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A Guide to Repairing Major Appliances

A Guide to Repairing Major Appliances
Meaningful machinery intended to serve us faithfully year after year, often working tirelessly with minimal problems. We tend to take their reliability for granted until the day one breaks down unexpectedly. When faced with such a situation, it can leave you feeling helpless and unsure how to get it back in working order.
So, what options do you have? You can hire a professional technician, roll up your sleeves, and attempt the repair yourself, potentially saving some money. This article aims to equip you with the knowledge to successfully disassemble and reassemble your major appliances. However, before you dive into fixing your appliances with a toolbox, let’s first delve into some essential background information about major appliances.

Most appliances run on your home’s electrical system, getting their power from the AC supplied by the wiring in your home. Small appliances typically work with 110-120-volt circuits featuring plugs with two blades. On the other hand, large appliances such as air conditioners, dryers, and ranges require 220-240-volt wiring and cannot function on 110-120-volt circuits. Large appliances come equipped with a grounding wire, and their plugs consist of two blades and a prong. Appliances may have to supply an earthed socket with two blades and an earthing prong or be earthed using a special adaptor. Every appliance has power requirement information in watts, volts, and sometimes amps, typically found on a metal plate or the appliance casing.

What should I do if a small household appliance breaks down?

Small appliances are relatively straightforward machines, often comprising heating elements, fans, blades, or rotating beaters connected to a drive shaft. Some may have a couple of simple mechanical linkages. Consequently, repairing such appliances usually involves simple tasks. Conversely, large appliances are more intricate, with components like motors, timers, pumps, valves, switches, and solenoids. Problems can affect either the control devices or the mechanical/power components when issues arise. Control device failures may impact a single operation or the entire appliance, whereas automatic/power device failures generally affect only functions reliant on that specific component. Diagnosing the issue is just as critical as knowing how to fix it in the event of a major appliance malfunction.

Due to the complexity of significant appliances, pinpointing the source of a malfunction can sometimes be obscure. (The owner’s manual explains that many newer appliances even feature electronic diagnostics.) The first step is determining whether the problem lies in a control or mechanical device. For example, control devices regulate heat in a dryer, while mechanical components handle drum rotation. Which system is affected? If the drum rotates, but the dryer doesn’t heat, the issue lies in the control system. Conversely, if the dryer heats, but the drum doesn’t turn, the problem is mechanical. This kind of analysis helps identify the nature of the failure, whether within the control system or the automated system, for all large appliances.
What should I do if a small household appliance breaks down?

A few steps in the Appliances repair process

To pinpoint the exact problem, you must methodically inspect each part of the affected system to locate the malfunctioning component. It’s more manageable than it might sound, as appliance parts work together logically. Starting with the simplest possibilities, you can test each component individually, isolating the cause of the failure. Now, let’s discuss the three crucial rules to follow when attempting any appliance repair:

  1. Safety First: Always ensure that the power and gas supply to the appliance turns off before checking or repairing. If you need to check operation after repairs, switch on the power and observe without touching the appliance. If adjustments are required, switch off the power before making any adjustments.
  2. Know your limits: If parts of the appliance attach with screws, bolts, plugs, or other disassembly fasteners, you can most likely make the necessary repairs. However, if rivets or welds join parts, avoid attempting to repair them and seek professional help.
  3. Use the Right Parts: In most cases, replacing broken or malfunctioning appliance parts with new ones designed specifically for your appliance is more cost-effective and efficient. If you can’t find an exact replacement, it’s acceptable to substitute a similar part as long as it fits the designated space. Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for installation in such cases.

A few steps in the Appliances repair process
When it comes to obtaining appliance parts, you have several options. You can visit appliance service centers, appliance repair dealers, or appliance parts stores. Brand-name appliances often have dedicated service centers, but you may find the parts you need at other establishments. If local options are not permitted, you can order the required part directly from the manufacturer, whose contact information is usually listed on the appliance. Provide all necessary information about the model and part to ensure an exact match. If necessary, you can search for replacement parts on the Internet. Before initiating any appliance repair, confirming that the appliance is receiving power is imperative. Lack of power is the most common cause of appliance failures.

Here are some preliminary steps to take:

  • Check that the appliance is in good working order and that the cord, plug, and socket are correctly connected to the power supply. Use a voltage tester to check the outlet for proper operation.
  • Examine the fuses and circuit breakers controlling the circuit to ensure they haven’t blown or tripped. There may be multiple electrical entrance panels in your home for 220-240-volt appliances like ranges and air conditioners, so check for blown fuses or tripped breakers in both the main panel and any separate panels.
  • Inspect the appliance itself for blown fuses or tripped breakers. Appliances like washers, dryers, and ranges have reset buttons to restore power. For ovens, check for separate plug-type fuses and ensure they are intact.
  • If the appliance uses gas or water, confirm it receives an adequate supply.
  • Consult the appliance’s owner’s manual, as many manufacturers include helpful problem-solving charts. Even for older or obsolete appliances, you can often obtain a manual from the manufacturer’s customer service department.

By following these guidelines and being cautious throughout the repair process, you can take charge of repairing your significant appliances and potentially extend their service life, all while ensuring your safety and the appliance’s optimal performance.


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My dryer was giving me problems so I decided to give SD Appliance Repair a try. They were friendly.  They were willing to work around my schedule.  They came within 24hrs.  They fixed my dryer within an hour. I will definitely call them again if I need another repair!.
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