Consumer Complaints and Reviews
I bought a Kenmore 30 gal water heater from Sears back in 11/19/12. Less than 2 years it failed twice on me. First time I was able to get it fix but I have to pay for the labor. Second time I have to call Sears' technician and was told that I cannot order part directly from AO Smith, the manufacturer. I had to get Sears to come out to fix it. This is how Sears ripped off consumers by not letting customer to order parts directly from manufacture and the heater was still under 6 years warranty at that time. I'll never buy anything from Sears again.
My Power Miser 12 Gas Water heater leaked after 10 years. I faithfully flushed and replaced the sacrificial anode to extend the life of the tank to no avail. I was told by a Sears clerk that I could call the warranty service line and they would have a record of my water heater. When I called they asked for my phone number and they were able to bring up my address and purchase. He said I needed to schedule a service call to verify the water heater was the original and that it wasn't another part or plumbing issue. The Blue Crew service member arrived 2 days later. Was very polite, verified the leak with a rep in Tx using video on his phone and gave me an 800 number and a reference number to call to request a new water heater under warranty.
When I called they said I needed an original receipt. I don't know about you but the ink on receipts do not last 10 years. Regardless they were unrelenting. I called Sears customer service and a nice gentleman spent an hour on the phone with me going through his system and compiled enough data to prove without a doubt that the water heater in my garage was the same one they had in their system using serial numbers, purchase date, and warranty expiration date. He had in his system. However, they do not have sales records beyond 7 years so the burden of proof still rested with the sales receipt. He constructed a letter, emailed it to me but didn't have a clue what I was supposed to do with it, but he gave me a reference case number that was the hub to the situation and that any reference numbers were the spoke.
I called the repair service again, and asked for a manager and after 45 minutes of holding using a technique to get me to hang up, the manager failed and put their flunky back on the phone with the same stiff arm approach. No receipt, no warranty. They said they could not look up reference case numbers and that I needed a receipt to honor the warranty despite the efforts of customer service to construct a case file proving original ownership. After 3 hours of being on the phone, I have come to realize a couple of things. Kenmore is an AO Smith water heater. They received lousy reviews on Amazon too. I also realized that they had no intention of ever honoring the warranty and after reading the reviews here, I know that a replacement would not last very long way anyway.
I have given up. Sears wins. You can keep your Power Miser POS from AO Smith. I will no longer buy any product from Sears again. Doubtful they will be able to sustain themselves much longer at this rate. The stores are empty. Their customer service is deceitful. They encouraged an $80 service call to verify the water heater is original only later to say the warranty is void without a receipt. Would have been proper to start with that statement. My written warranty says nothing about a receipt. The online website states in CAPITAL letters that PROOF OF PURCHASE is required. So they changed the rules. I don't think a receipt is the only type of proof of purchase. You'd think they thought I was asking them to prove that the water heater wasn't mine.
Purchased a Kenmore model # 153330220 water heater that quit after 48 months. I called our local gas company and the service man stated the burner was cracked. The water heater came with a 6 year warranty. When I inquired with Sears about warranty repair, Sears stated the warranty only covered parts... no labor. I was told a service call would cost me $79.
When the service man came, he stated the burner was cracked due to an excessive amount of dust in the burner area. I put my hand in the cavity and rubbed my finger on the bottom of the cavity. No dust on my finger. Cannot see any dust on bottom of cavity. Service man refused to repair under warranty, says we didn't keep dust away from burner assy. Gave me an estimate to replace the burner assembly for $828. I paid $420 for this water heater brand new... Why would I now pay $828 for repairs? I cannot believe that Sears would put their name on this water heater, since it's junk. I will never buy another Kenmore product again!
I created an account simply to post another warning to consumers considering Sears or this Kenmore Water Heater. I purchased an electric Power Miser 9 Water Heater and had it professionally installed in 2012. Now, (late 2016), the thermostat is dying (thermal breaker tripping off daily). I called my electrician to ensure it wasn't tripping off due to house electric issues. It wasn't ($125 spent). I then called Sears as the unit is still under the 9 year warranty. After being transferred around a few times, I was informed that yes, the unit was under warranty, but that it cost $80 to have a repair person come to the house (a "diagnostic fee"). Fine. Annoying money-grab, but what can you do. At least it's still being repaired under warranty, right? Wrong.
