Thursday, March 4, 2010

Interesting Quotation from Robert Bosch, Founder of Bosch GmbH, In Light of the Treatment We Have Received from Bosch on Our Dishwasher Flooding Claim


"I would rather lose money than trust. The integrity of my promises, the belief in the value of my products and of my word of honor have always had a higher priority."

- Robert Bosch, founder of Bosch GmbH

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Bosch B/S/H Corporate Principles: What We Stand For

[from the Bosch Home Appliances website]

BSH Corporate Principles - What we stand for:

"Our customers can trust us.

Each one of our brands stands for the highest quality, outstanding design, and excellent service.

We make every endeavor to ensure that dealers and customers around the world experience BSH as a competent, dependable, and fair partner."

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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Since We Already Have So Many German Products in Our Home, We Had No Qualms Whatsoever About Buying a Bosch Dishwasher

When we bought our Bosch dishwasher, we had confidence in Bosch products, Bosch technology, design and engineering, and Bosch customer service. The Bosch dishwasher was top-rated, very quiet, energy-efficient, and had a stainless steel interior and the patented anti-flooding feature.

Since we already had many German products in our home, it was easy to buy a Bosch dishwasher when we needed a replacement for our old one. We were completely unprepared for the dishwasher failure that came last May 2009, but it seemed like a good idea to buy Bosch at the time. Live and learn.

Over the years, we have owned several German cars, starting with our first VW Beetle in the '60s, and followed by two other German automobile lines. Although we do not currently drive a German car, every day we trust our safety and our lives to the Bosch ABS braking systems when we drive on today's roads and highways.

In our kitchen, we have a German egg cooker, toaster, coffee maker, and there is vollkornbrot in the pantry. The china on our table is a noted German brand that has been in business for hundreds of years. Our kitchen knives are a well-known German brand. Our cooktop, oven and microwave are branded Bosch subsidiaries. Many of our cameras are made by an old and respected German optics manufacturer. And even our dog leashes are made in Germany.

We have enjoyed our travels to Germany for both business and pleasure. Some of us have studied German in school, and we had a German exchange student in our home some years ago.

For many years we have had a positive view of German culture and products. In exchange for our loyalty, we expect reliability, ease of maintenance, responsive customer service, and good value for the money. We expect to be treated fairly.

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Monday, February 1, 2010

Timeline on the Bosch Dishwasher Flooding Claim

  • December 9, 2005 Bosch dishwasher purchased: FD 851100XXX / SHY56A0XXX/23

  • May 27, 2009 Bosch dishwasher flooded our kitchen, dining room and basement during the night.

  • May 27, 2009 - August 2009: Post-Flooding Repair & Recovery Period - Below is a list of some of the tasks you face when a dishwasher, or any appliance that uses water, sustains a failure with extensive flooding of your home: removing flood waters from kitchen and basement with mops, towels, brooms, and wet-vac; drying out house; preventing mold and mildew with fans and dehumidifiers; removing kitchen flooring down to the sub-flooring; removing toe boards, molding and trim from kitchen and testing for moisture; locating anything containing particle board and testing for moisture; pulling back carpet in dining room to assess water damage; making many trips to hardware stores for tools and supplies; quickly relocating furniture and household goods out of flooded areas and into other rooms; dealing with insurance issues; getting quotes from carpenters, appliance stores and flooring companies; shopping for flooring, carpeting, and a new dishwasher; coordinating and scheduling repairs and installations; managing repair do-overs; washing dishes by hand for 8 weeks; keeping a household going with a kitchen in chaos; continuing to earn a living while dealing with a major disruption of our day-to-day living; then, after all repairs and installations completed, moving all furniture and household goods back to their original locations.

  • We did not take a vacation last summer. Sadly, it's true. Instead, we spent our summer at home trying to restore order to the chaos of the dishwasher flooding.

    In a short-lived moment of pique, I wondered where Bosch and Gerling executives took their holidays. After all, Bosch has annual sales of around 8.76 billion euros (over $12 billion U.S. dollars). Did they head to Grand Cayman, the Swiss Alps, the Galapagos Islands, St. Tropez, or Machu Picchu? Or did they go kite-surfing in Greenland, skiing in Sun Valley, trekking in Nepal, or bison-watching in the Yellowstone?

