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Why You Should NOT buy Anything from Thermador

April 20, 2007

UPDATE:  What started as a post about my stove repair woes has turned into the most popular thread on this site by far.  It gets comments multiple times per day and features a whole host of people telling similar horror stories about service and repair from Thermador.  I can only hope this thread provides pause to anyone considering buying one of their appliances.  Also, make sure to check out pretty much every comment from SvcMgr, an ex-manager at Thermador who sheds some light on the company's shady practices and how to get your complaints escalated.

Our stove issue has since been fixed, but let this repair horror story along with the many other stories in the comments serve as a warning to anyone looking to spend thousands of dollars on a "luxury" appliance from Thermador. 

As the regular blog readers know, we've been having issues with our stove ever since we moved in and the issue is still not resolved. We still cannot use either of the ovens. I'm starting to think this thing is just a 617 pound, $9000 lemon. I documented the entire saga for the site Consumerist and thought I would put it up here as well, so everyone was informed. Here's what I sent them:

I thought I would share my horrific customer service experience with high end kitchen manufacturer Thermador with you.   I am currently undergoing major home renovations and redesigned my entire kitchen.  During my research I saw the Thermador stoves got the highest performance ratings so I opted for their 48" dual fuel double oven range with grill and griddle.  This thing is as big and as expensive as a small car.  I dropped $9000 on what I thought was going to be the greatest range ever.  I was sorely disappointed with the appliance and even more disappointed with the attitude from this well renowned American company that promises exquisite performance and service.

I purchased the range at PC Richards in Queens, NY back in mid-February of this year.  While they offered their extended warranty, I knew that the range came with a one year manufacturer's warranty and mistakenly thought that would be sufficient. The stove was delivered, set in place and inspected in late February, but it sat there for almost a month until the proper dedicated power line could be run by our electrician.  In mid March we moved into our new home and tested out our new range with great results.  I cooked with it for exactly four days and was very happy with the results.  Then on the 5th day, the day of our housewarming party, guest arrived, I turned on the ovens to start warming up the food and the thing would turn on for about 5 seconds and just shut itself off.  We tried over and over again with the same results.  This effectively ruined my housewarming party.  So it goes. 

Originally we though the issue might have been with the power line, but after our electrician reviewed the setup, confirmed the power line capacity was within the manufacturer's specification, so at that point it appeared the issue was with the range itself.  I called Thermador on April 2nd and they set up a service date with me for April 5th.  I took that day off from work to be available and on the 5th a technician came out, examined the stove briefly and determined that one of the main circuit boards had fried and needed replacing—he told me this was a very common occurrence with these models and that sometimes the units were just trashed and replaced instead of replacing just the circuit board.  We sat on hold with Thermador for over 30 minutes so he could get an estimate on how long it would take to order the part, but he couldn't get through.  He joked that even as an employee he always had a hard time getting someone on the phone.  He told me he would call back later that day with the information, and he did.  He left me a voicemail telling me that part was ordered and that it was delayed a week so he would come back on 4/16 to swap it out. 

I took 4/16 off from work as well and about mid-day I got a call from Thermador telling me that the part was delayed and the technician would not be coming out that day.  I was very upset and told them I had taken the day off already and wished someone could have given me more notice.  The women I spoke to, Jennifer apologized and offered to extend my warranty from one to two years. She also told me she would call back by the end of the day to give me an ETA on that part.  That day came and went without any contact so I called back on 4/17 and after sitting on hold for over 30 minutes I was told that there was still no information from the factory on when the part would be available.  I was told I would get a call back that day, but again it never came. 

I called back again on 4/18 and spoke to a women who continually put me on hold and then came back after another 20 minutes or so and said, quote "the part should be in stock in a couple of weeks or so, we'll call you and let you know"  I explained to here, again, that my stove was completely unusable, had been for almost a month and that I needed an ETA on when it would be fixed or else I wanted the whole thing replaced ASAP.  She told me she couldn't give me an ETA, so I asked for her name and her supervisor.  She put me back on hold and then 5 minutes later I was disconnected. 

I called back into and was on hold another 20 minutes before speaking with Gary.  I calmly explained the whole story to him, reiterating that the stove was unusable, had been for almost a month and that I needed an ETA on when it would be fixed.  He repeatedly told me he could give me no ETA since they couldn't get the right part from their factory.  Again, I asked to speak to a supervisor and was told that a supervisor wouldn't tell me anything different.  I explained that I was willing to wait longer but that I couldn't wait indefinitely and that I needed a concrete date as to when my stove would either be fixed or completely replaced.  I was told by Gary that if I wanted the stove replaced that I would need to contact the store where I bought it.  When I explained that I did not purchase a service plan with PC Richards and reiterated the fact that the stove stopped working days after it's install (indicating a manufacturing problem) he again told me a supervisor wouldn't help me.  I insisted on speaking to one, was put on hold for another five minutes and then told that there was no supervisor available and that I should call back tomorrow.  I requested that a supervisor call me back as their hold time to get to a human is always upwards of 20 minutes.  Gary obliged, but I wasn't very optimistic.  After about an hour Gary called me back and said no supervisor would be able to call me that day and that I should call back again the next day.  When I expressed, yet again, that all I wanted was an ETA on when the part would be in, he informed me that they should have a solid ETA by Friday and that I should call back then for an update.   

I called back on the morning of Friday 4/20 and after another 20 minutes on hold I spoke with Delia and explained the entire saga to her.  She put me on hold for two minutes to check with their shipping department and came back to tell me that they still we trying to locate the part and that there was no firm ETA.  When I again expressed my displeasure about the lack of communicate or a solid action plan to get me a working stove, she told me rather snippily that I needed to give them more time to locate the correct part.  I confirmed with here that Thermador does indeed make the part so that if they couldn't find one that they could manufacture a new one for me.  She affirmed this but gave me the same "we have no ETA" answer when I asked her how long it would take them to fabricate the part.  I told her that felt her company had not provided service commensurate with the purchase of a $9000 luxury appliance purchased just 2 months ago, installed just five weeks ago and operational for just 4 days of that time.  She apologized and told me they would replace the stove completely if they could not get the part.  I asked her at what point in the process they would move to the second option and again she said she couldn't give me a concrete answer.  She told me someone from the parts department would call me back later that day.  So far, no callback from them.    

