How to Take Care of Home Appliances

Today many advanced home appliances have made our lives much easier. Definitely big home appliances are not cheap but if you take care of them and execute proper maintenance at regular intervals, they will really last longer.

It is easy not to think about things you use every day as you get so busy in day to day tasks. Your dishwasher, refrigerator, laundry machines and other appliances are very common parts of day to day life that many home owners have this false sense that these appliances will keep working on their own but in reality they do need your help every now and then.

Our home appliances see a great deal of use around the home, they help us cook, store, clean, make our environment warm when it is chilly outside, make us feel cool while temperature goes high sky and much much more. Then why not give these appliances some extra care not just to stretch its usage but also for a super sparkling home all the way? After all they do for us it is well deserved to take good care of them. and well it is not difficult at all, you can do it all by yourself once you are armed with appropriate knowledge.

So why not start giving your home appliances some cleaning love and in return they will be geared for super performance.

Following are given some of the biggest and most important appliances in your home and information regarding how to take care of each of them so that they last longer.

Refrigerator:

One of the most important things that you should do is cleaning off your refrigerator’s condenser coils. These coils work to remove the heat from inside of the fridge which is what keeps your food cold. However, it is possible that dust and other debris can latch on to coils which make the refrigerator work harder to perform its job and eventually overheat the motor.

When you look under this big guy it will be undoubtedly full dirt, gunk and food drips…oh that is so not a good sight! Don’t be frightened it is not very difficult it just needs a bit of your time and attention…yes that’s about it! Just drag it away and mop out all the dirt and nasty stuff that has fallen down. You can also vacuum the refrigerator coils or just from behind so that it last longer and perform well.

In order to clean off condenser coils, you have to just take a vacuum with a brush attachment. Go over the coils to get the dirt off. It is as easy as that.

It is also important to take a close look at the rubber seal along the door’s edge whose purpose is to keep warm air out. When the seal starts getting old and begins cracking, it compromises the tight air seal and allows warm air to seep in. This makes the refrigerator work harder to keep your food cold. Make it sure to inspect it after few months and replace it if needed. A tip for this is spread a thin layer of petroleum jelly on the seal to prevent it from cracking and to keep a tight seal when door is closed.

For your freezer, try to keep it full but not too full. All the frozen food radiate its own coolness like an ice pack would, so keeping the freezer full makes refrigerator to work less to keep everything cold inside. If you don’t have a lot to freeze, consider filling up jugs with water and put them in the freezer to help with that.

However don’t stuff your freezer absolutely because you also want to keep vents free from blockage because they help circulate air and keep it cold.

Exterior is equally important therefore you need to clean that up too and trust me it’s the simplest. Just take damp cloth and clean the stainless steel exteriors they will start shining in seconds. For more crisp cleanliness you can use vinegar and water solution, it works wonders. This solution will leave your refrigerator spotless and new looking.

Dishwasher:

Not every house has a dishwasher but if you own one make sure you are taking good care of it. There is a big mistaken belief here is that our dishwasher doesn’t need cleaning because it cleans itself every time you put it to use. Although it helps us to clean but it is correspondingly essential to wipe away all the gaskets to ensure a tight seal.

First and foremost, you should clean out the filter at the bottom regularly. It is usually underneath the bottom sprayer and catches any larger segments of food or other debris from getting lodged in drain hose. When you clean it periodically, it is made sure that it never gets clogged.

It is also be consider that you don’t overload your dishwasher. If you stuff with dishes all over the place, water may not get access to other dishes that need to be cleaned and you will end up running it again or instead taking more time to clean the dishes by hand.

Also run your kitchen tap and let water get hot before running your dishwasher. It this way it can start immediately with hot water instead of using more time and energy for heating element to heat up water before it actually starts washing the dishes.

And if glass breaks inside of your dishwasher, it becomes certain that you will need to clean it up but make sure you get every last piece. Doing it by hand is not the best option so use a vacuum to get all of it because even small pieces can cut through a seal letting water into the motor.

