What are the Best Tips for Appliance Repair?

Dee S.
Dee S.

There are a few common tips for appliance repair. These tips are useful for most household appliances. There are tips for organization, electrical concerns, and simply taking items apart. For larger concerns, a skilled repair technician may be needed.

An empty egg carton can be used to help keep track of the tiny parts removed from an appliance during repair.
An empty egg carton can be used to help keep track of the tiny parts removed from an appliance during repair.

Tips for appliance repair can be as simple as keeping track of tiny parts. One of the best ways to do so is to put the parts in a pre-numbered ice cube tray or egg carton. Drop the parts into each compartment as the appliance is being taken apart, then use the parts in reverse order when it is being put together again. Another way to keep track of parts is to staple a strip of tape, with the sticky side up, to the work area. Again, place them on the tape in the order that they were removed from the appliance and use them in reverse order for reassembly.

Some tips for appliance repair work to keep the handler from getting grease up to her elbows. For example, if a few parts need grease, place them in a sandwich bag, add the grease, and then allow the grease to cover the parts in their entirety without handling them. In the alternative, if parts need to be washed, place them in a paint tray, fill it with solvent (instead of paint), and let the parts soak. Then, the upper portion of the paint tray can be used if the parts need to be brushed and wiped off.

Electrical tips for appliance repair are sometimes useful. For example, a can of spray contact cleaner should always be kept at a repairperson’s fingertips. The electrical contact cleaner is non-conductive and will quickly fix a switch that sticks or a push button that refuses to pop back out. The spray can be purchased in electronics stores and auto parts stores and can save time and money compared to disassembling and reassembling the sticky item. Another tip includes using a crimp-on connector instead of a normal wire connector when joining wires that can easily shake loose.

A few tips for appliance repair include ways to gain access to the broken part of the appliance. For example, if the small appliance seems unable to open, look behind the name plate. Mounting screws or glue may be holding the name plate in place; a screwdriver will work to remove it. If it is a stick on label, run your fingers over the name plate in search of screws. Then, lift and peel that corner of the label only. Removable plugs and underfoot screws also hide the parts of some appliances. By removing these items, hidden screws or the parts themselves may be exposed.

Tips for appliance repair can involve learning patience. If a bolt will not loosen by following the mantra – “lefty loosy, righty tighty” – try turning it the opposite direction. Some parts have left-hand threads which require them to be turned clockwise instead of the usual counterclockwise. In addition, do not force screws back into items. Sometimes screws must be gently turned the wrong direction, without stripping the threads, to get it to find its groove.

Dee S.
Dee S.

Dee is a freelance writer based in Colorado. She has a B.A. in English Literature, as well as a law degree. Dee is especially interested in topics relating to medicine, legal issues, and home improvement, which are her specialty when contributing to wiseGEEK.

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Use your digital camera generously when stripping appliances you are not familiar with.

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