  • August 11, 2009 Contacted Bosch Customer Service at 1-800-944-2904 in Huntington Beach, California. I spoke with V.M., Customer Support Representative, who dismissed my concerns because it had been so long since the flood, and because the dishwasher was not available for testing since it is not installed anymore. I told her it was available for examination and testing, but it was not longer installed in the kitchen. It was in my garage. When I insisted on speaking with someone in technical service to discuss my damage claim, I was turned down. However, she did take my contact information. I told her I would appreciate a call back.

  • August 13, 2009 Received a letter from V.L., Claims Coordinator, of BSH Home Appliances in Huntington Beach, California. Enclosed was the Claim Acknowledgement Form to be filled out and returned to her, plus instructions for filing investigative reports and for arranging a diagnostic report with one of Bosch's authorized service technicians. There was also a request for photographs of the damage and a request to retain all failed parts.

  • October 23, 2009 Mailed via USPS certified mail the Claim Acknowledgement Form with photographs and a description of the incident and damage. I also included a link to a website I had set up with photos and information about the flooding.

  • October 26, 2009 Put up a website/blog with information and photos on the flooding incident.

  • October 27, 2009 T. from Bosch came to do a diagnostic report on the dishwasher which was in my garage. He said he could not test it for valve failure unless it could be hooked up to power and water. I suggested we move it to the patio where there was an electrical outlet and suggested he rig up the hose to the outdoor water spigot and run the dishwasher that way. He said he would have to check with the office, and he would have to figure out a way to connect the water hose and would get back to me. He said they might have to send the unit back to the company for testing. He did not want to try to rig it up that day because it was raining and that might pose a danger of electrocution. He did not even open up the dishwasher to look at the circuit board or any of the components. He would let me know soon how to proceed.

  • October 31, 2009 Sent a duplicate packet with the Claim Acknowledgement Form, photos, description, etc. via UPS since the USPS packet I sent earlier never displayed any tracking information online or after repeated trips to the post office. This UPS information packet was delivered November 2, 2009, and signed by D. at Bosch in Huntington Beach, California.

  • November 5, 2009 Called Bosch Customer Service for an update on my claim. Was told nothing had happened on it because there was a notation in the file that the dishwasher was no longer on the premises and was thus unavailable for diagnostics. Case had been closed. Upon further investigation, I was told that my claim forms had been received and had been sent to the insurance company. No diagnosis or testing of the dishwasher was needed. If they needed more information, they would call me. Check back in a week.

  • November 16, 2009 Received a call from J.H. of HDI Gerling in Chicago. Case number is GLP XXX58. A technician will call to set up an appointment to test the dishwasher.

  • December 8, 2009 Had not heard from the technician. Called J.H. Must have an inspection by diagnostic technician for the case to go forward. Then it will be all done. She will contact the technician again.

  • December 21, 2009 A.T. (Regional Manager) from Bosch tested the failed dishwasher on our patio. His assessment: Failed intake valve/pump. Failed anti-flood system. He sent his report to J.H. at HDI Gerling Insurance that afternoon. She will call with settlement terms soon. That's all that needs to be done. If no call in a week, call A.T. back. For more information on the diagnostic testing, click here.

  • January 8, 2010 No word from Bosch or Gerling, so called A.T. Just be patient. You're almost there. Nothing else to do. The insurance company has to check the laws when they get claims. These things take time. Call him back in a week if no word received.

  • February 1, 2010 Still waiting. No word from anyone. Six weeks now since diagnostics completed.

  • Februrary 8, 2010 Still waiting. No word from Bosch or Gerling. Seven weeks since diagnostic testing showed pump/valve failure.
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    Update February 1, 2010: It Has Been Six Weeks Since A.T. Filed His Report

    Six weeks since A.T. tested the failed Bosch dishwasher and determined that the dishwasher failed because of a valve and pump failure which then overwhelmed the patented anti-flooding feature. Six weeks since he filed his report with J.H. of HDI Gerling (Bosch's insurance company).

