Do you repair your own appliances?

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Pete12
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Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Pete12 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:21 am

How adventurous are Bogleheads when it comes to repairing household appliances? Between Youtube videos and websites that sell appliance parts there is a ton of information and help out there.

Some examples of repairs I’ve done:

Replaced ice maker module in french door refrigerator
General maintenance on fridge including taking the freezer apart to unclog frozen drain line
Replaced chopper assembly on dishwasher which was broken and making a loud noise
Replaced drive belt on clothes dryer
Replaced timer module on washer and repaired/replaced various broken knobs
Changed out a frayed power cord on vacuum cleaner

I must have saved thousands over the years.

My next project is trying to diagnose why the washer occasionally doesn’t spin properly leaving the clothes soaking wet at the end of cycle. This one is proving to be tricky. :annoyed

JoeRetire
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by JoeRetire » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:35 am

I replaced the handle on a microwave once. I was shocked how much it cost.

rkhusky
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by rkhusky » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:57 am

Pete12 wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:21 am
My next project is trying to diagnose why the washer occasionally doesn’t spin properly leaving the clothes soaking wet at the end of cycle. This one is proving to be tricky. :annoyed
Perhaps a clutch. We bought a used washer, which came with a short warranty period. Almost immediately it quit spinning properly. The owner came out and replaced a clutch. Then that one went bad and he came out and replaced it again. Said he had bought some cheap clutches, which are turning out to be not so cheap since he is making extra service calls.

I've done repairs on a previous washer and gas dryer. Downside is the wife has to go to a laundromat for a few weeks while I figure things out.

Housedoc
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Housedoc » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:57 am

I repair everything. Old computer tech/mechanic/woodworker. Most appliances these days have diagnostics you can run via a series of button and knob combos. Google your model and the word diagnostics. I fixed SIL top load washer with same issue you have. It was a tach sensor on bottom near motor. Would not get proper signal that drum was stopped to begin spin cycle. Repairclinic.com has a lot of info. Amazon has parts at better price. Good luck

Chicago60
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Chicago60 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:37 am

I replace the oil in my lawn mower. And, I even put gas in. That's about the extent of my "repair" appliances gig.

HoosierJim
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by HoosierJim » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:44 am

Housedoc wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:57 am
I repair everything.
Me too.

Just got a $15 carburetor kit for my 10 year old weed wacker - kit came with new carb, air filter, spark plug, gas hoses, carb adjustment tool and gas filter stones. Added clean mixed gas and started on first pull. If you have a rough running or hard to start small gas engine tool, check youtube videos first for tips then try the carb replacement.

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lthenderson
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by lthenderson » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:48 am

In today's Youtube instructional video rich environment, I attempt to repair just about anything from appliance on up. I've learned a lot along the way and made a few mistakes but it brings me a lot of satisfaction to be able to figure it out by "myself".

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wander
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by wander » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:00 am

Replaced seals on refrigerator doors. Replaced seals on oven door. Nothing else breaks.

renue74
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by renue74 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:22 am

Over the years I've taken apart our Samsung washer and mostly the dryer to replace sensors, belts, and heating elements. The parts for these are fairly cheap....I can replace all the sensors and the heating element in my dryer for about $30.

Sometimes it's for the challenge.

I have rental property and last spring, I bought a nice side by side fridge for a nicer condo property I own. Within 3 weeks, the tenant texted that it would not cool.

In this type of situation, I can't putz around. So I called a repair guy and he told me it would cost $400 for a new controller board. At some point you have to weigh the cost/benefit. I could buy a basic new fridge for about $600 or $700.

At some point, the 3D printing industry was supposed to make things better for us all. We were going to find a part # for a part in our fridge and have the 3D printer print it on demand. For the every day consumer, we're still not there. Though, I have designed some 3D things and had them printed for cheap ad 3D Hubs. (side projects for fun)

iamblessed
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by iamblessed » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:23 am

I try to repair everything sometimes I win sometimes not.

Broken Man 1999
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:24 am

Never got into the habit of it. Does putting a new knob on our crock pot lid count? :D

When we had the children at home, washers/dryers/refrigerators were way too important for a two worker household to have much downtime. Our weekends were filled carting daughters to different events, always at different fields. Just too dang busy.