So right now I have a 617 pound, $9000 piece of junk in my kitchen that I can't even warm up a pizza in, much less create the culinary masterpieces that Thermador promises are possible for cooking enthusiasts who purchase their products.  Their customer service has been abysmal, the callbacks nonexistent and I'm really unsure as to how to proceed as I keep on getting the same lame run around from these guys.  Any advice?

65 Comments leave one →
  1. Kathy permalink
    April 20, 2007 4:19 pm

    I think Bill from Enon Hall also had problems with a Thermador double wall oven – a cosmetic prolem. The ovens were replaced and the replacements were as bad. It might be time for a temper tantrum at PC Richards.

  2. April 20, 2007 4:36 pm

    No advice, only sympathy. We had exactly the same run around from Sub-Zero in 2004 with an ice dispenser that wouldn’t or couldn’t dispense ice.
    It took 10 weeks, innumerable phone calls to the store, the distributor and Sub-Zero head office, three visits from the technician and two replacement parts before it was fixed.
    What made me mad was they knew when they marketed this model that it had a problem but they sold it anyway. I’m sure there’s a law about knowingly selling defective goods?
    I told them I was going to detail my experiences on my web-site, email them to everyone I knew and to consumer magazines. I was extremely frustrated that they wouldn’t just haul the thing away and give me my money back. They extended the warranty by an extra two years but the whole experience left a bad taste in my mouth.

  3. April 22, 2007 9:25 pm

    Lawyer up.

  4. Ryan H permalink
    April 23, 2007 9:55 am

    I would try and call above the customer service.
    The VP of Sales for BSH (Termadoor, Bosch)is Scot Brown.
    It looks like he is in CA.
    5551 McFadden Ave.
    Huntington Beach, CA 92649 United States (Map)
    Phone: 714-901-6600
    Fax: 714-901-5980
    Good luck.

  5. April 24, 2007 11:36 pm

    First off I would opt for a brand new stove not a repair. 9k is more of a life commitment than an appliance, and Thermador should feel married to you by now. So I would say, no repair in 24 hours or no replacement in one week the relationship is over and you should go for a full refund.
    Try call them four, five times in a day for “updates.” I suggest that the pain of a broken foot can make one very forgetful of who called whom about what.
    If passive aggressive phone calls don’t appeal then amazingly, writing to the Better Business Bureau often works. It
    worked for me with a particularly annoying long distance phone company.
    Or band up with other bloggers with problems like this
    If all else fails then show up at PC Richards in a wheelchair with as old and ornery a person as you can get pushing you, and start as talking very very loudly in the showroom about your 9k marvel should get their attention.
    Good luck.

  6. DHL permalink
    May 4, 2007 1:47 pm

    I’m having issues with my Thermador 48″ pro all gas range. We moved in to a new construction 3/1/07 and the oven never worked it fired up for 5 seconds then flashed error codes. So a tech came on 3/23/07 and said it was a computer and fan. They finally came to replace the fan and computer on 5/3/07 because the fan was on back order that whole time. Now the problem is that I have to play with the knobs for it to get above 150 degrees and even then it is about 75 degrees off from actual. I called and they are coming back again on 5/11/07. I’ll update the progress…

  7. May 12, 2007 9:39 pm

    Hey thanks all for the support! After weeks upon weeks of me calling every single day, sometimes multiple times per day, they finally got the part in and came out. After waiting all day Friday for the technician (I had a 10-2 appointment) he called and said he would be a little late. He didn’t wind up showing up until close to 6:30 and left at around 9:30 but all seems well. I haven’t had a chance to do any fancy cooking yet, but all seems to be working so far. I just hope this doesn’t happen again any time soon.
    DHL–any update on your issues?

  8. DHL permalink
    May 15, 2007 10:26 am

    Yes, update… We tested the oven through out that week before the scheduled appointment and decided that the oven was working to our satisfaction so we cancelled the appointment. The oven took a long time to preheat, but the trick was to set the temperature about 25 to 50 above what we actually want the temperature and it will hit the correct temp within 20 minutes and then crank the knob back down to the actual temperature. Also we read on the internet that these new big pro ovens take longer to warm up to prevent the porcelain from cracking because these suckers can heat up to quickly.

  9. May 15, 2007 10:33 am

    good to hear DHL–yes, mine takes a while to heat up as well and the small oven has no thermometer, so I bought one to make sure it’s getting to the right temperature.
    So it appears that Thermador will eventually fix issues with their ovens but it takes months and months to get a final resolution. While I’m happy it worked out in the end I can’t help but think that for the price we are paying that we should be getting much better and much FASTER service.

  10. DHL permalink
    May 16, 2007 9:12 am

    No kidding on the faster service part. I think if I bought a Kenmore for $300.00 I would get faster service then paying many thousands for a Thermador. I would suggest you get an oven thermometer for the large oven as well. They advise that the thermometer on the outside is for general reference only and is not a true gauge of what the temp inside is.

  11. Shirley Tomlin permalink
    August 16, 2007 3:16 pm

    I have a Thermador gas range with grill. Due to weird circumstances, the insulation has to be replaced. The parts have been on order for several weeks — the stove is at the repair store, so I have no stove at all! The tech’s at the repair store told me that replacing the insulation is unusual and that was the problem. After reading these comments, I called the tech back and he admitted it is always this way with Thermador. Unbelievable!

  12. August 17, 2007 5:31 pm

    Thanks for sharing Shirley. Well I suppose we are all stuck with our Thermadors but hopefully someone who is thinking of buying one will read this and think twice about their crazy-long repair times, extremely high lemon rate and constantly backordered parts

  13. SvcMgr permalink
    August 25, 2007 4:13 pm

    I worked for Thermador (B/S/H/ Home Appliances Corp) as a Regional Service Manager for years and I can tell you that the Electronic Control Boards on the current Pro-Range models have been a continuing source of oven failure since their introduction, just a few years ago. Most frequently, they fail if there is a simple power outage (not lightning damage), but simply switching off the circuit breaker or if the local power on your street is turned off and switched back on by your municipal power company.
    Please document your experience on the GardenWeb Site, Appliance Section. I am sure others will be interested in your experience. Service availability was also a problem when I worked for Thermador and it appears nothing has changed since my departure. Some of my contacts have advised me it is now taking up to 1 1/2 months to obtain a scheduled service call by Thermador’s own factory service division, B/S/H/ Manufacturers Domestic Appliance Service, headquartered in Huntington Beach, CA. With your local service office in Avenel, NJ.

