Whirlpool Duet Washer and Dryer set

Rusty Clothes After Finishing Your Laundry? Here's How To Find The Problem

A reader wrote in and asked what to do about rust appearing on her clothes after doing the laundry. "Our washer and dryer are 20-25 years old, so I'm thinking they are the problem. Should I buy a new washer or try to have this one fixed?"

Given the age of the washer and dryer, it's possible that the problem is with the machines. However, there are some things to investigate before running out to plunk down money on new appliances.

Determine where the rust is coming from

The rust could either be due to your washer or dryer. Of course, it's easiest to determine whether it's your washer or dryer that's the culprit with your whites. If they come out of the washer with little brown spots, you know the problem is in your wash cycle. However, if they leave the washer clean, but have little brown rust spots after the dryer, that's where the problem is.

Rust could be from your water source or the pipes

While the rust might be coming from your washer, it could also be coming from your pipes...or your water. I was at a friend's cottage a few years ago and did a load of laundry. Their well water had so much iron in it that my whites came out rusty brown. It took three days of soaking them in Oxy Clean to restore them. In an apartment we lived in - very temporarily - the pipes were so old that brown water came out of the faucet every morning. We had to flush the system every morning before we dared use the water. The point is, the rust may be from your pipes or originate from the water itself. In those cases, you can either get a filter for your washing machine or a water softener for your house. If you have hard water, an investment in a whole house water softener will extend the lives of your dishwasher and washing machine, decrease odour from the water, and help lessen or eliminate the waterline mark in your toilets.

Rust could be from your washer

Sometimes it's fairly obvious that the problem stems from your washer. If the enamel has chipped away on your drum, or if the drum is stainless steel and it has small rust spots appearing, that is likely the cause of your rust stains. If you can easily access the spot and you're a confident DIYer, you could try sanding down the rust and touching it up with an enamel heat resistant appliance paint. If the drum is thoroughly rusty you could consider replacing it with a new drum - usually an appliance repairperson is a good idea for this kind of job. If it's another part and you need to take the washer apart to find it - well, I leave that in your capable hands - (or, you could call in some help, or buy another).

What if the rust is coming from your dryer?

It turns out that your dryer might be the guilty party - if your clothes are coming out clean from the washer and getting rust spots on them after they've been through the dryer. If that's the case, Hunker.com suggests getting to the back of the dryer and cleaning out the air duct with an old towel.  It also suggests checking the interior of the dryer door seal to make sure it doesn't have any rust spots. As with the washer, it could also be the dryer drum.

Have a washer or dryer that's causing you problems? Tell us about it on the forum.

Resources:

https://home.howstuffworks.com/home-improvement/household-hints-tips/cleaning-organizing/washing-machine-leaves-stains.htm

https://www.angieslist.com/articles/what-causes-rust-stains-laundry.htm

https://www.thespruce.com/rusty-water-laundry-problems-and-solutions-2146654

https://www.hunker.com/13410411/why-is-my-dryer-putting-rust-stains-on-clothes


How To Responsibly Dispose of Your Old Refrigerator

IPCC just unveiled its latest evaluation of climate change and warned that if we continue down our current path, we're in for trouble, big time. One of the culprits in this battle is refrigerants. Right now just over 2% are captured and recycled at the end of an appliance's life. According to Drawdown, by capturing most of them we can help avoid 89 gigatons of gases, saving the planet almost 1 degree Fahrenheit of warming.

Refrigerants and Global Warming Potential

Refrigerants have significantly more Global Warming Potential than carbon dioxide (CO2 - which is the baseline with a GWP of "1"). The refrigerant chemicals most commonly used are hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) and hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). They have a GWP of between 1000 and 9000. The average GWP for refrigerants is somewhere just above 2300 GWP. What that means is that the refrigerants used in your refrigerator, chest freezer and air conditioner are 2300 times more potent than carbon dioxide at warming the atmosphere when they are released into the air.

Refrigerator Disposal - the reality

When you talk to a local scrap collector and ask them how they handle refrigerants, they will smile at you and nod. They know why you're asking. The last guy said to me, "Scrapyards won't accept refrigerators with refrigerants still left in them, so we drain them before we take them in." When he sees the look of horror on your face he shrugs and says, "Everybody does it." You can tell them that it's wrong until you are blue in the face, it still won't change their practices. There isn't enough government oversight and the penalties aren't severe enough to make them stop. (Bounties on refrigerants could change that in a heartbeat.)

The problem is, with shorter refrigerator lifespans, the more refrigerators are replaced, the more refrigerants are created and likely, let off into the atmosphere at end of life.

If you have to replace your refrigerator, try to find out what your appliance replacement company is going to do with your old fridge.

In municipalities where there is municipal collection of "white goods" (appliances) in place, there is a better chance that refrigerants are dealt with responsibly. Elsewhere, well, it's finding getting the right scrap dealer. You can call around and see if there is a scrap dealer who is a certified refrigerant manager, but they are hard to find. The equipment to capture refrigerants is expensive and so not a lot of scrap dealers have it, even if they're supposed to.