When the repair guy arrives a week later, he spends about 5 minutes looking at it and says "Yeah, it's the thermostat. Parts are covered under warranty, but labor isn't. It's going to cost $200-$300 to replace". The wife stalls him while I do a couple of quick online searches. The part costs $50-$60. The repair looks like it will take all of about 5 minutes. I tell the guy to GTFO. I'll do it myself. So we've spent over $200 (so far) to have a water heater *not* repaired under warranty. What a piece of junk. This will be the last Sears appliance I *ever* buy. And I'll make darn sure to tell anyone looking for appliances about my experience. Good riddance, Sears. You may have been good in the 1950s, but today, you're garbage.
We had purchased a Kenmore 40 gal water heater from Sears in Aug 2013. This purchase was not needed at the time, but we figured we would keep it in the basement as an immediate replacement for our aging water heater. One year later Aug 2014 our water heater broke and I had put in the pre-purchased Kenmore. Things were fine until Dec 2014 (Christmas Weekend). That is when our heater stopped producing hot water. The blinking light code was a #4. Four beeps. Overheated! Reading up on this, I learned that generally two things cause a # 4 failure indicator... 1- If the temperature was set above Hot. Or, 2-The lime build up inside the heater was too much. Well, at only two years old, and the heat being drained of 3 gallons of water every six months. I really doubt lime build up was the issue. Secondly, the temperature was set on Hot. Not above!
Long story short, this Valve/Thermostat is not easy to find for purchase for an immediate repair. I searched many stores to no avail. I checked with Sears Parts and was told they can order it for $180.00 and it would take 3-10 days to receive. Well, I kind of need a shower NOW! I went home, logged in to Sears Parts website and purchased it for $180.00 plus an expedited 2 day delivery fee of $35.00. LUCKILY, I will be able to replace it myself, but what if someone is not very mechanically inclined. Here would come a two hour plumber charge I'm sure. I find it ridiculous that after only 2 years of use, this valve would go bad. Even MORE ridiculous is the idea that many people are facing the same problem at the 2 yr mark. Somewhat ironic I feel! Almost appears as though they are designed to fail at 24 months. Be careful of Kenmore and even more careful of these Honeywell Gas Valves/Thermostats. Model # 9007890.
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We purchased our home in 2006. The home had a new Kenmore Power Miser 9 50 gal Hot Water heater. Within a few years we had a leak and Sears sent someone who replaced at no charge citing manufacturer's issue. Fast forward a few more years leaking again. Sears sent someone out to verify the leak at a cost of $75-85. Not that the puddle under the tank was an indicator. We were then told they would replace the water heater for free but there would be a $700 charge to install. We picked up the water heater and had our plumber install for much less. This was 2013.
Fast forward to 10-2016 - leaking again!!! We went with our plumber and picked up a new hot water heater NOT Kenmore. After 3 Kenmore Power Misers in 10 years it goes without saying NEVER AGAIN! The young woman at Sears was very nice but their policy is to replace with the same model. True definition of stupidity - doing the same thing and expecting a different result. Guess that goes for them and for me... glad we wised up!
We bought a power miser 12 year warranty water heater in October 2006. In July 2012 it started leaking from the top. We called a sears tech to come look at it. We paid him $89 to tell us we needed a new tank. He said they could install a new one for free since it was under warranty, but it would be 3 weeks until they could get a new one in. Not wanting a flood in my home, my husband called a sears store 135 miles away that had one in stock. He drove the 4 hour round trip so we could have it installed the next day.
Now 4 years later in Oct 2016 the new one is leaking from the bottom. Thank god we have a pan it sits in or we'd have water on our floor! Since it's under warranty we called Sears. They said they can have someone come out in 4 days to look at it and if we need a new tank, it will be the end of Oct before a new one can be put in. The 12 year warranty is a joke. It starts when you buy the first water heater and keeps carrying over to the next, etc. Since we bought our first one in 2006, we only have 2 years left in warranty until 2018 even though this would be our 3rd tank! We are taking this piece of crap out and spending the money to have a Rheem installed. I will never buy another Sears product as long as I live!