  14. DHL permalink
    August 27, 2007 3:18 pm

    I am still having problems with the oven coming to temperature… The small oven does not like going past 350 (yes even with it cranked up for hours) and the large oven does come up to temperature after 2 hours.

  15. August 27, 2007 3:37 pm

    wow DHL that is crazy. Mine are working fin. Small oven heats up fully in about 20 minutes and the full one in about 40 minutes on higher temps. Yours definitely sounds very broken. Did you try any of the suggestions from SvcMgr?

  16. SvcMgr permalink
    August 28, 2007 11:50 am

    Your Pro-Range is not functioning properly, as you have described, as it is unable to maintain the selected temperature. If you have the current Thermador PGR series (all gas Pro-Range), and it is not holding an accurate temperature, first check the simple things…These units are configured by the factory for L.P. or Natural Gas. The model number denotes which type of gas it is configured for.
    First, be sure your unit is appropriate for your gas supply…You don’t want to be operating an L.P. version of this range on a Natural Gas supply. Typically, your surface burners would also be malfunctioning if the gas type were not suited to your range.
    Once you verify you have the correct model for your gas type, contact Thermador customer service and let them know of your ongoing oven temperature problem and reschedule your service call.
    The smaller oven also has an auxilliary circuit board which sometimes requires replacement, too. However, the oven burners should also be observed for proper operation. All of this should be covered under warranty if your date of occupancy is as stated in your earlier post.
    Both small and large oven temperatures are controlled electronically on this range, making oven temperatures very accurate. However, from your description it is possible that all oven burners are not functioning and thus not contributing to producing heat within the ovens.
    I don’t have an oven cycle/timing chart for the Broil and Bake burners on the gas unit, but I do know that on the similar electric oven models the Broil Element is used during standard Bake Mode pre-heat. After preheat is complete, the broil element is energized for only 8 seconds per minute while the range maintains oven temperature and the lower bake element is energized for the full 60 seconds per minute while the range maintains oven temperature.
    Although your range is all gas, the oven burners probably cycle in a similar fashion to the heating elements in the all electric model. If this is the case, and one or more of the oven burners is not contributing to maintaining oven temperature (after pre-heat has completed), it is understood why you are unable to operate the oven at the selected, stable temperature.
    Again, contact Thermador for a satisfactory resolution. But, keeping Dana’s Thermador service experience in mind, this could take some time until the job is complete and your ovens are fully functional.
    Think positively and don’t give up. The range will work, once you overcome the Thermador service department obstacle course! And don’t be afraid of contacting your dealer or builder about this problem, as they can play an active role in supporting you through their Thermador Factory Sales Representative, too!
    Start by calling Thermador: 1-800-735-4328
    Best wishes!

  17. DHL permalink
    September 20, 2007 11:21 am

    I finally got around to scheduling another appointment. They will be checking it out tomorrow.

  18. DHL permalink
    September 21, 2007 5:13 pm

    Oh my god! I think they fixed it! 2 computers later… I called in a different appliance repair company and these guys came in (with the computer) and went right to work.

    • Trish permalink
      March 26, 2011 1:39 pm

      I also have a 48″ double oven all lp with and electric griddle. Neither oven will heat past 300 degrees.
      The ovens weren’t working for a couple of months. Speaking to a local repair man on the phone he said it sounded like a gas constriction rather than a stove issue as the oven is not flashing any error messages in the lights. Then my husband had to change the gas fittings’ location. A week later the big oven went to temperature and we thought we fixed the problem until I turned on the little oven also and both oven temperatures dropped back down to below 300 degress. We had the gas company test the lines from the tanks to inside the house, all good. We then called a local Thermador repair man (recommended by the store we bought the range from) He came in and said it was probably the motherboard, replaced it and the ovens still did not work – not the motherboard. Next in the sequence was the two DSI boards. He changed them and it still didn’t work – not the DSI boards. Now he is going to try the selenoid….waiting to see if that works, but I do not think it will.
      My husband says the orifice was converted for the burners but nothing had to be converted for the ovens….
      I feel this is something very simple that is being overlooked. If it was an electrical issue, the oven wouldn’t have worked for three hours and then stop. Has anyone had the same situation and come up with a solution? Can the orifices that convert the range go bad? A crimp in a line restricting the flow of gas? I realize these posts are from 2007 but I am hoping someone has found the solution. My range is six years old at this point. All repair people have said the broilers and burners are heating correctly, but I do not agree. The burners sputter and the ingnitors keep clicking, and the broiler that used to take 2 – 4 minutes to burn a steak is now taking 15 minutes to cook it. I don’t feel they are as hot as they used to be.

  19. Carl T permalink
    September 21, 2007 6:14 pm

    The authorized Thermador repair person just left my house after the second major problem with my 36″ dual fuel range with grill (Model PD364GL).
    Some background: Like many of you, I did a major remodel of my home (completed two and a half years ago) and, after doing due diligence, I settled on the Thermador because I liked the design and the features and the fact that it got pretty good consumer ratings.
    Upon using the oven for the very first time I discovered that if I used the oven and grill at the same time the air from the oven fan would blow on the grill ignitor, causing the grill to continuously ignite. I assumed that it was a design flaw and when I called Thermador their representative confirmed my suspicions – with no offer of a solution.
    One year and one month after installing the stove (or, more precisely, one month after the warranty expired) I had a power outage in my neighborhood. When power was restored the master circuit board on my range blew out. One service call (and $400) later I was back in business. Kind of.
    After the repair was completed I noticed that the temperature gauge would automatically go to the designated temperature as opposed to the actual temperature in the oven itself. When I asked the service technician about this he told me that this was a new feature. I spoke to the Thermador service representative on the phone and he told me the same thing. This makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. I KNOW what temperature I set the oven to, I need to know what the actual temperature is.
    My current situation is that I made the fatal mistake of using the self-cleaning feature for the first time six months ago. Right after using the self cleaning oven I noticed that the oven was not heating up to its designated temperature and that the problem was getting worse. Finally the oven quit heating at all.
    Diagnosis: the baking and the broiler elements are both burned out. I have since been told by a good friend and by the service representative that one should never use the self cleaning feature. Live and learn.
    The bottom line is that I would never ever buy a Thermador product again and I would strongly caution anyone against doing the same. The product design, manufacture and customer support are all very sub-standard. This is especially galling in light of how much the Thermador products cost.

