With the economy still is a stagnant state, and extra cash for new home needs remaining low, many American homeowners are putting off getting new appliances in their homes and condos and opting to fix their current ones with appliance replacement parts.
According to recent research from Euromonitor, Americans’ buying of new appliances remained ‘extremely soft’ in 2011, as a result of high unemployment, low consumer confidence, tight consumer credit markets and a failure of the housing market to rebound.
But many of us know, when kitchen appliances break, you must either buy a new one or have the old appliance fixed. A twist on the old saying might be, if it’s broke, ya gotta fix it. But if buying a new appliance is out of the budget, then repair becomes the default option.
So what are the best ways for consumers to find elusive parts on older appliances that still work? Here are a few tips to help you get that appliance back in smooth working order.
Can you fix it yourself?
Keep an eye out for changes in performance, temperature, openings and closings and overall quality of your refrigerators, dishwashers, microwave ovens, stove-ranges and more. A good way to get started is to go back to the appliance user’s manual, which outlines how to periodically tune or clean your appliance parts. If you can’t do it yourself, consult a friend, or technician in town, who can help you determine the cause of the misfire.
Try the manufacturer
Find the original receipt to the retailer where you bought your appliance. See if you can get a trade-in. If the retailer is out of business, try going directly to the manufacturer’s website. This only half-helpful, as many manufacturers are updating only their service offerings to reflect the current digital appliance products, not the older models. In fact, some large manufacturers like GE and Whirlpool outsource their older appliance parts to third party companies.
Search online for replacement parts
Online sources for replacement parts for appliances can be an older consumer’s best friend. If your refrigerator needs a new liner to seal in the cold, consult an online source for that part. Is your gas valve coil in need of repair for your stove? Online shops have many parts like washers, bearings, filters, pumps, motors and valves and more for use in older appliances.
Know your part and model number
Knowing what part and model number you want is important. You can search for the part and model number at a site like Appliance Parts Company, which offers a quick catalog search for parts and accessories for refrigerators, washing machines, dryers, ranges, dishwashers, air conditioners, ice machines, disposers, and more.
Have a Plan B
When you have a malfunctioning stove, refrigerator, or washer-dryer, it can play havoc with your daily routine. If you’ve struck out of luck on finding the appliance replacement part that you need, you might need to resort to Plan B. That may consist of using a public laundromat, or looking on Craigslist for a low-priced appliance equivalent to the likes of Whirlpool, Amana, KitchenAid appliance and more. Hopefully, that will work until you have the funds necessary to buy a new appliance. Using these tips above can help you get on the right track in getting your replacement parts for any kitchen appliances that you still hold near and dear.