I bought a Sears heater a year and a half ago and now the pilot light is going out. They came out and "fixed it" cost me $180 to clean a filter. Less than a month later having the same problem!! Going tomorrow to buy one from Lowe's. What a joke!! :( When I had the pilot fixed they left and didn't give me a receipt. They told me they would send it to my email, didn't. It is in a rental that I own now. I cannot even take it on taxes because they didn't send the receipt. Please buy your hot water tank some place else...
February 2nd Sears techs came out 5 times to check the water heater. They replaced the gas valve, thermopile, and we replaced a 3/8 gas line to a 1/2 inch. They claimed it was low gas pressure afterward.P. G.&E checked. It is 9.0wc. 10 blink cont. And they still have not replaced it. We still have no hot water. It is less than 1 year old purchased June 2015.
I purchased a Kenmore water heater (model number 153.331350) in February 2014 and it was installed in March 2014. It started leaking last week (March 2016) and the service technician said the backup valve needed to be replaced because there was no expansion tank on the unit. He said these water heaters are now installed with expansion tanks and that the leak would continue until I contracted a plumber to install an expansion tank. I spoke to a Sears service rep today and he said their install technicians can't install the expansion tank because it requires a plumber. So, essentially, they installed a water heater that was destined to leak because they had no way to install it properly.
The service guy just left. Leaking water all over the floor is just fine. They do that! NO NO THEY DON'T. I should hook a hose up to the relief valve... and put it in a drain. NO NO NOT going to have a high water bill for running water directly down the drain. $169.00 to reset the computer so it is hot water that leaks is... I don't even know how to say... NOT FIXED.
Sears replaced my leaky water heater (as it was covered under warranty) with a new one. It was the Kenmore 40 gal natural gas model #57941. I went to the closest store, which is 45 min away, and brought the new one home. Our plumber unboxed it and noticed a very large dent by the gas valve and couldn't use it. So, we had to drive it back to the store and pick up a new one. The plumber got it installed for us to find out that this one was defective too because the igniter and pilot light do not work. Hoping someone can come fix it soon! 2 Defective water heaters in one day???
In Feb 2013 I bought a water heater Kenmore Model 153.330250, with 9 years warranty on parts and tank. After 1st year (Oct.2014) a Sears technician replaced the main gas valve module controller ($176.00) and charged for labor another $140.00 (LED flashing 4 times fault). Called again Sears on Jan 14 2016 for same fault on control module. This time he was lucky, had to reset the thermostat only and charged another $150.00. Please don't buy any Kenmore products and stay away of Sears service!!! Don't be a loser buying these lemon products!!!
I purchased this on Sat and it will be delivered and installed Thurs. I'm afraid because they charged me $189 for installation but failed to tell me they will charge me for a drain pan, flexible hoses (2) and a haul away charge plus anything else they think I need for installation. Looking at an additional $250. Don't know what will happen if it does not fit. Should I cancel now? I need this because I fear a leak and water damage. Help. When I placed the order the representative (Shekinah) did not tell me about the additional costs. I told her what I need 40 gal, 55 in round, 55 in tall, 12 yr warranty and gas.
I write this two days before Thanksgiving. My son will soon arrive from Austin TX to visit. I had the integrated Honeywell gas valve fail last night, spilling water all over my garage. I had it capped off as it was late at night by ARS repair. I already know the issue, it is the Honeywell valve, made of plastic that melts over the course of years, rendering it inoperable and causing leaks. I called Sears. They want me to call their tech, charge me $89, just to diagnose the problem. In other words, just to put $89 bucks in their own pocket. Then they will charge me another fee to install it after I order the part and wait for it to ship to me. I asked them for a full refund for the value of the product, and they refused, stating that I must follow their process if it is repairable.
I will never buy another Sears product. I went to Lowe's and bought a Whirlpool. If it fails, they explained that they will give me store credit, no questions asked. When you buy a product, you buy the service that goes along with it, which makes or breaks the deal. It always boils down to service. I am sorry to say Sears has lost my trust and my business. They used to be synonymous with Appliance, now they make it so hard to deal with them. They just seem like thieves.
