The modern home is full of useful appliances. Refrigerators, ovens, washing machines, dishwashers, garbage disposals, and many more items have become so common we don’t even think about how useful they are. That is, until something breaks. When a household appliance stops working, you can find yourself in real trouble. It’s important to get the appliance fixed as soon as possible and to make sure the repair is done right.

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Common Household Appliance Failures

There are a number of items in your house that can fail, and each one will present unique challenges and require a unique solution. Many appliance failures have relatively simple causes. It may be a broken part or a dysfunctional electronic component. Often, appliances fail just due to regular use. Pieces wear out and normal functioning stops.

For many appliances it can be useful to get regular maintenance checks to make sure they stay functional and don’t wear out or break down. This is especially true of high end appliances, when you have made a significant investment in a quality product. This is also useful for appliances that are especially important. This can include a refrigerator-freezer unit that stores your food. If it fails, it could mean hundreds of dollars in spoiled groceries. In this case, it pays to keep your appliance well maintained and in good working order.

The same is true of other food storage systems, such as climate controlled wine storage. You may easily have hundreds or even thousands of dollars worth of wine stored in a carefully maintained climate. If that climate changes, the cost of the losses could be quite significant. This makes regular maintenance a very good investments. Often, the cost of maintenance can be less than a nice bottle of wine.

What to Do About a Broken Refrigerator

If your refrigerator fails, you are working against a ticking clock. If you don’t get your refrigerator and freezer working again quickly, you could lose hundreds of dollars worth of cold and frozen foods. At a time like that, speed is of the essence. A repair company that says they can send someone out in the next few days is almost useless. It’s important to get someone to your home as quickly as possible to save your food.

In the meantime, while you wait for a service professional, there are steps you can take to preserve your food for as long as possible. The most important thing you can do is to keep your refrigerator or freezer closed. A sealed fridge or freezer can hold its temperature for a surprisingly long time. But each time you open the fridge or freezer you are letting out the cold air and allowing in the warm air from your kitchen, greatly decreasing the cooling ability of your unit. Opening the fridge or freezer as little as possible gives you the best chance at preserving your stored food. If all else fails, you can pack your refrigerator with store bought bags of ice to help keep them cool.

There are many possible causes of a broken refrigerator or freezer unit. However, there are some more common causes that are mostly likely to be the culprit. If your refrigerator is running but not keeping your groceries cold, there are a few things you can check yourself. First, check the gaskets along the doors of the fridge and freezer. Make sure that you are getting a tight seal and there are no tears or gaps. You can also check your ice maker to make sure there is a tight seal and that it closes completely. If there is a gap in either of those places, cold air could be escaping. A simple replacement of the gasket should solve your problem.

Another common cause of failure to cool is when the condenser coils are unable to do their job properly. The condenser coils are located underneath the refrigerator and are usually accessible behind the grill on the front of the fridge. If the coils are too dirty, they can stop working properly. Cleaning them with a long vacuum extension or a long handled brush will often solve the problem. In fact, condenser coil cleaning should be a regular part of refrigerator maintenance.

Common Oven and Range Issues

Common issues with ovens and ranges include stoves that won’t heat and ovens that heat unevenly. In both cases, there are a variety of causes, but sometimes the problem can be relatively simple to diagnose and repair.

If a gas stove is not lighting, it is almost always due to a failure in the sparking unit that lights the gas. You may find that the unit clicks, but does not spark, or that it does not respond at all. In this case, it is important to avoid running the gas without lighting the stove. Built up gas can be dangerous. It poses a risk when inhaled and can also be a fire risk, as gas in the air can ignite and cause serious damage. The issue could be a minor electrical issue, but if you are unsure how to fix it, it’s wise to call a professional. A gas range repair involves electricity and flammable gas. As with any electrical repairs, faulty wiring poses a fire risk. This risk is even greater when dealing with flowing flammable gas. It is also  best to avoid any attempted repairs that could lead to a dangerous gas leak, which could cause gas poisoning or even an explosion. In most cases, gas ranges should only be repaired by a professional.

If you have an oven that is not heating evenly, the problem could be with the heating element in the bottom (or sometimes also the top) of the oven. When functioning normally, the heating element heats up to an even orange glow and provides heat equally to all parts of the oven. If a heating unit is not heating evenly you may see signs of blistering or damage on one part of the heating element. Fixing the problem may be as simple as replacing the heating element. This is rarely an expensive part, and the labor involved is minimal. This could be a DIY fix if you are confident in your skills, or a relatively quick repair by an appliance repair person.

Washing Machines

Another household appliance that often fails is the washing machine. There are a number of different ways in which a washing machine can fail. It can stop one or all of its functions, including agitating, spinning, and/or draining. It can vibrate excessively. Or it can even overflow, creating a terrible mess in addition to failing to clean your clothes. Often the issues with washing machines are electrical or electronic. If a switch fails your repair person can test it with an ohm meter and replace it if it’s broken. A failing electronic control board could cause a variety of problems with functioning and can usually be replaced. In this case, make sure you are getting a quality replacement, usually from the original manufacturer of your appliance.

When You Can’t Diagnose The Problem

If you can’t figure out what is wrong with your appliance, it may be time to call an appliance repair specialist. A repair person should be able to diagnose the problem and fix it, often for a relatively low cost.

If you need to repair a home appliance, TrustDALE has some suggestions. The Appliance Doctor has been in business for over 30 years and has a long history of customer satisfaction. They can often proved same-day service. Their repair service call is just $87.95, plus parts and labor, and they can come to your home anywhere in the greater Atlanta Metro Area.

If you are dealing with a high end luxury or European brand appliance, you want to make sure that you have a repair person who is knowledgeable in your appliance. The Advantek Service Group is a three generation family owned business that specializes in high end appliances. Their technicians are trained in all of the high end brands. Their dispatchers make sure to match the right technician to each service call, so that you are guaranteed expert service. Advantek Service Group’s service call is $89 flat. Once they diagnose the problem, they will quote a flat repair fee that includes parts and labor, so you know exactly what your repair will cost you.

Keeping your appliances well maintained will help reduce failures and repairs. But when things do go wrong, it’s good to know that you have someone to trust. Both The Appliance Doctor and the Advantek Service Group have been committed to customer service for decades. They have been thoroughly investigated by TrustDALE and are backed by Dale’s Make it Right Guarantee. So you can feel confident in your appliance maintenance and repair.