When you have a major appliance that decides to konk out on you, it can put a major dent into your budget. Eventually, something will go- appliances don’t last forever. There are some simple maintenance tips though that you can do on a regular basis to help them last longer.
Clean your air conditioner filter once a month during cooling season. Use dish soap to clean. Don’t operate your AC unit if the weather outside is cooler, you can freeze up the coils inside. Use a garden hose to hose off your unit occasionally to keep debris from settling inside. This also helps on your electric bill!
Change your furnace filter monthly during heating season. It will increase airflow and keep your use down. Have your furnace cleaned and serviced annually to keep it functioning properly.
Washer and Dryer:
Clean your dryer’s lint screen with warm, soapy water to get rid of build up. Clean out the vent hose to remove debris that has built up inside. Washing machines need to be on a flat service, so if it’s not, use a level and position straight. If it is unleveled, it can cause your wash loads to be unbalance and can ruin the inside barrel quicker. Check your lines where water runs in, to make sure there are no leaks or cracks. Or, you could replace them with stainless steel lines, which have a longer lifespan.
Run your dishwasher every month with just two cups of vinegar. This will get rid of mineral and soap build up. Remove the strainer and wash under warm, soapy water to remove any particles that have accumulated.
Clean the condenser coils on your refrigerator with a long armed brush, which you can find at most hardware stores. The coils will either be located behind your fridge, or under it with a pop-off grill, depending on the model of refrigerator you have. By cleaning these, it keeps dust and debris off, and makes your refrigerator run more efficiently. Defrost your freezer on a regular basis, typically every 6 months, and clean the door gasket well to keep cool air in, and warm air out.
Keep the inside of your microwave clean. You can run two cups of water with two teaspoons of baking soda in a microwave safe bowl. Heat for two to three minutes and any food buildup will come off easily. You can also pour vinegar into a bowl, and heat that with the same results. Wipe the door gasket well.
Clean your stove burner pans on a regular basis with warm, soapy water and a sponge. Never line them with aluminum foil, it will cover vents and can even cause a short circuit, believe me I found this out the hard way! Clean the filter with soap and water or a degreaser. Rinse well.
Draining your water heater prevents sediment build up on the bottom. Check your lines and replace any that are cracked and/or leaking. Test the relief valve, if not working properly replace the valve. Be careful working around your water heater so you don’t get sprayed with hot water!
Taking care of your appliances will help keep them running longer. This will not only save your appliance bill, but also your utility bills as well! All these tasks are simple, just doing them on a regular basis is key!