How Your Appliances Can Work Together with the Latest Technology

Smart home technology is not only changing the way we secure our homes, use devices, and listen to music, it is also changing the way we use appliances. Read on to learn how your appliances can work together with the latest technology.

 

Washer and Dryer

The most obvious pairing with smart technology would be your washer and dryer. They are already working together to do your laundry, but with smart tech, they can do this more efficiently. With a smart home system, your washer can alert you when a load is ready to go in the dryer. Your dryer can also automatically adjust its cycle depending on what cycle was used in the washer. For example, if you washed your clothes on Delicate, your dryer will know to use a low heat setting.

Oven and Refrigerator

This next one is exciting for foodies and home cooks everywhere. With smart technology, your oven and refrigerator could work together to help you develop new recipes and ways to use up the food in your fridge. You could program your fridge to alert you when you have fresh foods close to expiring, and in turn, your oven could preheat and prepare for that recipe. No more rotten veggies, and lots of new recipes to switch up weeknight dinners. It’s a win-win!

Virtual Assistant

With a smart home system, your virtual assistant, either on your smartphone or through a device like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, will coordinate all your home appliances. Whether it is turning on your dishwasher at night while everyone is asleep or preheating your oven when it knows you are on your way home from work, your virtual assistant is like the butler of your appliances.

 

Whether you have smart appliances, or the traditional kind, keep Express Appliance Repair in mind for all your appliance needs. Give us a call today!

Take Advantage of Basic Fridge Features to Make Food Last Longer

The whole point of your refrigerator is to keep your food fresh as long as possible. But if you are not using some of the features it was made for, you may be missing out. Here is how to take advantage of basic fridge features to make food last longer.

 

Store Dairy Products At the Back of the Fridge

Your refrigerator’s shelving system was set up on purpose. Certain areas get cooler than others. It may be more convenient to keep your jug of milk in the door, but that could actually make it spoil faster. Keep your milk and dairy products on a shelf in the center of the fridge, near the back.

Use Your Crisper Drawers Correctly

Every fridge has crisper drawers specifically to keep vegetables fresh as long as possible. Some have humidity settings, and if you have those, make sure you are using them correctly. High Humidity settings are for veggies like asparagus, cauliflower, broccoli, cucumbers, green beans and leafy greens. Low Humidity settings are for the harder fruits and vegetables like apples, avocados, melons and plums. Using these drawers and their settings correctly could save you lots of money. Wasted produce is never a good thing.

Make Sure Your Temperature is Set Correctly

Most people do not realize that your fridge’s temperature can fluctuate with the seasons or how cool you keep your home. The ideal temp is 40 degrees Fahrenheit, or a few degrees cooler. If you have young children in your home, check the settings frequently. Little ones tend to play with dials, and you may not realize it until some of your food is already spoiled.

 

If any of your fridge’s basic features are not working correctly, or if your food is spoiling quicker than it should, the experts at Express Appliance Repair can help. Call for an appointment today!

Basic Appliance Tips to Save Energy

Did you know your appliances account for about 20% of your total household energy use? If you are looking to save money on your utility bills or cut down on your energy usage, start with your appliances. Here are some basic appliance tips to save energy.

 

Refrigerator Energy Saving Tips

When it comes to saving energy, the first appliance you should address is your fridge. Refrigerators use the most power out of any appliance in the home. Try these easy tips:

  • Keep the temp between 37 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Don’t overcrowd, leave a little space between items so cold air can circulate
  • Always cover containers. Uncovered food release moisture into the air, causing your fridge to work harder
  • Make sure the doors are sealed tight

Dryer Energy Saving Tips

In a close second to your fridge, clothes dryers account for a large percentage of energy use in your home. Try these tips:

  • Dry towels and heavier fabrics separately
  • Use the moisture sensor setting if available
  • ALWAYS empty the lint vent before and after a load
  • Periodically inspect your outdoor dryer vents

Washing Machine Energy Saving Tips

Front loading washing machines are more energy-efficient than their counterparts, so when shopping for a new machine, keep that in mind. 80% of the energy used for a washing cycle is to heat the water, so to save energy, use these tips:

  • Unless you have heavily soiled items or are trying to sanitize a load, use the cold or warm water settings
  • Always wash a full load, but do not overfill
  • Buy cold water detergent and use cold water cycles for most items
  • Turn off the extra rinse or 2nd rinse option

 

For more energy savings tips or for any of your home appliance needs, ask the experts at Express Appliance Repair. Call for an appointment today!

How a Dishwasher Works

Sure, you may use it every night, and rely on it to wash your dishes so you don’t have to, but do you really know how your dishwasher works? Understanding how an appliance works is helpful when something breaks down or begins to fail, so you can treat it accordingly. Here’s a breakdown of how a dishwasher works.