  20. SvcMgr permalink
    September 25, 2007 1:38 am

    Carl T:
    According to your experience, and since my departure as a Regional Service Manager for Thermador, many of the policies and procedures have changed for the worse, probably due to the many cost cutting measures being taken by Thermador’s parent company, German based, B/S/H/ (Bosch-Siemens) Home Appliances Corporation. It seems they are now managing Thermador much like German based Daimler-Mercedes-Benz, who recently destroyed Chrysler’s U.S. based automobile business and then was forced to sell Chrysler back to an investment group, due to their mis-management. I fear B/S/H/ has done the same to Thermador, once a fine American manufacturer, now left with a tarnished reputation, due to the business practices of this German based appliance giant.
    During recent service cutbacks at Thermador, some service positions that were helpful to consumers were eliminated. For instance, as a Regional Service Manager, one of my jobs was to work with dealers and consumers like you and make concessions and arrangement for repair of faulty products where needed, especially if the problem was a repeat, such as the Pro-Range, Main Control Circuit Boards, which had a reputation for failing when disconnected from the electrical power supply.
    Normally, within the first year of warranty, all repairs are covered at no charge to the customer. But, as you discovered, much to your disappointment, you were responsible for the cost of the repair after you were just 1 month out of warranty, as no one at Thermador customer service was willing to work with you regarding this known main control circuit board problem, along with no resolution for the grill igniter which continually activates due to air movement produced while the oven is operating. And the accuracy and function of that oven temperature dial on the control panel has always been an annoyance to most customers and technicians. Additionally, you should be able to use the self-clean feature on this oven…No Excuses!
    I can only say that I am sorry to learn of your experience. The future does not look promising for Thermador if they continue to follow on this path of minimal customer service. Be sure to let your dealer or builder know of your experience and dissatisfaction with your Thermador Pro-Range.
    In addition to a reduction in service levels, Thermador (B/S/H/ Home Appliances Corp.) has apparently started to close down their Regional Sales Showrooms, with the Boston/New England showroom and sales office being the first to close on September 1, 2007, according to See the attached link.

  21. Frank Mitchell permalink
    September 27, 2007 3:34 am

    Did you try to get any help from the store PC Richard is a good company and most of the time you will get results

  22. PC Richard Employee permalink
    September 27, 2007 3:42 am

    If you go to the store, ask for the store manager to have the DM call you you will likely get results.
    FYI all comments you type on the PC Richard website go to Gary and Greg Richard’s Blackberry.

  23. SvcMgr permalink
    September 29, 2007 1:42 pm

    PC Richard Employee:
    The Thermador Use & Care manual requests that the consumer contact the Thermador customer service department’s toll-free phone number for help with any questions or problems regarding the use or servicing of their products.
    Although you have suggested the customer should have contacted PC Richards for assistance, the real problem is that, without dealer intervention, Thermador’s own customer service department would not deliver repair times at acceptable levels for this high-end appliance customer. Instead, she was placed on Thermador’s (B/S/H/ Home Appliances Corp) Customer Service Obstacle Course of being placed on hold and repeating her problem, and associated chain of events, over and over to an assortment of Thermador customer service representatives, etc. This is very frustrating to the customer and totally unnecessary, as all customer complaints are documented by model and serial number, along with current status for future reference.
    However, it is encouraging to hear that PC Richards is requesting customers to contact the store’s customer service department regarding situations such as Dana’s. And considering the ongoing cost cutting and service cutbacks at Thermador (B/S/H/ Home Appliances Corp), PC Richards will have a monumental task ahead.
    Dana: Could you please comment on your PC Richards customer service experience if you did, indeed, contact the PC Richards store regarding this situation?

  24. Peter in McLean permalink
    October 1, 2007 4:36 pm

    I have a Thermador Model SCD302TP, double wall oven, with convection. Although it is five years old, I doubt it has been used more the 100 hours. Last year we started getting an error code “FR” when the temperature went at or above 350 degrees in the bottom oven. Now it is happening on both ovens.
    The two repair companies we contacted — and paid to make three house calls — said it is the Master board, and we need new ovens. Can this be true? Any guidance?
    I have submitted a file to Thermador, but have not heard back after two weeks of waiting. On the phone now. Thanks!

  25. October 1, 2007 6:17 pm

    I did not contact PC Richards as my oven did not work within a couple of days of being installed and the saleperson was very clear that the item was covered under manufacturer’s warranty so I should contact them for the first year.
    I feel for you Peter–hope your issue gets fixed soon…but knowing Thermador, you have a real headache on your hands

  26. SvcMgr permalink
    October 2, 2007 4:03 am

    It is unfortunate this “FR” Error Code problem did not present itself during the warranty period. Most of these early version “SC” series ovens had many problems with the electronic control board’s ribbon cable type connectors and wiring, along with the electronic control boards themselves.
    However, many of the earliest production models (especially years 1999-2000) required replacement of the entire oven because repeated attempts to repair were not successful. Your service technicians may have advised you to replace the ovens because they have experienced this problem before with this Thermador model and was unable to resolve after numerous attempts to repair.
    For any possible consideration from the manufacturer, be sure to advise Thermador if you have a documented repair history and service records from an Authorized Thermador Service Agency.

  27. Michelle Hubertus permalink
    October 25, 2007 2:09 pm

    I am so glad to find this site. I am having the exact same problem with a new 48″ gas range. I purchased the range on Aug 24 and the oven has never worked. I have had the circuit board replaced two times, and the oven still does not work. Calling my retailer does not help as they keep referring me to Thermador. I am going to call the head of sales as someone else suggested.

  28. October 25, 2007 2:30 pm

    Michelle–sorry to hear about your issues–please keep us posted on how things go.
    And just an FYI to everyone, since our issue got resolved with our pro-range in mid-May we haven’t had any more problems with it. I really do love the range but dread interaction with Thermador moving forward if any more issues arise.