Plus, Youtube wasn't around, and the ability to obtain parts was not as easy as it is today. Repair manuals on line, tons of forums to offer help, much more support for those who want to fix things instead of calling a repair person.

We did (and still do) have a great appliance person. Our original repair guy was with us from 1980 until he retired. He recommended our current repair man. So, in almost 40 years we have used two repairman. We never had any hesitation about calling them. No drama, no comebacks.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

jharkin
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by jharkin » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:27 am

Yes - I replaced the gas oven igniter twice, replaced float switch on the dishwasher to fix a leak, and replaced a broken motor coupling on the washing machine.

None of these jobs took more than 10 minutes and basic hand tools to do once you knew what was wrong and had the part. Usually less than $20 to do something that could cost hundreds if you called service.

I also repair and service my lawn and garden equipment and the cars, and do some minor renovations, plumbing and electrical.



When I was a kid in the 80s my Dad did the same.... only difference back then was rather than youtube and online vendors, he worked from a paper repair manual and would take the broken part and drive to the parts counter at Sears to find a matching replacement.

hicabob
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by hicabob » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:37 am

Yup - fixing stuff is sort of a hobby of mine - last appliance fix was the magnetron on a built in microwave/oven combo. So much sheet metal to remove! The "feel good" after it's back together and works is really nice though and I learned a bit about microwave theory and operation.

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Sheepdog
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Sheepdog » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:40 am

In my 54 years of owning a home, I have repaired every house hold appliance, and everything else in the house. Some times when the appliance is old, say 20 years, it is crazy, for me, not to purchase a new one instead of trying to repair it. But, I recently tried to repair my refrigerator ice maker. The auger which dispenses the ice broke in half. I ordered a new auger from GE for this only 10 year old GE fridge, removed the ice maker to replace it, but I just couldn't figure it out. I researched it online which gave no assistance. (I never thought of youtube) Oh well, I decided to sleep on it. When I woke up from that deep sleep, I decided to try again, but when I started, I noticed that the temperature of the freezer was at only 26 degrees and the refrigerator portion was running at 52 degrees. The next couple of days, it was not going that good. It could not be adjusted. I wasn't going to pay someone to replace the compressor and I believed that I should replace the whole thing . I returned the ice auger, and bought a new fridge. (but not a GE.)
It's not what you gather, but what you scatter which tells what kind of life you have lived---Helen Walton

shorty313
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by shorty313 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:58 am

rkhusky wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:57 am
Pete12 wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:21 am
My next project is trying to diagnose why the washer occasionally doesn’t spin properly leaving the clothes soaking wet at the end of cycle. This one is proving to be tricky. :annoyed
Perhaps a clutch. We bought a used washer, which came with a short warranty period. Almost immediately it quit spinning properly. The owner came out and replaced a clutch. Then that one went bad and he came out and replaced it again. Said he had bought some cheap clutches, which are turning out to be not so cheap since he is making extra service calls.

I've done repairs on a previous washer and gas dryer. Downside is the wife has to go to a laundromat for a few weeks while I figure things out.
Also check the water level switch, we have had to replace this before. Tub filled up but wouldn't switch to spin/drain on its own. If I moved the knob to drain manually it would, but it couldn't do it automatically.

We repaired our last fridge twice (ice maker and motherboard), washing machine (see above), and belt on the dryer. When our 15 year old dishwasher goes we won't try to fix because I want a new, quieter one. You tube makes it so easy! The only one we didn't do ourselves was cooktop regulator - we had a week old infant, a toddler, my parents were staying with us, and we were hosting Thanksgiving that week :P

international001
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by international001 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:01 am

If you fix it yourself, do you have to report it on taxes as an imputed income?

anil686
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by anil686 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:02 am

Only if I can watch a youtube video and it seems within my area of competency (pretty not handy in general). If it fits (ice maker, dryer heating element and sensor, washing machine, car visors), I do it. Knowing my limitations may have cost me a little more upfront but I am sure has helped me not hurt myself and not create bigger problems - JMO though...

Broken Man 1999
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:07 am

jharkin wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:27 am
Yes - I replaced the gas oven igniter twice, replaced float switch on the dishwasher to fix a leak, and replaced a broken motor coupling on the washing machine.

