/ Home & Energy

Have you lost faith in Beko since its fridge freezer “recall”?

Hand reaching for fridge

Beko’s handling of its fridge freezer disaster has come under lots of criticism from the people who matter – its customers. We’ve had over 300 comments about the problem, with many turning their backs on Beko.

Around 500,000 Beko fridge freezers, manufactured between 2000 and 2006, are feared to be a possible fire hazard.

For those certain that they had an affected model, it was a case of desperately trying to get through to Beko on its contact phone number (0800 009 4837 if you need it) in order to book an engineer to come out and fix the fault.

Although most have successfully scheduled an appointment, often after many attempts of ringing up their customer service team, the feeling on our previous Convo is that it hasn’t been a pleasant experience.

In fact, many have said they’re turning their backs on the brand and won’t return.

Bye-bye Beko?

John Screech tried desperately to ring Beko and after he finally got through to someone was promised they’d ring him back – three hours later he’d heard nothing:

‘If this is the best service Beko can offer I never wish to see another of their products.’

Others have already made their mind up that they won’t buy from Beko, like Sue:

‘I am appalled, not least because this experience has changed me from a reasonable human being into a demented harridan! I will never buy any of their products again.’

Kimberley talked candidly to the home appliance manufacturer:

‘Beko you have a lot to answer for here – I have bought many of your products over the years, but I can safely say that I will NEVER purchase another again.’

However, Bosch only last week issued a repair notice about a potential fire hazard on some of its dishwashers. So how did it deal with the problem? Commenter Ron had an affected Bosch dishwasher and said there was ‘no comparison’ between the painless experience he had getting it fixed, and how Beko dealt with its fridge freezer recall.

Some have already started shopping for a non-Beko replacement fridge freezer, like Craig:

‘Spent yesterday afternoon searching for new fridge freezer. Ended up spending £550 on new Bosch, money well spent for the peace of mind.’

Commenter Jane frankly sums up the strength of feeling with the following question, ‘Who in their right mind would buy Beko again after this absolute farce?’

Positive support for Beko

There’s no doubt that there’s been a huge backlash from Beko’s fridge freezer fire hazard, but commenter MartinT thinks the issue has been blown out of proportion:

‘Jeez, some of the comments here are ridiculous. Relax people, log the fault, get your fridge mended and move on with your life.’

Opinion within the industry is also positive, with the editor of Kitchens & Bathrooms News, Philippa Turrell, arguing that Beko should be proud of the way it dealt with the situation:

‘The way it reacted is testament to the hard work of all its employees. It not only increased the capacity of its call centre by 20 times, employing more staff to man the lines, but increased the capacity to modify the faulty appliance by five times. Beko certainly didn’t hide from its responsibilities.’

So are you also content with how the company has dealt with this fridge freezer problem? Or will you now move away from Beko and buy your appliances from other manufacturers?

We’re meeting with Beko next week and will be passing on your questions and concerns to the manufacturer – and I’m sure they’ll be keen to know how they can win your custom back.

Comments
mr beryman says:
18 July 2011

i would like to know why i was not contacted about the beko problem from currys who i bought it off, i know comet have been contacting there customers who have bought this product so whats currys excuse?

robbie,b says:
18 July 2011

I too purchased though currys and have had no contact advising of the issue.
2 emails and 3 phone calls to beko to get my details logged, 5 days today and no contact from the
engineer. Another phone call, details checked and i am now to wait up to another 4 days for the engineer to call. I go on holiday in 3 weeks time and theres no way i will leave a fire hazard running whilst im away. (i wonder how the insurance company would view it)
Beko – MASSIVE FAIL !!!

Marian Hall says:
19 July 2011

Our Beko f/f performed an unscheduled defrost (1.3l of water all over the kitchen floor) the evening after it was “fixed” but seemed OK the following day. However, three days later it had stopped refrigerating/freezing altogether and we’ve had to borrow a tabletop fridge until we source a new (NON-Beko) model. I’m attempting to get some recompense from Beko for the inconvenience and spoiled food…

Elfrida Martin says:
19 July 2011

Good news! Just heard on Twitter from @EU_Consumer (part of the EU Commission’s Health and Consumer Protection Directorate General) that UK authorities have notified RAPEX, the EU rapid alert system for unsafe consumer products, about the faulty BEKO models.

Heartfelt thanks to Stefano Soro, Head of the Commission’s Product and Service Safety Unit, and Yeshim Halil, UK Contact Point for RAPEX, responsible for notification of dangerous products.

fed up says:
19 July 2011

Can you please ask beko what compensation they will be paying to their consumers? After twelve days, five phone calls, two emailed enquiries and logging details on their website I still have not been contacted. I am now on holiday and had to switch the ff off losing all my food. I’m pregnant and this whole fiasco has caused me unnecessary stress. How long until an engineer contacts me??