  29. DHL permalink
    October 25, 2007 3:42 pm

    I have not had any problems either since mine was finally fixed correctly.. The wife is baking like crazy!

  30. S. Cook permalink
    October 29, 2007 1:59 pm

    Anyone have a Thermador hood that emits a pulse of light every now and then? Mine’s been doing it ever since we got it, and I can’t find any information on why it might be doing it.

  31. DHL permalink
    October 29, 2007 3:18 pm

    I have a thermador hood, but no pulsing light. Sorry.

  32. CGS permalink
    October 30, 2007 12:25 pm

    I bought a Thermador Wall Mount MW electric oven combination (convection) in March 07. It did not start after installation. Then started the series of technicians coming to the house to fix problems! MW worked fine. I had about 4 technicians from dealer and 2 from BSH come to my house . The oven cooks very unevenly. one side burns, one side stays uncooked. I have been on the phone first with the dealer (for 3 months) , then with BSH (manufacturer) since August 07. Called, every week, every day., twice a day and no response other than saying “someone will call back”. Of course there was no call back. I wrote Better Business Bureau. They followed up, but no call from either the dealer or BSH (manufacturer). Two weeks ago BSH said that they will replace the unit and will call back to schedule it within 7-10 working days. Yesterday I called again and to my surprise (I don’t know why I get surprised with them any more!), the supervisor was on the phone and said that they have disconitued the model!! Unfortunately the new model will not fit the older cut out since they incleased the length of the new oven by
    ~3 1/2 inches. They said that they will give “dealer refund”. That means I have to go to the same dealer again. Now i don’t know what to do. Before anyone buys Thermador appliances, should look into the problems seriously.I have never had such poor customer service relation with anyone ever! any advice?

  33. SvcMgr permalink
    November 1, 2007 2:07 am

    CGS & Michelle Hubertus:
    If possible, try to contact the top man at Thermador, Scott Brown, Senior V.P. for Thermador Sales. He is located at the Huntington Beach, CA, Corporate Headquarters of German Owned B/S/H/ Home Appliances Corporation; parent company of Thermador. Phone: 800-701-6691, dial option 4 and enter the name “Brown, Scott.”
    If you are unable to reach Scott Brown, contact your dealer and insist that his Thermador Factory District Sales Manager (DSM) contact you directly to further discuss your Thermador related problems.
    And, CGS, you should not be paying for alterations to your cabinetry if Thermador cannot supply you with a replacement oven of the original dimensions. You need to ask the Thermador DSM to pay the cost to revise your cabinets, so the replacement oven can be installed at no charge to you.
    I cannot over-stress that Thermador is now owned and operated by German Appliance Giant, B/S/H/ Home Appliances Corporation and they are first and foremost a sales organization, always trying to grow their sales numbers, while at the same time slashing operating costs, especially when it comes to customer service.

  34. Stu permalink
    November 1, 2007 9:17 pm

    We are having a problem with the oven door on our 36″ dual fuel model. The door does not close tight and when open it stops at about a 95 degree angle. There have been 3 visits from the factory service techs. They adjusted the hinge boxes in the stove and it was ok for a few days.
    I called the 800 # and after waiting 1/2 hour on hold, I told the operator I needed to talk to a supervisior to resolve this issue. She would not let me talk to that person and eventually put me on hold and then hung up on me…..
    I am in the Boston area and purchased the stove from Walcott in Bedford. The have been cooperative but they also seem to be getting the runaround from Thermador.
    Any suggestions?

  35. SvcMgr permalink
    November 2, 2007 3:28 am

    Contact Thermador customer service and request that the Northeast Regional Service Manager review your ongoing problem with the factory technicians that serviced your range’s door hinges.
    If Thermador customer service is no help, ask the owner of Walcott Sales to assist you with a direct phone number or email address to Thermador’s Northeast Regional Service Manager, so you can discuss the hinge problem with an experienced Thermador pro.
    Most of the Regional Service Managers are aware of any door hinge problems on various oven models (old & new) and associated technical service bulletins for resolution. Also, the Northeast Regional Service Manager should be able to provide the needed direction to the factory technicians who have been unsuccessful in servicing your range to this point.
    If the above suggestion fails, ask the owner of Walcott Sales to put you in direct contact with the Thermador Factory District Sales Manager (DSM). The DSM visits Walcott Sales on a routine basis and should be able to help, especially if it means staying on good terms with the dealer, Walcott Sales.

  36. CGS permalink
    November 5, 2007 1:34 pm

    Thank you for your help! I did try to contact Scott Bown, his Admin. Asst. told me that “he is not the right person, contact Karl Werner, Direcor of Service.” I left a message, of course , no return phone call. Like many people we must have called Thermador many times some days 2 times a day. Each time the supervisor is not available and never calls back.
    Today, the supervisor said to my husband (by the way we are rotating making phone calls with myself, my daughter and my husband) that, since the new oven model would not fit the cabinet, they are not responsible for giving us a new unit but will give the “dealer credit”. In other words they are not interested working with us to resolve the “oven issue”. I think our problem started with a very incompetent dealer. Since in the beginning I tried to resolve the issue with the dealer and had no result. Do you have any suggestion? We live in SF Bay area.

  37. SvcMgr permalink
    November 5, 2007 11:02 pm

    You just purchased a well known brand, Thermador Oven in March 2007…Unless the dealer sold you an “Antique” display model, perhaps Karl Werner can explain why your malfunctioning unit could not be repaired rather than taking the easy way out by issuing a credit to the dealer, thus leaving YOU with the expense of renovating the cabinets to accept an updated replacement oven.
    If you don’t receive an effective response from Karl Werner (Director of Service), visit or call your dealer and insist that his Thermador Factory District Sales Manager (DSM) meet with you and the dealer (in person) to further discuss and resolve your Thermador dilemma. This way, all facts involved can be brought to the table for resolution. If your dealer won’t agree to this, be sure to ask for the direct phone number and email address for your dealer’s Thermador DSM. Call and write the DSM until this problem is resolved to your satisfaction.
    You mentioned how difficult it is to contact and receive an effective return call from Thermador customer service. That is because during recent service cutbacks at Thermador, some regional service positions, such as mine, that were helpful to consumers were eliminated. For instance, as a Regional Service Manager, one of my jobs was to work with dealers and consumers like you and make concessions and/or arrange effective service where needed. My job helped to eliminate many unnecessary customer phone calls and much aggravation. Now, the consumer must deal directly with the Thermador customer service obstacle course located within the call center at Huntington Beach, CA, as you have experienced. I am truly sorry to see how Thermador’s parent company, (German owned, B/S/H/ Home Appliances Corporation), has reduced and mis-managed the customer service side of the business.