None of these jobs took more than 10 minutes and basic hand tools to do once you knew what was wrong and had the part. Usually less than $20 to do something that could cost hundreds if you called service.

I also repair and service my lawn and garden equipment and the cars, and do some minor renovations, plumbing and electrical.



When I was a kid in the 80s my Dad did the same.... only difference back then was rather than youtube and online vendors, he worked from a paper repair manual and would take the broken part and drive to the parts counter at Sears to find a matching replacement.
Well, I was a kid in the 60ties, living in the country, and Sears was golden for us. As a kid, getting that Sears Christmas catalog was a big deal.

And, the nice thing about appliances and such was you received a parts list, exploded drawings showing how everything went together, or came apart.


Sad to see Sears in the current mess.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

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TexasPE
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by TexasPE » Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:34 am

Yes, I give everything at least one shot, with good success.

I was blessed with a father who, beginning when I was 10 or so, would periodically find me and say "Let me show you something". [Dad was a multi-craft mechanic - primarily an instrument/ electrical technician, but also qualified as a welder, carpenter and millwright]. This summons was followed by the disassembly and repair of something needing attention. The work was always accompanied by a narrative on how the device functioned.

The downside of these sessions was that, when the repair was finished, it was my job to fix it in the future. :annoyed

Dad also taught me the value of having the right quality tools for the job.

The value of this informal education was brought home to me by a college friend who lost his father when he was 8. He was an excellent student but couldn't show you where the spark-plugs were in a car or tell the difference between a Philips and straight blade screwdriver.

Based on what I learned in my father's sessions, I've overhauled motorcycle and auto engines, built, tuned and maintained a racing motorcycle, and kept home appliances working.

Do your kids a favor - the next time you repair something, involve them- even if it is just to hand you the right tool.
At 20: I cared what everyone thought about me | At 40: I didn't give a damn what anyone thought of me | Now that I'm 60: I realize that no one was really thinking about me at all | Winston Churchill

whomever
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by whomever » Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:59 am

"At some point, the 3D printing industry was supposed to make things better for us all"

Well, I have 3D printed replacement parts for various things :-). Although I had to measure the old ones and do the CAD myself. I've also welded parts for repairs, and fabricated them with conventional machining. How do people get by without a machine shop in the basement :-). I just tell my spouse 'If we want to have refrigerated food in the future, we need to buy a TIG welder/3D printer/milling machine'.

"If you fix it yourself, do you have to report it on taxes as an imputed income?"

Can I deduct the cost of the equipment?


In all seriousness, as with DIY house projects and car repairs, 'it depends'. I'm not going to spend too many man-hours on a $99 microwave, but sometimes you can save quite a bit. In particular, replacing a $29 part in the washer/furnace/whatever can save a bundle over calling a repairman who has to come out once to diagnose, and later to put in the part. Not to mention having to be home twice for appointments.

nordsteve
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by nordsteve » Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:01 am

I do lots of repairs.

For example - microwave - new magnetron, fabricated custom springs for door latches.

Saves $$$ to do so.

international001
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by international001 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:37 am

whomever wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:59 am
In all seriousness, as with DIY house projects and car repairs, 'it depends'. I'm not going to spend too many man-hours on a $99 microwave, but sometimes you can save quite a bit. In particular, replacing a $29 part in the washer/furnace/whatever can save a bundle over calling a repairman who has to come out once to diagnose, and later to put in the part. Not to mention having to be home twice for appointments.
Do you really think it's worth at any rate? Particularly, with high income BHs, and considering that when you get to fix something it's often a new thing, so you have to invest time on the learning curve.

I sounds to me like a hobby or a learning experience.

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Pete12
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Pete12 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:52 am

shorty313 wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:58 am
rkhusky wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:57 am
Pete12 wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:21 am
My next project is trying to diagnose why the washer occasionally doesn’t spin properly leaving the clothes soaking wet at the end of cycle. This one is proving to be tricky. :annoyed
Perhaps a clutch. We bought a used washer, which came with a short warranty period. Almost immediately it quit spinning properly. The owner came out and replaced a clutch. Then that one went bad and he came out and replaced it again. Said he had bought some cheap clutches, which are turning out to be not so cheap since he is making extra service calls.

