In 1985, my wife and I bought a Sears refrigerator for the apartment we had in Irvine. That refrigerator has followed us ever since. When we had our current house built, we had all new appliances--but that refrigerator ended up in the garage. When my daughter and son-in-law rented our house in Boise, it went to them, and when they bought their first house, it followed along. It finally has some sort of leaking problem, so my daughter recycled it, and bought a new refrigerator.
I think we have had one minor repair on that appliance during that whole time--which is pretty impressive. Think about it: I think it cost us less than $500, and it worked well for 27 years. The salescritter who sold my daughter its replacement said not to expect new ones that last anywhere near that long. His claim is that the EnergyStar requirements shorten their life, and not to expect more than 5-7 years from new ones.
Perhaps he was just trying to sell an extended warranty--but if he is right, then perhaps the EnergyStar requirement is just one more environmental idiocy. How much energy did we save by having the same appliance operating for 27 years?