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Miele K 12820 SD (White)

Miele K 12820 SD (White)

3.2 from 28 reviews

Disappointed, great expectations.

I have owned a Miele K12820 for the last 3 years during this time the drip tray in the back of the fridge has blocked up so many times resulting in water leaking from the inside of the fridge on to the laminated floor boards which are now ruined. Initially I had a technician out to clear the drip tray but it is ridiculous that you are expected to clear this every month or so. The handle has also been an issue and now it is just about to break. Two significant design flaws on an expensive refrigerator.

Purchased in January 2016 at retrovision for $1,799.00.

Build Quality
Value for Money
Ease of Use
Cleaning & Maintenance
Noise Level
Internal Layout
Household Size 6 person(s)
1 comment
Hi Andrew, please accept our sincere apologies for the inconvenience of the matter. If possible, can you email your full name and best contact number to prsupport@miele.com.au and a member of our team will be in contact as soon as possible? Please reference your Product Review username so we can identify you. Kind regards, Miele.

Significant Disadvantage

This fridge suits all of the required purposes. Two fruit and vegetable drawers are a particularly desirable feature. Door trays could be just 1cm deeper. Greatest disappointment is that the door handle broke after a year's use. We were always careful not to pull on it roughly especially if it had just closed so it is with huge dissatisfaction I had it break off in my hand. We have a 60 year old fridge in the shed and its handle is still sturdy and working. Longevity of design not considered.

Purchased in November 2017 for $899.00.

Build Quality
Value for Money
Ease of Use
Cleaning & Maintenance
Noise Level
Internal Layout

Broken handle AGAIN

After much research Miele Was the brand For me. I love, love my Miele fridge and freezer. I love the design and function. But the handle has broken 2 times. Why do they make them out of plastic. There is so much stress on the handle and for a product that is used often why plastic. I know I can buy a new handle but they are still plastic and I know the handle will continue to break. So disappointed.

Purchased in April 2014 at JB Hi-Fi.

Build Quality
Value for Money
Ease of Use
Cleaning & Maintenance
Household Size 3 person(s)
1 comment
Hi Diane, please accept our sincere apologies for the inconvenience of the matter. If possible, can you email your full name and best contact number to prsupport@miele.com.au and a member of our team will be in contact as soon as possible? Please reference your Product Review username so we can identify you. Kind regards, Miele.

Crappy handle!!!!!!

This is a fantastic fridge except for the really poor design of the handle. An item that is under so much stress should not be made of plastic...really!!!!!
MINE HAS SNAPPED and I am not happy. I really dont want to pay for another one as the replacement is the same thing...no improvement is design or manufacture.
I will see if i can improvise another solution as the Miele product is no good.

Purchased in March 2014 for $2,800.00.

Build Quality
Value for Money
Ease of Use
Cleaning & Maintenance
Noise Level
Internal Layout
Household Size 2 person(s)
Hi Dianne, please accept our sincere apologies for the inconvenience of the matter. If possible, can you email your full name and best contact number to prsupport@miele.com.au (please be aware this contact method is for Australia & New Zealand only) and a member of our team will be in contact as soon as possible? Please reference your Product Review username so we can identify you. Kind regards, Miele.Thankyou Miele your customer service is fantastic

Both handles on Miele broken in less than 4 years.

These handles are plastic, who puts plastic handles on a $4000 fridge freezer set. I would not vuy this brand again. Apparently they are made to last 20 plus years. Great so for the next 16 years I have to tug the crap out of the doors just to open them. We have to leave the doors open if we are meal prepping, or tag team and get as much as we can in or out in one go. How embarrassing we have renovated our whole kitchen around this set and now everyone laughs at us.

Date PurchasedJan 2012

Handle broke and now door seal

Handle broke within 12 months and now door seal is broken. Called Miele and was told that the whole door needs to be replaced at a cost of $400 + call out fee. I was told it would not be covered under warranty. Fridge is not even 3 years old! not happy to say the least. Would not buy again!

Date PurchasedMar 2016
1 comment
Hi Vincent, Miele appreciates your feedback and apologises for the inconvenience. We will continue to work closely with you to ensure a resolution is met. Kind regards, Miele.

Do not buy a Miele fridge

Terrible handle design. Has broken 3 times and now it's out of warranty they won't replace the handle. Freezer pair is fine but obviously doesn't get opened as much. Very regrettable expensive purchase. Leaks as well!!!
I am left with a fridge that we have wrestle open, is an embarrassment to us and should be to Miele!

Date PurchasedJan 2016
1 comment
Hi Steph, Miele appreciates your feedback and apologises for the inconvenience. We can confirm the Service booking has been scheduled to assess your appliance and Miele will work closely with you to ensure a resolution is met. Kind regards, Miele.