    And almost six months since I first contacted Bosch customer service about the failure of their dishwasher and the flooding of my house. Six months of filing claims, making phone calls, setting up appointments for Bosch technicians to come test the dishwasher, six months of following up, and still no resolution to my claim.

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    Update: On Dec. 21, 2009, A.T. (Southeast Regional Field Service Manager for Bosch Home Appliances Corp.) Tested the Failed Bosch Dishwasher

    After many follow-up calls to J.H. of HDI-Gerling America Insurance Company in Chicago, we finally heard from and scheduled an appointment with A.T. of Bosch Home Appliances Corporation. A.T. is the Southeast Regional Field Service Manager for Bosch Home Appliances in Huntington Beach, California.

    He arrived at our home on December 21, 2009. We had scheduled a test of the failed dishwasher with him on our patio.This arrangement was the only way we could have both the water and the electricity required to power the many tests involved in determining the cause of the dishwasher failure we had experienced. This unique testing arrangement actually worked out very well.

    After plugging in the electrical outlet on our patio, A.T. hooked up a water line from our exterior water spigot to the dishwasher. Everything worked, so testing could begin.

    The tests were thorough and professionally done. He conducted a number of tests, and explained some of them to us. At all times, A.T. was courteous, professional and knowledgeable.

    He questioned my husband closely about what the dishwasher looked like when my husband first discovered it was flooding. My husband said, as he has from the beginning, that when he first saw it, the dishwasher was spewing water from all sides, but especially from the upper right corner. Evidently the pressure of the water had breached the seals around the door and allowed the water to come out.

    First A.T. tested the drain carrying water from the dishwasher. This was on the right side of the dishwasher. There was no crystalization from water deposits in the pan, meaning that no water had been present in that area. Otherwise the evaporation would have left crystals from the water.

    Next he tested the left side of the dishwasher and the intake pump and valve, as well as the anti-flooding feature.

    After a while, he told us that, based on what he had observed, the failure was "on our side," and that "Bosch owned it." We were not at fault and we were not responsible for the flooding of May 27, 2009. No operator error.

    Apparently, the pump failed and overwhelmed the anti-flooding feature. You can see from the photos that even during the tests, the water began flowing out of the dishwasher onto the concrete of the patio. And the testing did not take very long, compared to running a full load of dishes or compared to the amount of water that could come out during the night. Res ipsa loquitur.

    A.T. also said that after the insurance company had settled with us, Bosch would ship the dishwasher to one of its facilities for examination and further testing. This is a good idea, because I don't want anyone to go through what we have gone through.

    He said the would file his report to J.H. at Gerling that afternoon, and to let him know if I had not heard from her within a week. That was six weeks ago, and I have not heard a word from anyone at Bosch or Gerling.

    On January 8, 2010, as he requested, I called A.T. because I had not heard from J.H. two weeks after the testing. He told me to be patient because these things take time, and we're almost there, and the insurance people have to look at all the laws for my state to see what their liability is. If I didn't know better, I would suspect stalling, delays, and excuses. The old runaround. Videbimus.


    Below are some of the photos I took of the testing process and the final results:




























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    Monday, October 26, 2009

    How It Happened: The Bosch Dishwasher Flood of Our Home


    At 6:30 am on May 27, 2009, my husband went downstairs as usual to make our morning coffee. Unfortunately, we were not able to enjoy our coffee that morning.

    In the kitchen, he stepped into 1-1 ½ inches of water covering 2/3 of the kitchen area. It was coming from our Bosch dishwasher, and apparently had been flooding most of the night. Water was still coming out.


    This was not a leak of the 2-3 gallons of water used to run a load of dishes. This was a catastrophic failure. My husband turned off the water to the dishwasher, but it continued to drain out for several more hours.

    The water had gone under the vinyl flooring, as well as on top, causing the floor to undulate as we walked on it. The water had gone through the floor to the basement below and had flooded the basement as well. The water was raining down through the floor at many points, and had flooded ½ of the basement area. Many of our possessions in that area were soaked. The wood framing and floor joists in the affected area of the basement, from top to bottom, were soaked. The concrete basement floor had water standing on it, increasing as more water came from above.

    To say that we were shocked, angered and devastated by what we encountered is an understatement, especially since we were simultaneously dealing with flooding on two floors of our house, caused by a dishwasher with a patented anti-flooding feature.

