Home appliances make our lives easier. They are heaven-sent. But they can turn into a pesky annoyance, especially when they conk out at the most unholy moments.
Hosting a party tonight? You’ll discover the fridge not cooling up or the dishwasher malfunctioning just a few hours before your guests come over. But you can avoid these unwanted breakdowns by giving your appliance their well-deserved TLC.
Here are some helpful tips to keep your major household appliances in tip-top shape and expand its lifespan.
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1. Ensure proper air circulation
As a vital part of the kitchen and the priciest home appliance, you want to give your fridge the best care possible. Refrigerators can last up to 13 years, but in many households, they never serve half of their expected lifespan.
The secret to a long-lasting refrigerator is to ensure the coils are kept cool at all times. To achieve this, regularly clean the coils by dusting it off or using a vacuum to remove dust. Keep it away from the walls and free from obstruction to ensure proper air circulation. Aside from preventing untimely damage, clean and cool coils also help save money on power bills.
Keeping the door gasket clean should also help ensure that the fridge is adequately sealed. Use warm water and sponge to remove debris and gunk. Do this at least once a week to make the gasket last longer.
2. Don’t overstuff your refrigerator
Coil and motor problems are among the most common problems with refrigerators. But this should not be a problem if you avoid overstuffing your unit. Make sure there is enough space for air to move inside the fridge. Thermo-sensors detect the temperature inside the unit and shuts off the motor once the desired setting is achieved. Without proper air movement, this target is never hit; hence, the motor works non-stop.
In addition, overstuffing your unit can make it impossible fully close the door. If it doesn’t shut completely, cold air can slip out which makes the motor work double time. This can shorten the serviceable years of the fridge.
3. Clean your gas ranges every use
Gas ranges are designed to last long. Of the major home appliances, gas ranges have the longest life expectancy at 15 years. To enjoy its intended serviceable years, make sure you clean it every after use. Make sure to remove food debris and gunk that can accumulate in its surface. Clean out the gas port using a paper clip or pipe cleaner to prevent build up from blocking it.
4. Check your clothes for any loose change
Some may think that washing machines are the most fragile, easily damaged home appliance. While these machines are designed for heavy-duty tasks, improper use can cause it to wear faster than expected.
Coins, pins, and other small objects can get stuck into the spaces in-between the agitator causing washing machine problems. Plus, when these unwanted objects get into the tub, they can cause dents, chipped paint, and rust into the washer drum. Avoid this by making sure that your pockets are empty before washing them.
Replacing or cleaning filters can also help maintain your washer. Filters are an essential part of this home appliance. Usually located at the attachment point of the machine, these thimble-looking accessories trap water sediments preventing them from entering your unit. Simply remove hoses, poke out the filter, and wash it to remove the trapped debris and sediments.
Tampa-based appliance repair specialists remind users to never overload their washers. In a bid to hasten our laundry, we tend to stuff in as many clothes as possible into the washing machine. As a result, the unit is doing more than what it is designed. Using your washing machine beyond its recommended capacity strains the motor and results in more frequent troubles. Follow the load limit as specified by the manufacturer and it will add a few more years in your unit’s serviceable year.
5. Never slam the doors
This is a pretty basic tip that applies to your refrigerator, washer, microwave oven, and other home appliances with doors. If you continually slam the lid of an appliance, it can damage the physical integrity of the door or the electronics/electrical components installed in it.
For example, the washer lid has embedded sensors and controls in it. Dropping it can damage these fragile electronic components and alter the entire operations of the unit. To avoid this, make sure you gently close the lid.
6. Clean the lint trap
Dryers are the equally important tandem of washing machines. With proper use, they can last up to 15 years and you can even add more by cleaning out the lint trap after each use. You should also use the auto-sensor to check whether the clothes are dry. Once the sensor determines its contents are already dry, it shuts off the motor immediately. It’s also important to clean the exhaust vent at least once per year. Alongside, also check the outside air vent.
Here’s another tip: just as you would with a washer, make sure your dryer is level. Placing it in an uneven surface can cause it to tilt or hop around causing the components to wear out faster than expected.
7. Check your oven temperature calibration
If your oven temperature seems off, you might need to recalibrate the thermostat setting. Check the user manual to see how you can reset the unit’s temperature setting. To do this, you need to place a quality oven thermometer in the center of the shelf. Wait for the oven to achieve and maintain the desired temperature. Follow the instructions outlined in the user manual for calibrating temperature setting.
8. Clean your air-conditioner unit during spring
Air-conditioning units get stored during winter. When summer comes, it has some nasty surprises. Different stuff, such as dead bugs, leaves, mold, and mouse droppings, can get their way into your a/c unit. If not removed, they can cause trouble to your cooling unit. Make sure to get your air conditioner cleaned up after long winter storage.
Giving your home appliance its well-deserved TLC is simple and doesn’t take a lot of time, but it can be tough to follow through. Every time you forget about these simple maintenance tips, think about the cost of appliance repair and replacement.