Cleanfreak. says:
20 July 2011

This is a bit harsh on beko
most appliances are assembled with parts shipped in from different countries. They bought in the thermostats from a company who makes them. as do hotpoint,zanussi and hoover etc. For all we know these faulty parts could be in many different brands of fridge yet beko try to do the right thing and get hung for it.all. all parts of an electrical item deteriorate with age and can become dangerous,
Some of these machines date back to the year 2000. you cant expect to get a brand ne replacement after you have had 10 years use out of it
Beko is being made a scapegoat. what about the manufacturer of the faulty part or the BEAB who were supposed to test the appliance for saftey standards. There is a small risk with any appliance which grows as an appliance aged.
Of course an appliance should be safe hoever There is a reason theese beko fridges sold in there thousands they were cheap nothing rong with that i have a beko fridge freezer near 2 year old never missed a beat.The life of a domestic appliance of this type i would expect to be five to 6 years at the most. so alot of the affected models could just be put down to old age. Yet beko re willing to fix them. My £400 hotpoint fridge freezer only lasted 3 years. I like beko. they offer good value for money.

Patricia jones says:
20 July 2011

Hi, I am would not be happy if my FF only lasted 3years infact I would quote the sale of goods act 1979 goods should last and give good service for a resonable amount of time,you had your hotpoint for only 3years that’s not good service,if everyone is expected to just go and buy new a lot of people in this day and age cannot afford to do this.
Not so long ago goods were made to last and did so,I think due to the fact that people have been injured and killed due to these faulty fridge freezers that’s why we are so annoyed,re the testing I would have thought that ls Bekos job,how many more people have died because of this fault ,they first new about it as long as four years ago,I think that Beko are going to be losing a lot of future sales I for one will NEVER buy beko again,I have another dangerous fault with my Beko FF and Beko do not want to know they told me to take it up with Comet who also don’t want to know,they should Never be allowed to get away with it.

Annie82 says:
20 July 2011

Over two weeks ago I finally got through to BEKO on the phone – they confirmed I have an affected model and said they’d call me back “Today” to arrange repair. They didn’t. Over two weeks ago I emailed BEKO – they responded confirming I had an affected model, and said they’d be in touch to arrange repair. They haven’t. Today I receive a LETTER from BEKO, to tell me how to work out if I have an affected model and to ask me to get in touch. Have I lost faith?? You bet.

Richard D says:
20 July 2011

I understand that companies have problems from time to time but the key is responding well. Initially when I tried to call the phone was permanently engaged and then later a message saying they were too busy to answer calls!! But I sent an email and lo and behold a response within a couple of hours and an appointment fixed within 2 days. After my initial disappointment, I was most impressed and it went someway to restore my faith in Beko. Sadly it seems that a lot of people were calling without checking that they had a unit that was affected by the problem and this only jammed the phones. So if consumers are a little more careful, companies can respond faster.

Cleanfreak. says:
20 July 2011

I didn’t mean to belittle what has happened.To think that people have died for the sake of a faulty fridge is terrifying. My beko is a non frost free one i have to defrost it. that was due to the fact a frost free was £75 more expensive and my mother had 3 hotpoint frost free models in 11 years one only lasting 2 so i decided on a non frost free.A relation had an affected model They couldn’t get through for 2 days. When they did they were told the phonelines were in meltdown but when they did get through the engineer came a week later and fitted the new part. I believe brittish gas have been inlisted as i doubt the beko engineers could cope with the volume of machines to be modified.
My point is that more questions need to be asked of the people testing for saftey. These things now have to conform to european standards. not the old brittish standards.These things should be being tested for a ten year lifespan like miele and dyson test to distruction. Has anybody contacted trading standards to see what your rights are if you are not willing to wait 3 weeks to talk to somebody?

Hello everyone

Thanks again for all your posts and questions for us to put to Beko, please do keep them coming.

We have needed to postpone our meeting to next week, due to unforeseen circumstances. Rest assured though, we will be meeting with their senior management to get to the bottom of the problems and get answers to your queries so please do keep them coming.

Richard

Maxine Rowan says:
21 July 2011

as well as the leaking and flooding caused by my beko fridge freezer id also like to mention the fridge back wall has frozen up and seems to be permanent.

i like the look of my beko fridge freezer but would definitely never buy another.

Kathy says:
22 July 2011

We purchased Beeko fridge freezer in November and am more than pleased with performance of appliance. Having some concern when hearing appliances had in some cases caught fire, we contacted Beeko. At the time we were unable to get through, as you would imagine the lines must have been inundated with calls. We contacted our supplier who immediately gave us a contact no. to contact. We were met with an answer machine message saying that they would take our call as soon as possible very polite, and if we had a computer to go to their web site where the list of faulty appliance no. would be listed. The site was easy to follow and no. revealed of faulty batch. lucky for us we were okay.