Better with a new handle design

We recently had the handle replaced (under warrant, great service from Miele). The new design seems much stronger and gently breaks the seal before opening the door. The fridge itself works very well, and is extremely hardwearing and easy to clean. We have the pigeon pair and they look great together. This is our first Miele and I have been very impressed by all levels of design in this fridge.

Date PurchasedDec 2016

Not worth it

3 month old fridge and seal was faulty. This is being fixed under warranty by replacing the door and seal as they are one unit. I expect this would be very expensive if not under warranty. Rear internal wall gets very wet and you cant store things against it. We were advised that's just how it works. Like some other reviewers we have had cheese go off with mould. I guess we are lucky as we have not yet broken a handle but sounds like it will only be a matter of time. Miele should stick to vacuum's!

Date PurchasedFeb 2018

Handle not fit for purpose

This is a good fridge rendered frustrating by a very inferior handle. Two handles have broken within 4 years. One was replaced under warranty and one free with a little persistence. We were told to use a two stage action and wait, to break the seal - which is unrealistic considering the fridge is used by visitors and grandkids. Also that the drain hole can ice up causing a too strong seal - which has not been a problem for us. The handle is obviously just not strong enough and Miele should admit the problem and provide a better designed one free to all. It is NOT FIT FOR PURPOSE.
Full marks though to CustomerCare (email, not phone) who responded to email within an hour - and new handle arrived within 24 hours.

Date PurchasedJun 2014

A very Low quality fridge and freezer handles.

Just 4 months out of 2 year warranty, cast iron handle snapped off, cost $179.00 visit fee only without replacing the handle which the technician did not have despite giving them a full description of the part. plus the cost of the handle $144.00 which will be send to me to replace it myself otherwise fees will apply. A product big time waste of money, I wish I read reviews before buying. now I'm spending money I haven't got.

Date PurchasedAug 2015

Good Fridge but poor/weak handle design.

Excellent fridge, very quiet, easy to clean and trouble free until May 2017, when the handle unexpectedly snapped off. Not at all happy when Miele's response was that I was not opening the fridge correctly by releasing the seal slowly, before opening the door. This has caused undue stress on the bracket. I'm sorry but that is just unrealistic!

Date PurchasedJan 2014

Heaps of room.

Keeps the temperature at a good level. Easy to clean. Heaps of room. Makes a few little funny sounds that take a bit to get used to. However you can't put things in front of the fan which everyone does because it looks like an empty spot but makes the temperature heat up.

Date PurchasedMay 2014

Great fridge - crap handles

Couldn't be happier with the fridge - the handles are another issue though. Agree whole heartedly with another reviewer - Miele should redesign the fridge handles to be more robust and replace the poorly designed ones free of charge. They advertise their products as high quality and long lasting. Well, they are, as we have a multitude of Miele products and have had for years now -but they need to put in a disclaimer when it comes to fridge handles. At $147 each they should be better quality.. Update - I have contacted Miele and advised them of the broken handle and they are aware of the design flaw. Their newer model fridge handles have a more robust design. They did however comment that to minimize the chance of a breakage again the handle should be gripped as close to the edge of the fridge as possible. If held at its end the large handle can produce quite a bit of leverage and an over zealous tug can break the thin alloy mounting plate. They also recommend you frequently check the water drain plug inside the fridge located at the back. If this is blocked not only does water run onto the interior of the fridge floor, it also causes a strong vacuum to develop making it harder to open, requiring more force on the handle, resulting in it breaking. All kudos to Miele though - they said because the fridge was only 3 yrs old they would supply the replacement handle free of charge - can't ask for much better after sales service than that!

Date PurchasedJan 2012

Repeated broken handle on fridge now the freezer

The fridge and Freezers were purchased together 4 yrs ago. Very happy with both units in every area except the door handles. We have had to replace the fridge handle 3 times and now the freezer handle has broken. Worried we were to rough. Agent replacing the handle told us it was a common fault and he has replaced multiple handles. The handles are made of an alloy that becomes weak and cracks. Miele did replace 1st two handles however now on our own as out of warrantee and the handles cost over $130.00 each. Ouch!!!

