Laundry and Kitchen Appliances: Repair or Replace

BGE HOME Appliance Repairman Photo

You will eventually be faced with the decision to repair or replace the appliances in your home. As your refrigerator, microwave and clothes washer age, repairs can become more frequent and expensive. Mounting repair costs and the price of a replacement appliance can be major factors to consider, along with warranties, age of the equipment and more. Use the general tips below to help guide your decision to repair or replace a kitchen or laundry appliance.

Top Reasons to Repair an Appliance:

  • The problem is covered. The kitchen or laundry appliance is still under a manufacturers warranty or service contract that covers the failed part and/or labor.
  • Equipment has serviceable years. Based upon the average life expectancy of the appliance, the equipment has enough service years remaining to justify the repair.
  • Repair costs are reasonable. One general rule of thumb identifies "reasonable" as "less than 50% of the cost of a new appliance.
  • Consistent reliability and operation. If the equipment has been reliable, has operated without failure, or if you particularly like the model and features, then repairing the equipment may be the best option.

Top Reasons to Replace an Appliance:

  • High repair costs. If the cost to repair the appliance is more than 50% of the cost of a new one, investing in a new appliance may be advisable.
  • No repair coverage. The appliance is not currently covered by a manufacturers warranty or service contract, which would cover the costs of repair.
  • Age of the equipment. The age of an appliance has surpassed its average life expectancy and the repair will not adequately extend the life of the equipment.
  • Service reliability issues. If the appliance has been unreliable and undergone numerous repairs, then replacing the equipment may be the best option.
  • Unavailability of replacement parts. As home equipment ages, replacement parts may be more difficult to find.
  • Improved energy efficiency. Newer models of appliances may have improved energy efficiency ratings. Compare the annual energy savings of the new model to the cost of running the old model. Savings from higher efficiencies may help the new equipment pay for itself over a relatively short period of time.
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