Everyday Cheapskate: Appliance Maintenance You Can Do Yourself
It was Christmas Eve. Company would be arriving in a matter of hours. I opened the refrigerator only to discover everything inside had reached a balmy 70 degrees F. This could not have happened at a worse time.
Away to my computer I flew like a flash -- straight to the RepairClinic website, where I entered the make and model of our refrigerator and read all the possibilities for why it was running but not cooling.
By following the suggestions and detailed instructions, we performed eight years' worth of maintenance. We looked under the darned thing for the coils that had become hopelessly covered in refrigerator gunk. We were back up and cooling in no time at all.
One thing I learned from my holiday refrigerator crash is that, like cars, major appliances require routine maintenance to keep them working at the peak of efficiency and guarantee a long and useful life.
Here are five simple appliance maintenance jobs everyone should do, each of which takes only minutes and can be tackled by anyone.
Inspect the dish rack tines for rusting. Rust particles can ruin the pump and seals, causing a hidden leak or pump failure.
A tine repair kit, available on manufacturer websites or Amazon, could save you the cost of a new dish rack. The kits come in various colors so you can pick one that matches yours. If the dish rack is beyond salvation, it should be replaced.
Dirty stovetop drip bowls reduce the heating efficiency of the burner, so clean or replace them regularly. If you can find it, Dawn Power Dissolver will make light work of that tough job! A good second choice is Dawn Heavy Duty Degreaser. Never cover drip bowls with foil! This can cause an electrical short in the stove or block the oven vent, which is often through the center of a back burner.