I've done repairs on a previous washer and gas dryer. Downside is the wife has to go to a laundromat for a few weeks while I figure things out.
Also check the water level switch, we have had to replace this before. Tub filled up but wouldn't switch to spin/drain on its own. If I moved the knob to drain manually it would, but it couldn't do it automatically.

We repaired our last fridge twice (ice maker and motherboard), washing machine (see above), and belt on the dryer. When our 15 year old dishwasher goes we won't try to fix because I want a new, quieter one. You tube makes it so easy! The only one we didn't do ourselves was cooktop regulator - we had a week old infant, a toddler, my parents were staying with us, and we were hosting Thanksgiving that week :P
Yeah I am working with both hypotheses right now, I am leaning more towards the switch because it seems to be an intermittent problem. Also the washer seems to get out of balance very easily, if you-rearrange the clothes then set it to drain and spin then it runs the whole spin cycle fine...

whomever
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by whomever » Thu Jun 13, 2019 12:30 pm

"Do you really think it's worth at any rate? Particularly, with high income BHs, and considering that when you get to fix something it's often a new thing, so you have to invest time on the learning curve."

I dunno that I'm high income, but even independent of that, let's consider a couple of examples:

1)Furnace stops working. Taking off the cover reveals that the noise is coming from the combustion air blower. Taking that out reveals it's bearings have catastrophically failed. Diagnosis and googling part number to order a replacement took one hour, and installing the replacement a couple of days later took a half hour. Even disregarding a repairman's bill and markup on the part, calling a repairman would have taken more than 1.5 hours out of my life.

2)Plastic bit on 30 year old but otherwise working fine built in vacuum broke. I spent maybe 3 hours doing the CAD design for a new one (and a few person-minutes 3D printing it), and maybe half an hour installing it. I couldn't have shopped for a replacement built in vac in under a couple of hours, and would have had to be around for the install, which surely would have taken more than an hour.

It's like a clogged sink or toilet - it's not fun to snake/plunge/whatever to unclog them, but it sure takes less time to DIY than to call a plumber and wait around.

(another example: plumbing failed under the basement slab. Lowest bid was $11k. It's a dead simple plumbing job; the expense is cutting the slab and digging out the pipe. We spend $1k on rentals/permits (concrete saw, cast iron pipe cutter, grasshopper soil compactor, portable cement mixer) and a solid week of full time work. So if you're net take home pay is more than $10k a week/$500k a year you would be better off hiring that out. Except ... I would have wanted to be home while they were doing it anyway.)

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Doom&Gloom
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Doom&Gloom » Thu Jun 13, 2019 12:35 pm

I used to when appliances were simpler, I was younger, and my wallet was thinner.

I will still try to do simple things, but otherwise I look for my challenges in other areas of life.

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onthecusp
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by onthecusp » Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:07 pm

I've fixed top loading clothes washers in the past, replace belts, etc. Fixed ranges and ovens for various control failures. But I'm less interested all the time.

I just, last week, replaced the starter contacts on a refrigerator along with the water valve. I was not going to, called a friend who recommended an appliance guy he knew. That guy only sold appliances but told me who he would have repairs done by. They did not service LG appliances. Found an internet ad, but they did not service my area code. Found another that scheduled someone to come Saturday and have a look at it for $70, applied to repairs if I authorized them. Tech said the overload needed to be replaced (we knew the water valve was an issue). Went away to get prices and an estimate. Monday came and went. Called them Tuesday and heard nothing back. Called again Wednesday and they told me that the parts are no longer available! Fridge is about 8 years old.

Well at this point I had a questionable diagnosis, but what the heck, looked up the overload on line, found one for $15 (it was indeed listed as unavailable on a couple sites). One of the appliance Q&A I read suggested it could also be the starter contacts, so I bought them for about $30. Paid about $40 for the valve. So, about $85 for the parts.

Got into the back of the fridge. The water valve took about 5 minutes, changed the overload, but the starter contact assembly was different. Probably identical electrically but I would have had to mess with the wiring. Had water afterward, but he compressor still did not start reliably. Found another starter (including another overload) with the correct form factor for another $20. When it arrived I knew what I was doing and was done in about 15 minutes. Compressor started first time. About half of the time I spent getting down and up from the floor. Not as spry as I once was. I also have a box of parts including two good overloads.

Very satisfying, but I sure wish I could have had it repaired right the first time!