 

What Happens When You Push the “Start” Button

Once you’ve loaded your dishwasher and added the soap, you close the door and press the necessary buttons for the cycle you want. Then the magic happens. Once a wash cycle starts, your dishwasher adds the amount of water needed to the bottom of the machine and heats it to the appropriate temperature. Contrary to popular belief, only the required water is added, your machine is not continuously adding water while it’s on. Once the proper amount of water is at the bottom of the machine, it activates a sensor which then turns the heating element on.

The Washing Begins

Once the water is hot enough, another sensor is activated, and the next stage begins. An electric pump takes the warmed water and forces it into the pipes on the side of the machine, which are connected to spinning paddles. When water enters the paddles, it makes them spin around. The spinning motion, much like garden sprinklers, assures the water goes everywhere it needs to go to wash your dishes. The water that falls down to the bottom of the machine is heated up again, and the cycle is repeated.

The Drying Cycle

Once your dishwasher has completed the washing phase, the water drains through the bottom of the machine and your machine heats up again. The water still on the dishes evaporates in the heat. When this process is complete, your dishwasher is done and your dishes are clean.

 

If your dishwasher isn’t working properly, remember Express Appliance Repair is here for all your home appliance needs. Call for an appointment today!

Dryer Safety Tips

According to FEMA, there are 2,900 reported dryer fires every year in the United States, resulting in $35 million in property loss. A large majority of these fires may have been prevented by utilizing some of the following fire safety tips:

 

Always Have Your Washer and Dryer Professionally Installed

The only way to ensure that your laundry appliances are set up correctly and safely is to have them installed by a professional. Professional appliance repair and installation technicians are trained in both electric and gas dryer setups. They will know how to pair your dryer with your home safely. While it may be tempting to save some money and do it yourself, the risks are not worth the savings.

Clean the Surrounding Areas

The top of your dryer or the area surrounding it should never be used as storage. Keep your laundry area free of clutter and vacuum and dust regularly.

Check the Lint Trap Before AND After Each Load

The most common source of dryer fires is an overflowing lint trap. Get in the habit of checking the lint trap before and after each load.

Check Your Vents

Your dryer vents should be cleaned out periodically. A dirty vent is a dryer fire just waiting to happen. Dryer vents should be cleaned professionally once a year. In between professional cleanings, be sure to check the outside exhaust and clean it if needed.

Never Overload Your Dryer

A load of wet clothes that is too heavy for your dryer will cause it to work harder than it needs to. Not only is overloading your dryer a fire hazard, but it can also cause your dryer to break down or not last as long as it should.

 

Another way to prevent dryer fires is to have it professionally repaired at the first sign of an issue. Express Appliance Repair is here for all your dryer-related repairs and all the major appliances in your home.

Common Appliance Malfunctions Caused By User Error

Appliances can be a little finicky sometimes, at least we think they can be. The truth is, many common appliance malfunctions are caused by user error. Here are some common appliance malfunctions and how to avoid them

 

Refrigerator Not Cooling Enough

 

There’s nothing more frustrating than opening your fridge to realize the temperature has dropped. Before you panic and start pricing new refrigerators online, check the coils. The black tube and wire coils on the bottom on your fridge can get grimy and covered with dust, pet hair and debris. Try to vacuum the area below your fridge regularly and carefully.

 

Washer Stops Spinning

When your washing machine begins to make loud conking sounds or suddenly stops spinning during a cycle, it could simply be an error. Overloading the washer, or filling it unevenly, can cause the spinning mechanism to go a little wonky during a cycle. Try taking some items out or redistributing the weight of the load around the spinner.

Dryer Not Drying

If your clothes are not drying, first check the settings dial. It may sound obvious, but it’s common for your dial to get set to the wrong cycle, air dry perhaps, without you realizing it. If you have checked your settings and it’s still not getting hot enough, check your lint vents. A build-up of lint in your dryer vent not only makes your dryer work harder, but it is also a fire hazard.

Dishwasher Not Washing

Opening the dishwasher to a load of semi-clean dishes is always a bummer, but it could be an easy fix. There are filters on the bottom of your dishwasher that are probably being neglected. Remove the filter and wash it with dish soap and warm water. Check your owner’s manual for guidance on this.

 

If you’re still having appliance malfunctions, call Express Appliance Repair. We’re here for all your appliance needs!

A Comparison of the Many Different Kinds of Stoves

There are many different kinds of stoves to choose from, so it can be a little overwhelming when comparing all your options. We’ve compiled a list of the most common kinds of ovens on the market, and the pros and cons of each. Here is a comparison of the many different kinds of stoves.

 

Traditional Gas

Home chefs definitely seem to prefer gas ovens, due to the ability to cook over an open flame. Flame burners heat up immediately, as opposed to waiting for an electric burner to get hot. It’s also a bit easier to control the heat under your pot or pan if you can visually see the flame’s size. Gas ovens can range anywhere from $300-3,000, so there really is an option for every budget. Also, gas can save you 10-30% in energy costs than traditional electric.