  38. CGS permalink
    November 6, 2007 7:49 pm

    Thanks again for your response SvcMgr! From my experience it seems that it will be impossible to get to speak with Karl Werner. I cannot even speak to a supervisor in customer service dept. My Thermador oven bakes very uneven, the food cooks in a way that one side is burnt and the other side almost raw. I am quite certain an antique oven would perform better than this! I had a Litton which I used for 25 yrs, no problem other than one coil change. I am not sure this oven can be fixed in my house, Do you know who is the DSM in San Francisco Bay Area. I am dreading the idea of dealing with the dealer since I feel that if they helped, I would not be in such a situation. The dealer is most incompetent. Looks like companies put the customers in a corner and then walk away.
    Any advice to deal with the dealer (or anythig else) is welcome!

  39. SvcMgr permalink
    November 7, 2007 12:52 am

    Going back to your earlier post, you mentioned that Scott Brown’s Administrative Assistant said Scott is not the right person to address this matter and you were directed to Karl Werner. However, I am sure Scott Brown, Senior V.P. of Thermador Sales, would like to hear of your Thermador customer service experience, too, because the quality of customer service directly affects future sales at Thermador, especially now that consumers share their product/service experiences on sites such as this…for the whole world to see.
    Therefore, before giving up on speaking with Karl Werner, I suggest you email Karl Werner and copy (cc) Scott Brown and B/S/H/ President/CEO, Franz Bosshard, via their direct email addresses, as follows:
    Employees at B/S/H/ read and typically respond to their own email, without the involvement of Administrative Assistants. Try working with Karl and Scott for an acceptable resolution to your problem, first. And Scott should be able to provide the name and contact number of your dealer’s Thermador DSM, should it still be necessary. But hopefully, your problem will be resolved through Karl and Scott, without the need to involve the DSM.
    Good Luck!

  40. CGS permalink
    November 11, 2007 1:52 pm

    Thank you SvcMgr! I already sent (in Sept) a letter of complaint to Franz Bosshard. One of the service rep said that “you will be surprised by getting a response from him!” as a matter of fact, he did not reply and I am not surprised! Last week, one of the supervisors from BSH said that “your paper work for dealer refund was sent for signature and you should get it in a few days”. At this spoint, I am trying to see if is really the case. On the other side of the issue, I still am concerned about the dealer, who I will be forced to go back to. I spoke with one of the people from California distributor, and he said that there is not much can be done about the whole transaction.
    As for your thought on that all the people in management should be concerned, I have given up hope because if they really cared, I sould not be waiting for a replacement of a totally non-functional ,brand new oven for so long (it was installed in April). Holidays are coming, but I doubt that they care enough for the customers to make the customer’s life easy. sound cynical? yes. Please comment.

  41. SvcMgr permalink
    November 12, 2007 12:50 am

    First, you are not being cynical, as yours is a typical B/S/H/ customer service experience.
    I, too, am not surprised that you did not receive a response to your complaint letter to Franz Bosshard, as I am sure Franz’ daily mail is reviewed by his administrative assistant and then turned over to the appropriate department for further action. However, that appropriate department has decided to issue the dealer a credit rather than resolving the entire problem, which now includes needed cabinet renovations, due to the discontinuation of the defective oven.
    There are many possibilities as to why Thermador decided to issue only a dealer credit…Perhaps, Thermador researched and found that the dealer knowingly sold you an outdated, discontinued oven and because of this, the dealer should be held responsible for renovating the cabinets to accept the updated replacement oven. Again, if you email Karl Werner, as I originally suggested, he may be able to advise why B/S/H/ decided to credit the dealer for the oven, only.
    Finally, I have been advised by my contacts that this website is being closely monitored by Thermador and B/S/H/ Service and Sales Management, along with many dealers throughout the U.S. I can assure you that B/S/H/ does not appreciate a website that features in its Headline, a Thermador Pro-Range, complete with LEMON pictured in the oven window! You can’t buy press this bad! But, keep in mind that, although B/S/H/ management is concerned about the bad press they are receiving from this site, Thermador will not make a decision to resolve a consumer complaint based on the comments posted here.
    Good luck with your email to Karl Werner and be sure to copy (cc) Scott Brown and Franz Bosshard!

  42. Joan Underwood permalink
    November 12, 2007 8:31 pm


  43. SvcMgr permalink
    November 12, 2007 11:48 pm

    Joan Underwood:
    The Thermador Pro-Range pictured at the top of this column was notorious for being trouble-prone, especially for the earliest production models built in the years 2002-2004. And since its introduction, hundreds of design and manufacturing changes have been implemented to improve the range, but that is of little to no help to those who purchased early production units and are now stuck with them.
    Although Thermador is well aware of the documented service history on these units, (and as you have experienced), Thermador is very reluctant to assist the customer with repairs, once you have exceeded the 1 year manufacturer’s warranty period. This is why Thermador’s Reliability Rating scores so very low in Consumer Reports Magazine.
    Many consumers have lost faith in this brand with manufacturing and service now being destroyed by Thermador’s parent company, German based appliance giant, B/S/H/ (Bosch-Siemens) Home Appliances Corporation. Again, they are first and foremost a sales organization, mostly interested in making their monthly/yearly sales quotas with little to no regard for the consumer, as they are quick to advise that you are “Out of the Warranty Period” even when they are aware your appliance may be afflicted with a known problem.
    However, their marketing people do talk a good game when it comes to manufacturing “Green Appliances.” But this is of no comfort to those consumers who are stuck with their costly, non-functioning products.

  44. DHL permalink
    November 13, 2007 8:47 am

    Of course they are “Green”… If your range does not work then you are not using any gas, hence lower energy consumption. Why doesn’t GM, Ford, Chrysler, Toyota and Honda try it? Don’t fix cars when they are broken so that they sit in people’s driveways and cause Zero pollution and a tank of gas will last forever (no taking into account evaporation). (Sarcasm so thick I can cut it with a knife).

