed. Maybe they have very cleverly and sensibly laid out plans to do it very slowly. I hope that's the case because I'm pretty sure the vast majority people have never heard of them. They don't seem to promote themselves much at all.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry, not had time to reply to any of my personal stuff last few days.

Ebac - yes, they are not exactly a household name but their website is actually quite punchy marketing-wise. The thing that really stands out is the 7 year warranty. Think they had a deal with Argos at one point but maybe no longer.

John Lewis - I've not been impressed lately with their sales people, though it can't be much fun in retail nowadays - at least pre-Internet if someone asked you questions for half an hour about various machines there was a sporting chance they'd buy one from you. JL - like M&S - have arranged most of their floors so that the tills are at either extreme ends. This means that you have to use sniffer dogs to find someone to talk to...

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So I found my original Miele warranty material.

The text on the main page of the leaflet (with the order form and CC payment area) is very clear "If we are unable to repair your appliance economically, we will replace it with the latest equivalent model". Period.

This is then slightly contradicted on the rear tiny terms and conditions: "If in the opinion of Miele an appliance is beyond economic repair, Miele reserves the right at its sole discretion to provide customers with a new appliance  of equivalent specification".

This does not surprise me - Miele UK definitely seem to be the classic dysfunctional company, right hand not knowing what left is doing, probably a lot of dead wood in management who keep their jobs by kissing the rears of the German head office. So nobody probably really triple checked the order form - had they done so they would have ordered an asterisk to be put against the first and main para in order to provide a potential legal get-out.

Not that I am a legal expert, but the fact that the first and main para is in large print and bold and makes a promise with no exclusions whatsoever, IMHO that would be seen as taking precedence over anything in smaller print. We'll see.

Called them and they are coming in a couple of weeks time. Interestingly they had trouble finding my details, then asked who had provided the warranty(!). Clearly their data systems are a little ropey. I said I assumed 'Miele' (rather than D&G) as no mention of latter.

Have explained that the display panel is water/condensation damaged and so very likely the entire electronics are. Was under the impression that Euro firms tend to have 10yr parts policy (could be wrong) so they really should either replace with new or else maybe with refurbed. Especially since it has clearly been an error on the part of the previous service guy to allow  dryer air to circulate in the machine - it has not been physically moved since his last visit and is perfectly level, so no hose will have worked loose as a result of that.

I did go and visit the Miele repair pages on their website and some things made me wonder whether they have maybe finally woken up to the bad reviews they had been getting re service. They seem to be offering a 'standard fee repair' which includes all parts (wonder if any pricey ones excluded though?)  and which can be refunded as discount against a new machine if the old machine cannot be fixed.

Also interestingly, they have a big page offering to sell manuals and diagnostic software to non-Miele repairers - is that new?

Taking out my calculator, my machine RRP (at the time) + £399 10-yr warranty brings total cost of the machine to £1600 (would be nearer £2000 now, assuming they even offer 10-yr warranties on washer-dryers. So, £160 per year for washing-drying privileges.

JL currently flog a Hoover WD for £400, with the option of a 5-yr warranty (including definite replacement if unrepairable) for +£100 i.e. £500 for 5 years peace of mind i.e. £100 per year. Interestingly they also offer the 5-year thing for their Miele WD, though at + £210 (so, £1640 total for the Miele WTD165 i.e. £328 per year, though of course only for 5 years unlike my present 10 year thing.

(their wording is actually:

✔ a replacement product (for example where we cannot
repair it or we decide that it is uneconomical for us to repair
your product)
✔ a gift card for the full retail price of a replacement (if we
cannot reasonably arrange a replacement)

...so I guess that they could offer something other than a Miele for replacement - I would need to ask.

The £100 p.y. jobbie machine (Hoover) is probably not going to wash/dry as well as the Miele I  have - I particularly like the smooth drum on the Miele, the stability of the spin and the way it uses very little detergent - but at 30% of the cost of a warrantied Miele definitely tempting.

I've just seen that Ikea are also doing a washer-dryer again - Tvattad at £599, and of course includes their usual 5-year repair/replace warranty. Think it looks a bit Electrolux/Zanussi/AEG like (at JL - £699 with just 2yr warranty as standard), and previous model got a good-ish review from Which. So, 5-year peace of mind as well as built-in for £120 per year.

Oddly enough, nothing about 'Rinse Out Fluff' program - though I know that E/Z/A present non-integrated models definitely offer that and encourage use). (Looking at what I think may be the equivalent AEG model - L7WC8632BI - their manual does say to run Machine Clean with the Dry option on).

