Tag Archives: appliance maintenance

Don’t Let Broken Appliances Ruin Your Holidays

Broken appliances are a major inconvenience any time of the year, but during the holidays, they’re the last thing you want to deal with.Broken Appliances

A malfunctioning stove or refrigerator could really throw a wrench into your celebrations and family gatherings. Before the busy holiday season hits, take time to ensure that all of your appliances are in peak condition, and if any are lacking, take action now!

Preventive Appliance Maintenance Any Time of Year

Regular maintenance can help prevent unexpected failures and costly repairs, possibly saving you from dealing with broken appliances at the worst possible time. Routine care can also increase the efficiency of your appliances, saving you money all year long.

Cleaning is certainly an important and effective maintenance task that you can handle. However, you can take some additional steps yourself to keep your appliances performing at optimal levels.

For the refrigerator, you simply need to vacuum the condenser coils and do a periodic temperature check. Your oven also needs an occasional temperature check, and be sure to remove and clean the knobs, burners and racks, too.

For your dishwasher, periodically inspect and clean the filter and pump screen and sanitize the machine. Your laundry appliances also can use some preventive care, so don’t forget to remove and clean the filters, screens and dispensers.

Handle Minor Repairs Before They Grow

As you take care of your appliance maintenance tasks, keep an eye out for any damage or minor problems.

You may need to change the hoses on your washer or the belts in your dryer, for example. Or, you could find that your refrigerator gasket is loose or cracked, or that an oven indicator light is malfunctioning.

While these may not be major issues today, they could turn into big problems at any time. By taking care of these minor repairs now, you can avoid the headache and expense of dealing with broken appliances and inconvenient emergency repair calls.

Be Prepared for the Holidays

Just imagine it: Your oven stops working just hours before out-of-town guests are due to arrive for a holiday dinner. Or, you open your refrigerator to store the hors d’oeuvres and desserts for the evening’s celebration and discover that it isn’t keeping food cold.

Broken appliances can be a nightmare at times like these.

Be ready for the holidays and save yourself the stress of dealing with broken appliances by scheduling professional maintenance and repairs now. Contact us now for an appointment, before the hectic rush of this busy season. You’ll give yourself the peace of mind of knowing that at least your appliances will be well-prepared for the holidays!

Would you like to learn more tips for keeping your appliances working their best? Contact the experienced professionals at Complete Appliance Repair, serving Kaysville and the surrounding Salt Lake City area, and save yourself from the worry and hassle of broken appliances.

Learning to Care for Your New Appliances

They’re finally here, your brand-new appliances. They are shiny and pretty and you can’t wait to use them! But how can you get the most out of any new appliance, and how do you keep it New Appliancesrunning like new? Like all technology, today’s appliances offer a wealth of features that may not be obvious or intuitive to you, especially if your previous model was older or lacked all the new bells and whistles. Following are a few suggestions to help you take full advantage of your new kitchen appliances, as well as some suggestions for keeping your new machines in like-new condition.

New Refrigerators

Today’s refrigerator models are still fairly basic machines, easy to keep in great condition, thanks to their relatively simple design. Refrigerators use a compressor pump to condense hot refrigerant vapor that circulates through a series of heat-exchanging condenser coils. The air around the coils dissipates the heat and cools the vapor back to liquid. The refrigerant then flows through evaporator coils where it sucks up thermal energy, expands back into a gas and then gets pumped out the condenser coils where it then starts all over again.

The longer a compressor runs, the faster it will wear out, so strive to maintain the ideal internal temperature. All those times your dad told you to shut the refrigerator door, he was right! Clean the door seals with warm, soapy water every three months and run a vacuum with a brush attachment over the fan and condenser coils monthly to prevent dust bunnies from taking up residence. Dust bunnies make terrible pets, after all.

Your New Washing Machine

These are great at cleaning your clothes but not so great at getting rid of the dirt they removed from those clothes. If you notice that your clothes are coming out dingy, it’s time to give your washer a cleaning. For top-load washers, let the clothing tub fill with a full load’s worth of hot water, then add a quart of bleach and let it agitate for a minute before pausing it. Let it soak for about an hour before you resume the cycle. Repeat the process after that cycle is through, but with a quart of white vinegar to remove odors.

