Whether you’ve purchased your appliances from a big box retailer or a mom and pop shop, chances are your intent on getting your moneys worth. Since our kitchen appliances are some of the most utilized technology in the home, they tend to need a little extra TLC after long months of overuse. Lack of proper care can actually shorten the lifespan and cost you thousands of dollars in service in the end. Follow these care tips to make sure you get the most out of your most precious purchases.
REFRIGERATOR- Coating the refrigerators gasket with a thin layer of petroleum jelly ensures a better seal, helping to conserve energy and keep cold air in. Periodically take a damp cloth and wipe down the plastic strip that around the door for better staying power. Dirty coils can inhibit airflow through any appliance and after a while, this can cause wear and tear resulting in a breakdown. Reach around the back of the unit, and clean with a handheld vacuum.
OVENS AND RANGES- Don’t go too long without cleaning the interior of your ovens or range tops. Grease build up can become a problem when hardened and intense scrubbing can damage the way the oven operates. Never spray product directly onto appliances, instead spray first on a damp rag and gently rub down loose debris. Prevent grease build up by creating a spill barrier. Place a cookie sheet to catch dripping before they happen, resulting in an easier clean up.
DISHWASHERS- Dishwashers can easily become clogged with hard water build up and food particles. Much like refrigerators, a faulty gasket can result in loss of power so make sure they are clear of debris at all times. Clear all traps and nozzles as needed so water has the ability to flow freely. Also, never use dish soap within the unit. Those chemicals are not meant for interior cleaning and can damage the racks and individual parts of the dishwasher.
WASHER/DRYER- Make sure your washer and dryer are installed on a level plane. Unequal balance can cause damage to the interior of the unit and result in improper washing and drying of garments. Clean attachments once a month with a quick wipe down. Even unseen, natural residue from our clothes can build up within the drums and clog the pores that release water through the natural cycle. When it comes to dryers, cleaning the lint trip is vitally important to the productivity of the unit. If your “laundry list” is heavy, clean the trap after every other use. Most importantly, have your dryer vents inspected once a year. Vents are highly flammable and when in contact with lint, can start a potential dangerous dryer fire.
MICROWAVE- Microwaves are something that need to be cleaned frequently and without question. Since they have very little ventilation, vents can become easily clogged and dramatically shorten the microwaves lifespan. Since they’re not quite as durable as larger units, they require extra care, though the cleaning process isn’t quite as difficult as it may seem. For a natural cleaner, fill a microwave safe bowl with ½ cup of water. Slice a lemon in half, squeeze juice into the water and place lemons In the bowl. Microwave on high for three minutes and let stand another five minutes with the door closed. The steam and acidity from the lemons will break down all grease builds up for an easy wipe down.
Protecting our investments is important, especially when it comes to appliances we use every day. However, the safety aspect of any machine is always the top priority of maintenance in any home. Preventing mishaps before they happen is always the best form of protection for you and your family. Don’t be afraid to call your distributor for an inspection, or get down and dirty once a year to inspect the unit yourself. Most common issues are easy to assess with some quick online research. Follow these tips and you’ll enjoy the longevity of your appliances for years to come.