Appliances are a part of our everyday lives and we often take them for granted. As a result, it can be frustrating when they break down.
Getting appliances repaired is costly and inconvenient, especially if you have to clear your schedule around the contractor’s window. However, you can prevent a lot of repair issues by performing simple maintenance tasks yourself.
Check the Electrical Connection
Almost all appliances take AC voltage from an outlet and convert it to heat, light or turn a motor. If this voltage is interrupted at any point, the appliance may not work, or it may malfunction. Some problems with home appliances can be solved with the use of simple tools and a bit of common sense. For example, many seemingly broken appliances require a reconnection of power, which could be as easy as flipping the master switch on your breaker box.
It’s also a good idea to check for frayed cords or wires, which are not only a fire hazard but can be the source of an electrical short that could cause the appliance to malfunction or stop working altogether. You can find replacement cords at most home improvement stores and, with the help of a non-contact voltage tester or multimeter, check for voltage on each conductor.
Another thing to keep in mind when performing appliance repair yourself is that moving parts, such as fans and motors, are the most likely to break down. A common hint that these components are about to fail is a loud noise coming from the appliance. This may be a sign that the fan belt is going bad or that the motor is about to overheat and burn out.
If you do decide to call an appliance contractor for professional assistance, it’s always a good idea to clear your schedule for the entire time he is working on the appliance. This is because you won’t know exactly how long it will take him to make the repair. The scheduling assistant will typically give you a window of time when to expect him, but it’s best to be available for the full length of that window just in case the work takes longer than expected. This tip will save you the hassle of having to reschedule other appointments or deal with missed business opportunities. It will also prevent you from having to wait around for hours waiting for someone to show up for a home appliance repair service.
Check the Water Level
It’s easy to take appliances for granted, and they work hard year after year without much trouble. However, that hard work can easily catch up to them if they’re not properly cared for. In fact, even home warranty companies won’t cover appliances that are not in good working condition. Performing small repairs and maintenance on your appliances is cost-effective and can prolong their life expectancy by years.
Before attempting any repair or maintenance on your appliances, make sure that you disconnect the power and gas supply. Also, make sure that you’re wearing appropriate safety gear and using proper tools. You can purchase these at hardware stores or online.
Always test for continuity with a multimeter. Refer to the appliance’s owner’s manual for specific instructions on how to do this correctly.
You can find a wealth of information about appliances on the Internet, including YouTube videos and user-generated reviews. However, wading through a sea of hacks and ragtag advice can be time-consuming and frustrating.
Some appliances are simple to fix at home, but others may require the help of a professional. If your appliance is still under warranty or you’re unsure of the problem, it’s a good idea to check with the manufacturer first. Depending on the model, you may be able to get a replacement under the warranty.
Appliances can get clogged by debris that collects inside them, such as soot or dust. They can also become overheated if they are plugged in incorrectly or if their filters are clogged.
Before scheduling a repair service, make sure that you have cleared the way for the contractor to access the appliance and perform the necessary tests. The best way to do this is to have a clear path of access, along with sufficient lighting and an area for the repair expert to work. You can also save yourself a lot of headache by keeping detailed inventory lists of each appliance, along with photos of the appliances and their stickers for model identification. This can be a handy tool to have in the event of a repair emergency.
Check the Filters
Whether it’s the washer, dryer or fridge ice maker, these appliances all use filters to keep them running properly. If you notice that one of these filters is dirty, make sure to clean it. A clogged filter can stop the appliance from working and could even lead to a fire.
This is one of the most common appliance repair issues people face, and it’s often easily fixable. In most cases, all you need to do is flip the power switch on and off again. Occasionally, this will reset the system and eliminate any problems you’re having.
It’s always a good idea to check these simple things before you call in a professional for an appliance repair service. This will prevent any unnecessary costs and make it easier to decide whether repairing the appliance is a good option or if replacing it makes more sense. In most cases, it will be much cheaper to replace the appliance. The only downside is that you may have to wait a little while until the appliance is ready for you to use again.
Check the Fan
Many appliances have fans that aren’t working right, and this can lead to overheating or not cooling. To fix this, you can try to clean the fan blades and check for any obstructions. You can also make sure that the fan is properly aligned and the motor is running. It’s important to test the appliance after cleaning it. The first time you use household appliances after a long period of inactivity, it is essential to clean them. This will ensure that they work according to their manufacturers’ standards.
The best way to ensure that your appliances are running smoothly is by ensuring they are protected from power surges. You can do this by using a whole-house surge protector that connects directly to your main electrical panel. This will help prevent damage caused by lightning-induced surges. Additionally, you should unplug appliances during thunderstorms to avoid power surges.
If you are a handyman or have a bit of mechanical knowledge, you can do many basic repairs to your appliances. However, you need to have the right tools for this job. The best tool to have is a multimeter, which can detect different voltages. If you’re not a skilled electrician, this tool will help you determine which wires or components are faulty.
You should also have a box full of screwdriver bits, including Phillips, flatheads, and square drives, as well as a stiff putty knife. This tool is especially useful for disassembly tasks. It helps you release hidden clips that would be difficult to reach otherwise.
It is also helpful to have a digital thermometer for measuring temperature. Thermostats are another common appliance that can malfunction due to improper setup or maintenance. You can also check the flooring on which the appliance sits to see if it has become uneven or if the vents and filters are clogged.
The decision to repair or replace an appliance is often a matter of cost and convenience. If the appliance is old and expensive to repair, you may want to consider replacing it with a new one. In some cases, a new appliance will save you money in the long run because it is more energy efficient and likely to last longer than its predecessor.