5 Ways to Extend the Lifespan of Your Appliances

Tired of replacing your appliances due to breakdowns and other problems? On average, most home appliances last for between eight and 35 years, depending on the specific brand, type of appliance and other factors.

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Just like scheduling regular servicing for your car can extend its lifespan, there are a variety of techniques you can use to extend the lifespan of your home appliances. Below, we’ve listed five of our favourites, from performing regular maintenance to repairing instead of replacing.

Clean, Unplug and Store out of Harm’s Way

The first step in extending any appliance’s lifespan is to keep it as clean as possible. Over time, grease, stains and dust can take their toll on appliances, ranging from your oven to your fridge, food processor and more.

When you use an appliance, make sure you clean it right away when you’re finished. As well as your oven, stovetop and other obvious appliances, it’s also important to clean the coils on your fridge, as well as the inside of appliances like your washing machine, dryer and dishwasher.

Keep your Washing Machine Level

Generally, appliances that contain the most moving parts are the first to wear out. Your washing machine contains a drum and internal motor, both of which spend a lot of their functional life in a state of motion, increasing their rate of wear and tear.

To get the longest lifespan from your washing machine, it’s important to keep it leve. Use a spirit level to check your washing machine’s surface, then adjust the legs of the machine to keep it at a matching level with your flooring for improved performance and fewer breakdowns.

Avoid Using Firm Items in Your Food Processor

Your food processor can be a great tool for blending cooking ingredients, making smoothies and speeding up many kitchen tasks. However, it’s usually best not to use your food processor to cut firm, hard ingredients like coffee beans and certain nuts.

While these ingredient will usually blend, they can damage the blades of your food processor in the process. Instead of blending them whole, try cutting them into smaller piece before you put them in your food processor, or just use your food processor the way it was intended.

Pre-wash Dirty Dishes Before Putting them in the Dishwasher

Few appliances are as handy as your dishwasher, helping you save time and avoid the work of cleaning up after preparing a meal. However, without pre-washing, it’s possible for dirty dishes to do significant damage to your dishwasher.

When you don’t pre-wash firm, sticky food items, your dishwasher might fail to completely wash them off your dishes. To improve your results and reduce wear on your dishwasher, make sure you brush away anything hard, sticky or oily before adding dishes to your dishwasher.

Broken Appliance? Get it Fixed Instead of Replacing It

Even with proper care, it’s far from uncommon for appliances to break down over time. While it can be very tempting to throw away a non-working appliance and replace it with a new one, it’s usually a better deal to simply get your old appliance repaired.

Appliance repair services like Go Assist offer competitively priced, fast repair services for a wide range of different kitchen and home appliances. Often, it’s possible to bring a broken appliance back to life for a fraction of the price of a new one, saving you a significant amount of money.

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Better Ways to Decorate With Flat Pack Furniture

When you are decorating your space on a budget, your first instinct is to get all your big furniture pieces in flat pack form. This is the furniture style popularized by IKEA, where you buy your furniture in neat boxes and assemble it yourself in your home!

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While it isn’t a bad idea, there definitely are right and wrong ways to use flat pack furniture in your design. Generally, assembling furniture straight from the box is a good way to make your room look like everyone else’s — which is to say: boring. To add more personal flavor to your interior design, here’s how to use flat packs the right way.

Know the Quality Brands

Not all flat pack furniture brands are the same. While IKEA is certainly the best-known, it isn’t even close to the best quality. Before you commit to ordering all your furniture from the Swedish giant, consider these other flat pack brands with better reputations:

Article. While Article more often competes with brands like Wayfair and West Elm, it is in fact a flat pack company. The inventory in this online shop is huge, but most of it falls into a mid-century modern vibe. Here’s the biggest selling point: a flat $49 shipping fee to get whatever furniture you order to your door.

Campaign. This is what happens when an Apple engineer develops a furniture company: You get gorgeous furniture designed perfectly to fit in standard shipping containers. These pieces are made for durability, so you should be able to take them apart and reassemble then again and again without issue.

Hem. Another Swedish flat pack competitor, Hem works with top interior designers to develop unique, stunning and functional furniture. What’s fascinating is that Hem’s pieces can be reconfigured, so if you grow tired of one style, you can morph it yourself into something new.

Burrow. Burrow offers perhaps the most limited selection of all these companies, but their furniture is the easiest to assemble. Plus, the simple, unassuming style goes with pretty much any design, meaning you can continue using your Burrow pieces even as your interior design ethos evolves.

Splurge on Assembly

Typically, you are buying flat pack for a reason: You need it fast and you need it cheap. However, a good way to ensure that your flat pack furniture stands the test of time is to have a professional assemble it for you. In cities across the U.S., from Tacoma to Tampa, furniture assembly services have the tools and know-how to put your flat pack furniture together quickly and perfectly, without a single bolt left over. It’s worth your money to splurge on the experts, or else you might be repurchasing all your furniture in just a couple years.

Mix and Match

With flat pack furniture, you shouldn’t feel bad about experimenting. In fact, plenty of people have made it their hobby to “hack” flat pack furniture to produce all-new, innovative and interesting pieces that you won’t find anywhere else. These hacks include things like screwing bookshelves together to make a bed with built-in storage, transforming a dresser into a gorgeous bathroom vanity and creating an entire office out of a closet organization set. By mixing and matching pieces of flat pack furniture, you can come up with unique pieces that exist only in your home. You’re only limited by your imagination — and perhaps your skill with power tools.

Add Finishing Touches

Even if you assemble your flat pack furniture how they instruct you to, you can add finishing touches that make the furniture your own. At simple end of the spectrum, you can paint or reupholster your furniture; at the more complex side, you can affix decorative door fronts, handles and hardware.

Plenty of companies capitalize off the desire to customize flat pack. Here are some of the best:

Prettypegs. This retailer sells feet and legs in an almost overwhelming number of styles, and all of them are designed to fit on the bottom of flat pack furniture.

O’verlays. If you want to zhoosh up the front of your furniture, you can buy fretwork overlays from this company. They are surprisingly easy to apply and dramatically change the style of the piece.

Semihandmade. If you aren’t just getting furniture but are investing in a cabinet set for your kitchen, bathroom, office, etc., this company builds custom door and drawer fronts to fit flat pack boxes. Thus, you get the price of a flat pack and the look of a commission.

Flat pack doesn’t have to be boring. You can enjoy the low cost and wide variety of flat pack and get the unique and attractive style you crave as long as you have a plan and stick to it.

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