Sarah says:
24 July 2011

Well I must have been one of the lucky ones to have an engineer out, however the engineer confirmed mine is an affected model, the new part does not fit this model. The part number of mine is CA5411FFS. He assured me Beko would be in touch with me in the next couple of days to advise. So a day off work wasted and no phone call since, and still a faulty fridge freezer. Ridiculous! And yes, the helpline is far from helpful with one of the advisers telling me not to over react, the chances of my fridge freezer causing a fire was over a million to 1. How rude! Try telling that to the families who have lost family in the fires!

Elfrida Martin says:
26 July 2011

I gather that Hertfordshire Trading Standards are monitoring Beko fridge-freezer recall: are figures available to show how many appliances have been seen and successfully modified to date? Thanks.

Hello Elfrida,
Many thanks for the question and for letting me know about Hertfordshire TS’s interest in this. We will put that one to Beko when we meet with them tomorrow and I’ll let you know what their reply will be.

Richard

Elfrida Martin says:
27 July 2011

Thanks, Richard: have a good meeting tomorrow!
Elfrida

Thanks Elfrida. Just getting our questions together and heading over to Beko now.

Anne says:
28 July 2011

Whilst on holiday in later June / early July I saw a TV news report about Beko fridges. I have such an item and upon my return from holiday I checked my serial number and inputted it in to the Beko online database which tells consumers if their fridge freezer could be an affected model, and indeed mine was. I tried to call to book a repair appointment but the call centre shut at 5pm and I had to call back the next day.

Upon calling back the next day I was able to book an appointment for 21st July. The lady that I spoke to was not able to offer a specific time, other than the engineer would be at my property at an hours notice; the engineer would call me on my mobile around 60 minutes before his arrival. I called Beko again on 20th July to confirm the appointment. I called again on 21st July around 11.30am to make sure someone was going to come and again at 4.55pm and again was assured that I was booked in for that day.

By 8pm nobody had arrived nor contacted me to explain the lack of arrival. This was both frustrating and distressing, knowing the context of why the repair had to take place. Someone losing their life should be enough for Beko to make this a priority but unfortunately not. I called Beko again on Friday 22nd July and was told that they do not have a Complaints department but that the gentleman I spoke to could send an email to Beko’s “Issues” team and that someone would call me back in 2 hours. Whilst enquiring what the difference was between a Complaints team and an Issues team and expressing my sincere disappointment at the entire situation, not least me waiting at home for 12 hours the previous day, the gentleman I spoke to hung up on me (he did inform me that he was going to terminate the call, the line was not lost) without any type of explaination nor an attempt to rebook another appointment.

Upon calling back and speaking to a call centre manager (who was helpful in getting to the root of the issue), it turns out that the appointment wasn’t changed to the right “status” and so it was never sent to the team that coordinates the engineers, even though everyone I spoke to until that point said it was booked in. Absolutely ridiculous. So now I have to organise another day off of work, in the height of summer holidays, in the hope that the person I speak to next time remembers to change the status, and that my fridge hasn’t combusted in the meantime.

I am disgusted with Beko’s 360 degree lack of responsibility or customer service and do not find this acceptable in any way especially (as I mentioned) in the context of which I am having to speak with them now. I will never buy another Beko product, but my priority is to somehow get my potentially lethal appliance fixed.

By the way – I am still waiting for someone from Beko’s Issues team to call me back – a week later.

Terri says:
28 July 2011

Hi Richard was just wondering what BEKO had to say for there selfs?? any news 🙂

Hello Terri (and everyone else). My apologies for the delay in reporting back from the meeting. I am just getting their responses together as well as our thoughts on these replies. I will post them here as soon as I can.

Richard

Hello all, as Richard said, we’re compiling all of Beko’s answers to your questions and we’ll have them posted here on Monday. Thanks and have a great weekend!

Elfrida Martin says:
30 July 2011

Hello Richard and Patrick:
Thank you for taking the time to meet Beko and compile the information: I’m looking forward to hearing the results on Monday.
I thought you would be interested to compare the way that the Consumer Product Safety Commission protects consumers from dangerous products, including electrical appliances, in the US. It appears that the Commission has the power to penalise companies that don’t report immediately the discovery of an unsafe product, or take effective action to remedy or replace it. http://www.cpsc.gov
I noticed the recall of a faulty electric heater http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2010/12/wal-mart-recalls-electric-heater The instruction is to ‘immediately stop using it and return…for a full refund’. No deaths resulted from the use of this appliance: 21 reports of incidents of injury to persons or property were considered grave enough to warrant this action.
The statement ‘the heater can malfunction resulting in… fire’ makes it clear that the product is a proven hazard, so why are faulty Beko and LEC appliances, similarly prone to malfunction, still described as a ‘potential’ risk, so not meriting the emergency action?
Yesterday I sent this message to Dr Vincent Cable, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills: BIS has, I believe, an overall responsiblity for product safety in the UK. ‘ I am convinced that (Beko’s) timescale is not urgent enough to prevent another tragic case of injury or loss of life. Another weekend approaches in which many are left understandably anxious and at risk.’
Elfrida

Patricia jones says:
1 August 2011

Hello,what have Beko got to say?. Thanks