Modern appliances have made our lives a lot easier, and most of us can no longer live without our dishwashers and washing machines.

However, replacing and repairing equipment in your home and kitchen can be costly. Fortunately, you can improve their lifespan with proper care and routine maintenance.

This blog will list some suggestions to extend the life of your most-used appliances.

Washing Machines

  • Keep The Spillage To A Minimum!

Detergent spills can collect residue in washing machines. Once these spills have accumulated, they might begin to stink and become sticky. Using a mild cleanser is the best way to get rid of this gluey residue. To remove lint, grime, and detergent deposits that form over time, wipe the drum’s interior using a damp cloth.

  • Keep The Rubber Gasket Clean

The rubber gasket is the most important and often utilized portion of a washing machine. To protect your clothes and hands from the prickly edges of the washer-dryer, wrap this rubber gasket over the edge.

However, every time you open the door, micro dust particles can sweep in and enter the washing machine. Along with detergent and softener, these particles also tend to gather on the gasket.

Therefore, you must clean it weekly to eliminate all the detergent, softener, and dust particles. The rubber gaskets are also subjected to a lot of spills. Lack of attention and regular cleaning can make your machines wear out more quickly. All of this, though, may be avoided by simply keeping it clean.

A person adding liquid detergent to a washing machine

  • Clean The Detergent Dispensers Regularly

Fabric softeners and detergents are usually stored separately in automatic washing machines. The appliances combine these ingredients with water and pour them into the tub, making the operation nice and tidy.

However, long-term use of these containers without adequate cleaning can turn them into a breeding ground for bacteria and harmful substances. It takes on a transparent and occasionally green tint that is pretty unpleasant to look at.

Washing your clothes with such a buildup can be dangerous for your health and damage your clothes. It can also ruin your washing machine. Hence, you must carefully clean the dispensers to avoid these issues.

  • Intensive Cleaning

A washing machine is one of the most commonly used appliances in every home that can become inefficient with time. You may find that your clothes aren’t as spotless as they were initially. The micro-residuals in the water can affect the efficiency of your washing machine.

An in-depth clean is all that’s needed. You can do this by cleaning your washing machine using an effective machine cleanser. You can use a soft-bristled brush to clean it thoroughly.

However, make sure the tools and cleaners you use aren’t too harsh on the metal and plastic components of your washing machine. This will not only help improve the performance but also the lifespan of your washing machine.


  • Thoroughly Clean The Refrigerator
    a woman wiping the refrigerator with a cloth

Make sure to clean the exteriors as well as the interior of the fridge thoroughly biweekly. Empty the refrigerator for some time, and scrub the shelves and body using a soft-bristled brush in a refrigerator-friendly cleaner.

You can also DIY a cleaning solution by mixing an equal proportion of vinegar and dishwasher solution. Remove all the drawers or shelves and dip them in soap solution.

It’s advisable to use a certified cleaning solution to clean the exterior and ensure you don’t damage the steel body. Avoid using any abrasive tools such as sponges or scrubbers. Instead, use a warm microfiber cloth. You can use a stainless steel greaser for tough and greasy stains and leftover sticky food particles.

  • Clean The Coils Regularly

One of the most critical strategies for extending the life of your refrigerator is to clean the condenser coils. These coils help dissipate heat from the inside, allowing your food to stay fresh.

However, dust and other dirt particles can cling to the coils, resulting in the refrigerator working harder and overheating the motor. Cleaning condenser coils is as easy as using a vacuum with a brush attachment to sweep the coils clean.
fruits and vegetables in a built-in refrigerator

  • Watch Out For Door Seals

A faulty seal causes cooler air to escape. This wastes a significant amount of energy, increasing the workload on your refrigerators. This will also lead to soaring utility bills. Therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that the door seals are clean of all sorts of food residue.

Clean these seals once every six months with a toothbrush to reach the inner corners. Make sure the seals are clean and clear of food residue first.

To know if the door is sealing properly, carry out the bill test. Close the door with the note so that half of it goes inside and the other half hangs outside. If the dollar bill stays intact, the door seals properly. If the bill slips down, it’s time you need to clean the seals.

  • Clean Drain Pipes And Pans Routinely

Slime and sludge often build up in refrigerators over time, causing units to freeze. The best approach to prevent this accumulation is to inspect any tubing or drain pans that may be prone to clogging.

If your pipe is clogged with sludge and moisture, it can release a pungent smell that spreads throughout your refrigerator and kitchen. Therefore, it’s critical to clean the drain pan monthly with warm water infused with soap or a vinegar solution.

The accumulated gunk can also block the drain pipes. Get your tubings inspected by a professional each year for any major blockages. A blockage in the drain pipes can cause your defrost system to overflow and eventually leak.


  • Watch Out For Clogged Dishwashers
    pots and plates in a dishwasher

Make sure you use your dishwasher the right way. To begin, clean the filter in the bottom compartment of the dishwasher regularly.