For front loaders, dissolve four tablespoons of baking soda in four cups of warm water. Soak a washcloth in this solution and then put some elbow grease into it to get rid of any residue on the inside of the tub. Run a rinse cycle to finish. You also will want to occasionally check the hoses that carry water to and from the washer for signs of wear. Any blisters, cracks or sponginess means it’s time to replace!

Getting the Most from Your New Appliances

If you don’t have the time or patience to sit down with the manual and teach yourself how to use and care for your new appliances, consider scheduling a service call with your favorite appliance repair tech. Better yet, instead of purchasing your new appliances from the local big box store, contact Complete Appliance Repair in Salt Lake City, Utah. Providing appliance sales, installation and training in northern Utah, your technician can install and teach you everything you need to know about your new appliances.

Regular Refrigerator Maintenance Saves Energy and Money

Refrigerator maintenance requires only a small investment of time and money, but it can potentially save you lots on energy bills. It helps to keep your food fresher and at the proper Refrigerator Maintenancetemperature, meaning less spoilage and waste. But maybe the best part about keeping your appliances well-maintained is that it extends their life and significantly reduces the frequency of equipment failure.

Why Your Refrigerator Guzzles Energy

A refrigerator and freezer need to keep running 24 hours a day to keep food at the right temperature. The required fans, coils, condensers and moving parts make it a power hog. In fact, it uses about 13 percent of all the energy consumed by most homes. Certain practices when storing food can make it work even harder, driving up energy use. Here is a look at how you can save:

Tips for Effective Refrigerator Maintenance

  • Fill it Up. The fuller your freezer and refrigerator are, the more efficiently they run. Keeping the fridge well loaded also lets you keep more food fresh and cold. If you experience a power outage and your refrigerator and freezer are full, your food will stay safe for twice as long than if it was half full. Just make sure that you leave room for air to circulate.
  • Keep it Away from Heat. This sounds logical, but the number of refrigerators that are positioned next to stoves, heaters or large windows is surprising. That can cost you plenty, because for every degree above 70 your kitchen is, your refrigerator will use 2.5 percent more energy.
  • Keep it Sealed. Check the seals and gaskets around your refrigerator and freezer regularly. They deteriorate with age, and if they are dirty, the seals simply don’t work. You can test how tight the seal is by shutting the door on a single piece of paper. If you can pull the paper out without pulling hard, you know your seal needs attention. Though you will have to pay a refrigerator repair person to do the job, it is well worth the price. Damaged seals and gaskets let cold air seep out, which adds significantly to your energy costs.
  • Clean the Coils. Dust and grime cause the coils on the back and underside of your refrigerator to become inefficient. By vacuuming them every four or five months, you can reduce the amount of energy used by as much as 6 percent.
  • Cool Your Food. Most food can safely be left on the counter to cool for up to two hours. Do this with hot food before putting it into your refrigerator for storage. If foods are close to room temperature, your refrigerator won’t have to work as hard to chill them.
  • Use Glass. Glass storage containers are the best conductors of cold, keeping the food at a cooler temperature for a longer period.
  • Cover Food. When food is not covered, it can release moisture into the interior of your freezer or refrigerator, making the compressor work harder and use more energy.

By following these six tips, you can keep your refrigerator-freezer operating with peak efficiency. Regular refrigerator maintenance will also save you money on your energy and grocery bills. Contact Complete Appliance Repair of Salt Lake City for all of your appliance needs, including regular refrigerator maintenance.

Appliance Maintenance and Practices to Avoid Food Contamination

New studies show that appliance maintenance and methods of use may be more important for your family’s health than previously believed. Regular kitchen maintenance and sanitation Appliance Maintenancepractices can help you avoid dangerous bacteria and food contamination. Read on for more information about keeping your kitchen sanitary and contaminant-free.

What is Food Contamination?

When bacteria spreads between foods, surfaces or appliances, cross-contamination takes place. It’s most likely to happen when raw items touch or drip onto other food or surfaces in your kitchen or on your appliances. It may also occur when people touch raw food with their hands then touch something else. For example, if you store raw meat in your refrigerator and it drips onto the cake below it, bacteria will spread from the meat to the cake. When cutting raw meat on a chopping board, bacteria spreads from the meat to the board and knife. If you use the same tools to then chop something else, the bacteria from the meat will be transferred.