  45. SvcMgr permalink
    November 13, 2007 10:47 pm

    Considering your sarcasm and in keeping with the spirit of the upcoming Holiday Season…Do I sense another Thermador – B/S/H/, round of firings looming on the horizon for the Customer Service and Sales Departments this Christmas/Holiday Season?
    From past experience, this is the time of year firings at Thermador usually take place…Happy Holidays to our U.S.A Employees, From German owned B/S/H/ (Bosch-Siemens Home Appliances Corporation)!

  46. CGS permalink
    November 15, 2007 4:15 pm

    Well, after calling from August (first week), every day, some days twice, finally BSH said that they have returned my money to the DEALER. I was trying to work with the dealer forthe first 4 months. It took 4 more months! It is a lot of money for a consumer, however, for a large company like BSH to hassle for that much of money for this long , does not make sense to me. I am afraid the dealer won’t be much easier to handle either. One of the bigger dealers in this area commented, that if there is a problem with a brand new unit then it is the dealers obligation to fix it or take action. You can see, that I am stuck with not only a bad, expensive product (a lemon), a bad manufacturer and equally incomptent dealer. Does BSH choose the incompetent dealers too? By the way, it is my observation that BSH seems to respond to “male voice” faster than a “female voice”! Things started to move once I handed the problem to my husband and he did all the calling for about 2 weeks. What to do with the dealer? Don’t know. Once I find out I will let you know.

  47. SvcMgr permalink
    November 15, 2007 7:03 pm

    Your product and service experience is all too common an occurrence at Thermador – B/S/H/…It is just how they do business in the U.S.A.!
    When I was working as a Regional Service Manager for them, experiences and horror stories, such as those told on this site happened on a daily basis. The foreign (German) top executives that have relocated to this country to operate B/S/H/’s U.S. division don’t have a clue as to what Americans expect and demand of their appliances; in effect, tying the dealer’s hands when it comes to taking care of their customers. Because of this, months often pass by with no effective action by B/S/H/ before the conscientious dealer often ends up taking the loss to satisfy his customer or the customer just gives up.
    In good humor, I must ask you to consider yourself fortunate that your dealer has received a credit and perhaps, now, you can choose a brand that performs well, along with being reliable for the long term. Do your research on some of the available appliance websites before buying this time. Keep in mind that a mainstream, G.E., Frigidaire, etc., brand of appliance will often meet or exceed your expectations, as well as outperform a Thermador, before major repairs are required.
    Regarding how B/S/H/ responds to a Male Voice versus Female Voice…You are correct in your observation

  48. SvcMgr permalink
    November 15, 2007 7:12 pm

    Previous Reply – Redirected to CGS.

  49. Rey permalink
    November 16, 2007 10:48 pm

    I purchased a Thermador Oven PGR304 3 1/2 years ago and after having it for 2 years, the oven won’t heat up. I called an Authorized Thermador Service Center and found out that the igniter is bad. They replaced the parts and I paid $310.00 for parts and 45 minutes labor. Today, I have the same problem again (11/16/2007)..the damn oven is broken again. I guess no Turkey for us this Thanksgiving Day!!!…. I’ll never buy nor recommend Thermador product ever again. I’ts just for decor!!!! and thats about it…Never!Never Never buy Thermador again!!!!

  50. SvcMgr permalink
    November 17, 2007 1:58 am

    The igniters were and still are a constant source of oven failure on the PGR range series. In fact, the upper broiler burners functioned so erratically that an ignition “enhancement kit” is required on some units.
    During my time in the B/S/H/ service department, I requested and approved many “no charge” courtesy service calls to assist our customers with the expense of premature repairs on these faulty designed ignition systems. The German owners of Thermador (B/S/H/) rewarded my fairness to the consumer by eliminating my job…They are only interested in selling product with little to no post sales support at this time…Buyer Beware!

  51. November 25, 2010 5:53 am

    last year we bought two electric stoves that we use on our kitchen, they are nice because they do not generate smoke *’.

  52. Linda Stickley permalink
    June 3, 2011 2:46 pm

    Wow, I have been reading all these complaints with increasing trepidation. I have a Thermador Pro-Harmony Dual Fuel Range that I purchased four years ago at Expo Design Center in Fairfax, VA. I have been reasonably satisfied with the product up until recently. Two weeks ago I came downstairs in the morning to find shattered glass all over my kitchen floor. It seems that the middle piece of glass in the oven door (which I didn’t even know existed) shattered during the night. Most of it was on the floor but some of it remains trapped in between the outer and inner glass. I called Thermador customer service and was told that I had to have a repairman come out and give me an estimate for the repair (at my own cost) and then Thermador would “most likely” pay for the repair. The repairman said he had seen this happen before and thought that Thermador would agree to pay for a replacement door because the middle piece of glass could not be replaced and a whole new door, at a cost of over $1000, would have to be ordered. So I called Thermador and spoke to a cust. service rep who seemed surprised that I had been advised to call a repairman before I had a reference # from Thermador. She advised me to fax the service history and the original sales receipt to them and she would send it to “management”. She also said she thought they would agree to pay for the replacement door and that she would call me back with an answer in a few days. Well, one week later, I called them back and was told that “my file” was reviewed by “management” and it was determined that the product was too far out of warranty and they would not pay to replace the door. I asked to speak to a supervisor and was told that there was no one higher up the food chain that I could speak to and she suggested I write a letter to the corporate office. Has anyone else had their glass door shatter? I am hoping that SvcMgr will have a suggestion. Can the oven still be safely used without the middle glass? I am tempted to try, although of course, Thermador has advised against it. Should I try to email Scott Brown or call someone in corporate? This is obviously a product defect that should be covered by Thermador no matter how old the oven is!

  53. SvcMgr permalink
    December 26, 2011 1:54 am

    Although I was glad to see this blog/column reappear, it is not complete. Dana Bushman and her New York based experience was known as “This is the House Where It All Happens” and it featured a Thermador Pro-Range with a Lemon pictured in the Main Oven Window. The blog was originally posted for a few years, beginning in 2007 and ending in 2009 or 2010. Perhaps the blog’s originator, Dana Bushman, can add the remainder of the original blog’s several years’ worth of negative Thermador comments to this site, as well. In any case, it is good to see this site back in action, even on a more limited basis.

