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.


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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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 .

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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D-I-Y Appliance Repair

Tips on Fixing Your Own Appliances

Appliance Repair Advice

Having more than just a few years in appliance sales, I've often had the impulse to do some minor repairs on my own appliances. It never went well. For example, replacing a refrigerator door gasket seemed like an easy job, but in my case it turned into a nightmare. Did you know that in the process of replacing a gasket, you may have to remove and re-install both the door and the door liner? Not a fun experience. Here are some tips to save you time and money:

1. Be certain of your diagnosis.

What's the problem? Refrigerator not cooling. This can be many things. If your use and care manual doesn't help, you might be able to get a repair manual and/or a parts list from your nearby appliance parts house. It's not always possible, but it is so much better if you know what needs to be fixed or replaced before you start taking things apart.

2. Learn what you need to do before you begin.

Review online help pages and videos that demonstrate the process. There are many YouTube videos by appliance service companies and appliance manufacturers demonstrating common repairs.

3. Assemble the necessary parts and tools in advance.

Nobody wants to remove a refrigerator and freezer door, only to find out that there is a broken plastic part on the hinge assembly that also needs to be replaced, and by the way, the part is on backorder. Order all the parts you might need, just in case.

4. Clear your work area in advance.

If you're working in the kitchen, at a minimum you'll need a floor mat, a few small boxes or trays for saving screws, bolts, clips or other small parts that need to be re-attached later, and a place to put large parts such as doors, etc. Make a list so you know the order in which you removed parts, and can replace them in the reverse order. In some cases, its better to remove the appliance from the kitchen entirely and take it out to a workshop or garage if you have this option.

5. Have a backup plan.

If you get stuck, be ready to call a friend for help, use the nearby coin laundry until that backordered part arrives, and as always… count on your friends at Arizona Wholesale Supply to save the day with a new appliance!


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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Do Today’s Appliances Wear Out Sooner?

Appliances of old lasted longer than appliances today.

True or False?

True. The useful life of an appliance today is not what it once was. The same is true with the clothes we wear, the automobiles we buy, and the homes we build.

Twenty years ago, the Maytag repairman was known as “Old Lonely” and hyped as the loneliest man in town. Maytag salespeople bragged about a transmission that was said to last for 25 years, far longer than the average life of a washing machine.

While Maytag brand still touts its durability and commercial parts, they no longer refer to the Maytag repairman as “Old Lonely” and the factory where those legendary machines were made was closed soon after Whirlpool purchased Maytag in 2006.

Ironically, this is actually good news for consumers. There is little to be gained from paying for a product that is over engineered. It makes no sense to pay for a 25 year transmission in a washer that lasts 12 years on average. We replace appliances now, that we once used to repair. We do so:

  • in order to get the new latest and greatest new features.
  • to avoid today's high cost of repair.
  • to take advantage of greater energy savings in newer appliances.

Life expectancy aside, today's appliances perform better, use less energy, offer more features, and cost less as a percentage of our total income, than ever before. So rather than bemoaning the fact that these products have a replacement cycle and won't be passed down to our children, we should consider what great values they are.

To get the best value on appliances consumers should:

  1. Get professional advice. A trained appliance salesperson is worth his or her weight in gold. Buying from a home improvement store or a club where you get either bad advice or no advice will probably mean that you'll pay to much. Spending hundreds of dollars for a product that doesn't meet your expectations means you paid too much even if the price was low.
  2. Buy from a trusted source. Choosing a local company that has been in business for a while, and specializes in appliances is a good idea. You'll get a good value from somebody who has a reputation of standing behind their products.

In Arizona, a good choice would be Arizona Wholesale Supply Company. They've been in business for over half a century, are locally owned, have a highly skilled sales force, and have their own delivery and service. They have three convenient locations in Arizona. Call or visit today:

Arizona Wholesale

Arizona Wholesale Supply Co.

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

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