Q:

How can you fix appliances at home?

A:

Quick Answer

Fixing appliances at home depends on the appliance and the problem it has. Things that homeowners can fix themselves range from replacing an igniter on a gas oven to replacing the door gaskets or seals on a leaky refrigerator.

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Full Answer

Remember that fixing home appliances requires turning off the gas or electricity before beginning the task.

A gas oven that does not heat is a common problem that many homeowners can fix themselves. Follow the steps below to complete this type of repair.

  1. Check the pilot light
  2. Begin by figuring out why the oven does not heat. Check to be sure the pilot light is lit by checking the burner assembly. If the pilot light is not lit, refer to the manufacturer's instructions for lighting a pilot light and ignite it.

  3. Spark the ignition
  4. If the oven makes a clicking sound when it is turned on and that sound stops, there is probably something wrong with the spark ignition assembly. It is rare for this part to malfunction, so if it does, call in a professional.

  5. Examine the glow coil igniters
  6. Locate the glow coal igniters at the rear of the burners. When the oven is on these igniters should glow, and if they do not, they are faulty. Remove the oven racks, unplug the oven and remove the screws that hold the faulty igniter in place. Replace with a new igniter.

Another common problem with home appliances is a leaky refrigerator, which may be caused by either damaged door gaskets or seals or a faulty water inlet valve. Follow the steps below to troubleshoot a leaking refrigerator.

  1. Inspect the door seals
  2. If the seals around the door are faulty, which is evident by moisture around the edge of the door, replace with new seals. Pop the new seals in the clothes dryer for a few minutes to make them more pliable before installing.

  3. Check the water inlet valve
  4. If the water leak occurs in the back of the refrigerator, check the water inlet valve for cracks or other damage.

  5. Remove the old valve
  6. Unplug the refrigerator and remove the faulty valve by unscrewing the bracket that holds it in place. Gently pull it away from the refrigerator.

  7. Label and remove the wires
  8. Label each wire running to the valve and then remove each one by gently pulling. Use needle-nose pliers if necessary.

  9. Attach the new valve
  10. Attach the new valve in the opposite order. Do not restore power to the appliance until the valve is securely in place.

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