Consumer Watch: How to prevent appliance problems


by WHAS11

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 6:47 PM

Updated Friday, Nov 16 at 7:01 PM

(WHAS11) -- The busy holiday cooking season in now upon us. So are your appliances ready to work overtime?

More than 40 percent of people who responded to a recent Angie's List poll say they are hosting holiday dinners this year, putting their ovens, refrigerators and garbage disposals to the test.

Before you pull your Thanksgiving turkey from  the oven and empty that stuffing into your favorite bowl, remember to give the oven a test run.

"People that haven't tried their ovens for a month, two months, three months, or six months. The day before thanksgiving you want to cook a turkey and their oven doesn't work, so we get emergency calls all the time," said Rick Cantleberry, an operator of an appliance repair company.

If you have to make that call to a repair shop with a house full of hungry people look out. The cost of repair could be double the going rate. On a holiday repairing a refrigerator, dishwasher, oven or garbage disposal will cost you even more. Angie's List says a basic preventative service call on an appliance will cost only $60-$100.

"Sometimes people think 'wow, do I want to spend that kind of money,' but when compared to the amount of money it would take to replace that appliance it can be money well spent,” said Angie Kicks. Hicks lists these tips on her popular site:

-Research potential hires

-Inquire about costs

-Check skill level

-Confirm work is under warranty
If it seems these appliances break down more often during the holidays that's because they do - after we over-stuff the fridge blocking the air supply or overfill the dishwasher hoping to run one fewer cycle. The rule of thumb here is "don't over-stuff."