Oven and Stove:

Believe it or not, you don’t have to perform much maintenance on your oven and stove. Just keep it clean while most ovens are self-cleaning. In fact you should not use oven cleaner on a self-cleaning oven because it gets too aggressive and will damage the surface of interior of the oven. Just use the self-cleaning feature which heats the oven up to almost 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit burning everything off.

When it’s done you are left with crumbs that you just need to sweep out. Some believe that using the self-cleaning feature may not be a good idea always because you there is a risk of blowing a fuse which demands a repairman to come in and fix. However if you use the self-cleaning method, only run it for an hour or so perhaps instead of 3 to 4 hours as suggested by manufactures in the manual.

For the stove top, you just make sure that it is clean and nothing blocks the gas burners. If you own an electric stove top, ensure there is not anything on the coils that could possibly burn and stink up the house.

Air Conditioner:

You can remove the cover panel and check evaporator coils and fins. If there is dirt build up, usually you can vacuum it out and clean it yourself. But if there is freezing ice over the coils and fins, then consider it a problem and call a professional to come in and repair.

For the condenser, you should make sure that it is free of debris as well. Spend some time cleaning off the radiator fins on the outside as well as inside by hosing it down. You can take off the big fan by removing a few screws allowing you to access the inside.

Furthermore, if you find obstructions in the way, get rid of them. Many people like to hide their A/C condenser with lattices, brushes and shades but as it is a piece of machinery that requires being free with wind blowing all around it, so let it be.

Furnace:

With a furnace, there is not a lot you can do for its maintenance, especially if it is powered by gas as it is dangerous to play around it, but there are a few things you can do. First and foremost, on a regular basis replace the air filter which is usually every 3-4 months depending on how it is used. When air filter gets dirty, it lessens the flow of your HVAC system which limits its performance and forces the blower to work harder and your house will not be cooled or heated as efficiently as it could be requiring more energy and costing you more money.

You should also examine the flames that the furnace produces. Flames should be steady blue that are not flickering orange whereas a teeny bit of flickering is fine. If you find them more flickering orange, it indicates a problem that requires professional to check out.

It is also a good idea to clean the ducts if you have not cleaned them in a while. Ducts can be a place for mold to grow and you surely not want those spores blow out of your vents and float around in the air. Carpet cleaning companies usually have tools to do this job and it costs only a couple hundred bucks.

Water Heater:

There are certain things that you should regularly check on a water heater and all are of relatively equal importance. First check the pressure relief valve that automatically gets rid of excess pressure created by hot water inside of the water heater. However, calcium and mineral buildup can form inside the valve and freeze it shut in a way, keeping it from opening up when it needs to be. In order to fix this, open up the valve simply a couple of times a year to prevent that kind of buildup.

The dip tube inside the tank forces cold air down to the bottom of water heater in order for it to get heated. If the dip tube gets old, it can corrode and break apart leaving cold water at the top of the tank near hot water outlet. If you don’t get hot water you need at the faucet but heating elements are working properly then it is likely the dip tube which is not too difficult to replace.

Also it is a good idea to drain water completely out of water heater every now and then in order to get rid of sediment that becomes collected on the bottom of the tank. It is also to be noted that never leave an electric water heater on when it is empty because heating elements are designed for heating up water and are prone to burn otherwise.

Clothes Washer:

While washing clothes, don’t use much laundry detergent on high efficiency machines especially that don’t use a whole lot of water. A film can be left behind on the inner surface by too much detergent and this film can be s hotbed for mold growth.

Furthermore you should also pull the washer out from the wall and check all of the hoses for wear and tear which eventually could cause a leak. Ensure that your washer is perfectly level and is planted to the floor firmly. If not, excess vibration can occur which can loosen connections over time causing a water leak, not to mention lots of noise.

Clothes Dryer:

Last but not the least…the dryer. Probably you know this already but it is very important to clean out the lint filter after every cycle. If the lint filter is clogged, it severely reduces drying time and can be a huge fire hazard. Above that, every few months take the time to deep clean your dryer as lint can build up in other places apart from the lint filter. Usually you can remove the back panel by opening a few screws and you can get access to inside from there. You should also examine the dryer exhaust duct for trapped lint and clean it out.

See how these seemingly dreaded tasks can be easily done. I am sure now you’d be anxious to do it any sooner. Good luck!

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