A loss of a star, LG begins payment for incorrect energy rating
<?xml:namespace prefix = st1 />LG Electronics USA: French Door Refrigerator losing Energy Star
LG Electronics has made an agreement with the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency on the matter of Energy Star rating for its French door bottom mount freezer model refrigerator, listed below. Nov. 2008 LG reach this agreement to suspend the use of the rating on the affected units.
LG has voluntarily under the direction of DOE changed all printed materials and labeling by removing any information regarding Energy Star program. Also those models are being removed that have not been sold already and those models will be modified with a new icemaker control panel.
ConsumerReports.com states that LG claims its model LMX25981ST French-door-fridge has an energy consumption of 547 kWh per year, the testing done by Consumer Reports tested the model and what was found was that the only way to reduce the energy consumption to anything close to this number was to shut off the icemaker. Where it becomes a problem, the icemaker is attached to the cooling unit in the door for the ice and water, and with this function off all the of ice melts. Without this cooling unit the refrigerator will not function properly.
The testing by C.R. showed that when the icemaker was on it caused the energy consumption to nearly double to the amount LG claimed, 1110 kWh per year.
These claims are made on the similar Kenmore models with 795 in the beginning of the model number.
According to LG media contact, John Taylor, the average payout for the difference in energy cost will be $5.77 per year for the next 14 years coming to a total of $80.78 per defective unit.
How many units were affected? Taylor stated he was not allowed to give information on the total number of units. Taylor adds that LG is coordinating a service network to resolve the problem.
Currently 70% of the affected units were sold retailers, Home Depot, Best Buy and Sears.
The DOE provisions that LG make an annual payment to the consumer for the difference of the energy usage starting payments no later than, Dec. 18, 2008. The DOE has interpreted this act as a misunderstanding, and if all obligations are met LG will have no additional penalty by the DOE.
Obligation to LG:
· Modify all units to lower energy usage at the consumer’s home, “free of charge.”
· Stop all deliveries and make modification to the units in the warehouses.
· Remove the Energy Star label from all printed media of the affected models: Marketing materials, price labels, websites, and any other communication material.
· Notify all manufacturers, retailers and consumers of the problem, and to make appropriate modifications. Also, stop all sales of affected models of LG and OEM products until modifications are made to the unit.
· Modifications must be made to affected units in-door icemaker, when the unit is tested it must function at normal operating temperatures preventing the melting of the ice. Only the fill tube and ejection heater maybe off during testing. Therefore, modification must make a separate shutoff connection between the cooling unit in the door and the icemaker components.
· In addition to checks must be made from LG to the consumer for the difference energy usage. Payable on the anniversary of the first check.
· Exception: Units marked as floor models and having the Energy Star logo removed are except from under going modifications.
DOE claims that they will be meeting with other manufactures of similar models. Jennifer Scoggins, press secretary for the DOE, “I can not give out any information on the negotiations.” Scoggins would not provide any information on how the DOE became aware of the issue.
Consumer Reports listed another similar style fridge by Samsung having a listing of 540 kWh and testing at 890 kWh.
Here is a list of all LG models listed affected by this agreement:
LFX25950; LFX25960; LFX25971; LFX23961; LFX21960ST; LFX21971ST; LFX21980ST; LFX25980ST; LMX21981ST; LMX25981ST
Also all Kenmore models listed with 795.XXXX are to have same changes.