Washers and dryers play an integral role in countless households. Without a functional washer and dryer, getting laundry done in a timely and effective manner is liable to be an uphill battle. In addition to fulfilling your family’s laundry needs, your washer and dryer can directly contribute to the value of your home. When most people move, they leave behind their major appliances, and prospective buyers generally aren’t amenable to replacing them. As such, it’s in your best interest to stay on top of maintenance and keep your laundry machines in prime condition. Anyone looking to make their washer and dryer last would be wise to avoid the following errors.
Overloading the Machines
Habitual overloading is among the most common mistakes people make with their laundry machines, and it isn’t difficult to see why. Since many of us wish to spend as little time as possible on laundry, we opt to overstuff our washers and dryers on a consistent basis. However, in addition to making our clothes less clean – and less dry – overloading can take a tremendous toll on the machines themselves. Not only does it overtax their internal components, it also stands to damage their respective drums irreparably, thus opening the door for expensive repairs and premature replacements. So, while you may think you’re saving yourself time, you’re actually costing yourself money.
To nip this problem in the bud, avoid overloading either machine, and stick to the load sizes recommended by their respective owner’s manuals. This may mean spending a little more time on laundry than you’d prefer, but it will help keep your washer and dryer running at peak efficiency and prevent you from shelling out a small fortune in repair costs.
Not Purchasing a Home Warranty
Like your household’s other essential appliances, washers and dryers represent large investments. In order to get the maximum return on these investments, you’ll need to make them last for as long as possible. However, in the absence of a comprehensive home warranty, this may be easier said than done. For anyone wondering, “What is a home warranty?,” this type of warranty provides coverage for all of a household’s major appliances, thereby ensuring that homeowners aren’t beset by economic anxiety every time an essential device finds itself in need of repairs. So, if peace of mind and affordable maintenance are what you’re after, there’s no time like the present to start exploring your home warranty options.
Letting Lint Linger
Allowing lint to accumulate is not only bad for your dryer, but it can also be a genuine safety hazard. Clothes dryers are among the leading causes of house fires, and it behooves every family to be vigilant in staying on top of lint. For starters, make a point of cleaning the lint screen and lint trap after each load. To effectively clean the trap, you’ll need a good lint brush at your disposal. Furthermore, make sure to deep clean the screen every few months to purge it of any residue you may have missed.
Neglecting Vent Maintenance
Neglecting your dryer vents can also facilitate a clear threat to your family’s safety. To help prevent potential fires, take care to clean your exhaust vent every two years. If your family does a sizable amount of laundry, you may want to consider doing this more often. If you’re uncomfortable and/or inexperienced when it comes to cleaning dryer vents, farm this task out to a seasoned pro. You’ll also need to regularly clear out the vent cap, as this will enable air to flow more freely. Additionally, if your exhaust vent is made of vinyl or plastic, consider replacing it with a metal one, as metal is less likely to catch fire.
Although washers and dryers are among the most important appliances in any household, they’re also among the most misused. Not only can misuse cause lasting damage to these devices, it also stands to facilitate a number of safety hazards. So, in the interest of preserving your laundry machines – and your household’s safety – make a point of exercising caution and steering clear of the mistakes discussed above. A little bit of knowhow and a commitment to safety can help keep your washer and dryer up and running for many years to come.