Even well-made appliances can suffer the occasional mechanical malfunction. When you first start to notice strange behavior from one of your appliances, you can avoid replacing it by getting it inspected and repaired by an expert for a fraction of the cost.
Here are some of the common warning signs that mean your appliance probably needs a professional repair.
1. The appliance’s performance becomes inconsistent.
Does it seem like your dryer is taking a longer time to dry your clothes? Does food seem like it’s thawing and then refreezing in your freezer? Does your oven have trouble climbing past a certain temperature unless you fiddle with the controls? These are all signs that your appliances may have a malfunction that’s interfering with their performance.
2. The appliance is leaking water.
Don’t ignore even a small leak from your fridge, washing machine, or dishwasher. It’s only a matter of time before a small leak gets worse, and it can eventually lead to a mold problem. Usually, a leak will result from a worn or damaged seal that’s preventing your appliance from being waterproof.
3. Your utility bills are going up.
This warning sign is typically associated with gas appliances like ovens, stoves, and ranges. Problems with the equipment cause it to perform less efficiently. The less efficiently the appliance performs, the more energy it uses, and the more your energy bills go up.
4. The appliance is making strange noises.
It’s unusual for any machinery to operate in silence. However, if your appliance starts making “new” sounds that you haven’t heard in all the months or years you’ve owned it, there’s most likely a problem. Listen for any unusually loud humming, whining, clanking, or buzzing.
5. A burning smell is coming from the appliance.
A burning smell should never come from one of your appliances. This usually indicates that a component is overheating, typically the electrical wiring.
6. The appliance is unresponsive.
If your appliance won’t turn on, there are two things to check first:
Make sure it’s plugged directly into a wall outlet (not a power strip or surge protector).
Make sure the appliance did not trip its respective circuit breaker.
If neither of these is the issue, your appliance probably needs a repair.