Does keeping your home appliances running all year long feel like a Herculean feat? Help keep your home appliance game strong with these simple home maintenance tips.
APPLIANCE EFFICIENCY QUALIFIERS
Simple fixes can boost the energy efficiency of several home appliances, including your AC unit, refrigerator, oven and dryer. Here are a few tips to keep your home’s stars running at peak performance.
Oven Warm-up — If your oven door isn’t sealing properly, you could be losing more than 20 percent of its heat, -- taking longer for your food to cook or causing it to cook unevenly. Inspect the oven door seal for breaks, tears or abnormalities and look for possible leaks. If you spot a problem, replace the seal, which is available for purchase at most home improvement stores.
The Filter Toss — Dirty, clogged air filters reduce energy efficiency and restrict airflow. They can also limit the lifespan of your home’s air conditioner. You can help prevent expensive repairs by cleaning or replacing AC filters every one to three months.
Bonus: You can get discounts on high-quality, brand-name air filters. Learn more about our discount air filter program.
The Exhaust Plunge — A dirty, dusty, lint-filled dryer exhaust vent will reduce the efficiency of your dryer, but more importantly, it’s a fire hazard. Pull the exhaust hose off the back of the dryer and look inside for any large clumps of lint. Remove any debris in the exhaust vent and use a straightened coat hanger or vent brush to gently scrape out anything you can’t reach. Finally, vacuum and blow out the exhaust vent hose before reattaching
The Window Spot — Cracks and leaks around doors and windows allow cold air out and hot air in. Don’t make your air conditioner work on overdrive; inspect for and seal any cracks or leaks around windows and doors to help keep your home well insulated.
Refrigerator Cool Down — If dirt, dust or pet hair is clogging up your refrigerator coils, your fridge is losing efficiency, working harder to keep food cool. Use the hose attachment on your vacuum to clean coils and remove any loose debris. Not sure where to find the coils? Check behind the front panel near the floor or on the rear of your fridge.
Water can be one of your biggest opponents inside your home. Keep your dishwasher, water heater, washing machine and plumbing in tip-top shape with these tips.
Filter Shuffle — If you get your drinking water out of the fridge, be sure your water is fresh and clean. Replacing water filters regularly is critical for keeping contaminants and impurities from your water. Check your fridge manual for instructions for changing the filter, and do this every three to six months.
Hose Inspector — Water hoses to your dishwasher and washing machine can develop cracks, weak spots or leaks over time. Avoid a flood in your home by inspecting hoses for any deformities. At minimum, hoses should be replaced every five years.
Water Heater — Drain your water heater to help keep sediment from collecting inside the unit. Turn off power or gas to the water heater then turn off the cold water supply valve. Hook a garden hose to the drain valve and run it outside. Open the valve where the hose is attached and say goodbye to dirty water.
End of Game Deodorizer — Take a minute to think about all that goes down the garbage disposal in your sink, and you’ll quickly realize just how important it is to periodically clean and deodorize this small appliance. First, be sure the disposal is turned off then check the drain for any items that may be stuck. Remove any blockages and pour a mixture of ice and vinegar down the drain. Run cold water for 10 seconds and then turn the disposal on. To remove the old food stench, place a handful of lemon or orange peels in the disposal, run cold water and turn the unit on.
Add these simple DIY home maintenance tips to your game plan to help your home appliances be winners for years to come. However, even the best maintenance efforts can't always keep your home running at gold medal status. Sometimes your appliances or systems will need professional repair or replacement.
In that situation, look to an American Home Shield® Home Warranty Plan for protection from unexpected costs. AHS can help guide your home back to world class levels. Learn more about finding the perfect home warranty plan for you.