Appliance Check-ups!

Terry Brezsny Ballantyne
- Terry Brezsny Ballantyne

Appliance Check-ups!

This holiday season I impressed my very non mechanical self with DEEP cleaning my dryer filter. One quick YouTube video for my Electro Luxe brand and I was off and running with a phillips head screwdriver. My clothes were just taking too long to dry! I felt so proud! And my dryer is performing great now! Simply changing the lift out lint filter is not enough.

From there I tackled my Shark small hand vacuum that was not staying on. Turns out it has an internal filter that was full of fine grit! I cleaned that baby and Voila! My Shark was back in action….

So now I am an evangelist for better care of appliances so we can make them last and keep them out of the landfill or wherever they end up!

If your refrigerator stops working on a hot day, suspect the coils. Service pros find this problem on half of their refrigerator calls. On many fridges, you get to the coils by removing the front grille. Then push a coil cleaning brush (sold at home centers) into the coils, pull it back and vacuum it clean. If the coils are located on the back, pull out your fridge to clean them. Bonus: The clean coils will cool more efficiently and save you money on your utility bill!

Recalibrate your oven temperature

If the temperature in your oven seems off, or if your new oven just doesn’t heat like your old one, you can recalibrate the temperature setting. Use the instructions in your manual or go online and search for a downloadable version using your oven’s model number. Place a good-quality oven thermometer on the center shelf and wait for the oven to maintain a constant temperature. Then follow the procedure outlined in your manual to match the temperature setting to the thermometer reading.

Keep the Dishwasher Clean

My favorite plumber Robert told me most dishwashers are filthy because people don’t rinse properly and then the filter gets full of rotten food over time! UGH! When your dishwasher no longer gets your dishes clean, a food-filled filter is most often to blame. If it’s clogged, water can’t make it to the spray arms to clean the dishes in the top rack. The fix takes two minutes. Simply pull out the lower rack and remove the filter cover inside the dishwasher. (Check your owner’s manual if you can’t spot the filter). Then use a wet/dry vacuum to clean off the screen. Or if you can remove it, wash it. While you’re there, slide the nearby float switch up and down. If the cover sticks, jiggle it up and down and clean it with water. ALSO IMPORTANT! If you use pods, don’t put them in the soap dish, just put the pod in the body of the dishwasher! It affects the pre rinse cycle and your dishes will be cleaner!

Clean Up Stove Spills

If a stove burner won’t come on, the likely culprit is spilled food. Use a toothbrush to clean off food spills from the igniter. On an electronic ignition stove, it’s a little ceramic nub located either on the stovetop or under the ceramic seal strike plate. Also make sure that the round ceramic seal strike plate is properly seated on the burner.

Clean out Disposer Crud

This one was new to me! I never thought about what was going on under those rubber flaps on my disposer. It will smell better if you clean the splash guard. Lift the flaps and scrub them (especially the under side) with a toothbrush and grease-cutting cleaner.

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