Somewhere in there I was mad as hell with the repair outfit and convinced them to get the tech to call me back. Told him that the parts are available and he just mumbled he had to go through their system and it showed not available. I think the outfit is basically a phone answering service that different techs can sign up with. The $70 up front is sure a scam when it is easy to just say eh, can't help you anymore.

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DanMahowny
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by DanMahowny » Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:12 pm

I'm not much of a handyman.

I've had a few successful small jobs, but far more disasters.
Funding secured

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Sandtrap
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Sandtrap » Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:16 pm

As a landlord self managing apartment buildings for decades, I can't think of anything I haven't fixed, repaired, renovated, or replaced, on my own. It was simply a matter of economics. As for my own home, it's a given.
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hfj
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by hfj » Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:39 pm

A few small repairs come to mind.

1. Twice extracted and opened up the drain pump when the washer wasn't draining. First time was a twig, second time was a long thing piece of fabric. It was especially satisfying to see the washer working and draining again.

2. Took apart and cleaned out a lot of lint from the dryer, re-greased the bearing. Youtube showed how to take the dryer apart and put things back together fairly easily.

We bought the pair in 2000, still running today.

3. Recently replaced the heating element in the oven, pretty trivial

4. Spliced/fixed the power cord for the vacuum.

5. When we had a pool, taking apart and cleaning the cartridge filter was something we did instead of having a pool person do it.

MathWizard
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by MathWizard » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:40 pm

I've repaired lots of things, some appliances, lots on the car and house. I've saved tens of thousands
over the years on the car and house. Not so much on appliances though. They are pretty cheap by comparison.

I usually have a repairman out or just replace with appliances. I fixed a dryer multiple times and
finally replaced it.

My major appliances last so long that I may have a repairman come out, but I usually just replace them
when they break. I've replaced 2 washers, 1 dryer, 1 fridge, 1 dishwasher and one range over nearly 40 years.
Lots of toasters, coffee makers, microwaves though. Maybe I am just getting good brands, or am just lucky.

ychuck46
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by ychuck46 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:50 pm

Try to do everything myself, whether fixing appliances or any other jobs around the house. This one was minor but I ran over an emitter valve with the lawn tractor this week that was at the end of the sump pump line out in the side yard and shredded the popup portion. Went to Lowe's were they had the NDS valves and replaced it for $10. Always do things yourself if possible.

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Pete12
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Pete12 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:55 pm

I agree with the posters who have said it's satisfying to figure out and fix things yourself. I would not go as far as calling it a hobby though, that would mean things are breaking around the house all the time :oops:

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Watty
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Watty » Thu Jun 13, 2019 5:20 pm

Some repairs are surprisingly easy so it would be silly to not do it. I had the turntable in a microwave go out I thought its days were numbered. Once I saw a video on how to replace the turn table motor it turned out that putting a new motor in was little more difficult than changing a light bulb and only took five minutes.

Most appliances have a label on them with things like the model number, serial number, and the manufacture date. That date will tell me how old it is which is good since I have at times that I thought an appliance was not that old since I could remember buying it when it was in fact 15 years old which would mean that it was not worth putting a lot of effort into fixing it.

One problem with appliances though is that they seem to come fall into these tiers;
1) Bargain budget dodgy broads.
2) Respectable models with basic features.
3) Respectable models with lots of features.
4) Premium Brands that are real expensive.

I usually buy the "Respectable models with basic features" which are not too expensive so by the time they are 10+ years old it is hard justify putting a lot of effort and money into fixing it when replacing is not all that expensive.

A440
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by A440 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 5:31 pm

Yep. So far the washer (2x's), dryer (2x's), dishwasher (4x's), disposer, air handler, whole house heater, water heater.

I always use repairclinic.com, Google and YouTube and support my local appliance parts store. I wouldn't want to do it for a living, but it is enjoyable when you DIY and it actually fixes the problem.
I don't know what the future holds, but I know who holds my future.

FireAway
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by FireAway » Thu Jun 13, 2019 5:56 pm

Yeah, I've fixed most of the appliances we now own - fridge, washer/dryer, oven, dishwasher, etc. It's so easy nowadays when Youtube will show you how, and Amazon will ship you a part within a day or two. And I'm guessing (have paid for a repairman in decades) that just having the repairman make a housecall to do a 5 minute job would cost well over $100, even before parts and labor for the actual fix were added. I've also seen shoddy work done - shoddier than I, a non-expert, would do -when having repairs done by others, for example on my cars. So sometimes I get the benefit of higher quality work - aside from cost savings -when I do it myself.

