We spend a lot of money on our appliances to make day-to-day activities easier and faster or to add entertainment in our lives. Our appliances are our investment and it’s not meant to be “disposable” but we are expecting it to stand the test of time.
Luckily, this is attainable. First, buy good quality appliances (recommendations and reading ratings go a long way) and second, always apply proper care through these simple home appliance maintenance tips from us at Same Day Pros:
Dishwasher maintenance tips (average life span: 10 years):
1. Use it regularly – you are not prolonging the lifespan of your dishwasher if you are just using it sparingly. If you want your dishwasher to be in tip-top condition, simply use it regularly. This prevents any buildups from settling in your machine.
2. Always scrape the plate – your dishwasher won’t most likely require a pre-rinse, but make sure that you scrape off those bones or other solid items before loading. This will prevent any hard bits from causing damage to the pump, filter and hose. After scraping, load the dishes the right way – dirtiest surfaces face in toward the center of the dishwasher and cups and pots should be facing down.
3. Help your filter – if you notice that the wash performance of your dishwasher is poor, then one of the first things to inspect is your filter. Are you cleaning your filter regularly? If you answer no, then start doing it immediately! It is very easy to do and won’t take much of your time. The filter is usually situated in the bottom rack of your dishwasher (if not, check your manual). Just simply rinse the filter under running water and if there are some stubborn solids, you can use warm soapy water with a soft brush of sponges to avoid possible damage.
4. Vinegar is your friend – simply pour a few cups of vinegar at the bottom of your dishwasher, make sure that it’s empty, then run on low for a clean cycle. Those mineral deposits and leftover scraps will be taken care of. You can also use vinegar + water solution and a soft cloth to clean the edge of your dishwasher.
5. Don’t overload your dishwasher – not only will this wear out the mechanical parts of your dishwasher, but it will also prevent proper cleaning, as it restricts the water spray pattern. You’ll end up rewashing your dishes. In addition, don’t use your dishwasher other than for your dishes (not all things that you see online are true or safe). Many people are trying to wash some car parts and even candlestick holders, which ends up clogging the filter and destroying the components of your appliance.
6. Make sure that you prevent your racks from being corroded – as soon as you spot the plastic coating of your racks wearing off, repair it with replacement tine tips or vinyl paint, otherwise your racks could corrode and the rusty metal will find its way to your pump.
Washing machine maintenance tips (average life span: 11 year):
1. Don’t overdo the detergent and always use the manufacturer’s recommended type – more detergent doesn’t mean cleaner clothes; it could actually leave residue on your clothes. Refer to your user manual in determining the right amount of detergent.
When it comes to choosing detergent, don’t only consider your budget, it’s better to choose machine-specific detergent or at least not too harsh detergent, which could cause damage to your machine.
Also make sure to load the detergent and fabric conditioner into the right trays.
2. Don’t close the door after using – this is one of the most common mistakes of users, closing the door of the washing machine immediately after use. Just leave the door open for about 15-30 minutes to allow moisture to dry out and prevent any molds, mildew or bacteria to build up. You can also wipe out the inside of your machine after the 30 minutes mark to ensure that there is no leftover moisture.
3. Clean your washing machine – again, vinegar is your friend when it comes to cleaning your washing machine. An equal parts water and vinegar solution will do the trick. Do this once or twice a month especially for front-load machines.
Make sure that you also clean the lint filters of your washing machine regularly. Once your machine’s filter is full, it will not be able to collect the debris. This will in turn get stuck on your laundry or build up in the machine, resulting in your machine’s reduced performance and shorter life span.
Don’t forget to check your rubber gasket, where dust particles and residues from detergent and softener may gather. Just simply use a damp cloth to clean your rubber gasket.
4. Check your machine’s hoses for signs of brittleness and cracks – even without any obvious damage, make sure to replace your machine’s hoses every 4-5 years. Note that the older the hoses are, the higher possibility of them bursting.
5. Before loading your laundry, make sure to check for loose items – this will help prolong the lifespan of your machine’s drum plus those coins, pens, and the likes, could cause damage to your clothing.
Additional tip: Want to save electricity? Make sure to go full load! This also applies to your dishwasher.
Refrigerator maintenance tips (average life span: 13 years):
1 Fill it up! – did you know that the more food you have in your fridge, the cooler it stays every time you open it? This is because of cold food’s thermal mass that helps in maintaining the low temperature. More reasons to buy more stocks.
2. Ensure that your refrigerator’s door seals are tight – aside from cleaning up the seals at least twice a year, make sure that your door seals are tight. If not, cool air will seep out. And if you suspect this, call in your electrician to check.
3. Keep the coils clean – since your refrigerator’s coils are out of sight, it is easy to forget to clean it. A dirty coil will prevent your refrigerator from running efficiently. You only have to do this at least twice a year to keep those debris and dust away.
4. Clean up – aside from the coils, make sure that you also clean the interior of your refrigerator-shelves and walls, to avoid any bacteria build up.
5. Use the right temperature – make sure that the temperature of your refrigerator is between 37 and 38 degrees, while your freezer should be kept at 0 degrees for optimal performance.
Additional tip: Are you still using your 15-year-old refrigerator? If yes, then it’s time for a replacement (yes, even if it’s still working). Your refrigerator is already outdated and might not be functioning efficiently and it might be the culprit why your electricity is running high.
Oven maintenance tips (average life span: 16 years):
1. Deep clean your oven – aside from using the self-cleaning option of your oven (make sure that you are closely monitoring your oven when using this feature for safety), clean your oven thoroughly (unplug your appliance while doing this or if the plug is hard to reach, you can turn off the switch breaker). You can use a vinegar + baking soda solution and gently scrub with a wet towel. Don’t forget to dry it out before using.
2. Prevent spills from happening – if you have food that might drip, just simply place a baking sheet to catch possible drippings. After baking, don’t forget to clean immediately to avoid food accumulation.
3. Make sure that your oven gasket is intact – this is important in the cooking process and with signs of wear and tear, have it replaced before using the oven.
4. Do not spray cleaning solution directly – to prevent damage of sensitive electronics, spray your cleaning solution to the cloth and not directly.
Television maintenance tips (average life span: 4-10 years):
1. Turn off your television when not in use – theoretically, the lifecycle of your television is from 40,000-60,000 hours, so turning it off when not in use extends the lifespan of your appliance plus you can also save money on your electricity bill.
2. Make sure to have at least 4 inches of space between your television and wall – improper installation will result in overheating, so make sure that the ventilation of your television is not covered.
3. Clean regularly – televisions are easy to clean, you just need a microfiber cloth and a tv screen cleaner, then wipe away, to avoid dust to settle on your television. This will also prevent dust from building up on the ventilation.
4. Use a surge protector – we suggest that you use a surge protector to protect your appliance from voltage spikes especially during thunderstorms and lighting. This is also applicable to other electronic devices. Ask an electrician to install this for you.
Nothing is of course fool proof. Any signs of defects or issues in your appliances, call in your trusted repairman. Do not attempt to do the repairs by yourself to avoid further damaging your electrical appliances.