Reasons To Never Leave Your Appliance Running Unsupervised
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Reasons to Never Leave Your Appliance Running Unsupervised

Dishwashers are a wonderful appliance to have but it is very annoying when they break. Here are a few things you can do yourself before getting an appliance technician involved.

Power - You'll notice this comes up every time if you read all of my articles. Check your fuse box, lots of embarrassing service calls could have been avoided if someone had just checked their fuses.

Dishes not getting cleaned - Haul out your user manual and check if you are following all the directions on how to use the dishwasher best. Some dishwashers will actually have a reservoir for a certain kind of salt; the salt will help soften your water and improve the shine on your dishes and cups. Make sure you are using a good type of dishwasher soap and unfortunately you really do need a "finisher" like Jetdry to really get rid of soap scum. If your finding left over soap in the machine after the full cycle is run you should call a tech.

Cycles not completing or Stopping during cycles - Make sure you are closing the door 100% if the door isn't completely shut it might start alright but end up stopping before finishing since it thinks you've opened it. You may need to call someone to adjust the door for you or perhaps change out the latch if it's a constant issue.

Bad Smells or an explosion of bubbles - For smells clean it with a special detergent or stick with the always effective vinegar and baking soda trick. Bubbles comes from somebody using hand dishwashing soap for the dishwasher. They are very different things. The soap for dishwashers are specially designed to not "sud" or make bubbles and if you use regular soap it's going to be.. interesting...

For things like leaks, floppy doors, power problems not caused fuses, and other issues you'll likely need a repairman.

Here are a few things to check on your stove/range/oven before calling for an appliance technician.

Power - Does the stove even turn on or are there no lights, no display? Check your fuse box before calling someone.

Burners not igniting/elements not heating - For gas appliances check that there is no dirt or other crud blocking the holes that the gas comes out of. For electrical appliances make sure the elements are cool and try pulling them out of their sockets and putting them back in again. If those things are fine you will need an appliance tech.

Oven Does not Heat - Does it really not heat at all or is it just not getting hot enough? This is a rather similar fix as the burners and elements since the oven element is very similar in function to the top ones. Check if the oven needs cleaning and if not call for service.

Oven door is locked - There are a few reasons this might happen but the biggest offender is the self-clean cycle. Dig up your user manual, you may need to hold certain keys to get the door to unlock after the cycle. If you can't find it or it doesn't work, call for help.

Bad odors - Cleaning required; if it is a gas smell rather than just a bad smell call for assistance. A gas leak is not something that you want to just leave.

Broken Glasstop or Oven Door Glass - Find your model number and call for quotes; the glasstop or ceramic top for your stove is a special order and it's going to take at least a week if not more to come in. It is also ridiculously expensive, so if it has gotten cracked or shattered I am very sorry. Oven door glass is much more reasonable but it can still be annoying to install so the quotes for the labour might be higher than you expect.

Decided to do a series on common issues to help you decide when to call or not call for a repairman. Bear in mind that every instance where I say that maintenance is needed you can complete it yourself but if your not confident you can do it yourself you can get an appliance repair technician to do the maintenance for you.

Common things to check on your washer before calling for assistance:

Power - Does the machine seem to have power? Are any lights on or the display? If there is nothing check your fuses. If it has power but doesn't start anyway you'll need to look at a few other things.

Overloading - Did you stuff too many clothes into the washer in an attempt to get your laundry done more quickly or before your leaving on a trip? Pull a bunch of them out, the motors in these machines are only good for a certain amount of weight and so are the moving parts that bear the drum weight. Be patient, overloading will just break your machine. Besides, it'll take a long time to dry in the dryer when you get to that stage too.

Not draining - Did the rest of the cycle run without a hitch until you got to the drain cycle? Try selecting just a spin and drain cycle if you can and see if it works the second time. If it doesn't you'll need to either check the drain line for clogs or call for help unfortunately, there are several reasons the machine doesn't drain and the drain line is just one of them. It can also be an issue with the controls or computer, the wiring between a few components needed to drain, the pump, the drain lines, etc.

Leaking - This is a one stop check; if it's the drain hose that's leaking it's something you can probably replace yourself without too much fuss. If it's coming from inside of the machine or anywhere else you will be better off getting a professional to figure out where it's coming from and fix it. To help you out: If the leak is coming from the water hook up that's actually in the wall you want a Handyman or a Plumber; if it's the machine you want an Appliance Repair Technician.

Dents, rents, and holes in the drum - Unless it's under warranty still don't bother calling for repairs. The drum is a very expensive part and it's also labour intensive to install. You would typically be looking at the same cost, or more than, as purchasing a new machine.

Bad Smells - Cleaning is required. I imagine sighs every time I say to clean an appliance, unfortunately maintenance really is key. Just tackle it one day when you have extra energy! If scrubbing out the drum and seals with vinegar and baking soda doesn't solve them smell you might need to have the door seal replaced or the drains cleaned more aggressively. To help prevent bad smells in the first place always leave the door open a crack or the lid up on the washer, the extra air flow will allow it to dry out more quickly so mold can't start growing.

Ordering the parts you need for your appliances yourself might save you some money since you will only need to pay someone else for installation but it can also be tricky to get the proper parts. Here are a few things to look out for.

Ordering from Online-only Companies

Yes I'm talking about sellers on E-bay and Amazon and other sites like those or those without a physical address. While there is nothing wrong with the sites themselves, the problem lies with the sellers. A lot of the parts that you find here, especially if the parts for your appliance are discontinued, will either be refurbished, non-OEM (aka: knock-off brand), or simply not as advertised.

It may be more expensive somewhere else, but you will be in far better hands ordering from an actual part supplier; preferably one that is local so you can see the parts in person before purchasing them.

Buying parts without your model number

A model number tells a supplier exactly what type of stove you have and approximately what years it was manufactured in. A serial number will be more specific about when it was made but most manufacturers will use the same parts for all the models in the series and other models produced in similar years; so it is typically not needed.

If you go to order from someone and their only questions are what brand and type and not what model it is; it is extremely likely you're getting the most generic non-OEM part imaginable. They tend to be cheaper because they are made from worse materials, and they can even void your warranties. You want to avoid super cheap parts; they are cheap for a reason.

As one final warning: if your appliances are 2 years old or less you should avoid working on them at all or hiring 3rd party companies. Most manufacturers have included a clause in their warranties that says if any "non-authorized" individuals work on a machine it will void all the warranties on it. Check your user manual to see if you have that clause before reaching out for assistance.

You should never run any of your appliances when you are not home, or awake, to supervise them while they run. Any money that might be saved by running them at night when power consumption is lower is not worth the risk of a fire, a flood, or the damage that might occur to your machine while it is working.

Dryers are a potential fire hazard as lint builds up within the machine and in the ducts. Even the most conscientious of users who cleans the lint trap after every use will still have lint get past the trap.

Dishwashers and Washing machines both have the risk of leaking or overflowing while running and can cause mild to severe property damage.

Washing Machines can also damage themselves while running the spin cycle if their load is unevenly distributed.

Even hood fans, be they over the range microwaves or a dedicated hood fan will have grease build up in their filters over time and become a fire hazard.

Be careful and be aware, for the things that you can control only let them run when you are there to make sure there are no issues. Appliances are expensive machines and if you can avoid damaging them you will be saving money.

Calgary Appliance Repairs - Calgary, AB

White Rock Appliance Repair - White Rock, BC

Richmond Hill Appliance Repair - Richmond Hill, ON

Markham Appliance Repair - Markham, ON

Vaughan Appliance Repair - Vaughan, ON


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