New Appliance Ideas that Flopped

*Three Appliance Industry Epic Fails

During a career in the major appliance industry I've witnessed the introduction and growth of many great new products such as microwave ovens, convection ovens, induction cooktops, steam washers and dryers, french door refrigerators, and professional ranges for the home.

There have been a number of product flops, too. Here are three notable failures over the last two decades.

Continue reading “New Appliance Ideas that Flopped” »

3 Prong to 4 Prong Dryer or Range Cord

Proper Install of Your Dryer or Range Cord

It's not unusual for home owners to confront problems when they find that the 4 prong plug for their new electric range or dryer won't fit the 3 hole receptacle in the wall. Alternatively, they may find that the 4 hole wall receptacle in their new house won't match up with the 3 prong plug on their old electric dryer or range.

This mismatch occurs because in the mid 1990's homes had 3 wire systems that had two “hot” wires (red and black) and a single neutral/ground wire. In 1996, the National Electrical Code was updated to require new homes to be built with a safer 4 wire configuration with separate ground and neutral wires.

So today, your new 4 prong electric dryer cord won't fit in an older 3 prong wall plug. The solution is simple. You will need to switch to a 3 prong dryer cord. The same is true for mismatched range cord and wall receptacle. Here are three important points to keep in mind:

  1. If a cord's plug, and the wall receptacle don't match, you must change the cord, not the wall receptacle.

  2. Dryer hookups and range hookups are configured differently. A dryer cord plug won't work in a range wall receptacle, nor will a range cord plug fit a dryer receptacle.

  3. The current 4 wire system has red and black wires just as before, plus a white neutral wire, and a green or bare wire for the ground.

The move to a 4 wire system was an important safety improvement. However, you can tell from above, that the conversion from a 3 prong vs 4 prong configuration on the plugs can be a bit of a hassle. Even after 20 years, this still can be an issue if you have or move into an older house.

Now that you know what needs to be done, you should also know that range and dryer cords do not come attached with a new appliance. If you are installing yourself, you'll need to know how to attach the cord to the appliance. Below is a link to a Whirlpool video demonstrating how the 4 wire cords are to be hooked up:

How to install a 4 wire supply cord to your dryer

Of course, when Arizona Wholesale Supply is delivering and installing your new appliances we'll bring the correct cord with us!


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Cooking with Gas: Sealed Burners vs Open Burners

Pros and Cons of Sealed vs Open Gas Burners

Burner Types

There are two styles of surface burners for gas ranges: open burners and sealed burners. Imagine a range top as a single piece of metal with holes punched in it just large enough to accommodate a gas line for each of the burners. This cooking surface would have sealed burners. Any spills or debris would contained on the top.

Some cooking surfaces have large openings for each burner so that the entire burner sits in the center of the hole with open space around and below the burner itself. This is an open burner configuration.

There are advantages and disadvantages with each system. Industry veterans often have strong viewpoints prefering one or another. If you are confronted with this decision, here are some criteria to help you choose.

Cleanability

There's no doubt that sealed burners are easier to clean than open burners. Spills are captured on the cooking surface where they can be wiped up, and the burners themselves can also be cleaned with ease. On the other hand, when spills occur with open burners the spill will fall into the hole surrounding the burner. Fortunately, there is a metal sheet below to catch any spills. Cleaning the burner itself can be time consuming and depending on use may be required often.

Appearance

Open burners expose the underneath of the top, and are generally going to have more of an industrial, restaurant-look. Sealed burners will not show anything below the top, and be less obtrusive than the bulky open burners.

Cooking Results

There's lots of debate here. Chefs will brag about the air surrounding the open burners creating more heat, greater flexibility, and better overall control. Tests confirm some advantage here, but as they say, “your results may vary”. Sealed burners are by far the most popular, and few users complain about the lack of air circulation affecting cooking results.

Conclusions

If you do a lot of cooking and are used to using the open burners of commercial-type ranges or rangetops, you're probably going to want to stay with open burners. It's worth noting that open burners can be synonymous with professional or commercial-style appliances that are likely to have a steep price premium.

For convenience and low maintenance, sealed-burners are the obvious choice. Over the years, there have been some advances in both sealed and open burner technology. For example, Viking has recently launched a new sealed burner that is claimed to have a commercial heritage.

For more information, or to compare the two burner-types call the experts at Arizona Wholesale Supply for an appointment.