My most satisfying repairs were when control boards went out on my oven, and dishwasher. Being a cheapskate and not wanting to pay $200+ to replace the boards, I did a few simple tests, and found that power relays were burned out. A $5 part and a few minutes of soldering saved the board (a job which a repairman wouldn't even consider), and lots of money.

infotrader
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by infotrader » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:11 pm

Try to repair everything possible. It is easier these days with Youtube.

Replaced:
Washer plastic spin coupler
Dryer igniter

Car:
Change oil, transmission fluid, coolant
Generator, coolant reservoir, radiator (3 times), Ignition coils, spark plugs

UpperNwGuy
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by UpperNwGuy » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:14 pm

Not me. If an appliance breaks, I buy a new one. No muss, no fuss. The cost is not significant enough to make a difference.

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fortfun
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by fortfun » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:05 pm

Yes. For me, there's really nothing to lose. If I can't fix it, I'll just buy a new one rather than pay someone nearly the price of a new one to fix it. So far about a 90% success rate. I do prefer buying older appliances off of Facebook market place and Craigslist. They were definitely built better back then (less computer chips/control panels).

Cardinalsfan
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Cardinalsfan » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:13 pm

Working on a kitchenaid refrigerator right now. It isn’t keeping refrigerator or freezer as cold as it should. After searching the
Google I found the cause and a fix, working in replacing two components from the control board. Nothing a little solder can’t fix! Have fixed dishwasher, washer, dryer even car repairs etc over the years. Thankful for YouTube!!!

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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by ianferrel » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:22 pm

I repair lots of things. Agreed that Youtube makes it easier. But I've always enjoyed fixing things. It's fun to take things apart and figure out how they work and find the part that's broken.

I'm sure it's not actually worth my time for the money I save. If I didn't enjoy it as a hobby I'd do a lot less.

I don't generally do auto work unless it's something pretty simple because the cost of having a car that doesn't work while I teach myself how to fix it is too high.

I also don't try to fix my phones any more. The parts are too small and flimsy. I did it several times, and the last time I attempted it I tore a little ribbon cable putting it back together and decided I'd be better off paying someone with steady hands and lots of practice.

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TierArtz
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by TierArtz » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:31 pm

Not very often (too busy and have ten thumbs and limited tools). I do maintain my own lawn and pool equipment. My penultimate repair was diagnosing and repairing a heating element on a water heater. It was a great excuse to buy a nice Fluke 117 multi-meter and a huge socket to remove the element. The new tools cost about $200, but that's likely cheaper than paying a plumber to do it. I find other trouble shooting uses and school project applications (lemon batteries) for the Fluke.

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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by michaeljc70 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:37 pm

I've changed out a bunch of parts on a range (Viking). Other than that, I've only defrosted my ice maker with a hair dryer about 15 times but I wouldn't count that as a repair. I installed all of my appliances myself when we rehabbed the kitchen.

The main issue is knowing what is wrong. If you know that, you can watch a video or whatever and figure it out. It can get expensive if you think it is one thing, order parts, that doesn't fix it and you keep repeating the process.

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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Teague » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:05 pm

Watty wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 5:20 pm
...that they seem to come fall into these tiers;
1) Bargain budget dodgy broads.
2) Respectable models with basic features.
3) Respectable models with lots of features.
4) Premium Brands that are real expensive.
You have succinctly described my early dating years.

