Many people consider repairing basic kitchen appliances out their reach in the do-it-yourself capacity due to the number of moving parts and their small size. However, most appliances function based on some pretty simple systems that generally require repair due to the same problems over and over again. With this notion in mind, you can explore this brief guide to repairing some of the most basic kitchen appliances when problems arise. Rather than throw away that old appliance when it starts having problems, or stops working, try fixing it first. We might live in a disposable world, but you could learn a lot in the process, and enjoy knowing that were able to solve the problem yourself and save some money in the process.
Do Not Neglect the Obvious Solutions
In the world of small repair, it is best to eliminate the most basic problems first. The electrical system for kitchen appliances should be the first system to be inspected. Without power, there is very little room for progress. Check the wiring for loose connections and frayed areas that may be exposing the wire metals due to wear. This kind of damage can cause shorts or complete failure. Fixing problems with the electrical system can be as simple as applying electrical tape or require a complete replacement of all electrical components.
An Oiled Machine
If the electrical work is secure, then you should move onto major gears, blades, and other moving parts that must be carefully fitted together. Slipping gears, broken teeth on gears, and parts that have moved out of place are typical problems. Broken gears require disassembling the motor in order to replace the gear itself. Slippage may be the result of worn down parts, again requiring a complete replacement. It is not unusual to have to make adjustments in this part of the motor as the years go by. Occasionally, slippage is a result of loose parts and pieces. Especially if you have owned an appliance for a while, it is a good idea to tighten all removable pieces that may have come loose during use.
Something More Specialized
What you hope to avoid are problems with the switches on devices such as blenders and other appliances with multiple settings. When speed settings fail, you are often faced with replacing fuses or even worse. Luckily, you can gain access to fuses for blenders simply by removing the face plate. Because of its location, this electrical component is often damaged by juices and other food items that leak into the appliance interior. You can test each one to determine which has failed. In the case of a blender, you can get your hands on new gears, fuses, and Cuisinart blender parts fairly easily with a little online research. When shopping for fuses, however, it is important to purchase ones with identical ratings as those that you are replacing in order to avoid further damage. The same is true with other replacement parts. Always stick with components that are made by the original manufacturer in order to avoid further problems.
Even if your appliance is still working, you should think about preventative maintenance if you are hoping to keep it for more than a year or two. Every six months you should remove all dust from the motor and grease moving parts that won’t come in contact with food. Preventative maintenance can also help you catch any problems early that could cause the damage to the appliance. A loose bolt in your Kitchen-aid mixer, for example, might cause more damage if left loose, but it might not be visible without performing some routine maintenance.
Fixing your appliances might be out of your comfort zone, and it might take some time, but it could save you money and hassle in the long run. It may be easier to throw away your old appliance, but taking the time to care for it and repair it is a good practice in general. It may help you appreciate what you have more, and ensure it lasts longer.
Sep 10, 2013 1