    We had to work fast to stop the flooding and minimize its damage.

    On the kitchen level, we started mopping, soaking up water with towels, cutting and removing the vinyl flooring to get to the plywood subfloor, hauling the vinyl flooring outside, wet-vac-ing the water up, opening windows, turning on fans, turning on dehumidifiers, turning on air conditioning, anything to remove the water.

    We started moving the contents of the lower kitchen cabinets and the island cabinets to another room. We moved the refrigerator away from the wall to remove the flooring beneath it. In doing so, we noticed that the wall between the refrigerator and the adjacent dining room was also wet. While checking the dining room floor, we saw that the carpet, padding and subfloor in that room were wet as well.

    In the basement, we did basically the same thing, mopping the water up, wet-vac-ing the water, and sweeping the water out into the garage and down the driveway. We put out buckets and plastic containers to catch as much dripping water from the ceiling as we could. We moved our possessions in that area out into the driveway, and started trying to dry them off. We set up dehumidifiers and heavy duty fans.

    We used fans and dehumidifiers for three weeks before the wood was dry enough for the carpenters to begin their work.

    We had to remove all particle board that had gotten wet, because once damp it cannot be salvaged. The toe boards/baseboard in the kitchen had a façade of oak over particle board, so we removed all affected toe boards at the base of the cabinets and the kitchen island, using a moisture meter to determine which wood was wet and which was dry.

    By hand, we removed two layers of vinyl flooring down to the plywood subfloor, and began drying out the floor. In the dining room, we tried to dry out the padding, carpet and fiberboard, but gave up on them. In the basement, we used heavy-duty fans and dehumidifiers to dry the wood after sweeping, mopping and wet-vac-ing the water. We carried our wet and damaged personal possessions to dry areas as quickly as we could.

    In the coming days and weeks, we contacted our insurance agency, we contacted the carpenter, we shopped for new flooring, we shopped for a new dishwasher. We moved the island and our dining room table and chairs to the den. We packed up the contents of the kitchen island cabinets and our dining room hunt-board, and moved them to other rooms. It was difficult to find things we needed because everything was scattered. We washed dishes by hand for eight weeks while the ongoing repairs were completed.

    The repairs had to be orchestrated carefully, with every step done in the correct sequence. For example, the carpenter wanted the dishwasher out so he could accurately measure the cavity for the replacement wood. The flooring people wanted the toe boards/baseboard replaced, but not the molding/trim, before they started on the floor. The appliance people wanted the floor installed before the dishwasher went in. And on and on.

    The disruption to our day-to-day lives was substantial, frustrating and time-consuming.


    Labels for this post: bosch dishwasher, dishwasher, flood, leaking, water, kitchen, dining room, basement, bosch, flooring, vinyl flooring, particle board, rot, damage, subfloor, plywood, fiberboard, carpet

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    About the Photographs: The Bosch Dishwasher Flood of Our Home

    Below are a few of the many photos we took of the Bosch dishwasher flood of our home.

    Please bear in mind that these photos were taken several hours after the initial response to the flooding. Because we were so busy dealing with the crisis, it was not until hours later, when we had gained a small degree of control over the situation, that I had time to begin documenting the extent of the damage.

    Before we began taking photos, we had to stop the flooding, remove the water, remove two layers of vinyl flooring in the kitchen, and start the fans and dehumidifiers.

    These are just a representative sample of the images, designed to provide the viewers with a glimpse of what can happen when a dishwasher floods your home in the middle of the night.


    Labels for this post: bosch dishwasher, dishwasher, flood, leaking, water, kitchen, dining room, basement, bosch, flooring, vinyl flooring, particle board, rot, damage, subfloor, plywood, fiberboard, carpet

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    Thursday, October 22, 2009

    The Kitchen: Photos of the Bosch Dishwasher Flood of Our Home















































    Labels for this post: bosch dishwasher, dishwasher, flood, leaking, water, kitchen, dining room, basement, bosch, flooring, vinyl flooring, particle board, rot, damage, subfloor, plywood, fiberboard, carpet

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    The Basement: Photos of the Bosch Dishwasher Flood of Our Home

























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