July 24, 2014

New Refrigerator Design Reflects Consumers’ Attitudes

As stated in Twice, consumers are starting to emerge from their economic doldrums, and the renewed optimism is beginning to be reflected in more colorful and eclectic kitchen designs.

According to Thom Filicia, award-winning interior designer and host of Style Network’s “Dress My Nest,” who put his observations into practice with a recently rolled-out refrigerator line for Amana, “People are feeling more confident, and they want color that’s fresh and optimistic but still grounded and earthy.”

What’s more, the mixing and matching of favorite colors and patterns, which is a given in apparel and other rooms of the home, has finally migrated to America’s kitchens. “Consumers are no longer necessarily buying their kitchen appliances in matching suites,” Filicia observed. “People like eclecticism, and they’re mixing it up by bringing more personality and an emotional connection into the kitchen.”

“Appliances don’t have to match,” he said. “They just need to coordinate and look good.”

Filicia, who gained national celebrity as a member of the personal makeover squad in TV’s “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy,” said examples of this new kitchen eclecticism can be found in appliances from Viking, Jenn-Air and Amana, which employ a host of finishes and colors.

His own refrigerator collection for Amana includes such designs as Green Tea, a leaf pattern inspired by room color; Mojo, a striped design with bold colors; Inked, an etched pattern suggestive of body art; and Corduroy, which was inspired by classic fashion and textured like fabric.

“The refrigerator has become part of the fashion of the home,” Filicia said.

The kitchen connection was underscored by a recent Amana survey of 1,000 consumers, who identified it as the No. 1 room they would most like to see get a design facelift. The majority of respondents also identified the kitchen as the hub of their home, and while nearly a third chose the room as the best for entertaining, only 17 percent believe their kitchen best represents their sense of style, suggesting new opportunities for appliance manufacturers.

Recall: Maytag Refrigerators Due to Fire Hazard

Name of product: Maytag®, Jenn-Air®, Amana®, Admiral®, Magic Chef®, Performa by Maytag® and Crosley® brand refrigerators

Units: About 1.6 million

Manufacturer: Maytag Corp., of Newton, Iowa

Hazard: An electrical failure in the relay, the component that turns on the refrigerator’s compressor, can cause overheating and pose a serious fire hazard.

Incidents/Injuries: Maytag has received 41 reports of refrigerator relay ignition, including 16 reports of property damage ranging from smoke damage to extensive kitchen damage.

Description: The recall includes certain Maytag®, Jenn-Air®, Amana®, Admiral®, Magic Chef®, Performa by Maytag® and Crosley® brand side by side and top freezer refrigerators. The affected refrigerators were manufactured in black, bisque, white and stainless steel. They have model and serial numbers printed on a label located on the top middle or left upper side of the refrigerator liner and have the following model and serial number combinations:

  Serial Numbers ENDING with AND Model Numbers BEGINNING with
Side by Side
Refrigerators
AA, AC, AE, AG, AJ, AL, AN, AP, AR,
AT, AV, AX, CA, CC, CE, CG, CJ, CL,
ZB, ZD, ZF, ZH, ZK, ZM, ZQ, ZS, ZU,
ZW, ZY, ZZ
ARS, CS, JC, JS, MS, MZ, PS
Top Freezer
Refrigerators
AA, AC, AE, AG, AJ, AL, AN, AP, AR,
AT, AV, AX, ZK, ZM, ZQ, ZS, ZU, ZW,
ZY, ZZ
AT, CT, MT, PT

Refrigerators with freezers on the bottom are not included in this recall.

Sold at: Department and appliance stores and by homebuilders nationwide from January 2001 through January 2004 for between about $350 and $1600.

Manufactured in: United States

Remedy: Consumers should immediately contact Maytag to determine if their refrigerator is included in the recall and to schedule a free in-home repair. Consumers should not return the refrigerator to the retailer where it was purchased.

Consumer Contact: For more information, contact Maytag toll-free at (866) 533-9817 anytime, or visit the firm’s Web site at www.repair.maytag.com

 representative models pictured ( Other models are affected.)  

Amana’s Jot: Dry-Erase Refrigerator

I have a friend who used chalkboard paint to create a large drawing space on her kitchen wall.  The family leaves messages and greetings there and she doesn’t have magnets and scraps of paper posted on (and falling from)  her refrigerator.

Kitchen clutter is a problem for most of us and Amana is addressing this with their Jot refrigerator.  The Jot has a dry-erase finish so you can leave notes, post reminders or release your inner artist and then wipe it all clean.

Here are the basic specifications:                                                 

Practical Convenience

  • 17.6 Cu. Ft. Capacity
  • Humidity-Controlled Garden Fresh™ Crisper Drawers
  • Gallon Door Storage
  • Classic Configuration
  • Easy Freezer Access
  • Sturdy Glass Crisper Shelf

Common-sense Features

  • Refrigerator Light

Your Style

  • Integrated Door Handles

Warranty

  • Limited One Year Warranty – Parts and Labor. For one (1) year from the original retail purchase date, any part which fails in normal home use will be repaired or replaced free of charge.