Promptly cleaning up any food spillage is critical, especially inside the refrigerator, freezer, oven or microwave. Follow up with an anti-bacterial spray or wipe to prevent contamination. As important as these safeguards are, however, the most potentially dangerous contamination occurs inside your refrigerator, freezer and oven, when proper temperatures aren’t maintained.

Avoiding the Danger Zone of Food Temperatures

The USDA* defines the danger zone for food contamination as any temperature between 40 and 140 degrees. Salmonella, E. coli and staph bacteria grow exponentially in this range, potentially doubling every 20 minutes. If your refrigerator, freezer or range are not properly calibrated and food is allowed to reach the danger zone, you may be putting your family’s health at risk. Take care with storing and reheating leftovers as well, to ensure they are refrigerated promptly and heated through to an internal temperature of 165 degrees.

You can help prevent food contamination by purchasing thermometers designed for use in your refrigerator, freezer and oven, checking them regularly to ensure proper temperatures are maintained. For your freezer, the USDA recommends a temperature of zero degrees. For the refrigerator, a temperature range of 15 to 35 degrees is ideal. Electronic temperature “guns” are also an excellent way to verify surface temperatures.

Although you can help avert food contamination with these tips and tricks, the most reliable way to ensure that your appliances keep your food safe is to have them inspected, calibrated and maintained regularly by a professional appliance repair service. Complete Appliance Repair of Salt Lake City is dedicated to keeping your appliances well maintained, to keep you and your family safe. Contact them today to schedule a maintenance check for all your appliances.

Are Extended Appliance Warranties a Good Idea?

Extended appliance warranties and so-called service plans may sound like a good idea when the salesperson is pitching them to you, but are they really a sound investment? The answer usually depends on whom you ask. Manufacturers’ warranties provide a reasonable level of protection, and extended plans can often be an unwise and expensive investment. Before you agree to buy a protection plan, you may want to do a little fact-checking of your own.Extended Warranty

Investigate the Product’s Included Warranty Coverage

New appliances almost always come with a manufacturer’s warranty. In most cases, the item is covered for one year of normal, residential use, as long as the appliance was installed and set up according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Although the manufacturer’s warranty technically covers only defective materials and workmanship, it’s unlikely that anything else will go wrong. Kitchen appliances are considered to be durable, reliable goods with a low incidence of failure. The arguments you are likely to hear in favor of buying extended protection at the time of purchase are that today’s appliances have more complicated technology, higher failure rates and lesser quality manufacturing processes. While some of that may be true, protection plans are not necessarily the answer.

What Service Plans, Protection Agreements and Extended Warranties Offer

Most extended warranties promise to fix those parts that wear out or fail during the course of normal use, but in many cases, each service call requires that you pay a deductible or service call fee. Most are administered by a third-party service that contracts with local repair companies rather than having a staff of their own technicians. Consequently, you never know what you’ll get in terms of service quality and responsiveness. Most plans have a long list of non-covered repairs, but the protection agreement may offer you a generous 10 percent discount on those services they don’t cover. Charges for service plans can be high, with some programs costing half the price of the appliance itself for a three-to-five-year coverage term.

What You May Not Know about Extended Warranties

Appliance retailers set slim profit margins on major appliances to remain competitive in the marketplace. Service plans are the real cash cows, usually returning a 50 percent (or more) profit to the retailer. For this reason, many use the scare tactic approach to convince you to buy. For the cost of a single service plan on a new refrigerator, you can purchase a full home warranty that offers similar protection on all your home’s appliances, services and systems. If you purchased the item with a major credit card, you may have protection through the credit card company as well. Or, you could schedule your own trusted appliance repair technician to perform annual maintenance for not much more than your trade call fee under most warranty plans.

Complete Appliance Repair of Salt Lake City, Utah, specializes in keeping customers’ costly home appliances in good working order. Their prompt, professional service technicians and fair and honest pricing policies will ensure that you never have to worry about any surprises. With Complete Appliance at your service, you need not bother with expensive extended appliance warranties.