It’s commonly situated beneath the bottom sprayer and prevents food particles or trash from obstructing the drain line. Cleaning it will prevent the drainage pipes from clogging.

Make sure your dishwasher isn’t overflowing. If it’s clogged with dishes, the water may not reach other dishes that need to be cleaned, forcing you to use it again or spend extra time hand-washing dishes.

  • Get Rid Of Any Food Particles After Each Cycle

The residual food particles in your dishwashers are the source of the foul odor. After each cycle, it’s critical to get rid of these to ensure your kitchen doesn’t smell like rotten eggs.

Before your next wash, remove the bottom-most rack and clean off any debris. Clean your filters once a week to keep the collection from affecting the function of your dishwashers.

  • Wipe Off The Gasket Grime And The Door After Each Cycle

To clean the dishwasher gasket, gently remove any unpleasant gunk from the rubber seal with an old soft toothbrush. Using a moist paper towel, wipe the surface clean. However, avoid using a bleach-based solution if your dishwasher’s interior is stainless steel or has any stainless steel parts.

To clean the door, use a sponge or a microfiber cloth to wipe off any water splashes or residues that have settled on the door handles, inside surface, and dishwasher controls. You can use a damp sponge or a microfiber cloth to clean the control system.

a woman adding plates to a dishwasher

  • Rinse The Filter

Nothing else will be clean if the filter isn’t. You’ll have to take out the bottom rack to get to the filter. It is below the bottom spray arm. Look it up in the owner’s handbook or on the manufacturer’s website if you don’t know how to remove it.

Unlock the filter and rinse it under hot running water to get rid of those pesky spots on subsequent loads. To remove any food particles or grease lodged in the gaps, scrub the plastic frame and mesh screen with a soft toothbrush. After a final rinse, replace the filter in its original location.

  • Deep Clean Your Dishwasher At Least Once A Month

Regardless of how much cleaning you perform daily, it’s critical to give your dishwashers a thorough cleaning. Surfactant-containing cleaning tablets are widely available on the market.

These surfactants aid in the dissolution of any sticky food particles or stains that might otherwise remain after ordinary cleaning.

Water Heaters

  • Keep An Eye On Your Water Heaters For Corroding Dip Tubes
    a mini white water heater in a bathroom

A water heater may appear tricky to maintain, yet it does not necessitate much attention. Make sure there isn’t any mineral buildup in the pressure relief valve. This can make it difficult to open and close the valve. To prevent mineral buildup, you must open it a few times a year.

Secondly, the dip tube inside the tank drives cold air down to the bottom of the tank for the water heater to heat up.

An old dip tube can corrode and rust, causing cold water to flow toward the hot water outlet at the top of the tank.  You must keep a regular watch and replace it as soon as it starts showing signs of wear and tear to avoid it from breaking.

  • Keep A Close Eye On The Plug

Because of low-capacity wiring and power fluctuations, your switch can occasionally spark. Burn marks will appear on the pins of your plug as the higher electricity wattage heats the pins and plug, leaving burn marks.

It is usually preferable to use new sockets and plugs that have been correctly wired and connected to avoid any potential electrical short circuits. Also, instead of using a regular switch with your water heaters, try using an MCB switch, as MCBs are more durable than standard plugs and will avoid any short-circuiting. The third option is to turn on the water heater only when needed.

Garbage Disposals
a person washing a machinery coil

  • Do Not Dispose Of Damaging Items In Your Garbage Disposal

The purpose of your garbage disposal is to crush food scraps only. You must avoid dumping metal objects, plastic, glass, oil, fat, grease, and large bones in your garbage disposals.

You must also avoid putting any foods that swell, like rice and spaghetti, down your drain as they can block the drainage pipes. For larger particles, you must always break them up into smaller pieces.

If you have bigger food scraps that you wish to dump down your disposal, break them into tiny pieces and grind them separately.

  • Make Use Of Cold Water

You might have often heard that hot water is good at taking out tough and greasy stains, but that won’t work if you want to keep your garbage disposers clean.

Garbage disposals attempt to grind the food you’re trying to dispose of. Hot water will melt the food causing the waste to stick to the sides. In contrast, food hardens in cold water. This makes it easier for the garbage disposal to perform its action and crush it, sending it down the drain pipe.

For more comprehensive cleaning and inspection, reach out to the professionals. If you’re looking for high-quality appliance repairs in Alexandria, VA, look no further than S & E Appliance Repairs.

We provide top-notch home appliance repairs around the clock, regardless of the day, without additional fees for weekends or night jobs. We’re one of the leading appliance repair companies in the US, well-known for offering quick and convenient services. We work on all makes, models, and types of appliances. We ensure to provide thorough, dependable, and highly affordable appliance repairs, helping you avoid replacements.

From dishwashers, dryers, and refrigerators to garbage disposals, we provide affordable services, prioritizing our client’s comfort!

Contact us today to get your appliances running smoothly.