The phrase “brand new” brings on such excitement. Whether it’s a new baby, a new puppy, or, yes, even new appliances, the word “new” brings with it promises of a more exciting and more full life. Of course, while appliances might not bring the same joy–or excitement–as babies or puppies, a new appliance can make your life easier and add some much-needed modernity to a rundown room.
Still, when we buy new appliances like a refrigerator, cooktop, or cooking range, we aren’t really thinking about the life expectancy of these products. In the perfect world, our appliances would last forever and always work exceptionally well. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case, and when an appliance does break, it can be difficult to determine whether you should attempt to repair or simply replace the object. It might not be as poetic as Shakespeare, but when it comes to the house, to replace or repair…that is truly the question.
Read on to determine whether your appliance can last a few more years, or if it’s time to finally pull the plug.
Average Life Expectancy Chart Of Various Appliances
- Dishwashers: 9 years
- Refrigerators: 13 years
- Freezers: 11 years
- Ranges: 13-15 years
- Microwave Ovens: 9 years
*Results of a study done by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)
The appliances that last the longest in the home are usually ranges, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), with electric ranges typically lasting around 13 years and gas ranges lasting 15. Still, the life expectancy of any appliance depends on both how frequently the product is used and how well it’s taken care of, in addition to the initial quality of the materials and how well the object was engineered and constructed.
Even with top-notch quality and care, most appliances require regular maintenance. For example, many models of dishwashers have small areas where hair and other debris collect, areas which must be checked and cleaned often to ensure continued optimal use. In addition, maintaining appliance hygiene will not only extend the life of your appliances, but their look as well.
When to Replace
Dishwasher: If the control board is no longer responding or if the spray arms aren’t turning properly, it’s usually wise to replace–especially if dishes are consistently coming out dirty, even when the right detergent and water temperature are used.
Range: These are generally designed for decades of use but some gas ranges may need minor repairs–broken or clogged igniters being amongst the most common issues.
Refrigerator/Freezer: A refrigerator with a broken compressor means only one thing: replace, replace, replace!
Microwave Oven: If your microwave is rusty, over 10 years old, or smokes and cracks while heating, it’s definitely time to replace.
A Good Rule of Thumb When Debating Repairing or Replacing
If repairing your appliance would cost more than 50% of the price of a new one, then don’t bother repairing it — replace right away.
The Best Brands for Long-Lasting Appliances:
Here are the top 10 best brands for long-lasting appliances, according to Yale Appliance and Lighting*:
- Whirlpool: 3.56% serviced within twelve-month period
- Amana: 3.97% serviced within twelve-month period
- LG: 5.34% serviced within twelve-month period
- Frigidaire: 6.22% serviced within twelve-month period
- Maytag: 7.22% serviced within twelve-month period
- Miele: 7.78% serviced within twelve-month period
- Samsung: 10.9% serviced within twelve-month period
- Gaggenau: 10.35% serviced within twelve-month period
- Bosch: 11.19% serviced within twelve-month period
- Wolf: 15.41% serviced within twelve-month period
*Note that brands at the top of the list, like Whirlpool and Amana, sell more overall reliable products, like dishwashers, than less-reliable products like refrigerators. In addition, certain products may be more reliable than others within the same brand.
Food for Thought
Many manufacturers save on costs by using cheaper materials instead of steel or stainless steel, so splurging on higher-end manufacturers could save you money in the long run. Higher-end products tend to last quite a bit longer without the hassle of continued repairs and replacements, while a cheaper appliance may seem smart in the short term, but can end up costing you more in repairs and replacements in the future.
What do you think of your latest purchase? Have you had any appliances that just seem to keep breaking and need replacing, or some that have lasted for years without a single shudder? Join Revuu.com and let others know of your experience with a product, or search our reviews by brand and to get more insight on a new purchase.