STUDY_DETAIL

2013 Kitchen & Laundry Appliance Satisfaction Study Results

7/20/2013
The manufacturer's or retailer's warranty is gaining importance as a measure of customer satisfaction with major kitchen and laundry appliances. Product performance and reliability, however, are still the dominant drivers of customer satisfaction. Those are the conclusions of the just-released J.D. Power 2013 Laundry Appliance Satisfaction StudySM and the J.D. Power 2013 Kitchen Appliance Satisfaction Study.SM

The Laundry Appliance Satisfaction Study and the Kitchen Appliance Satisfaction Study are now in their eighth and ninth years, respectively. They measure customer satisfaction in five categories of major home appliances: clothes washers; clothes dryers; dishwashers; cooktops/ranges/ovens; and refrigerators. The studies measure overall customer satisfaction by considering six factors: ease of use; features (such as the usefulness of settings available and capacity); performance and reliability (including how well the appliance functions, noise level and energy efficiency); price; styling and appearance; and warranty.

According to the study, both warranty and ease of use have a larger impact on satisfaction with laundry appliances in 2013, compared with 2012, contributing approximately one-tenth to overall customer satisfaction across all major appliances. Ease of use is a factor that's growing in importance, especially with regard to laundry appliances. Price is an increasingly important factor in measuring customer satisfaction with kitchen appliances.

"We continue to see a tightening of scores among the highest-ranked brands, which is very telling in that, although specific brands have specific strengths, in the end there are a number of brands delivering an outstanding customer experience," said Christina Cooley, director in the home improvement industries practice at J.D. Power. "In this extremely competitive environment, brands that have already proven themselves through their products will likely be able to further differentiate through their relationships with their customers, as demonstrated through their warranty, and ultimately providing a consistent and strong value message that incorporates both the product and long-term relationship with customers."

Here are some key findings of the two studies:

Clothes Washers
Samsung ranks highest in customer satisfaction with clothes washers for a fifth consecutive year, achieving a score of 822 on a 1,000-point scale. Samsung performs particularly well in three factors: performance and reliability; ease of use; and price. Samsung is followed in the rankings by LG (818) and Kenmore Elite (816). Kenmore Elite and Electrolux also perform above the clothes washer industry average.

Clothes Dryers
LG clothes dryers rank highest in customer satisfaction, with an overall score of 821. LG performs particularly well in performance and reliability, ease of use, styling and appearance, features, and warranty. Following LG in the rankings is Samsung (820).

Refrigerators
With a score of 817, Sub-Zero refrigerators rank highest in customer satisfaction. Sub-Zero performs particularly well in ease of use, performance and reliability, styling and appearance, features, and warranty. Kenmore Elite (807) follows in the rankings.

Dishwashers
Kenmore Elite ranks highest in customer satisfaction with dishwashers, scoring 812. Kenmore Elite achieves particularly high scores in ease of use, styling and appearance, features, and price. Following in the rankings is KitchenAid (803). Bosch and Miele also perform above industry average.

Cooktops/Ranges/Ovens

Kenmore Elite (819) ranks highest in customer satisfaction with ranges, cooktops, and ovens for a second straight year. The brand performs particularly well in ease of use; performance and reliability; and features. Following in the rankings are Wolf (810) and Samsung (808).

Based on the two studies, J.D. Power offers the following consumer tips for appliance purchases:

  • Fully understand the appliance's warranty. Read it over carefully to determine what it covers and for how long. If you have questions, ask both the retailer and the manufacturer directly.
  • Understand the difference between the standard warranty and an extended warranty and the associated benefits so that you can decide what makes the most sense for your purchase.
  • Shop based on your specific needs related to function and style.
  • Don't wait until after the purchase to figure out how to use the appliance or its special features. Ask the salesperson to explain and demonstrate the appliance's functions as well as to discuss the regular maintenance required.

About the Studies
The 2013 Laundry Appliance Satisfaction Study is based on more than 7,800 evaluations from customers who purchased clothes washers and/or clothes dryers during the past 24 months. J.D. Power fielded the study between January and February 2013.

The 2013 Kitchen Appliance Satisfaction Study is based on more than 4,000 evaluations from customers who purchased dishwashers; more than 3,900 evaluations from customers who purchased cooktops/ranges/ovens; and more than 4,500 evaluations from customers who purchased refrigerators during the past 24 months. J.D. Power fielded the study between January and February 2013.

Additional Research: