Advice on Appliance Maintenance

You’ve got a lot of stuff to do, and you don’t have time to be messing around with broken appliances.

The good news is that there are plenty of things you can do to keep your appliances in tip-top shape. Here are some tips for keeping your major appliances running smoothly:

Washer: The most important thing you can do for your washer is clean it regularly—and not just the outside. Make sure you get inside the drum and wipe out any soap film or water deposits that have been left behind from previous loads. Also check the hoses and belts regularly, and replace them if they’re cracked or worn out.

Dryer: If you’re using a dryer, make sure there’s always enough lint trap in place and that it’s clean of debris. Clean out any lint buildup on the inside of your dryer as well (don’t forget to use a vacuum attachment). Do this once every three months or so, depending on how often you use your dryer.

Refrigerator: Keep an eye on how much food is in your refrigerator at all times—don’t leave anything rotting away! If something’s gone bad, throw it out immediately; don’t wait until it starts

Freezer:  The freezer should be kept at 0°F. If you do not have an automatic thermostat, check the temperature with a thermometer once a month. If it is too warm, adjust the thermostat accordingly.

Oven:  If you have an oven that runs on gas or electric, you should clean it regularly using baking soda or vinegar. You can also use lemon juice or salt on the burners to keep them from getting rust stains.


  • Run an empty load with a cup of vinegar once every two weeks to clean out any hard water deposits that may have built up inside. (You can also use lemon juice or baking soda, but vinegar is better at getting rid of lime scale.)
  • Clean the filter regularly—at least once per month, or more often if there are food particles trapped in it.
  • Wash out the soap dispenser with warm water and a little vinegar if it becomes clogged with soap residue (this will prevent it from drying out and cracking).

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