As far as appliances, yes, I generally will fix them myself. It's not only cheaper but usually much quicker. I might hire it out if access is particularly hazardous (e.g. a malfunctioning rooftop HVAC unit on an icy day.)
Semper Augustus

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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by abuss368 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:06 pm

Sandtrap wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:16 pm
As a landlord self managing apartment buildings for decades, I can't think of anything I haven't fixed, repaired, renovated, or replaced, on my own. It was simply a matter of economics. As for my own home, it's a given.
j :happy
Sandtrap -

How many direct real estate apartment rentals did you manage at once? Did you ever use a property management company?
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Sandtrap » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:55 pm

abuss368 wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:06 pm
Sandtrap wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:16 pm
As a landlord self managing apartment buildings for decades, I can't think of anything I haven't fixed, repaired, renovated, or replaced, on my own. It was simply a matter of economics. As for my own home, it's a given.
j :happy
Sandtrap -

How many direct real estate apartment rentals did you manage at once? Did you ever use a property management company?
At one time I owned as much as 125 units amongst a handful of various sized apartment buildings, some odd condos also.
(IMHO SFH, condos, townhouses, are a good starting point but there's no economy of scale so always sort of a cash drag so to speak)
I started with a just a small multi that was a fixer upper and renov it as I also had a construction company.

Money was always tight so I did everything 24/7 from renting to evicting to fixing to . . . .
When I started, I lived in one of the rental units as a resident manager and repair guy to save money.

As I got larger I hired resident managers (rent discount plus services) on the larger buildings and also additional maintenance staff to help me. But I always kept in touch with everything.

I have seen countless other landlords get their properties run down over the long term by management companies. IMHO nobody is going to vette a potential tenant like an owner with experience, let alone keep costs down. Thus CAP rates were high and I was always able to adapt quickly to changing markets by lowering rents, changing terms, and renting standards. And, the buildings were always kept up to maximize value and market appeal.

It is indeed a full time business when done this way.
And, an awful lot of work for a long long time.
But, it can be very rewarding to see tenants have kids and see them grow up and go away to college.
The people side of things can be very nice. Sometimes nasty. But, mostly very nice.

I had business "friends" and relatives who were slum lords. Resolved to do the opposite.

As far as DIY repairs per actionable topic: when the regular plumber, appliance repair guy, electrician, etc, is unavailable, you just buckle down and do it yourself because the tenant is waiting.

j. :happy
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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by rotorhead » Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:38 am

We presently have 23 year old fridge and dishwasher that I have repaired and upgraded myself. Not that hard if you are so inclined.

Website https://www.appliancepartspros.com/ is a great resource for do it yourselfers.

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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by cherijoh » Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:48 am

rkhusky wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:57 am
Pete12 wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:21 am
My next project is trying to diagnose why the washer occasionally doesn’t spin properly leaving the clothes soaking wet at the end of cycle. This one is proving to be tricky. :annoyed
Perhaps a clutch. We bought a used washer, which came with a short warranty period. Almost immediately it quit spinning properly. The owner came out and replaced a clutch. Then that one went bad and he came out and replaced it again. Said he had bought some cheap clutches, which are turning out to be not so cheap since he is making extra service calls.

I've done repairs on a previous washer and gas dryer. Downside is the wife has to go to a laundromat for a few weeks while I figure things out.
Since your problem is intermittent, you might be interested in this post on an appliance forum about a faulty lid switch (assuming you have a top loader).

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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Housedoc » Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:11 am

You may have already done this but you need to determine if machine has onboard diagnostics. My SIL had 2 techs out throwing parts at it. She called them back with the error code and part call-out I have her. They brought the part and fixed it for good. They told her they didn't have advance troubleshooting manual. She told them all I had was a cell phone and Google 😄 Don't guess, know for sure. Newer machines have a lid lock vs old lid switch. If lid locks it's not the problem.

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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by 123 » Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:46 am

I do home repairs and appliance repairs myself to the extend possible. The most recent appliance repairs have been replacing a pump on a washing machine and replacing the ignitor in a home gas furnace.

The main incentive for me in doing repairs myself is to avoid having to schedule and then wait around for a service person to do the task. It's often easier to fix an old appliance then to fiddle around with selecting a replacement and then waiting around for delivery and installation. Additionally new appliances seem to be getting more "disposable" so they are less likely to be readily repairable.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

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Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

Post by Time2Quit » Fri Jun 14, 2019 12:02 pm

fortfun wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:05 pm
Yes. For me, there's really nothing to lose. If I can't fix it, I'll just buy a new one rather than pay someone nearly the price of a new one to fix it. So far about a 90% success rate. I do prefer buying older appliances off of Facebook market place and Craigslist. They were definitely built better back then (less computer chips/control panels).
This. There is nothing I won’t fix, attempt to fix, build, or fabricate.
"It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, that is poor." --Seneca

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