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Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a handyman during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Setting up a safe consultation or appointment with a handyman during the COVID-19 pandemic starts with comparing local professionals online. Message or call the handyman to ask about performing a consultation over the phone or, better yet, a video call. This will allow the handyman to assess the problem without increasing the risk of transmission by visiting your home. If the service is essential and the handyman needs to enter your home, you’ll need to take stringent safety measures for the visit. Discuss temporary fixes if possible, and come up with a plan for safety and digital payment.

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with an electrician during the COVID-19 pandemic?

To set up an appointment or consultation with an electrician during the COVID-19 pandemic, ensure that you are performing as much of the process digitally as possible. The best way to begin is by conducting an online search for local electricians. Ask if they can perform consultations over a phone or video call to comply with social distancing mandates. You should also discuss a strategy for how to complete the project during social distancing or whether the project should be completed once the pandemic has ended.

How do I hire an electrician?

Go online to find a list of the best electricians in your area. View each individual electrician’s profile and learn more about their services and expertise. Then, read reviews from satisfied customers as well as any issues they may have encountered. This will help you find one with the right experience to work safely in your home.

You should also spend some time researching what qualifications and credentials they have. You might find information about their license on their profile, or you might need to check your local and state government’s website to verify their license. 

Once you’ve done a bit of research, ask to receive free estimates from several electricians in your area. Ultimately, hire the most qualified electrician who can complete your project at a reasonable price.

Is it worth it to hire an appliance repair technician?

There are several reasons why it’s worth it to hire an appliance repair technician instead of replacing the unit or doing the repair yourself. The first is to keep your warranty valid — doing a DIY repair on a home appliance may void some warranties.

Another reason is having the proper tools. While you may need to go buy extra tools to perform a repair, a technician will have the tools ready.

Hiring a pro can also help ensure a long-term fix instead of a band-aid solution, as an experienced pro will be able to assess the equipment for function.

If you have a broken appliance, get free estimates from the best appliance repair pros near you to figure out if it's worth hiring a pro to fix it for you.

How much does it cost for appliance repair?

While the average cost of appliance repair is $65, the price can range from $45 to $120. A technician may set a flat rate or charge by the hour. The average hourly cost is $65, although this can range from $40 to $95. 

Appliance repair technicians typically set their prices depending on the type of appliance, level of difficulty and other factors. Some pros may also charge a service fee or a consultation fee, and they might also offer discounts for new customers. 

To find out how much it will cost to repair your appliance, get free estimates from the best appliance repair technicians near you.

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with an appliance specialist during the COVID-19 pandemic?

The best way to set up a consultation or appointment during the COVID-19 pandemic is virtually, with no in-person contact. After messaging the appliance repairman, you can ask to set up a video chat or phone call to discuss what work needs to be done. Make sure to ask them how they handle payments, keeping in mind that paying in advance may be safer than handling cash or credit cards until the pandemic is over. Ask the professional what procedures and precautions they have in place to ensure safety during this time. 

How do you tell if your fridge is broken?

Use your nose — and ears — to tell if your fridge is broken and it’s time to call a pro. 

The first clue is whether your food is expiring too quickly. Your fridge should be at or below 40º Fahrenheit and your freezer should be at 0º, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. If temperatures deviate from these figures, the result can be food spoilage (from too much warmth) or even a frost buildup (from a faulty freezer). 

Other telltale signs that your refrigerator is broken are excessive noise, escalating electric bills and excessive heat from the back of the fridge.

If you think your fridge might be broken, don’t delay — contact the top appliance repair technicians near you today.

Do electricians do free estimates?

Yes, they do. Whether you’re looking for new electrical work or wiring repair, the electrician should offer you a free estimate. 

Go online to find the best electricians near you. After researching and finding a few pros who seem qualified for your job, go ahead and request a quote to find out how much those electricians will charge you.

Are there ways to be safe if I hire an appliance repairman or specialist when social distancing?

If you decide to hire an appliance service specialist or repairman, check your local news for community guidelines and follow the CDC’s guidelines for social distancing. Discuss safety protocols with the appliance repairmen before they enter your home. And when they enter your home, stay at least 6 feet apart, don’t shake hands, sanitize all involved surfaces and use digital payments instead of cash or a check. 

If you decide to postpone the work, consider buying a gift card from them or paying for future work. This is a great way to give back to the community, as many small businesses and individual contractors are feeling the economic effects of social distancing. 

How can I find out if an appliance repairman or specialist is considered an essential COVID-19 service provider?

The definition of an essential provider varies based on state, city and local guidelines. Visit the official government website of your state or city to see which services are considered an essential in your area.

For more information on a national level, read CISA’s publication on critical infrastructure workers. However, note that not all jurisdictions follow CISA’s definitions of critical infrastructure. 

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