Some of the most expensive items that anyone buys in their lifetime besides a house or a car are kitchen appliances. Repairing that new washer, dryer or refrigerator is a hidden cost that you can drastically reduce by making the fixes yourself.
The best refrigerator I ever had was at least 20 years old when I paid $25 for it. Nothing ever broke on that beast. I had to leave it on one of my moves and I replaced it with a younger, more breakable, model, which quickly taught me about repairs.
The first thing that broke was
the ice maker. I LOVED my ice maker. When I contacted the manufacturer about the cost, it was more than I paid for the fridge in the first place. I then went on eBay and found the exact replacement – brand new – for 50% of what the manufacture was charging.
Next, the little plastic piece broke off the water dispenser in the door. Getting cold filtered water out of my fridge is soooo great! A liquid luxury. Again, I checked with the manufacturer and they wouldn’t even quote me a price. Just said to contact a repair person. Even with a home warranty, it is going to cost $55 to have a repair person come to the house.
That is when I discovered my new favorite money saving website: Part Select.
This site is FABULOUS! I mean it. If one of your major appliances breaks, you put in the make and model number and all the possible parts come up with pictures and diagrams. They have installation instructions and online help. You can even find the part based on the size and shape of it. The Bargain Babe herself found Fixya and ReliableParts helpful, too.
Instead of just getting rid of your appliance because it doesn’t work and buying an overpriced new one, you can just fix the old one. Most repairs only require a screw driver and some common sense.
Just in case my enthusiasm for my new HUGE savings strategy isn’t enough to turn you into your own handyman, then check out these average repair charges for fixing a washing machine as listed by the Major Appliance Service National Price Guide. $121 to replace a fabric softener dispenser cap??!!
Disclosure: my husband is very handy. He helps me with these repairs – ok, he does the repairs. But, I find the parts at deep discount. Even if I didn’t have a handy hubby, I could probably learn to do these repairs by watching YouTube videos or setting up some sort of barter with someone else’s handy hubby.
I hope I have inspired you to save money on fixing your own appliances. Of course, if the problem involves electrical, make sure you follow all the safety cautions. I’m expecting you to be frugal AND smart.
Have you fixed your own appliances? What happened?