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Lawsuit filed against LG over appliance malfunction due to allegedly faulty parts: 'It's a nationwide issue'

"It's a tremendous hassle. I think they should make it right."

"It's a tremendous hassle. I think they should make it right."

Photo Credit: iStock

If your refrigerator has ever conked out unexpectedly, you know the pain of tossing spoiled groceries and shelling out to replace an appliance that should have lasted longer.

Now, a spate of fridge failures has sparked a new lawsuit claiming that LG Electronics is defrauding consumers by selling refrigerators with compressors that die far too young.

What's happening?

The federal fraud lawsuit alleges that a critical part called the linear compressor, found in many LG and Kenmore refrigerators, frequently breaks down years before its advertised lifespan is up. The suit argues this leaves owners out in the cold with warm fridges, ruined food, and hefty repair bills.

Plaintiff Betsy Anderson experienced the problem firsthand. "One morning I went to get milk out and it was sour," the Redwood City homeowner, who saw two pricey fridges fail in just five years, told NBC. "It basically stopped working. It wasn't cold."

Over 100 people have already joined the case, which follows an earlier class-action settlement that only covered certain LG fridge models purchased between 2014 and 2017. Attorneys say they've been "inundated with calls" from upset customers who bought LG refrigerators more recently.

"It's a nationwide issue," said Azar Mouzari, a lawyer for the plaintiffs.

Why are unreliable fridges concerning?

When major appliances die young, it's a lose-lose for household budgets and the environment. Consumers are forced to pay for repairs or replacements years before they should need to.

"It's a tremendous hassle," Anderson told the news outlet. "I think they should make it right."

Meanwhile, all those broken fridges end up in landfills, which release about 120 million metric tons (about 132 U.S. tons) of carbon dioxide equivalent into the atmosphere each year, squandering the energy and resources used to produce them.

Refrigerators have a particularly high environmental footprint, producing about 89 kilograms of carbon (about 196 pounds) per year, according to Earth 911, so extending their lifespan is crucial for conserving natural resources.

What's being done about unreliable fridges?

The fraud lawsuit aims to hold LG accountable and provide relief for affected consumers. Per NBC, attorneys are asking the court to:

  • Extend warranties on the linear compressors up to 20 years
  • Refund anyone who bought an affected LG or Kenmore fridge since 2018

In the meantime, what can you do if your own fridge is acting up?

Many utility companies offer rebates for upgrading to new Energy Star appliances, which could help offset the sticker shock of an unexpected replacement.

When shopping for a new refrigerator, look for models with top reliability ratings and warranties of at least five to 10 years on the compressor. With a little homework, you can keep your cool and avoid getting burned by premature appliance breakdowns.

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