If there’s one thing that can turn your bright, shiny new appliances into a high-maintenance drag, it’s weird problems you don’t know how to fix. And unfortunately, sometimes the most annoying appliance issues are about things you really can’t totally fix yourself. We’ll take a more in-depth look at these 5 most common appliance issues and how to get them fixed:
Dryer won’t turn on
If your dryer isn’t turning on, it could be due to a problem with the power supply or an issue with the control panel.
Check the outlet. First, make sure that the outlet you’re plugging into works by plugging in something else. If it doesn’t work, use a multimeter to test the outlet for power. If there is no power, check the breaker box and reset it if necessary.
If you’ve confirmed that there is power going to the outlet and still no luck, it’s time to check other possible causes.
Check your circuit breaker. If you have a separate breaker for your dryer, make sure it hasn’t tripped out. Turn off the breaker and wait 30 seconds before flipping it back on again to reset it.
Check for blown fuses or tripped breakers in your home wiring system. These are easy fixes; just replace them with new ones from your local hardware store (and don’t forget to shut off power before working on any electrical components).
Refrigerator temperature setting is wrong
The most common problem with refrigerators is that their temperature setting is wrong. This can be a problem for any type of refrigerator, but it’s particularly common in top-freezer refrigerators (which have the freezer compartment on top) and bottom-freezers (which have the freezer compartment at the bottom).
An improperly set refrigerator temperature can cause food to spoil faster and may allow bacteria to grow in your refrigerator. If you notice this problem, you should check your owner’s manual or call a technician to make sure that your refrigerator is set properly.
Ice maker won’t make ice
If your ice maker doesn’t work, check the water supply line and make sure it’s turned on. If not, turn on the water supply line to the refrigerator and check for leaks. Check to see if there is any debris in the tray that stores water for ice cubes. If there is, clean out your refrigerator’s water filter. If your refrigerator is more than five years old, replace its thermostat, which controls the temperature of the freezer.
Washing machine won’t start
If your washing machine won’t start, it may not be a problem with the appliance itself. Before you try to troubleshoot the problem, check to make sure that there are no other electrical devices plugged into the same circuit. If you have an electric dryer or another appliance on the same circuit as your washer, unplug them and then plug them back in after 30 seconds. If this doesn’t work, check for tripped circuit breakers or fuses. If none of these steps work, call an appliance repairman
Too much or too little water in dishwasher
Sitting at the bottom of your dishwasher are two sensors that measure the level of water in each tub. If one detects more water than it should, the machine senses there’s a leak and shuts down. Sometimes, this is caused by a faulty sensor; other times, it’s because someone didn’t wipe off the inside of their sink properly before putting dishes in the dishwasher (or they did it incorrectly).
Solution: Check your sink for any debris that could be blocking the sensor from working properly — then wipe everything down with vinegar and water. If that doesn’t work, replace the sensor using this guide from Appliance Parts Pros.