Whirlpool - Beware Black Smooth Exterior Finish
Refrigerator Exterior Finish - Complaint
SPRING HILL, TENNESSEE -- If cosmetic appearances are important when considering Whirlpool appliances, don't purchase units with smooth black surfaces. Dissatisfaction will quickly ensue and Whirlpool will not repair or replace it. However, on multiple occasions they are programmed to interject how sorry they are that you are not happy with the product.
I have one month old black Whirlpool side by side refrigerator, with smooth doors. After one week of normal usage and occasional cleaning with a clean, damp cotton cloth I noticed an ever increasing amount of scratches accumulating in the paint as well as reduction of gloss.
I contacted Whirlpool and a "authorized" technician arrived to confirm the problem. He indicated it is a common problem with "black" finish. Whirlpool has been unable to get the black paint to harden sufficiently to prevent the scratching. He suggested using car wax to "help" the paint out. Replacement doors were ordered and remain in my garage after 3 weeks.
I spoke to a relative who is a 20+ year Whirlpool employee who verified the problem exists and Whirlpool knows about it.
I was refused textured replacement doors and refused replacement of the refrigerator with a similar unit with textured doors. Whirlpool sidesteps the issue by claiming "cosmetic issues" are not covered in their warranty.
I went to a appliance retailer with a clean, damp cotton cloth and was able to duplicate the scratching I experienced at home.
Bottom Line: The paint on these products is very soft. Rapid finish appearance degradation is impossible to prevent and you will have no warranty remedy from Whirlpool.
Buy at your own risk!