Air conditioners, refrigerators, and dishwashers all certainly make our lives more comfortable and are conveniences our ancestors would never have dreamed of. However, when these modern marvels break down, the costs of repairs and replacements can deal a serious financial blow. With the average appliance repair costing around $200, just a few issues arising at once can severely strain budgets for homeowners.
Implementing money-saving strategies around home appliances should, therefore, be an essential component of household budgeting and financial planning. Taking a proactive approach allows homeowners to prepare for inevitable appliance repairs and make cost-saving decisions when issues emerge. Whether DIY-ing easy fixes, shopping repair technicians, utilizing warranties, or considering home appliance insurance, practical tips exist to minimize expenses.
Working hard to purchase appliances can make having to sink yet more money into them via repairs later on seem unjust. However, appliance issues cannot always be avoided. What can be controlled is your response through research, maintenance, and smart financial decisions. This prevents each malfunction or breakdown from escalating into a major hit to your bottom line.
Equipped with practical money-saving guidance, homeowners can tackle appliance repairs and replacements much more affordably. Budget-conscious homeowners can implement one or more of these suggestions that make the most sense for their unique situations.
Research Problems Thoroughly
Before calling for professional repairs, research the make and model of your appliance along with the specific problems occurring. There may be quick, inexpensive DIY fixes you can do yourself. Watch online repair videos to diagnose issues and learn how to do minor repairs.
Shop Around for Repair Estimates
If DIY efforts fail and professional repairs are needed, contact multiple appliance repair companies for quotes. Prices can vary widely, so get estimates from at least three companies. Ask what is included in their service fees to compare apples to apples.
Consider Buying Refurbished Parts
New appliance parts from the manufacturer can be very expensive. Check appliance parts websites to see if refurbished parts are available for your model. As long as the parts come with a decent warranty, refurbished parts can provide huge savings.
Attempt Cleaning and Maintenance First
Before replacing appliances altogether, try thorough cleanings and maintenance. Appliances like refrigerators, dishwashers, and washing machines often have simple fixes, like unclogging trash or replacing old seals or belts. These repairs cost very little compared to buying new ones.
Take Advantage of Warranties
Review appliance warranties to see if any coverage remains. Expect about a year’s worth of coverage, but some high-end appliance warranties run as long as five years. If an appliance is still covered, repairs and parts replacements will be free or heavily discounted.
Purchase Extended Warranties
Although expensive upfront, appliance extended warranties can pay for themselves if issues arise after the standard warranty expires. Only purchase from reputable third-party companies and make sure you understand what is/isn’t covered.
Consider a Home Warranty
Consumers today are also becoming increasingly interested in a home warranty company for help saving money. These coverage plans will help with the repairs of almost any major appliance, including refrigerators, air conditioners, and water heaters. Home warranty companies coordinate and pay for covered repairs, including parts and labor. Most home warranties are around $500 per year and have a per-service deductible. Repairs average $350, so a couple of appliance issues can make a home warranty worthwhile. Research plans thoroughly to avoid overly restrictive coverage. Implementing even a few of these money-saving tips when appliances break down can help limit costly repairs. With some elbow grease and research, homeowners can keep more money in their pockets.