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Introducing Monogram Appliances

New Monogram Appliances on Display

Monogram Shown at Arizona Wholesale Supply, Scottsdale

Monogram-at-AWS

Key Arizona builders attended a private showing of Monogram Appliances at Arizona Wholesale Supply in the Scottsdale Design Center on Thursday evening, April 21st. One of the highlights was the Monogram Professional Range. GE Southwest Region Manager, Rick Bonnie was on hand to answer questions as well as GE District Manager, Yolanda Sutton.

Of course, some delicious hors d'ouvres were prepared to go with the liquid refreshments. THANKS, Monogram. Here are just a few of the superior features on the Monogram Professional Range.

ZGP486NDRSS
Monogram┬« 48″ All Gas Professional Range with 6 Burners and Griddle (Natural Gas)

Sealed, dual-flame stacked burners
Deliver a full spectrum of heat settings, from an ultra-low 140┬░ F simmer to an intense 18,000 BTU

Sealed-Burners

Monogram professional dual-burner bake system
Combines reverse-air convection technology with an infrared broil and gas burner to provide superb baking results, with fast preheating

Reversible burner grates
Flat on one side and uniquely contoured on the other to accommodate round-bottom woks

Reversible-Grates

Heavy-duty oven racks
Glide smoothly in and out on stainless steel ball bearings for easy access, and are designed to remain in the oven during the self-clean cycle.

To find out more about Monogram at Arizona Wholesale Supply call your builder sales rep at one of the below branches in the Tucson or Phoenix area.


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How Long do Appliances Last?

When Should I Replace My Appliances?

It's complicated

Many years ago, I used to carry around a chart from AHAM (Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers) which itemized the expected life spans of various appliances: washing machines 15 years, ranges 20 years, etc. I've long ago disposed of this, but I did find this current version. Here is a look at today's appliance lifespans from Consumer Reports:

Dishwasher – 9 years
Dryer (electric and gas) – 13 years
Microwave oven – 9 years
Range electric – 13 years
Range gas – 15 years
Refrigerator – 13 years
Washing machine – 10 years

We all know that the life expectancy of appliances is not what it used to be, but let's not confuse quality with durability. Today's washing machines use less detergent, energy and water than their predecessors. They are more gentle on clothes, and get them cleaner than ever before, but have a life expectancy of only 10 years, compared to 15 years or longer from grandma's Maytag.

Today, manufacturers seem to be on a never ending quest to reduce costs, and as consumers we shop until we drop to get save every hard earned dollar we can on appliances. Moreover, we don't seem to care if our kids inherit the family refrigerator, and we are quick to get rid of a broken appliance to avoid paying a stiff repair bill.

I recently read that in upscale neighborhoods it is not uncommon for kitchens to be remodeled about every 10 years, and that includes new appliances. So, even though appliances don't last as long as they used to, we tend not to even keep them for as long as they last.

The truth is that we don't expect our appliances to last as long as they used to…but we do expect that they have the latest features and look great in our house. I once asked a customer if she had a brand preference for her new washer. She replied that it didn't make a difference as long as the washer was red.

So, don't feel guilty about replacing your 15 year old agitator style topload washing machine with a shiny new front loader. The old machine is at the end of it's life, and the new one could actually pay for itself in energy savings….plus, it's red!

To get more information on appliances, floor coverings, and more be sure to consult your design professional or builder, and make an appointment with the experts at Arizona Wholesale Supply.


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Phoenix 602 258-7901, Scottsdale 480 596-0092, Tucson 520 795-4663

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Commercial Appliances in Your Home

Purchasing Restaurant or Commercial Appliances for Home Use

Appliances for Restaurants and Institution vs Residential Appliances

Some years ago, I was handling appliance sales to a large homebuilder who was building a big (16 home) model home complex for a huge planned community. They wanted one home to contain a kitchen complete with authentic commercial appliances. They'd done some research and had some brand choices such as a Traulsen commercial refrigerator and a Vulcan restaurant range. These brands are indeed products you might find in restaurants, and large institutions, but they are not built for a home kitchen.

I pushed back, but they insisted so I connected with a restaurant supply company, got the literature, specs, pricing, and then met with the homebuilder. When I presented the refrigerator, I asked if they wanted the compressor located inside or outside the house. I explained that the refrigerator manufacturer offered an external compressor and condenser package to reduce the noise and heat from the refrigerator.

Traulsen-Refrigerator

I informed them that they would need to run a larger than standard gas line to the home for the commercial range, that they'd need to provide some extra insulation in the wall behind, and pointed out that the 34″ deep range would stick out considerably into the kitchen from their 24″ deep cabinets. The parts only warranty that came with these products might not even apply since these appliances were not built for residential use. Needless to say, their plan for “true” commercial appliances was scuttled.