Top Refrigerator Maintenance and Cleaning Hacks

 

Fridge Maintenance/CleaningRefrigerator maintenance and cleaning may not be high on your to-do list, but maybe it should be! A common mistake homeowners make is skipping refrigerator cleaning and periodic maintenance. No matter how hard you try to keep your favorite kitchen appliances spot cleaned, a full-scale attack is necessary every so often. If it’s been a while (or forever) since you’ve really cleaned your refrigerator, the following tips and tricks are bound to inspire you to don your gloves and line up your cleaning materials.

Why Maintain Your Refrigerator?

Cleaning your kitchen workhorse thoroughly kills germs and eliminates noxious odors. This also gives you the chance to throw out jars and food products that are long past their expiration dates. Perhaps the biggest benefit of refrigerator cleaning is removing the frost in the freezer or ice dispenser and killing the germs that can make you and your family sick. As a bonus, taking care of your appliances means they will last longer and require fewer repair calls.

Getting Started

To keep your fridge sparkling (and to avoid shopping for a new one soon), follow this periodic fridge-cleaning schedule.

  • Daily – Wipe up spills before they have a chance to dry. Also wipe the rims of jars, bottles and containers before storing them to stem the growth of bacteria.
  • Weekly – Wipe refrigerator doors with a cloth dampened with mild dishwashing detergent or white vinegar. Make sure to properly clean the handles, edges and top of the appliance.
  • Seasonally – At least twice a year, turn off your fridge and empty its contents before washing its shelves and crisper drawers.

Special Instructions

Refrigerator cleaning isn’t a herculean task, but the following tips will help you scrub less and keep your appliance spotless all year long.

  • Check the manufacturer’s manual for recommended cleaning products and detergents. You can also create your own rinse-free cleaner by combining a gallon of hot water, one cup of ammonia, half a cup of vinegar and a quarter cup of baking soda.
  • Buff the exterior with paste wax to prevent grease buildup on the appliance’s exterior and to make wiping up spills a breeze.
  • If you have an odor issue, dampen a few cotton balls with vanilla or orange extract and tuck them in a corner inside the fridge.
  • Check your refrigerator for a drip pan, located at the bottom behind the grill. Not every model has one today, but if you have a bad odor you can’t quite get rid of, this is a likely possibility. Clean it thoroughly, rinse with white vinegar, and allow it to dry before tucking it back in.
  • To be thorough, switch off the fridge and gently vacuum the coils underneath or in back every few months.

Schedule a Maintenance Service

Last but not least, have your refrigerator checked over once a year by a professional appliance repair company. In Salt Lake City, Complete Appliance Repair is your go-to source for appliance sales, installation, service and repair. Contact them today as part of your proactive refrigerator maintenance program.

Will a Home Warranty Cover Appliance Repairs?

Occasional appliance repairs are a fact of life for most consumers today. As a result of recent economic conditions, many homeowners have elected to keep their old appliances rather thanAppliance Repair replace them with expensive new models. Consequently, the popularity of home warranty programs has increased. Although many benefits can be derived from these programs, so too can drawbacks. When it comes to your home appliances, the value may not justify the cost.

The Benefits of a Home Warranty

The cost of a home warranty today is typically between $500 and $800, depending on the options you choose. When an appliance in your home breaks, you simply contact the warranty company and they send out a contractor to do the repairs. You then pay a trade call fee to the contractor, typically between $75 and $125. Think of this much like your auto insurance deductible or health coverage co-pay. As long as the repair is covered, that’s your maximum out-of-pocket expense — theoretically. Unfortunately, these programs aren’t what they used to be even a few years ago.

Common Criticisms of Home Warranty Programs

Although the cost of a home warranty hasn’t gone up all that much, trade call fees were $35 only a few years ago. The maximum coverage limits have been scaled back as well, so many plans won’t pay out more than a set amount for any given repair. But what many home repair warranty customers are most bothered by are excluded items.

For example, most plans forbid appliance repair contractors from working on an appliance if you have changed out any factory-supplied parts. So if you have had to switch out your washer’s hoses because the factory hoses wore out, the repair tech may refuse to work on your machine. Even so, you’re probably still responsible for the trade call fee. Now you’re $100 lighter and you still have to call (and pay for) your own repair company.