Some junk collectors, such at 1-800 Got Junk mention that they responsibly dispose of refrigerators.

The Future of Refrigerants

The type of refrigerants being used is changing. In 2016, the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol was signed. Effective as of 2019, developed countries will have to phase out their use of HFCs as refrigerants and replace them with the lower GWP refrigerants with developed countries starting in 2024. This is already happening, so you may hear about your new refrigerator using new refrigerants that are more climate-friendly, such as isobutane or propane. While this is a good thing for the future, we still have a massive issue with refrigerants already in use in refrigerators, freezers, air conditioners or car air conditioners.

The next time you need to replace your refrigerator, ask how refrigerants are handled in your neighbourhood. Responsible global management can help avoid up to  1 degree Fahrenheit of warming and avoid 89 gigatons of CO2 equivalent greenhouse gas emissions.

 

Have a refrigerator disposal question? Ask away in our forum!

 


Whirlpool Duet Washer and Dryer set

Should I Buy A New or Refurbished Washing Machine?

In 2014 our washing machine conked out and the repairman quoted us $1500 to fix it because the drum had torn away from the washing machine's body. As the repairman was leaving he said, "And whatever you do, don't buy the most expensive or the cheapest. They all last 10 years these days no matter what."

Truthfully, I became a little depressed thinking about appliances lasting only ten years, but everybody in the industry seems to be okay with that. A manufacturer we spoke with said, "People expect appliances to last as long as cars!" Only he meant that it was an unrealistic expectation. Since when? Appliances always used to last longer than cars. Appliances were changed because they were old, ugly, noisy, out of fashion, but rarely because they actually stopped working and couldn't be repaired.

Those days are gone. Read any review site such as amazon.com -- stay away from the manufacturer's site --  and you'll note that appliances aren't made the way they used to be.

So I considered my options: I could buy new, refurbished or used. After searching Craigslist and Kijiji, I discovered there weren't any realistic used options available to me at that time. I also knew I wanted a frontload washer. So that left me with new or refurbished.

Should I buy a new washer?

There are, of course, several advantages to buying a new washer.

The latest available features

The manufacturers are always coming out with new features that are geared towards making your life easier. Newer washers have steam cleaning options that deodorize and sterilize your clothes, auto soap dispensers, and wifi-connected options so you can be notified on your phone when the wash cycle is complete. There are washers with two basins - one for regular-sized loads and one for smaller loads. And the number of wash cycles always seems to be increasing. The list of new features is seemingly endless.

Size

Washers are getting increasingly larger. Depending on your laundry room and whether you have a growing family, a larger washer might be a good option for you. On the other hand, if you have limited space, there might be better compact options available. There will be more size options available to you if you are buying a new washer.

Warranty

A new machine usually offers a 1-year warranty on all parts, and many stores offer extended warranty options (although whether it is worthwhile to get one is debatable).

Energy Efficiency

There are lots of options for EnergyStar certified and water efficient washing machines available today. There are also rebates available in many municipalities for purchasing one.

Bright, shiny and new

It's fun to have brand new, shiny things, so if you're spending a lot of money on an appliance, isn't important to have one that you love using, that looks good and makes you happy? I know it sounds superficial, but new things tend to make us happy - the same feeling we used to get when we were given new toys.

Larger selection

Generally, there is a better selection of new appliances than refurbished. So if you have your heart set on a certain brand or certain features or size, you are more likely to find what you need in a new appliance.

On the negative side I considered:

Cost

New washers with all the new shiny features can be really expensive. Delivery and removal fees for your old appliances are extra.

Reliability

Reliability seems to be a huge problem these days. It seems to be difficult to find appliances that last and are easily repairable.

Unnecessary Features

Do I really need all the new features available on the new washers?

So then I thought about buying a refurbished washer and all the advantages and disadvantages.

Should I buy a refurbished washer?

Pros:

  1. A refurbished washer will cost less than half of a new one.
  2. They have been thoroughly tested before they are put up for sale.
  3. They come with a warranty that usually varies from 3 months to one year.
  4. Delivery and removal fees are significantly less than for new appliances.

Cons:

  1. It won't be shiny new.
  2. It won't have the latest features.
  3. It could still break after the warranty is over.
  4. Limited choice as to what's available.

In the end, I decided that instead of spending a fortune on appliances that might or might not last, I would buy refurbished ones.  I hate doing laundry and all the latest features in the world aren't going to convince me otherwise, so they aren't relevant to me. When I looked through Kijiji, I found a refurbished shop that sold plenty of refurbished frontloaders. I visited the shop and chose a refurbished Whirlpool Duet washer and dryer (I figured I should buy the set since our dryer was also 15 years old and could go at any time). They came with a 6-month warranty and the final cost of $700 (plus tax) included delivery and removal of my old pair.