I bought the water heater at Orchard Supply (now owned by Sears) and after 2 1/2 years of light duty, it stopped working. The display showed a high temp. shutdown. Figuring that it had a 6 year warranty, I made the mistake of calling Sears. The Sears representative said a tech could come out for a fee of $79. I agreed, stipulating that any parts would be free under warranty. When the tech came out, he said it would be $190 to drain the tank and reset the control. At this point, I told him I would drain the tank, and just show me the reset. Tech said it was against policy. I said what the heck was the warranty for if I had to pay $190? Because I was not at the site and my tenant needed hot water, I agreed to pay. I will never buy a product from Sears or Orchard Supply Hardware again.
I purchased a water heater from Sears in 2002 and it began leaking in 2008. That water heater had a 9 year warranty. I had it replaced with a Power Miser 12, with a 12 year warranty. This water heater is now leaking 7 years later. When I called to arrange a replacement, I was told that this warranty is no good since I did not pay extra when it was replace in 2008. I was never told this in all my phone calls to Sears in 2008 and during the horrific process I experienced, in 2008, where I had to find the plumber myself and make all the phone calls and arrangements myself since everything Sears was supposed to be doing and they were not.
Now I am told there is no warranty on this Power Miser 12 which is 9 years old. I will never get another appliance from Sears again. In my conversation with the representative he just ended it with "I hope the rest of your day goes better." If you are planning on buying a water heater, I suggest you run away from Sears. They are not the company they used to be. They just don't care anymore about reputation. I will be shopping for a new water heater from Home Depot or some big box store.
In 2007 I purchased and installed a Sears WaterMiser 12. After 7 years and 351 days it started to leak from the top. A call to Sears (please note it is NOT 24 hours service) for a warranty claim. I was told it would be $85 for the service call. The service would be between 8:30AM and 4PM. Night before service, an automated message was left claiming the service would be between 12noon and 4pm. Service called at 10:30AM. Service confirmed, yes it is leaking. He took many photos and ordered the part he thinks is faulty.
Part (9003487) is covered under warranty. However, to replace the part another $85 service call is needed. The cost of the part is $40.04. Based on a search of this issue, the anode is the problem but it is the beginning of the end for the water heater as corrosion has set in and it will (according to others and the service rep) leak from other places on the top of the tank.
After 8 years leaking so badly could not be used. Called 800 number and they said it would be 8 days before they could look at. Who can wait that long without hot water? Call center is located overseas. They would not tell me where they are at. It must be a secret. (Pretty sure it was India). Called back and said I would like a US rep. They said that was not possible. I finally gave up and had another installed by Lowe's. Beware of these scam artist. They know you can't wait over a week for hot water.
We bought a Kenmore Power Miser 12 from Sears, one of the best they had with 12 years warranty on parts and supply of a new heater in case of leak. Last Friday I found my basement flooded. The WH was dripping water and rust was coming out from under the cap and other places. I stopped the water and turned the electricity off, then called Sears. They said s.b. would call us within 24 hours to set up an appointment. However nobody called. The same thing was happening again and again from Saturday, Sunday, Monday. This morning (Tuesday) they told me that they have no technicians in my area to verify it. (It's laughable - I live in NYC suburb and 1 mile from Sears store in Yorktown Heights). I was told to find a licensed water heater technician to confirm that water heater is not repairable and then they can replace it. I have to pay whatever the technician for verification asks and then the installation itself.
When I asked them for more details how to arrange things, how the technician will let them know that the WH really needs to be replaced they disconnected me. Even after another 40 minutes on phone I could not get back to my case again. Knowing that customers cannot wait too long with leaking water heater, they frustrate them but doing nothing, telling them lies that s.b. would help them. The only purpose of this bureaucracy is to give up their rights. I hate Sears for this. Now I am stuck. I cannot get anybody from Sears to come and fix it or replace it. I am sorry I didn't get a tank from somewhere else. I won't shop at Sears again.
I purchased a water heater by phone with a **, he assured me that the WH would be installed the same day. I received a call from Eyman Plumbing who couldn't install for 4 days!! ** should have ck'd to make sure the WH could be installed before making that statement and taking my money. My money cannot be returned for 7-10 days and water is destroying my laminate floor. Every # I called, no one could help and passed me to the next person. Sears has fallen from grace and I do not wish to ever do business again with them.