Date PurchasedJan 2013

The best of the Best

My old fridge-freezer died of old age. I already had a stand=alone Freezer (different brand). My Miele is superb, All food seems to keep much better than before. Vegetables keep particularly well
Price? Surprisingly this fridge was no more expensive than many other Premium Brands on the market. It is completely silent which, initially, was a bit disconcerting for with previous refrigerators you could always tell when they switched to Defrost and, over time, when just operating.
I would recommend this fridge to all

Date PurchasedApr 2016

Same problem 2nd time round

I have the same problem only our handle has been replaced before under warranty and it broke again. Our purchase was in Dec 12 so I am now wondering if this is a continuing problem. I have been told the replacement will now cost us $175.00 which I'm not happy about. Subsequently I got back in contact with customer service 2 days later to follow up my problem to find out that they had already approved a replacement free of charge and it was on the way. The consultant explained that the seal is very strong and the opening action should be in 2 steps.
1 lever the handle to brake the seal
2 open the door

This was never explained to us at any time prior and seems a little complicated process for opening a door but we will try. I can say our family has been very careful with all our products but this action seems a bit of an over kill. We see if this handle last more than 18 months.

Full marks for Miele customer seervice.

Date PurchasedDec 2012

What a Disappointment!

We bought Fridge/Freezer Water dripping from fridge/not draining within fridge is an ongoing problem. The handle has split on the edge of the fridge - poor design. Our pair are differing shades of white - we were advised they are made at different factories. Suggested we (at our own expense) have them sprayed in enamel that matches.

Exemplary partner to the Miele FN 12827 S, Reliable, great looking, and perfect!

So I wrote a review for this great fridge some time ago but it was never published, so apologies for the lengthy delay in catching up on my reviews.

This fridge is the perfect match for the Miele FN 12827 S.

I will make this one not as long, because to be honest everything I said in the review of the matching freezer is true about this fridge. While not the top of the line Mastercool, it honestly does its job, and does it well. This pigeon pair was bought to replace a 1-2 year old LG bottom mount fridge/freezer. And you'd thing from going from a combined 306l to two separate fridge and freezer with a combined total of very usable 800l of space, one would obviously think energy consumption would at least increase some, being only 2.5 stars versus the LG's 2.5 as well, but having TWO appliances instead of one. But to our surprise Origin bill came in shockingly low for the quarter. And this was Spring/Summer. So on that front absolutely amazed that Almaty tripling the storage space, the energy usage actually dropped. Typical German efficiency.

The shelves are extremely strong and are infinitely adjustable. The wine rack the same. The door bins can be easily washed in the dishwasher or simply wiped with a damp sponge.

All in all a wonderful fridge that I'd recommend to anyone.

A few small qualms however, but, they are similar to the freezers "cons".

The shelves are no spill proof as in the glass is flat and of something were to spill it would leak to other shelves below. And to be honest, I'd have to say that's about all, and that digging for a con.

It does have few "normal functions" I had never seen before. Water often gather on the rear inside of the back wall of the fridge, usually ice and then melts with its self defrost cycle which drains out a small hole and out to the top of the compressor where it evaporates. Odd at first, but after reading, completely normal operation.

All in all food lasts longer than any fridge prior including the former LG. it has a wonderful LED light which diffuses the light to reach every nook and cranny. So I'll put a short pros and cons list for comparison, as I said the freezer review is extremely similar.

Astonishingly efficient
Build quality
Even temperatures throughout
Extremely quiet
Heaps of space (quite hard to actual fill)
Great LED light
Strong shelves
Infinite adjustibility
"Dynacooling" a fan circulates air throughout for even temps
Strong easy to clean and adjust shelves
Brilliant white matches all other Miele white appliances
Easily joined to make "one" large built-in look fridge freezer
Door handles that make opening so easy

Lack of "spill proof" shelves
Non adjustable crisper bins (temp and humidity)
No door alarm as the freezer has
Lack of the "soft close" hinges

So overall a must look at if you budget and space allow. But overall an amazing pair for $4k. Don't think I could have made a better choice. Similar, and I mean almost exact (as the Mieles are made by Liebherr) but cheaper. No reliability issues on either to note to date on either, a good sign this far. Customer service is stellar as usual, and recently was invited to join Miele 4 Life. I honestly can't fault the fridge in anyway, other than the few, at which I was grasping for in the first place. And I have to say, absolutely nothing wrong with the KFN 14842 SD ed/cs which was the other option we looked at, but for the price, and having the space for 800l of fridge and freezer, I don't regret not getting the other one bit. Both great products and although not made by Miele, and many peoples complaints of Liebherrs less than stellar reliability, I doubt Miele would rock their name for a product that is truly horrible. And, touch wood, there have been zero problems what-so-ever.

So if you budget is $4-$5k and you have the space for 1.2 metres of width, or even space to have them separately, go for it. I wouldn't hesitate once second. With the volume to price ratio, it's hard to beat.

If you have any questions on either the fridge or freezer, don't hesitate to ask, I plan on keeping up my reviews as 2016 rolls around. And Miele truly build, and stand by their motto "Immer Besser"!

