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Leading refrigerator brands misleading consumers: VOICE Study

11-September-2002
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Leading refrigerator brands misleading consumers: VOICE Study

According to an independent study conducted by Voluntary Organisation in Interest of Consumer Education (VOICE), some of the leading refrigerator brands being sold in the Indian market including Whirlpool, Videocon, LG and Samsung neither carry the Indian Standards Institute (ISI) mark, nor mention the ‘pull-down time’ or ‘cooling time’, ‘ice-making time’ or energy consumption value even when it is mandatory to do so.

Since the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) does not not specify any standards for ‘pull-down time’ and ‘ice-making time’, the manufacturers often tend to make advertising claims without proper verification.

These are the findings of the study done on eight refrigerator brands: Whirlpool, Allwyn, Godrej, BPL, Kelvinator, Videocon, LG and Samsung.

VOICE, which claims to have conducted these tests on direct cool 165-175 models of eight popular refrigerator brands in an independent laboratory, has rated Whirlpool as the best buy for an Indian consumer followed by Videocon in the second place and Allwyn in the third place.

It says that Videocon brand has the best cooling time of 78 minutes while Kelvinator brand takes the maximum 202 minutes to cool “that is two-and-a-half times that of Videocon. LG’s compressor jammed during the test and had to be replaced”.

VOICE study further says that Videocon is the most energy-efficient since the fridge consumed only 0.60 kwh of energy in 24 hours compared to 1.44 kwh consumed by Kelvinator. The BIS standard specifies an upper limit of 1.1 kwh per 24 hours.

According to the Voluntary Organisation in Interest of Consumer Education, an estimated running cost of Rs 4 per unit, Kelvinator users would overspend Rs 1,226 in terms of energy bills, as compared to Videocon, which has the best energy-efficiency value at 0.60 kwh/24 hours.

Whirlpool, Godrej and BPL are the quickest ice-makers but no brand provides the standard 300 ml ice-tray as is specified by BIS.

The brands tested were : Allwyn’s ‘Durocool’, Godrej’s ‘Star’, LG’s ‘GR 1711 ASX’, Videocon’s ‘S 161 PP’, BPL’s ‘C161’, Kelvinator’s ‘Master Gold’, Samsung’s ‘SRA 18N F0’ and Whirlpool’s ‘Master (DLX)’.

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