I bought a Kenmore Power Miser 12 from Sears, suppose to be the best they had. I had it replaced two times because of faulty tanks, and the tanks were leaking. Got the third and now it is leaking again. Checked the elements and it was not the cause, leaking behind the insulation. Cannot get a live person at Sears on the phone. Went by and they want to set up an appointment for a tech to come verify it is the tank for 109 dollars. I think I am thru with Sears products, unless they email and get this resolved today. Please do not buy a Power Miser 12 hot water heater from Sears. Now I have a floor full of rusty water to clean up. I wish they would contact me today 6/2/2015. No wonder they are have hurting finance's.
Tried to call manager in service about - 6 times, just kept getting transferred and dropped. Shouldn't this be considered under the lemon law for appliances. 4 times in less than 10 years! And I can't get anyone to talk to there. Called two different 800 numbers. Such a rip off. My next water heater will NOT be from Sears or a Kenmore that is for sure. We drain and do the proper maintenance every year for this. We never had any issues with our old water heater with the thermostat.
Called for service on a nonworking Kenmore water heater. Appointment set for Tuesday. No call, no show. Called service center and come to find out representative scheduled accidentally on different day. No apology and missed work. Rescheduled appointment for Thursday. Customer called to confirm and appt was confirmed. Near end of appt time was called by repair person that they would not make it and we would have to reschedule. Called service center to make it right. Got an apology this time and a guy named ** but he could only offer to reschedule a third time for next Tuesday. Missed out on work. Informed ** they lost a customer to purchase Kenmore products for life since he could not correct situation. Fyi... Based on my experiences I think the call center is outsourced out of the country which does not bode well for existing and future customer satisfaction in the US.
My daughter's Kenmore water heater stopped working. The code indicated a bad gas valve. I called my plumber, who told me he had just gotten a call from another customer with the same model of water heater with the same exact problem on the same day. Sounds like there may be a failure date programmed into the circuit board! Warranty was a nightmare. I was 4 years into a 6 year warranty, and Sears didn't want to honor the warranty. Both my son-in-law and I were told that the water heater wasn't under warranty. Last Kenmore Product I'll ever buy.
Purchased a Sear Roto Swirl Water Heater (model 409.7341820) May 2012 for $494.00 with a 9 year warranty. It stopped producing hot water today, 2.5 years old, and when I called the 1-800 warranty number they said "We do not provide any troubleshooting advice for this product." They offered to have the service distribution office call me within 3 business days (it's Saturday so 5 days) to arrange a service technician to visit in the coming weeks. After stating that was unacceptable the service person had no response. Very disappointed at paying a high price to Sears who we have faithfully purchased all of our large appliances from over the past 40 years... not any longer, goodbye Sears!
This maybe the most disappointing review I have ever written. I grew up with Sears. I have always been a loyal and trusting customer. First of all Sears is no longer Sears. Now it is Sears Holdings (think Chrysler before Fiat bought them). My Story, I purchased a top of the line Sears Kenmore water heater from Sears Montclair 3 years ago. It was warranted 12 years. Over the Thanksgiving weekend 2014 it failed. It blew out all the hot water onto my garage floor. It occurred during the late evening on a weekend. I purchased a new top of the line water heater from Home Depot before they closed and had it installed by a plumber.
When I went to return the old water heater to Sears the fun and games began. I started off going to the Montclair store where I purchased it in person. Zero help. They knew nothing and could only refer me to an 800 number. From there I went to 3 more numbers before sending me back to Sears Montclair. The last contact through Montclair referred me to another 800 number Sears is not Sears of old. This is probably my last business transaction with Sears or their partner Kmart. Sears no longer has a reputable service dep’t and should not be trusted for large purchases. I must note that the workers were kind and pleasant. I call it business confusing or intent to cause chaos and frustration with a smile on their face. I wish I could recommend some other store but I have found out that they all sub contract service and routine wait for appliances.
I had the Survivor installed by a neighbor in 1998. Never drained the tank, never had a service call, nor never replaced any parts. The day before I replaced the tank I measured the water temperature and it was 130 degrees F. I did not replace the tank because it was leaking, did not meet temperature, nor any reason other than it was 16 years old and I did not want a flood in the basement. Replaced with a Kenmore.