Should You Purchase a Home Warranty?

New homes come with a builder warranty, so purchasing additional coverage won’t provide any value for you. If your home is historic or if you purchased it through a distress sale such as foreclosure, a warranty may be beneficial for covering unexpected system failures (assuming those are covered items under your plan). If the seller paid for your warranty when you purchased your home, you will likely derive benefit from it during the first year.

When it comes time to renew, however, experts advise careful consideration of the program’s value. Warranty companies, like any insurer, are in business to turn a profit. If you save money one year, the law of averages indicates that you may lose money on it the next. Read the fine print and be sure you understand all the details before shelling out the money to renew your plan.

Complete Appliance Repair, serving Salt Lake City and the surrounding communities, specializes in providing exceptional value for its customers. In many cases, their experienced repair technicians can complete the repairs on your appliances for less than a trade call might cost under a home warranty. Call on them for all of your heating and air conditioning repair needs, as well as for home appliance repairs, sales and service.

It’s Time for a Spring Air Conditioning Tuneup

Having a spring A/C tuneup is the best way to ensure a comfortable summer. An annual service and inspection will accomplish several important goals. With your AC running its best, you’ll AC Tuneupsave money and keep your cool. Even more importantly, your air conditioning equipment will last longer and require fewer repairs when it’s maintained regularly. You’ll be much less likely to experience unexpected outages too, especially when the temperatures soar.

Why Have an Annual AC Tuneup?

Research shows that having an annual inspection and maintenance service on your AC equipment can reduce system failures by as much as 90 percent and save up to 25 percent on your summer power bills. In addition to preventing system down time, it can provide significant savings in the long run. Catching a small problem during an annual service visit may cost a little money to repair at the time, but compared with having to replace the compressor later in the year, you’ll be ahead.

What Air Conditioner Maintenance Includes

When the service technician arrives, he or she will usually start by checking your thermostat’s operation and AC filters, then check supply and return temperatures. The tech will use specialized equipment to monitor the compressor and fan motor amperage and power draw, and check the level of coolant. Depending on your system and its condition, the technician may clean and lubricate bearings, clean and inspect condenser coils, and inspect and clean valves and the condensate drain. The tech will check electrical connections and look for loose wires or other potential problems too. Finally, he or she will remove any debris and bring to your attention anything that may require further service.

Ways You Can Help Keep Your AC Going Strong

Although having your annual service goes a long way toward keeping your equipment up and running, you can always do things to help. Despite the many new high-efficiency filter styles available today, experts warn against using those that restrict the air flow too much. Choose a filter that will catch as much dust and debris as possible, but that doesn’t make the system work too hard. Newer systems are able to operate using dense filters that remove more particles from the circulating air; however, many older systems are not able to function properly with a lower level of air flow. Ask your technician to recommend the filter that works best for your system’s configuration.

In northern Utah, Complete Appliance Repair provides a full range of appliance repair services and they install, repair and maintain heating and AC systems. They even offer critical air duct cleaning and inspections. If you want to keep your cool this summer, contact them today to schedule your AC tuneup.

How to Clean Refrigerator Coils

If you have clean refrigerator coils, you’re reducing your risk of appliance failure by almost 75 percent. The coils are what keeps refrigerant flowing. If they become coated in greasy grime Refrigerator Coilsand pet hair, the unit struggles to work and will eventually fail. Fortunately, the cleaning process is quick and easy. If you maintain your kitchen appliances properly, they will provide you with trouble-free operation for years to come.

Why Clean Your Refrigerator Coils

When dust, animal fur and other debris builds up on your refrigerator’s condenser coils, the appliance can lose efficiency. Its parts can wear out more quickly and draw unusually high amounts of power when its working harder to keep its cool. Because dirty coils build up heat, the system can stop working entirely, potentially causing your food to spoil. For some types of flooring, a buildup of gunk on the coils at the base of the refrigerator can cause a sticky, gooey mess. Three out of four refrigerator repair calls are said to be the result of neglecting coil maintenance.

