Conduct plenty of initial research and know what to expect before opening up any appliance. Generally, small appliances are fairly simple, while larger appliances are more complex.
When repairing a larger appliance, such as a washer or dryer, first determine if the issue stems from a mechanical failure or a nonworking electronic control device. In dryers, for example, control devices manage heat while the drum rotation is controlled by mechanical components. If the dryer drum rotates but no heat is applied, the control device is to blame. When the dryer heats but the drum doesn't turn, the issue at hand is mechanical in nature.
To identify malfunctioning parts, test each separate part for integrity. Since appliance parts are chained together in a logical sequence, this process is fairly simple, if time-consuming. Before starting a repair, always disconnect all electric power and gas intakes.
Whether or not a professional gets involved, it is typically faster and more cost-effective to replace damaged parts than to repair them. If an appliance's parts are fastened in place with screws, bolts or similar take-apart fasteners, home repair is likely advisable. If parts are riveted or welded together, call in a service professional to execute the repair. Before opening up a nonworking appliance for repair, use a voltage tester to ensure the electrical outlet is working properly.