Given that some of the user comments about recent Miele WD models suggest some pretty dopey changes to the wonderful controls and options of my olde Miele anyway, I'd probably opt for the Tvattad once my Miele 10-year warranty finishes and if I couldn't cannibalise a discarded WT2780 for cheaply fitted replacement parts for mine.

Shall report back when the Engineer has been.

 

 

 

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Just noseyd around trying to see what WT2780 parts are available on eBay. Would have thought that someone could make a decent living flogging pre-used Miele parts from discarded machines.

Even offering to pick up a discarded machine for free (and so paying zilch for it) would - I assume - offer potentially £300 + worth of sellable parts??

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13 hours ago, jayj said:

So I found my original Miele warranty material.

The text on the main page of the leaflet (with the order form and CC payment area) is very clear "If we are unable to repair your appliance economically, we will replace it with the latest equivalent model". Period.

This is then slightly contradicted on the rear tiny terms and conditions: "If in the opinion of Miele an appliance is beyond economic repair, Miele reserves the right at its sole discretion to provide customers with a new appliance  of equivalent specification".

Hi there. I can see your concern there. But to be fair, to me those slightly different phrases don't seem dissimilar. I would expect that a model with equivalent specification is virtually the same as an equivalent model. This is based on the fact that a model is essentially defined by specifications. So for example if a model has a 7 kg drum, 1400 spin and automatic detergent dispensing and it needs to be replaced then any other model that has those features should be an equivalent replacement. A customer could argue that if any features on their current appliance were missing from a replacement, then it was not either an equivalent model or of equivalent specification.

13 hours ago, jayj said:

I did go and visit the Miele repair pages on their website and some things made me wonder whether they have maybe finally woken up to the bad reviews they had been getting re service. They seem to be offering a 'standard fee repair' which includes all parts (wonder if any pricey ones excluded though?)  and which can be refunded as discount against a new machine if the old machine cannot be fixed.

I would think definitely. Unless they have abandoned condemning their own - built to last 20 years - appliances at as being uneconomical to repair at less than half that age. I really hope they have.

 

13 hours ago, jayj said:

Also interestingly, they have a big page offering to sell manuals and diagnostic software to non-Miele repairers - is that new?

I presume this is to do with the new EU directive white goods right to repair which manufacturers only have to do "offer" to sell but don't have to make them reasonably priced or affordable. If they are doing and they are not ridiculously priced then that is great and long live Miele.

13 hours ago, jayj said:

Taking out my calculator, my machine RRP (at the time) + £399 10-yr warranty brings total cost of the machine to £1600 (would be nearer £2000 now, assuming they even offer 10-yr warranties on washer-dryers. So, £160 per year for washing-drying privileges.

Yes extended warranties are virtually always a poor economic choice and rarely does anybody save any money. Their main value is peace of mind but at a cost.

13 hours ago, jayj said:

The £100 p.y. jobbie machine (Hoover) is probably not going to wash/dry as well as the Miele I  have - I particularly like the smooth drum on the Miele, the stability of the spin and the way it uses very little detergent - but at 30% of the cost of a warrantied Miele definitely tempting.

Yes at that price you could buy three Hoover washing machines and they would most likely in total last longer than a Miele washing machine. As I've said many times before, people invest in a Miele appliance not just to get a better quality appliance but to get one that will easily outlast cheaper brands. If they can no longer be relied on to last around 20 years then the only real advantage in paying three times the price is that it is a better quality appliance. That is great, but reserved for the rich.

13 hours ago, jayj said:

Shall report back when the Engineer has been.

Please do.

 

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13 hours ago, jayj said:

Just noseyd around trying to see what WT2780 parts are available on eBay. Would have thought that someone could make a decent living flogging pre-used Miele parts from discarded machines.

Even offering to pick up a discarded machine for free (and so paying zilch for it) would - I assume - offer potentially £300 + worth of sellable parts??

I've long believed that there needs to be large scrapyard-type facilities in every city where people take their old scrap appliances to be stripped down for parts to sell on. I think to some extent this already happens, but not in the same way as I envisage.

I know that large companies like Currys used to sell all of the appliances that the part exchanged or picked up when delivering a new one to people in the trade and some companies are supposed to be reconditioning some appliances.

But I think the concept of a scrapyard-cum-workshop for appliances could have some benefit. If I was to run one I would have a large building with bays that people can hire out to test and repair their old appliances with help from an experienced appliance engineer, and a source of many thousands of scrap parts that have been salvaged. It sounds wonderful to me at least.

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