Sears and Kenmore, once a reputable and reliable company selling quality products such as Kenmore, are now in my opinion in cahoots with each other and have degraded to scam artists out to rip off consumers. I am now completely skeptical with their business practices. I purchased a Kenmore 50 gallon 12 year water heater from Sears last year in June 2013 for $730. My second water heater purchase from them because my last water heater lasted for 9 years and never gave me any problems so I figured why not buy from them again. The 1 year warranty expired so I called my plumber to come out and fix the issue of the thermostat shutting down due to high temperatures for some reason. (The heat dial was never changed or adjusted.)
My plumber came out and said he couldn't fix it because it was an electronic thermostat that he wasn't familiar with so I called Sears to ask about the product I purchased and that my plumber couldn't fix the problem. The Sear representative said that if I were to use another outside technician that the parts would not be warranted by Kenmore. (Okay why?) So I called Kenmore to ask about their warranty on the parts and was given the runaround with the automated system which always led me back to a Sears customer service representative. It was frustrating that I couldn't speak with someone from the Kenmore manufacturer.
Since time was going by, I had no other choice but to get a Sears service technician out there to fix the problem because my tenants had no hot water. Sears said that any of the parts would be warranted and replaced without charge but there would be labor costs. When the Sears technician arrived, he notified me that the thermostat needed to get replaced with a new thermostat. I asked him what kind/brand was the old thermostat and what kind/brand is the new one because I wouldn't want the same one if the last one was defective or unreliable. He then went on to tell me that he wasn't actually going to be replacing the thermostat, but resetting it and needed to flush out the system due to build up of sediment. He also suggested that this sort of maintenance should be done every year. This ended up costing me around $280 for the reset and flush.
I have never had to do this in the past with my water heater appliance. Not only am I pissed that this wastes a ton of water, but I’m also upset that a product like this was even designed and made. When did I buy an oversized Brita Filter for my house that needed flushing? The technician suggested that I purchase the Sears warranty so it wouldn't cost so much in the future. I ended up succumbed to buying a warranty because I supposedly have 9.5 years left on this product.
I will never purchase a Kenmore product without reading the Consumer Affairs report on it. I did some investigation and further found out that my situation wasn't a special case. There were a number of complaints from other consumers who experienced the same exact thing. I filed a complaint (#**) with Sears and I will also report this to the Federal Trade Commission as suggested from another consumer post. I feel that this was worth sharing with others in case anyone is in the market of buying a new water heater. DO NOT BUY KENMORE or SHOP AT SEARS.
I purchased a Kenmore 55 Gallon Electric Water Heater (Model# 153321543) and had installed by Sears 03/23/09. It started showing water seepage around the base 12/5/14. Sears wants $519.97 in labor and fees to replace with a new on "under warranty." I'll go elsewhere and buy a new one before paying them additional money for selling substandard equipment and providing deceptive warranty claims.
ConsumerAffairs Research Team
The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.
For over 100 years, Kenmore has been a leader in home appliances. They offer a broad range of water heaters and water heater parts and accessories.
- Types: Kenmore offers electric, hybrid, liquid propane gas and natural gas water heaters. Each kind of water heater has multiple options in tank capacity, tank diameter, warranty and venting.
- Warranties: Depending on the type of water heater purchased, consumers can expect three, six, nine or 12-year limited warranties. Details of the limited warranties can be found online.
- Online product manuals: Consumers can go online and search for their specific water heater owner's manual using the type, make and model.
- Repair scheduler: For consumers in need of a repair, Kenmore offers an online repair scheduler tool. Simply choose the appliance, brand, describe the issue and fill out your contact information. The tool allows consumers the option to pick a time that works best for them and includes any diagnostic fees.
- Customer care: Kenmore has a customer care page online where consumers can get prompt answers to questions regarding warranties, parts and repairs. The page also includes an option to schedule an appliance repair.
- Best for Consumers looking for a residential water heater.
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Kenmore Water Heater Company Profile
- Company Name:
- Kenmore Appliances
- Year Founded:
- United States