Quick Tips Before Calling for Service

Appliance repairs often strike at the most inopportune times. Here’s a few quick tips to check before calling PDQ Repair. If these don’t do the trick, PDQ Repair would be happy to service your appliance.

When a light goes out or a switch doesn’t work:

  • Check the Plug – While it may seem silly, this is one of the first things to check when an appliance is not working. Vibrating washers, animals and sometimes even small children can knock plugs out of the wall.
  • Check the Breaker – If the equipment is plugged in, the next place for you to look out would be the central home electrical box and see if the circuit breaker has tripped. If this happens, try resetting the circuit breaker.
  • Check the GFCI – If the circuit breaker hasn’t tripped, look for a GFCI (ground-fault circuit interrupter) which may be upstream from the troubled outlet has tripped. Simply push the reset button on the GFCI and you could be back in business.

See if the circuit breaker has tripped and try resetting the circuit breaker.

If your refrigerator isn’t cooling or conks out:

  • Check the Door and Seals – Many appliances have door locks which check to ensure the doors are properly closed. If the door of the appliance is open they will not operate. Check if the doors are closing properly and nothing is jamming the door.
  • Check the Coils – The coils are the black tube-and-wire grid that cools the fluid in the compressor. They are located by opening the grille at the bottom of the refrigerator or on the back of your fridge. A buildup of hair, dust and other debris can cause the compressor to overheat and trigger the overload switch.  Many home centers sell a coil cleaning brush that you can push into the coils, pull back and vacuum clean. 

Bonus: The clean coils will cool more efficiently and save you money on your utility bill!

Stove Burner won’t heat or ignite:

  • Clean the igniter – On your gas range, if the burner won’t light, try cleaning the igniter. Use a toothbrush to clean off food spills from the igniter. On an electronic ignition stove, it’s a little ceramic nub located either on the stovetop or under the ceramic seal strike plate. Also, be sure that the round ceramic seal strike plate is properly seated on the burner.
  • Check for a loose burner – On your electric range, your burner prongs may need a better electrical connection. You should be sure the burner is turned off and pull it out from its socket. Then plug it in again and wiggle it around. If it feels loose, remove the burner again and gently bend the burner prongs slightly outward for a tighter connection. Be very careful not to pry too much as you could end up pushing the whole socket out of its bracket.

On your gas range, if the burner won’t light, try cleaning the igniter. 

Oven won’t heat:

  • Check the clock and the timer setting – On some models, if you set the “time cook” function, the oven won’t turn on until the appointed time. Check to see if your digital display reads “hold,” “delay” or “time cook.” If it says any of these, then the timer is engaged. You’ll have to clear it first by pushing the “off” button. On ovens with dials, be sure the knob is turned to “manual.”

Check to see if your digital display reads “hold,” “delay” or “time cook.”

Noisy washing machine:

  • Check to see if it’s level – When a washing machine cabinet rocks, it makes a horrible racket during the spin cycle. To adjust the legs on your washing machine, using a level on the top of your washer, screw the front legs up or down until the cabinet is level. When both legs are solid on the floor, tighten each leg’s locking nut. In most washers, to adjust the rear legs, gently tilt the machine forward and gently lower it down. The movement will self-adjust the rear legs.
  • Check For Small Items – Washing machines, dryers, and dishwashers can make strange noises when small things such as coins and plastic get stuck. These items may even jam or cause your appliance to malfunction. Check if there are any such items inside the appliance creating the noise and remove them.
Specialist in uniform with tools and housewife washing machine

Dryer won’t dry:

  • Check the settings first – One way to avoid an embarrassing call is to make sure that your dryer is set to the proper settings for what you want to dry. Many service calls can be avoided by checking to see if the dryer is set to “fluff air”—a non-heat setting.
  • Check the Vents – Another common cause of poor drying is a clogged lint filter. Check the vents to see if they are plugged or if dust and dirt has settled on them and blocked them.
Clean the Lint Filter After Every Load

Dishes coming out dirty:

  • Clean the filter and float switch – When your dishwasher no longer gets your dishes clean, a food-filled filter is most often to blame. If it’s clogged, water can’t make it to the spray arms to clean the dishes in the top rack. Simply pull out the lower rack and remove the filter cover inside the dishwasher. (Check your owner’s manual if you can’t spot the filter.) Then use a wet vacuum to clean off the screen. While you’re there, slide the nearby float switch up and down. If it’s jammed, you won’t get any water. If the cover sticks, jiggle it up and down and clean it with water.

When your dishwasher no longer gets your dishes clean, a food-filled filter is most often to blame.

Problem not listed:

  • Check Your Manual – All appliance manuals have simple troubleshooting tips. Customers should check these appliance manuals for tips before calling for appliance repair. 
  • Check out our blog article for help finding your manual CLICK HERE

When all else fails:

  • If all these points stated above fail to yield any results, call us right away. PDQ Repair is your appliance repair specialists in the Portland OR, Vancouver, WA area. Our team of professional appliance repair technicians are fully trained.  We can offer you timely and professional service whether you are covered by warranty, or not. 
Posted in PDQ Repair Blog.

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