    Dana Bushman has since relocated to California. I am sure she will never forget her negative experience with Thermador and the Evil that lurks within the B/S/H/ (Bosch-Siemens) Home Appliances Company.

  54. CMB permalink
    March 19, 2012 3:21 pm

    I am having problems with Customer Service. I had one of Thermador’s servicemen come to figure out why my snorkel vent was not working. He came out on 2/17/12 and explained that the power switch was faulty. Also told me that this vent was discontinued. He told me he would call me later in the day to see if he could find a switch that was compatible. He did call and said he could get one and will call with a follow up date to return. The switch worked for me but I had to hold and press in a certain way. On 3/5 he returned with the new switch only to find out when he opened the box that it was broken. In the meantime the serviceman broke the switch that was working so now I have no vent. The serviceman returned on 3/7 and worked on the vent/fan for 2 hours only to be told he needed to leave for another appointment and couldn’t stay. I called customer service only to be told no supervisor was available and would call me within 24/48 hrs. I waited and 4 days later I called to ask why no one had called to be told there was no notation in my file. I did speak to a Customer Service Manager along with a Manager of scheduling to be told that I have an appointment for tomorrow which I already knew. I told Jennifer that I had vent that was working now it is not and what would she do for me. I got the parts for nothing. On 3/13 the serviceman returned and after 2 1/2 hours told me that this vent was unrepairable. I was to call the number he gave me in 24 hours and they would make arrangements on exchange. I called as directed to be told that this information will be sent to management and that they/or Michelle customer service person would call me back. On 3/19 I called to find out why no call was forthcoming. I spoke to another Customer service person telling me they were waiting for me to send in a proof of purchase. I don’t know about any of you but who keeps proof of purchases for 4 years? I told her no one had called to inform me of this and at that time I asked to speak to a supervisor. Again I got Grace who told me they were waiting for a proof of purchase. I told her no one called to inform me and she stated she was sorry but until that is received nothing could be done. She then gave me a fax number and told me to fax the POP along with my case number. Told her that not one person gave me a case number. She also told me that I was getting the parts for nothing, I explained to her that the parts were moot at this point since it was unrepairable. Now I need to find the POP or go the PC Richards and see if they still have my file there. This means more man hours on my part to find it or now receive nothing. Now I am wondering if my Freedom Tower Refrigerator/freezer is next to go….

  55. Nora Speer permalink
    August 27, 2013 8:18 pm

    We have a Thermador refrigerator, worst appliance we have ever owned. It has been falling apart piece by piece, we are on our third repair, the ice maker doesn’t work properly, even the repair man who came to fix the ice maker told me that for the amount of money we paid, it was shocking how cheaply built everything was. I cannot get a hold of Thermador management to discuss, only customer service who can only recommend a repair person. DONT BUY THEIR PRODUCTS!

  56. Vonn permalink
    December 28, 2013 7:04 pm

    You are absolutely right !! THERMADOR “SUCKS” Just spent 3 hours going round and round with their web site that does not work right and the 800 service cntr. that can schedule me for a service guy, who has been here before and was not able to fix the problem because he can not get a schematic or parts for this particular model, but charged me $$$ for the service call …. and Thermador does NGS. I will never buy a Thermador appliance again and am looking for another replacement.

  57. Susan permalink
    July 28, 2014 10:19 pm

    Just spent fifteen minutes reading the blogs on Thermador appliances. We are considering buying a suite of appliances (48″ stove and refrigerator, hood and dishwasher). Unsure how to proceed. Read similiar complaints about Viking appliances. Any suggestions?

  58. November 6, 2015 6:37 pm

    I know this is an old thread but I am having so much heartburn over my Thermador range I just had to concur with all of the above comments. NEVER AGAIN!!!

  59. January 16, 2016 12:09 am

    Good, I appreciate with your point of view

  60. Michelle permalink
    January 29, 2016 5:02 pm

    I am on my second stove from Thermador and both are probably going to end up in the landfill. We have the RDSS30. The computer board is fried. They do not make the part anymore. How could they not offer some kind of service on a $5000 stove? I am going to try to have the bard reworked thru another company. SHAME ON THERMADOR.

    • Florence Chilton permalink
      January 29, 2016 7:04 pm

      Oh, &%#$! I believe the board on my stove is fried as well. (Oven won’t heat above 150 after 20 minutes.) Having trouble finding someone to work on it. I am in the process of replacing countertops and wonder if I should replace the stove as well. Does your stove have the downdraft? Ours runs under the cabinets, up through the wall to a very expensive blower on the roof. It was the only stove I could find for peninsula install that I could avoid installing a hood. (ceilings are very high) So it’s not just the stove but the vent system that may well go into a landfill. I have searched for replacement stove w/ downdraft and have been unsuccessful. How are you managing the vent issue? Reworked through another company? How does that work?

      • Michael owens permalink
        February 26, 2016 11:59 pm

        I have a thermador dual fuel range. I bought it in 2000. The unit completely shut down 3 years later at the inopportune time of Christmas. Soon after the repair warranty was over, it started to do all kinds of crazy stuff. Turn the range eyes on, they click, and the the clock flashes and I lose the correct time…if the oven happens to be on, it goes out too. I dealt with this crap for years until recently. The oven now will not heat and I set up a repair visit. I took a month for them to send out a tech who checked and told me that parts were no longer available for this model. I was charged (or gypped out of) $100.00 for this.They should have informed of this possibility when I put the repair request in. I bought this junk from a Junk selling store called ABT electronics in Glenview, Illinois. I smell a scam here and will use anything available to get my $100.00 back .There are only me and my wife so it was never used a lot. I paid over $2000,.00 for this piece of crap.

      • Florence Chilton permalink
        February 27, 2016 2:17 am

        You have my sympathy! The same repair “scam” could have happened to us. Got lucky though. We live 26 miles from the nearest town and in a county with very low population density. (Word gets around quickly if repair people try things like that) There was only one repair person certified and he is no longer willing to work on Thermador. He’s disgusted. He knew exactly what the problem was. Said it would only be worth the trip out if I was able to locate the part (somehow). This is a man I will call in the future should I need any kind of appliance repair. He spent a ton of time on the phone with me … no charge … wished me good luck, and said to replace it and “Chalk it up!”


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