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Tips to Extend life of Appliances


  • Always replace the batteries in your smoke detectors twice a year—choose holidays or family birthdays as reminders.
  • Unplug small electrical appliances, such as blenders, toasters, etc. after using them.
  • Check appliance hoses and ventilation according to owner’s manuals.
  • Sanitize small electrical appliances after each use; unplug and allow to cool before cleaning.
  • Use only distilled water in steam irons to prevent mineral buildup.
  • Strap the water heater firmly to wall studs to avoid it from moving during an earthquake.


  • Repair minor drips and leaks as they occur, don’t allow the problem to develop in to a major issue.
  • Invest in quality shower heads and faucets as they last longer, and over the course of their life pay for themselves.
  • Circumvent flushing anything but toilet paper down the toilet.


  • Use only dishwasher detergent in recommended amounts Load dishwasher properly—and run only when you have a full load.
  • Load more fragile items on the top rack of the dishwasher.

Garbage Disposal

  • Do not put fibrous foods down the disposal, including celery, corn husks, and potato skins. Never put rice (uncooked or cooked) down the garbage disposal.
  • To freshen your disposal, occasionally grind a half lemon or lime while running cold water.
  • Run a strong flow of cold water through garbage disposal throughout grinding and for at least 30 seconds after turning off grinder.


  • If you have a self-cleaning oven, do not use any other method to clean it.
  • Clean the interior of your oven regularly.


  • Clean refrigerator compartment regularly, even though it does not require defrosting.
  • Wipe up spills in the refrigerator promptly to avoid staining and odors.
  • Clean coils with a condenser coil brush.
  • Once a year slide the refrigerator out and vacuum around and beneath it.
  • Defrost freezers about once a year, before frost is 1/2 inch thick on inside walls and clean. Use a plastic or wooden scraper, not a sharp instrument.
  • When storing items in the door, place the heaviest items closest to the hinge side; this will reduce stress on the door and inner door panel when it is opened and shut.

Microwave Oven

  • Do not use metal pans or containers with metal trim.
  • Clean microwave oven and removable glass shelves regularly; food residue keeps reheating and can cause the glass shelves to break.
  • Clean around microwave door to prevent soil buildup which could keep the door from closing tightly.
  • Only use mild soap and/or baking soda mixture to clean the interior to avoid damaging the lining.


  • Keep gas burners free of dirt and debris.
  • Clean exposed metal of range hoods regularly with sudsy water—do not use abrasive pads or scouring powders, as they may scratch the finish.
  • Occasionally clean the metal filter in warm, sudsy water. Charcoal filters should be replaced once a year.
  • Never spray cleaners directly onto the control panel. Put some cleaner on a soft, damp rag, and then wipe the surface.


  • Do not overload washing machine and choose appropriate level for size of load.
  • Heavy clothing such as jeans and towels should be spread out over two or more loads to avoid added strain to the machine.
  • Do not spill laundry products on exterior of washer or dryer: porcelain can be damaged by the chemicals.
  • Do not spray stain removers onto garments on top of washer or dryer: it can corrode painted or plastic parts.
  • Clean dryer lint filter before each load.
  • Clean out exhaust vent system at least once a year. Be sure to vent dryer outside never into the house.
  • Clean the washer and dryer exterior regularly. Wipe the dryer door opening occasionally. Never clean the dryer drum with flammable solvents.

Heating/Air Conditioning

  • Have the heating/cooling systems serviced annually.
  • Check the filters on your heating/cooling unit clean or replace as needed.
  • Do not operate an air conditioner unit or furnace on an extension cord! The compressor draws a lot of current and can be damaged if insufficient voltage is continually supplied.

Pools/Spas/Hot Tub

  • Keep a proper water level at all times.
  • Maintain chemical balance.
  • Clean basket strainers regularly.
Swimming Pool and Spa

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