Vulcan Range

The end of the story is that today at Arizona Wholesale Supply you can choose from a variety of residential appliances with commercial or restaurant features, that will fit in your kitchen, come with complete warranties, and will satisfy all your needs for high performance and durability. Some of these brands such as Wolf, Viking, and BlueStar to name a few have authentic commercial heritages.

For help in your remodeling or new build project, work with your designer or builder, and make an appointment with the specialists at Arizona Wholesale Supply for the best advice and selections of appliances and more to outfit your home.


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Phoenix 602 258-7901, Scottsdale 480 596-0092, Tucson 520 795-4663

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Fixing The Galley Kitchen

Efficiency and Space in an updated Galley Kitchen

The term galley kitchen goes back to the galleys on ships and carries forward to home kitchens that are built in an aisle with counters, cabinets, and appliances facing each other as in this photo (This Old House).

Galley-Kitchen

Galley kitchens are the antithesis of the open kitchens that are de riguer these days. Galley kitchens are closed off, and can be cramped and crowded to work in. If you have a galley kitchen, and want a more open kitchen, you should work with a designer to explore your options. Occasionally, a wall can be opened to create addition space, or a window might be added to give a more open look and feel.

However, while opening things up in your galley kitchen creates a more open feel, it often doesn't create additional space. If you need additional cabinets, more counter space, or freedom from bumping into appliances that stick-out into the room here are 3 ideas from the appliance guru that might help.

1. Counter depth or built-in appliances

Most appliance manufacturers now offer counter-depth refrigerators that will not push out into your kitchen aisle, and some brands have built-in refrigerators, that will be flush with your cabinet faces. However, it's not unusual for freestanding ranges to stick out a bit into the kitchen, and some pro ranges will stick out more than just a bit, so take care when choosing a range. Since galley kitchens usually have opposing workspaces, it's important that refrigerator, range and dishwasher doors have enough clearance to fully open,

While some dishwashers have fronts that can stick out a bit from the cabinet front, others can be installed flush. Always be careful about installing dishwashers in a corner. If the dishwasher has a protruding handle, it may prevent an adjacent corner door or drawer from opening.

2. Narrow width appliances.

With influence from Europe, there has been a revival of smaller width appliances. Luxury brands such as Wolf and Miele offer 24″ wide ovens along with their standard width American-sized models. Similarly, there are also more choices in 24-inch wide freestanding and slide-in ranges. All of these options create more space in cramped galley kitchens.

3. More accessible appliances.

There are a host of new appliances now on the market that are designed to provide greater accessibility. For example, nearly all major brands now offer microwave drawers, ideally installed under countertops. Great for accessibility, this product also frees up space on countertops or upper cabinets.

Microwave-Drawer

In the last couple of years Sub Zero has introduced a wide array of undercounter refrigerator and freezer drawers in different sizes and configuration. They also have an amazing selection of wine storage units, traditional undercounter refrigerators, and beverage centers. Much of the industry has followed their lead and similar undercounter units are widely available in different configurations, brands, and price points.

For more ideas on fixing a cramped galley kitchen, consult your design professional. For the best information on appliances make an appointment with one of experts at Arizona Wholesale Supply.


For more information call or visit the experts at Arizona Wholesale Supply .

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Pros and Cons: Range vs. Cooktop/Oven

Freestanding Range vs Cooktop and Oven

Kitchen Debate: Purchase a Range or a Cooktop and Oven

When building a home or re-designing a kitchen, homeowners can be faced with the choice of installing a single kitchen range vs. a cooktop and a separate wall oven. Here are a few considerations:

Advantages and disadvantages of a kitchen range

Freestanding-Range

This is a simple decision. Choose the range and you've purchased two appliances at once. No worries about locating two separate appliances, choosing among various dimensions eg, 30″ vs 36″, or running gas and/or electric lines to separate locations.

On the other hand, you'll be locking yourself into 2 separate appliances in a single space which may be inconvenient. You could find yourself needing to cook on the range surface while standing in front of a hot oven. Some people find that repeatedly bending over to access the oven is uncomfortable.

Advantages and disadvantages of a separate cooktop and oven

One big advantage is that by purchasing the cooktop and oven separately, you can get exactly the features you want in each appliance. Also, separate appliance purchases may sometimes result in different brands sizes and fuel types of cooktops and ovens. By having a wall oven installed at eye level, it can be operated and accessed without bending over.

