Home maintenance tips for your kitchen appliances

Home maintenance tips for your kitchen appliances

Is your refrigerator running? Then you had better go catch it – or at least make sure it’s running efficiently. Below are a few tips for making sure your kitchen appliances use less energy, last longer and save you money.


One good way to keep your cool is to test your refrigerator gaskets to be sure they’re sealing properly, and testing this costs less than a buck. 

To test the seal, close a dollar bill in your refrigerator door. Gently pull on the dollar bill - there should be a tug. If the dollar bill slides right out, then you likely need a new gasket. 

Be sure to test around the entire seal of the door. A weak gasket means your refrigerator may be pulling warm air in, causing it to work on overdrive, and that’s not cool.

It’s also a good idea to clean the outside coils of your refrigerator every six months, especially if you have pets. Simply remove the grate below the door and use the hose attachment of your vacuum to clean out the dust, hair and debris that can build up. Clean coils mean better airflow, which allows the fridge to be more efficient.


If your freezer isn’t stuffed with ice cream and frozen peas, help it be more efficient by filling excess space. Just use old plastic juice jugs filled with water to take up empty space. 

Once the empty space is filled with something frozen, the freezer won’t need to work as hard to keep cold. You can also use the frozen water jugs in your cooler the next time you go on a picnic or camping. Be sure to test the gaskets of your freezer too!


It may seem like the inside of your dishwasher should be squeaky-clean. After all, its job is to clean what’s inside. However, over time, soap, hard water, grease, dirt and grime can build up on the interior. 

Keep your dishwasher clean by regularly using a good dishwasher cleaner. Products like Lemi Shine and Dishwasher Magic can be found near the dishwasher soaps in the grocery store. A good sign that your dishwasher needs to be cleaned is if your dishes are coming out with a white film. 

Another cause of white film on dishes (and build up in your dishwasher) is using too much soap. This is one of the most common mistakes made with a dishwasher - just because the cups on the dishwasher are a certain size, doesn’t mean you have to fill them up all the way. 

Try filling the cups about half full and let the hot water do a lot of the work. Spend more money on delicious food for your plate and less on soap that may end up as residue on your plate.

Using these tips to keep your kitchen appliances running efficiently can mean lower energy bills, fewer repairs and a long, happy life in your home – not to mention fewer visits from your favorite appliance repair person!

About this Angie’s List Expert: Chris Sublett is the owner of Vogel Appliance Services, providing appliance repair services in Indianapolis. Since 1921, Vogel Appliance has specialized in dishwasher, washing machine, dryer, refrigerator, freezer and stove repair. They are a recipient of the 2012 Angie’s List Super Service Award.

As of October 16, 2013, this service provider was highly rated on Angie's List. Ratings are subject to change based on consumer feedback, so check Angie's List for the most up-to-date reviews. The views expressed by this author do not necessarily reflect those of Angie's List.

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How to Care for Your Kitchen Appliances During the Holidays


Ovens and dishwashers often undertake a heavy workload during the holidays, making proper maintenance vital. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Joanna W. of Washington)
Ovens and dishwashers often undertake a heavy workload during the holidays, making proper maintenance vital. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Joanna W. of Washington)

On this episode of Chat with the Experts, we talk with Chris Sublett of Vogel Appliance about how to care for your kitchen appliances this holiday season.

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