Appliances are something I always try to buy the best one of — as long as it’s still within my budget.
We all put a lot of wear and tear on our appliances, so making sure they’ll last is important. But even the most expensive appliances will break down once in awhile. This is why it’s always good to know when to replace your appliances versus when should you just pay for repairs.
Older appliances can end up costing you more money, but there are a few easy changes you can make to actually save money with the appliances already in your home! Here’s how to save money with your household appliances right now.
There are some general rules to consider that apply to most appliances:
- If there are any safety concerns with any appliance, you definitely want to consider replacing it.
- If you do decide to buy a new appliance, check with your local gas and electric company for rebates. In addition, you may find resources for rebates through the Energy Star website.
- If you have a repair/service person come out to see what the problem is and what it would cost to repair it, ask if the service fee could be applied to the cost of repairs or a new appliance if you go through their company.
- Make sure you’re familiar with the warranty. You may be able to have repairs or even replacements covered. Also, if the appliance is relatively new, you may qualify for a warranty through the credit card you used to purchase it.
- Remember the 50/50 rule: If the appliance is halfway through its lifespan and if the cost of a repair is more than 50 percent of the cost for a new appliance, consider replacing it instead of repairing it.
- If you’re buying a new appliance, always ask if there are any open boxes or floor models for sale at a deep discount. Open boxes are those appliances that may have been returned or a prior year’s model that was displayed. Just make sure the warranties still apply.
Of course, there are also some specific do’s and don’ts for each type of appliance. Here’s a quick and easy guide to help you make a decision to repair or replace:
When to Replace a Refrigerator
Average range of repair costs: $110-$325
Average cost to replace: $2,000 (Low: $900; High: $8,000+)
Some issues may be worth repairing. If your fridge is “sweating,” it could mean the rubber seal needs replacing. Or, if it takes longer for food to get cold, you may need your temperatures adjusted.
These are usually fairly simple repairs, but refrigerators are one of those appliances that run 24/7, so their lifespan may be shorter than other appliances.
- Built-in refrigerators are usually worth repairing because there’s a lot of work involved to replace them because they’re built into your kitchen.
- Side-by-side refrigerators should usually be repaired if they’re less than five years old, but you should consider replacing yours if it’s older than that.
- For bottom and top freezer models, those less than seven years old are worth trying to repair, but you should consider a replacement if they’re older.
Keep in mind, old refrigerators can actually end up costing you more money over time because of higher energy bills. Another thing to consider is that if your refrigerator or freezer are on the brink of breaking and you wait to repair or replace them, you could end up losing hundreds of dollars worth of food if the appliance shuts down and the food spoils.
If your fridge is on the fritz and you’ve decided to buy a new one, check out this coupon for $50 off all Kenmore appliances priced at $499 or more at Sears! (Exp. 1/17/2017)
When Should I Replace My Stove?
Average range of repair costs: $110-$260
Average cost to replace: $1,500 (Low: $600; High: $4,500+)
The average lifespan of a stove is usually 13-15 years, and a gas range will last a couple years longer than an electric one.
Making sure your stove is in excellent working condition is important because of the element of fire. You certainly don’t want to take any chances there!
Some repairs, like adjusting the heating elements, can easily be repaired by a certified repair person. But some of the more detailed electrical work can be more complex and therefore more expensive.
Make sure that, if you buy a new stove, you measure the area where you’ll be inserting it in your kitchen. You want a snug fit, but it’s even the slightest fraction of an inch off that may mean the stove won’t slide into its place.
Do you have a smaller kitchen appliance that needs replacing? Shop at Best Buy and save 20% on regular-priced small kitchen appliances! (Exp. 10/30)
When to Replace a Dishwasher
Average range of repair costs: $100-$300
Average cost to replace: $600
The typical dishwasher will last between 9-15 years. You’ll find with dishwashers that oftentimes a simple repair can fix the problem, especially if it’s an issue with your dishes not getting completely clean.
If the problems are more complex, such as electrical issues or if your dishwasher is leaking water, you may want to replace it.
If it’s time for a new dishwasher, you might check out appliance warehouses like US Appliance. Right now they’re offering up to $2,000 off GE appliances! (Exp. 9/30)
When to Replace a Washing Machine
Average range of repair costs: $100-$300
Average cost to replace a top-loading washer: $500
Average cost to replace a front-loading washer: $1,000
Your washing machine can last you 8-12 years. However, if you’re having issues with leaking water, you should contact a repair service as soon as possible. This issue can quickly become a larger problem, and you may need to replace the washer so there’s no risk of accidental flooding in the future.
Depending on the cost of the repair, you may be better off buying a new washing machine. Top-loading washers can be found for as little as $350, but if you prefer a front-loading washing machine you’ll be paying anywhere from $800 to $1,500. Keep in mind you can often get great deals on both washers and dryers if you buy them as a set.
Need your old washer hauled away? Lowe’s offers free appliance delivery, installation, and haul away services! (Exp. 11/30)
When Should I Replace My Dryer?
Average range of repair costs: $130-$180
Average cost to replace: $500
Just like washing machines, dryers can last you 8-12 years.
When it comes to dryer repairs, you may just need a minor fix to solve the problem of clothes not drying completely. Sometimes it’s something as simple as the lint filter being clogged!
You can usually find a new dryer for $400 to $1,200, but don’t forget that if you also need a new washing machine, you may find an even better deal if you buy them both as a set.