We rely on our household appliances to maintain our quality of life. There is nothing more horrifying than that fateful days when you hear a vital piece of home machinery sputter and die.

Depending on the appliance, the impact to your daily routine could be huge. That’s why it’s important to know roughly how long your appliances should last.

how long should my appliances last

If you know that your refrigerator’s life expectancy is running out, you can take preventative measures to prolong its life or start saving up to invest in a new one. The alternative is just waiting around for the day it drops dead in front of you, leaving you with a dark container filled with rotting food.

What are some of the most important appliances in your life? And more importantly, how long do you have before they start fritzing out?

Throughout this article we will examine four of the most common household appliances and give you an idea as to how long they will last.

We’re going to be looking at:

  1. Refrigerator
  2. Stove/Oven
  3. Washer/Dryer
  4. Dishwasher

Let’s dive in with arguably the most important and expensive item on our list.

1. Refrigerator

Can you get a refrigerator for under $1,000? Sure. It’s not going to be a great one, though. Refrigerators tend to be on the pricey side, with some of the more advanced models going for thousands of dollars.

So, it stands to reason that when you’re making such a hefty investment, you want your appliance to last for a long time.

Good news on that front. Refrigerators typically have a lifespan between 10 and 15 years. Obviously, the cheaper models are going to give out faster than some of the more expensive “built like a food cooling tank” versions that cost a pretty penny.

If your refrigerator dies, it can be a costly disaster. Not only are you losing a device, but you’re also going to lose all of the perishable food that you were storing within. At any given time, our refrigerators and freezers are holding somewhere around $100 worth of food. It would be a shame if all of that went to waste because of an avoidable malfunction.

You want to ensure that your fridge is storing items at around 37 degrees Fahrenheit for fresh food. If you see your device not hitting that number, it’s a safe bet that your appliance is starting to fail. A common issue with refrigerators is a dusty condenser coil. Hot air can no longer be pushed out and internal temperatures start to climb. Dusting the coils with a vacuum cleaner or a long brush can help to keep your food fresh.

2. Washer/Dryer

If you’ve ever lived in an apartment building that didn’t have a washer and dryer, you know all too well the joys of having one. No one wants to shlep their way out to a laundromat every time they need clean clothes. The end result of that scenario is usually piles of dirty clothes left behind as proof of your laundry procrastination.

That’s why it’s so important to make sure that both your washer and dryer are in good working order. Typically, these appliances last up to 12 years, but that can be extended with regular maintenance, including a few things that you can do yourself.

For starters, make sure that you’re cleaning out the lint trap after each dryer cycle. You should also be cleaning out your appliance hoses, dryer ducts, and heating elements once per year at a minimum. This helps two-fold, as it prolongs the life of your washer and dryer, and helps protect your home from a potentially disastrous dryer fire. If lint accumulates within the heating elements it could ignite and cause a horrible issue.

When it comes to washing machines, top-loading washers tend to last longer, while their front-loading counterparts are more efficient. Front-loading washers tend to see issues develop with mold accumulation on the rubber door gaskets, which require regular maintenance. Wiping this component down after every load can be helpful, followed by leaving the door open for a bit to let it air dry.

3. Stove/Oven

What are you going to do if your stove and/or oven die out on you? Microwave all of your meals? Cook over a roaring fire in the backyard? It’s important to ensure that these appliances remain in good working order to preserve your culinary future.

Both electric and gas burning stoves/ovens have a life expectancy between 10 and 15 years. Be on the look out for issues with the igniter, bake element, and control board.

So, which lasts longer, a gas burning stove or electric? Typically, a gas stove will have a few more years of functionality, because there are fewer moving parts. It’s always a good idea to clear out the gas burner ports from time to time with a pipe cleaner, as well as cleaning the vent hood filter on the regular.

4. Dishwasher

Yes, you don’t need a dishwasher to live, but isn’t it nice to have? Scrubbing plates, pots, and pans by hand can be cringey work, and it’s much easier to just load up a dishwasher and be done with that whole messy business.

A typical dishwasher is going to last you between eight and 10 years. However, this is also the most inexpensive item on our list, running somewhere in the $500 range, on average. Some signs that your dishwasher is starting to fail can include inefficient cleaning or a loud banging sound emanating from within the appliance.

Dishwashers have changed a lot over the years. Old models used macerators to grind up bits of food that stubbornly clung to a plate or pot. Most of the more modern appliances use a filtration system, but that requires maintenance.

It’s usually a good idea to scrape off your dishes into the trash or garbage disposal before putting them in the dishwasher. That will help the filter and improve your appliance’s lifespan. If you can smell a rotten odor coming from your dishwasher, the filtration system is likely gummed up.

Maintenance Saves Appliances

Don’t wait until your appliances kick the bucket. Regular preventative maintenance toward the end of an appliance’s lifespan can seriously prolong its existence.

Astre Appliance Services specializes in maintaining and repairing the appliances that keep your life moving forward. Call now, toll-free, to schedule an appointment, at 800-734-2098, or visit us online.