How to prevent appliance breakdowns in the summer

Hot weather, summer sports and grilling out are all signs of summer. Unfortunately, they are also things that put more stress on our appliances.

Luckily, you can do some simple things to keep your appliances from breaking down during the hottest days of the year.

Reese Dorsey manages an appliance shop, The Appliance Loft. He is constantly reminding customers that appliances need maintenance.

From the filter in your dishwasher to the rubber seals on a front-loading washing machine, he says regular cleaning can make them last years longer.

“If you leave a washing machine door shut,” he cautioned, “it’s going to stay wet.”

He recommends owners regularly wipe down the seal on front-loader washers and occasionally run an empty cleaning load with a special washing machine cleaner.

With your dishwasher, he says, check the manual to see if it has a food filter at the bottom, and remove and rinse it every few months.

MORE: The Best Washing Machine Cleaners for Maintaining Your Washer

Washing Machines Take A Beating In Summer

Repair expert Michael Cornell with Asurion says the pool and summer sports give your washing machine much more work.

“If kids play baseball and softball,” he said, “the clay on the field actually can just destroy your unit.”

So he suggests you:

  • Clean the tub occasionally.
  • Shake dirt, clay and grass from clothes before you wash.
  • Stick with smaller loads: don’t overload your washer with too many bathing suits and beach towels.

He also has a good reminder about refrigerators or deep freezers you keep in the garage.

“It’s just gonna be hotter in the summer, plain and simple,” he said.

He says to make sure you don’t have boxes stacked against the fridge.

“Some of them will have either vents on the side or a vent in the front, and we want to keep that free and clear.,” he said.

Lastly, he says, don’t over-pack dishwashers after a summer barbecue. And avoid putting large trays on the dishwasher’s bottom rack.

“It might lay over and now you’re not washing in anything, and then you’re gonna have to wash it again,” he said.

Finally, Reece Dorsey says that with families drinking lots of water during the summer, don’t forget to change the refrigerator’s filter.

With any appliance, Dorsey says you should check the manual to see what should be cleaned a few times a year.

“The problem is that it is all moving parts,” he said. “And eventually, one of them is going to fail if you don’t properly maintain it.”

A little maintenance should get you through these hot summer months so you don’t waste your money.

About the Author
John Matarese

John's goal is to help as many TV viewers as possible save money, avoid bad deals, know a rip-off when one comes their way, and be educated consumers. His informative weekly consumer segment "Don't Waste Your Money" now airs on 45 TV stations from San Diego to Tampa to Houston and Cincinnati. More.