Appliance Repair or Maintenance

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Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

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.

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.

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.

Is it cheaper to repair or replace a refrigerator?

In some cases, it might be cheaper to repair a refrigerator — in others, your best bet is to just buy a new one. The decision to repair or replace a refrigerator will depend on several factors, but the most important is cost. If the cost to repair a fridge is much more than the cost of buying a new one, it’s time to replace the fridge.

To help you determine if your fridge should be repaired or replaced, get free estimates from the best appliance repair technicians in your area.

Is appliance repair easy?

While some appliance repairs like cleaning the inlet filter on your washing machine or cleaning a smelly dishwasher are perfect DIY projects, others are better left to the pros. 

Certain jobs can be dangerous and risk extensive damage, such as repairing gas lines or leaks. Others require experience and know-how, such as balancing a clothes washer, replacing electric wires, rewiring appliances and more. If you’re not sure how to get it done safely, contact the best appliance repair technicians near you.

How much does refrigerator repair cost?

Refrigerator repair generally costs a fraction of the price of a new fridge and shouldhave your appliance up and running again in no time. The problems your refrigerator is experiencing and the parts required to fix it will affect your repair costs. Where you live can affect labor rates, which will raise or lower your costs. Here are some examples of average costs:

  • Diagnostic fees: $50-$100. Repair pros often have a service call fee or diagnostic fee to account for their time traveling to your location with all their tools to assess the problem. If you choose to have them repair the fridge, most pros then credit this fee toward your repair cost.
  • Parts: $20-$500. A new compressor averages $200, an icemaker $300, and computerized components such as touch screens and control boards average $300 or more.
  • Basic repairs: $180-$400, including parts. This price range can include repairing the evaporator or fan motor.

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. 

How long do fridges last?

Refrigerators can last 10 to 20 years, although the most common lifespan is about 13 years. If your fridge is acting up, consider its current age when deciding whether to invest in repairs or buy a new one. Common easy fixes include faulty thermostats, dirty coils and clogged drain lines. Thermostats and dirty coils can be generally be fixed for an average cost of $80-$100. Clogged drain lines, which usually cause leaks, can often be fixed for under $200.

More complex refrigeration repairs such as replacing a bad compressor or replenishing low refrigerant can cost more because of expensive parts and higher labor. A new compressor costs an average of $200, not including labor. If labor is an average of $75-$100 per hour, and the repair takes 3 hours, you’re looking at roughly $500. Consider the age and purchase cost of your fridge; investing $350 in a $600 fridge that is 8 years old may not be cost-effective.

Can I use digital payments to pay for appliance repair, installation or maintenance services?

Many appliance professionals accept digital payments through Venmo, PayPal, Square Cash, Zelle and other online platforms. You should contact the business or individual before hiring them for the project to see how they handle payments, especially during this time of social distancing. Many businesses also list their methods of payment in their profiles.

Reviews for Ashburn washing machine repair professionals
Jamil J.
Very fast response and honest service; did the job correctly. Very professional and knowledgeable. The repair was on my GE washing machine.
Appliance Protection LLCAppliance Protection LLC
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What you should know about washing machine repair services.

How much does it cost to repair a washing machine pump?

The cost to repair a washing machine pump ranges from $35 – $200. Keep in mind that a washing machine technician may also charge a labor fee and diagnostic fee. Get estimates from washing machine repair professionals near you to find out how much it will cost to repair the pump.

How much does it cost to fix a washing machine agitator?

Get cost estimates from repair technicians in your area for a better idea of how much it will cost to fix your washing machine’s agitator. 

How much does it cost to fix a washing machine motor?

The cost to repair a washing machine motor may be between $150 – $500, depending on the cost of the replacement part. Keep in mind a washing machine technician will also charge a labor fee and diagnostic fee. By getting cost estimates from several repair technicians near you, you can help ensure you pay a fair price to fix your motor.

What are common problems with washing machines?

Below is a list of a few common problems that washing machines often encounter.

  1. Washing tub bearings are damaged and cause the washing machine to make strange noises.
  2. The door switch is worn out and it won’t allow the washer to run.
  3. The drain pump is worn out and won’t let the water drain from the basin.
  4. A damaged motor coupler can cause the basket to spin slowly or not to spin at all.

How do you diagnose a washing machine problem?

Have you started running into problems with your washing machine? Inspect your washing machine and ask yourself if it’s making more noise than usual, if your clothes are rinsing as well as they used to and if there are any unusual smells.

Here are some common diagnoses:

  • Shaky or vibrating washing machine: Machine may not be level.
  • Noisy washer: Problem with the drum bearings, inlet valve pump or loose items.
  • Machine stops mid-cycle: Electronic malfunction or bad timer.

A washing machine technician near you can help you diagnose your machine and pinpoint the problem.

What causes a washing machine to stop working?

Several things can cause your washing machine to stop working properly. Some of the most common culprits include: 

  • electrical issues
  • the pump or motor has failed
  • a leak or drainage issues
  • valve and hose issues
  • faulty basket gasket or tub seal

A washing machine repair professional near you can help identify why your washing machine is malfunctioning.

How long should a washing machine last?

A washing machine’s lifespan depends on how much use it gets. According to the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, a washing machine can last anywhere from 5 to 15 years. Of course you can always replace the washing machine sooner if you find a machine that better suits your style or efficiency needs.

Is it worth repairing a washing machine or fixing a washer?

Weigh the cost of the repair with the cost of replacing the washing machine entirely. Repairing a washing machine may be worth the cost if it is less than half the cost of a new machine. But if your washing machine is old and outdated, or experiences frequent repairs, you may be better off replacing it instead of fixing it. And chances are, if you have run into the need for a repair now, you may run into another problem soon after.

When in doubt, contact a washing machine or appliance repair professional to get their opinion.

Can you fix a washing machine yourself?

Fixing a washing machine yourself can be a good way to save some money. If you’re handy or have a handy friend, you can probably manage to take apart and reassemble your washing machine. But remember that some machines can be heavy, so it will be good to have someone else around for safety reasons. 

If you’re not handy with appliances, consider hiring a professional for this project instead. If you start taking apart your washer and you don't know what you’re doing, you may cause irreparable damage.

How can I fix my washing machine problem?

Fixing your washing machine starts with properly diagnosing the problem and identifying the solution. If you have the expertise and tools required to fix your washing machine, have at it. For example, try to resolve any issues by unplugging the washing machine and plugging it back in. If the problem is that the machine won’t start, check the circuit breaker or test the outlet for current. You can also check to make sure the water supply valves are turned on.

But if the repair is out of your scope, contact a local technician. They can help you fix your machine — or they may suggest that you replace it instead.

Why you should hire a washing machine repair service.

A washing machine shutting off in the middle of a load is the last thing you want to deal with. But when that happens, hiring a local professional to repair or perform routine maintenance on your machine can help ease your mind. They know how to fix a variety of broken appliances and can keep your washing machine in peak performance. Check out the best washing machine repair pros near you below, read reviews from previous clients, ask for cost estimates and hire a specialist to fix your machine.

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