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repair or replace appliances

Should I Repair or Replace Appliances That Stop Working Properly?

When it comes to our beloved appliances, there often comes a time when we have to make a tough decision: should we repair the broken appliance or replace it altogether? This dilemma can be frustrating, but we’ll go over the different aspects to consider when making this decision. Here’s how to navigate the decision of whether to repair or replace appliances that stop working properly.

Is the Appliance Actually Broken?

Before jumping to conclusions and rushing to replace your appliance, it’s crucial to investigate whether it is truly broken or if it simply needs maintenance. Sometimes, seemingly major malfunctions can be attributed to minor issues that are easily fixable. Here are a few specific examples of maintenance issues that could make it appear like your appliance is broken:

  • Refrigerator cooling issues: This could be caused by dirty condenser coils, which can restrict airflow and affect cooling performance. Cleaning the coils can often resolve the issue and save you from unnecessary expenses.
  • Oven temperature problems: A faulty heating element might make you believe your oven is broken. However, sometimes it’s just a matter of replacing the element, and your oven will be back in action.
  • Poor dishwasher cleaning performance: Clogged spray arms or a blocked filter can lead to poor cleaning performance. Regularly cleaning and unclogging these components can restore your dishwasher’s efficiency.
  • Dryer doesn’t dry your clothes: If your dryer won’t get hot enough to dry your laundry, there may be an issue with restricted airflow. Start by cleaning the lint screen, then have your dryer vents cleaned to restore airflow, improve heating efficiency, and even prevent dryer fires.

is appliance repair worth it

By thoroughly examining your appliance and addressing potential maintenance issues, you can save yourself the trouble and cost of replacing it unnecessarily.

Appliance Age and Life Expectancy

The age of your appliance plays a significant role in the decision-making process. Appliances have a limited lifespan, and as they get older, they become more prone to breakdowns. Here are the average life expectancies of some major household appliances:

  • Refrigerators: 10-15 years
  • Ovens: 10-20 years
  • Dishwashers: 7-12 years
  • Washers: 10-15 years
  • Dryers: 10-15 years

If your appliance is nearing the end of its expected lifespan, it might be more cost-effective to replace it rather than sinking money into repeated repairs.

Repair vs Replacement Cost

One of the most critical factors in the repair or replace decision is the cost. Compare the cost of the necessary repairs with the price of a new appliance. As a general rule, if the repair cost exceeds 50% of the appliance’s original price, it may be wiser to opt for a replacement.

Additionally, consider the long-term energy efficiency and operational costs of the appliance. Newer models are often more energy-efficient, leading to potential savings on your utility bills in the long run.

Have You Kept Up with Maintenance?

Regular maintenance can significantly extend the lifespan of your appliances. If you’ve diligently followed the manufacturer’s maintenance recommendations, it’s likely that repairs will be more feasible and cost-effective.

Routine maintenance includes cleaning filters, coils, and vents, as well as checking for leaks, clogs, or unusual noises. By keeping up with these maintenance tasks, you can prolong your appliance’s life and make repair a better option over a more extended period.

repair vs replace a broken appliance

Ways to Extend Appliance Lifespan

To maximize the lifespan of your appliances, consider the following operational and maintenance tips:


  • Keep the coils clean and free of dust.
  • Set the temperature to the recommended level.
  • Avoid overstuffing, as it strains the compressor.


  • Use oven liners or foil to catch spills and prevent them from sticking.
  • Regularly clean the oven and remove residue.


  • Clean the filter regularly to prevent clogs.
  • Scrape off excess food before loading dishes.


  • Avoid overloading the machine.
  • Clean the filter and check hoses for leaks.


  • Clean the lint filter after each use.
  • Inspect and clean the dryer vent regularly.

By implementing these tips, you can help prolong the life of your appliances and reduce the need for repairs or replacements.

Other Benefits of Repairing Appliances

Your best bet is to find a professional to evaluate your appliance BEFORE you head to the store. It is so worth the price of a service call to find out that it was just a hairpin in the pump and your washer is now as good as new, rather than to go out and blow 500+ on a new one if you really didn’t need to. And who needs to add another piece of junk to the landfill?

Did You Know?

  • Americans generate 250 million tons of garbage a year, and some reports show over 400 million tons.
  • Since 1960, America has tripled the amount of waste we generate.
  • EVERY DAY, the U.S. throws away enough trash to fill 63,000 garbage trucks.

If you repair your appliance instead of tossing it, you will be helping to minimize the mind-blowing amount of waste piling up each year. Plus, chances are that the appliance repair cost will be a small fraction of the replacement cost. A win for you and the environment!

At Cody’s Appliance Repair, we understand that the decision to repair or replace an appliance can be challenging. That’s why we’re here to help! Our team of experienced professionals provides reliable in-home appliance service. Whether you need a repair or expert advice, Cody’s Appliance Repair has got you covered.

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