1 comment
****Update**** Nearly a year in and nothing has gone wrong (touch wood). No bin issues, no handle issues. They have cut our energy bill by approximately 29%. Which is a lot, seeing as two appliances took the place of a very small 306l total fridge/freezer by LG. It's not only that the bill was $$, but far less kwh. The bill has dropped every quarter since we bought them. Couldn't have asked for a better appliance. Next purchase, the new Blizzard bagless!!

the most beautiful fridge/freezer combo

After a decade of loving F&P I was tempted over to Miele (begrudgingly, as I don't like other Miele products) by this gorgeous matte white set, which goes beautifully in my dark grey country kitchen. I thought the white might look dirtier but this is not the case, as you actually tend to wipe off small marks more often than you do on a SS fridge.

+ looks fabulous! i'm so over SS and this matte white and minimalist retro design is timeless.
+ works great, adjustable shelves etc, no complaints. the third door shelf has a very shallow lip, about 1", and 3 times we've had glass bottles fall and smash. eventually we will learn to only use plastic there. I'd also suggest to open the door gently!
+ not sure why, but the fridge and freezer are so easy to move that I can vacuum and mop behind them regularly.
+ really like that you can remove drawers in the freezer and just use shelves, so the top shelf now stores our various ice cube moulds, and many bottles of alcohol.
+ fridge door opens 180º and beyond, although having a stopper on it would be handy (not sure if this is an available feature as the manual is a bit hopeless)
+ the wine shelf is a gimmick we don't need - who drinks only half a bottle?? :) we have a cellar for wine storage. (again, in warmer climates I'm sure this is useful) It's also not unique to Miele, have had one in my F&P fridge for years. Currently I've removed it to make room for taller items.
+ i've not had any items freeze up if pushed to the back, which has happened in other fridges. So far it's all just worked without any fuss.

- whilst not having water/ice making wasn't a deal breaker (as our plumber forgot to install a water tap when we reno'd the kitchen, doh) I find it so odd that Miele doesn't offer this at all. Luckily for us we are in love with the new shaped ice cube trays, and prefer large cubes/balls. If I still lived in Qld I might be more annoyed, but here in SA our need for cold water is only short lived, our farm water is usually very cold all year round.
- as mentioned the handles are a problem. the freezer one has been bent (by an impatient male!) so we are all aware to take it easy and be patient.
- we have no idea how to connect the two units together, the documentation on how to do it is hopeless. If we ever have any problems we will have the repair guy do it. (The manual is quite hilarious, advising us to not store certain fruits/veg in the fridge. I'm sure those who live anywhere north of Brisbane would have a great chuckle at that advice.)

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Questions & Answers

I am having trouble with water not draining away through the little drain yet I can't seem to reach anything that may be blocking it...any ideas? Have tried to use a straw.
No answers

My refrigerator is 5y old. I had this kind of noises since the beginning but recently they became much more loud. One noise is kind of LOUD BANG - as if somebody hit the refrigerator body with a hammer. Initially it was not as loud. When I made inquiry with the Miele service they said that it is nothing wrong. Maybe it is not but because it has became rather too loud I am concerned. The other noise that is more noticeable than earlier is the noise as if it was a fluid bubbling into a container. Anybody has any comment on these noises? Should I contact Miele specialists? Joe
1 answer
Hi Joe Bubbling is normal, usually the coolant shuffling about. Our has always made some dripping noises et cetera, as the back wall defrosts and water runs down the hole and out to the container on the compressor to evaporate. Usually louder banging sounds are metal pipes expanding and/or contracting slightly. However a really loud bang could indicate an issue. As it would be even past its extended warranty if bought, as long as it's still working, I wouldn't worry. Cheers

Fridge door pops open about 20 seconds after you close it. What do I have to do to fix it?
2 answers
Hi Jeana, Can you explain a bit more? It should only open by pulling the handle, or is you handle sticking then "popping" which pops the fridge door open? Cheers JoshThere was a broken plastic clip in bottom door hinge jamming the door. From memory part 14 in diagram of door.


K 12820 SD (White)
Price (RRP) $2,199
Dimensions 1850 x 600 x 630 mm
Energy Rating2 star(s)
Household Size 3-4 people
FeaturesWine Rack
Colour / Finish White
Handle Type External
Smart Fridge No
Shelf MaterialGlass
Number of Shelves5
Number of Fruit & Vegetable Bins 2
Weight75.3 kg
Manufacturer Warranty2 year(s)
Total Capacity 405 L
Fridge Capacity 405 L
Release dateApr 2011
Compare all Miele K 12820 SD

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