Steps for Cleaning the Coils

Unplug the unit and pull it away from the wall. The coils are typically at the base of the unit, but some may be on the back. If yours are on the back, give them a quick dusting and call it good for another year. If they’re on the bottom, however, clean them thoroughly every six months (more frequently if you have pets that shed). You may have to remove a plastic cover or kick plate from the front or rear. Start with a bendable coil cleaning brush, removing as much debris as possible from the front and rear. Use a vacuum cleaner with a crevice or vent attachment to remove any remaining dust, taking special care around the condenser fan.

Keeping Your Fridge Coils Clean

The most effective way to prevent future problems is to stay ahead of the dust and pet hair. Things end up under the refrigerator after they’ve blown around for a few days. It’s also helpful to keep the walls around the unit clean and grease-free. If the dust you cleaned away was particularly greasy, check your stove’s vent fan. Finding a greasy buildup away from the stove area is a good indication that the filter may be clogged or you’re simply not using it often enough. Ensure that your fridge has plenty of space for air circulation. Most experts suggest a three-inch minimum clearance on each side and six to 12 inches on top. Don’t stack items on top, as this can hold in dangerous heat.

Complete Appliance Repair, serving the communities in and around Salt Lake City, is your local expert for appliance repair and maintenance. Their professional technicians carry a full supply of parts on their trucks, ensuring a quick and effective repair. Ask them for tips on the best way to clean refrigerator coils.

Cleaning a Glass-Top Stove without Chemicals

Cleaning a glass-top stove, although easier than tackling drip pans and coil heating elements, can still present a few challenges. When spills become baked on to a glass-top surface, they Glass-Top Stoveseem to defy all human attempts at cleaning. You may have seen commercial products designed exclusively to clean glass cooktops. These unitaskers typically contain chemical products, are expensive, and, in some cases, aren’t even all that effective. Read on for some environmentally friendly and cost-effective ways to keep that glass top looking like new.

First, the Small Print

No matter how tempted you may be, never (ever) try to clean your glass cooktop while it’s still hot, or even slightly tepid. The obvious reason is that you can suffer serious burns, but that’s not the only reason to let the surface cool completely. Many cleaning products, when applied to a hot surface, will burn onto the surface rather than clean it. Then you’ll have twice the mess. Also, many cleaning products contain flammable ingredients that, when put in contact with a hot surface, will ignite. Finally, your stove’s manufacturer likely recommends a specific product for use. If you choose to use one of the following methods instead, be sure to test it in a tiny back corner of the stove, lest it cause any harm.

Pay a Visit to Your Kitchen Pantry

Some of the most effective products for cleaning glass cooktops are probably already in your kitchen: baking soda, white vinegar and lemon juice. Take a quick detour to the medicine cabinet and grab some hydrogen peroxide too, if the situation is dire. Begin by removing any crumbs with a paper towel or damp sponge. Mix lemon juice or vinegar with hot water and spritz it on, then wipe with a clean cloth. For more stubborn stains, sprinkle baking soda liberally over the mess, then cover with a clean towel dampened well with hot water. Let sit for 15 minutes, then use the towel to wipe away the mess. If the stains persist, sprinkle on baking soda and just enough peroxide to make a paste. Using a clean cloth, rub the surface in a circular motion until the stains let go. Wipe up the paste then buff with a clean, dry cloth. Voila! Clean stove top.

The Best Cleaning Tool You’ve Never Heard Of: The SKrAPr

By now, everyone should have this tool in their cleaning arsenal, but for some strange reason, most people have never heard of this revolutionary resin scraper. Made from a composite of glass and plastic, the SKrAPr was designed specifically for cleaning glass cooktops. Using just a little bit of water, this miracle invention quickly and safely dispatches even the worst burned-on stains. Tthough the tool is meant for glass-top stoves, users quickly discovered that it was invaluable for safely removing all kinds of stuck-on things from delicate surfaces. Use this handy gizmo on non-stick pans, natural stone surfaces, floors, windows and furniture. It will even remove the soap scum from glass shower doors. The heavy duty version can be used to successfully scrape paint, sealants and adhesives.

In the Salt Lake City area, Complete Appliance Repair is the premier locally owned and operated appliance sales, service and repair provider. Although their experienced technicians probably won’t clean your kitchen, they will keep your glass-top stove (and the rest of your appliances) in tip-top shape.