Oven-Cooktop

In most instances, separate cooktops and wall ovens will cost more than a comparable freestanding range. Having remodeled kitchens in two different homes in the last 5 years, we've chosen both configurations. We love our current double oven range with radiant top. However, the separate gas cooking surface and combination wall oven/microwave probably edges out the freestanding range. Viva la difference!

For the best advice on appliance locations and options work with your builder and designer, and of course make sure to schedule an appointment with an appliance professional at Arizona Wholesale Supply for the best choices.


For more information call or visit the experts at Arizona Wholesale Supply .

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Buying Appliances to Save Energy

Making Sense out of Energy Savings Appliances

Question. Can I justify buying new appliances based on energy savings alone?

Answer. Maybe. If your current appliances are old energy hogs, you may be able to justify replacement for energy savings alone because the savings will pay for the replacement. This applies more to washers, dishwashers, and refrigerators than it does to ranges, ovens, cooktops, and dryers.

Here are three specific recommendations:

  1. Topload agitator-type washing machines are real culprits. In general, the older they are the more water they use, and the more water they use, the higher the energy costs, because of the cost to heat the water.

  2. Here's a quick way to find out if your dishwasher is an energy hog. If you have a porcelain tub dishwasher which has no filterbasket, it's very likely a big energy user. Energy saving dishwashers are likely to have stainless or polystyrene tubs and often use a wash system with a filter basket vs. a built-in food chopper.

  3. Does your refrigerator make a loud clunking sound when the compressor turns on? That's a good clue that this has a traditional compressor that runs a long time at high speed to provide cooling and then shuts down for a long period. Most refrigerators today have smaller more efficient compressors that do not cycle on and off but slow down and speed up based on cooling demand.

Another test you might use is age. If an appliance is over 15 years old, consider it suspect. If the appliance is working well, not service prone, and you just love it, then keep it. But, when you have the next service call on old Bessie, it's time to say goodby. The combined cost of repair and potential energy savings of a new appliance make a compelling case for replacement.

GE Monitor Top Refrigerator

GE Monitor Top

There are other reasons to replace appliances such as a kitchen remodel or a move into a new house, but use the above recommendations to think through your appliance replacement needs. Of course, consult your builder or designer, and count on the professionals at Arizona Wholesale Supply for all your appliance needs and more.

For more information call or visit the experts at Arizona Wholesale Supply .

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New SMEG Appliances at Arizona Wholesale

What's New at Arizona Wholesale Supply?

SMEG Appliances from Italy

A few years ago Fiat automobiles were relaunched in the U.S. with some very clever TV commercials announcing “The Italians are coming.” Well, they sure are, but their invasion has not been limited to automobiles. Italian appliances have also made their mark in the U.S. over the past few years. Among the latest, is the Italian brand SMEG. It's now available in Arizona at Arizona Wholesale Supply.

I had an advance notice about SMEG. While vacationing in England a few years ago, we were wandering the streets of Bath, and passed an appliance store. In deference to my wife, I resisted the urge to go inside, but I did check out the SMEG refrigerator in the window display. Now, this upscale Italian brand is available in the U.S. As you can see the refrigerator has a distinct retro 50's look, and is available in an array of colors including the pastel blue below. It's a sturdy product, and a particular nice fit in smaller kitchens. Below are some of the listed features:

FAB28UPBL1

Refrigerator compartment features

  • No. of adjustable shelves: 3
  • Number of fruit and vegetables drawers: 1
  • Type of adjustable shelves: Glass
  • Type of crisper/vegetable drawers cover: Glass
  • Internal light in fridge

Refrigerator Inner Door

  • No. of door shelves with transparent cover: 2
  • Number of adjustable door shelves: 4
  • Adjustable door shelves with wire support
  • No. of bottle shelves: 1
  • Bottle shelves with wire support

Other Refrigerator features

  • Accessories: Bottle holder, Cheese box, Egg tray
  • Freezer compartment features
  • Internal freezer compartment: yes

Other refrigerators include 2 door models and undercounter units. In addition, SMEG has a complete array of appliance products in stainless steel including ovens, ranges, dishwashers, etc. Visit this site often for updates on SMEG and other great appliance brands and products for your new home, remodel, or improvement project.


For more information call or visit the experts at Arizona Wholesale Supply .

Appliances, floor coverings, window treatments, and more

Arizona Wholesale

Phoenix 602 258-7901, Scottsdale 480 596-0092, Tucson 520 795-4663

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