Traditional Electric

Electric stoves are reliable, inexpensive and easy to install. They also keep your kitchen cooler than gas stoves, so if you live in a hotter climate or don’t have an air conditioner in your home, this may be a better option. The cooktops on an electric oven are also easier to keep clean than gas stoves, and easier to turn on and off. The cons of an electric stove are that they take longer to heat up, use up to three times the amount of energy as gas stoves, and tend to cook slower.

Cooktops

Cooktops can be quite the addition to the kitchen for a home chef. The ability to cook in a separate area than your oven opens up a world of possibilities. It can alleviate congestion in your kitchen and give a better flow and ability to move around while cooking. However, you definitely need more space for a cooktop, and it does cut down on available counter space.

Fridges from The Future

The following fridges may sound like features we still have to wait for, but they are all available for purchase right now!

LG Smart InstaView Door-In-Door Refrigerator

This model allows you to look inside of the fridge without having to open the door! All you need to do is knock twice on the glass panel to illuminate the inside of your fridge. In addition, the “door in door” technology does a better job of optimizing the space in your fridge than ever before!

GE GAS18P

Are you tired of refilling that pitcher of water in your fridge every day? If so, then this fridge may be right for you! It comes with an easy to use, auto-filling station in the fridge. All you have to do is slide the pitcher in and the fridge does the rest for you!

LG LMXS30776S

If you’re the type of person that gets frustrated with your crisper drawers because nothing seems to last as long as they should, then this might be the model for you. This fridge allows you to set a custom temperature on an entirely separate drawer in the fridge. This can help you keep that produce fresh for much longer than you could before!

Samsung Family Hub

The first thing you will notice about this fridge is the giant screen on the front of it. This touch screen can also be voice activated and it has many features. Through the screen, you can connect to many other appliances and devices throughout the house. This especially comes in handy with its combined feature of being able to come up with recipes based on what is in the fridge and preheating the oven once you choose one. The fridge also has a camera inside of it so you can see if you are running low on anything while you are in the grocery store.

What’s That Drawer Under Your Oven For?…And Other Oven Tips

Did you ever wonder what that drawer was for under your oven? If your answer is “Of course, it’s for storage”, then you may want to continue reading! We put together some common misconceptions about ovens to ensure you’re getting the best use out of yours. These tips can help any oven owner!

 

The Warming Drawer

That drawer under your oven? It’s actually for keeping food warm. It’s a perfect place to keep food that just came out of the oven nice and warm, without continuing to cook it. It’s especially convenient if you need to cook a separate item in the oven at a different temperature. Take the first part of your dish, put it in the warming drawer, adjust the oven’s temp, and throw in the next part of your dish! It is actually not recommended that you store anything in there, even pans. The constant change of temperature will negatively impact just about anything you are thinking of storing in there.

Don’t Open The Door!

We know it’s tempting to open the door during the cooking process, but that could change the oven’s temperature by nearly 20 degrees when you do. Try to utilize your oven light as much as possible to get a peek at your food. This is especially important if you are baking anything in the oven.

Calibrate The Oven’s Temperature

Whether the dial or screen is reading 400 degrees…how certain are you that it is correct? Invest in an oven thermometer to double check it. This is a great way to get ahead of any problems in the future. If you notice that the thermometer does not match the temperature indicated on your oven, regardless of it indicating the temperature is actually higher or lower, then it’s time to give us a call!

The Most Energy Efficient Appliances of 2020

Energy efficiency has become a growingly important feature when choosing an appliance. Whether you are trying to reduce your carbon footprint and/or save on your electric bill, consider these models:

 

Washing Machine – Electrolux EFLW42

This incredibly efficient washing machine made by Electrolux only uses 60 kWh per year, which is 15 less then it’s closest competitor. Incredibly, it doesn’t sacrifice features to use this little of energy. This washing machine uses a patented system which offers improved wash actions, temperature control, and smart load sensing. Furthermore, there is a 20-Minute fast wash feature and it utilizes a specific mode to specifically target stains.

Dryer – Miele PDR908 HP

Miele created this electric dryer which is leaps and bounds more efficient than its nearest competition. With an estimated wattage of 87 kWh per year, it uses over 30% less energy than the next most efficient dryer on the market today. Similarly to the Electrolux washing machine, advanced features were not sacrificed to achieve this level of efficiency. Through heat pump technology, this ventless dryer can maximize time and energy saving. It also has a full touch screen display to access 35 different programs and has WiFi connectivity.

Dishwasher – 9 Separate Miele Models

Miele did it again with 9 of their dishwashers as well. These models range from 199-210 kWh per year before their closest competition comes in with models at 220 kWh per year. The nine separate models all come with a great range of colors and features for you to chose from. If you are in the market for an energy efficient dishwasher, then Miele should be your preferred brand.

Refrigerator – Galanz GLR10TRDEFR

The competition for most efficient fridge was exceptionally close with the Galanz model beating out a Beko model by just 2 kWh per year. Coming it at 292 kWh per year, the retro looking Galanz model would be a perfect second fridge for a garage, man cave, or she shed. It will look great all while saving a lot of energy!