The buttons were slightly worn, but other than that, there was nothing wrong with these machines.  In 2014 when I bought them, the cost of a new Whirlpool Duet pair was approximately $1600 + taxes, shipping and removal of the old equipment. I saved about $1,200 versus buying new.

Before you buy, do your homework:

The only caveat I have is this: It turns out the pair was actually 7 years old and not 5 years old the shopkeeper told me. I know this because the washer's electronic panel failed 15 months after I bought them and I had to replace it. The next time I buy a refurbished set, I will find the model and serial number and input them into this model finder to confirm their age. I will read reviews and ensure there aren't any recalls on the machines.

Refurbished appliances offer those on a tight budget, or those who've had bad experiences with new appliances, the opportunity to buy machines that should last another 6-8 years or more. Of course, expected lifespan depends on a host of factors including use frequency, water hardness, care and maintenance and sometimes, just luck of the draw.

Share your appliance story on the forum!

Have you ever bought a used or refurbished appliance? What was your experience like? Tell us about it on our forum!


Electrofabuleux, refurbished appliances

The Problem With Short-Lived Appliances

Megan McArdle wrote a great opinion piece in the Washington Post about her refrigerator dying too young and its lack of repairability for a reasonable cost. Decreasing appliance quality is a common story. It's also one of the primary reasons we started Gleen. Why can't we buy appliances that last 20 years anymore? Why are they so expensive to repair, if they are repairable at all.

This is just plain wrong - and it makes a lot of people mad. Just check out the 790+ comments on Ms. McArdle's article and you'll see the tip of the iceberg of discontent on appliance reliability and repairability.

What the manufacturers say

One of the justifications manufacturers use for the rapid replacement of appliances is the increase in energy efficiency we've seen from the newer appliances.  Another is that over 90% of an appliance is recycled so there is little physical waste that ends up in landfill.

The overlooked, ignored problems with short-lived appliances

We won't argue with these points, although there is a problem with refrigerant management and other insulation materials that we won't discuss here. However, where the manufacturer's argument starts to fall apart is in three areas:

Consumer cash outlay:

If an appliance must be replaced instead of repaired every 5 years (or less!), the consumer ends up replacing an appliance 4 times in a 20-year timeframe. If they'd been able to afford a $2000 appliance in year 1, they could likely have saved themselves the headaches of replacement and satisfaction of a better performing machine (but more expensive doesn't always mean trouble-free either). But not everyone can justify or afford a $2000+ appliance upfront. Unfortunately, financing options are steep --  if they are available to the consumer at all (ex.: a credit card with 39% interest if not paid in full within three months). So the consumer buys the underwhelming appliance replacement hoping that this time it will be different.

Energy efficiency:

There was significant progress in energy efficiency in major appliances starting in the late 70's right up until the 2000's.  That meant that replacing old appliances with newer, more efficient ones was a good thing to do for your pocketbook and the planet. And because of energy efficiency standards, we have saved PetaJoules of energy output. However, since around 2010, energy efficiency gains per appliance have been progressively getting smaller. Switching a 5-year -old Energy Star Certified appliance out for newer model may or may not save a few kilowatts because some appliances are starting to use more energy per unit due to size increases (dryers, for example).

Consumption of natural resources:

While many appliances are recycled, there is still an untold amount of energy, water and virgin material that goes into creating new machines. It seems reasonable to believe that a five-year-old dishwasher should still have another 15 years of life in it. Why are we trashing appliances instead of refurbishing and reusing them? A robust secondhand market could extend the life of appliances while creating a second line of revenue for manufacturers and resellers alike. That's what happens in the car industry, after all. The bottom line is that appliances should be used for at least 20 years before they're recycled. It would save countless PetaJoules of energy and litres of water, and employ local people who work in refurbishing and service companies.

People are fed up with spending their money on appliances that don't live up to their promise.  We here at Gleen are creating ways for people to find better appliances and try to keep what they have running longer.

We want to hear from you! Have an appliance story? Share it on our forum!

Thanks for dropping by.

The Gleen Team.

 


Bosch Ascenta Dishwasher

Bosch Ascenta Dishwasher Review Summary

The Bosch Ascenta dishwasher is by far, the most reviewed dishwasher by the professional sites (although not by consumers). It is primarily due to its price point as well as due to Bosch reputation as a standout dishwasher manufacturer. Bosch is known to make reliable products, so naturally, consumers will gravitate to them. In this case, however, the Ascenta may be a disappointment for those expecting top of the line Bosch quality.

I looked at reviews from Consumer Reports, Yale Appliance and Lighting and Reviewed.com to see what their take is on dishwashers. Resoundingly, Bosch was the favoured brand by all review sites, although reviewers differed on which Bosch series was preferred.  This is a summary of what the professional testers and reviewers thought of the Bosch Ascenta - which is Bosch's "entry level" dishwasher.

Bosch Ascenta Diwshwasher reivewsIn terms of what consumer reviewers had to say about the Bosch products, we looked at reviews on Amazon, Consumer Reports and Home Depot (excluding those added from the manufacturer's website).

 

Ascenta consumer reviews summaryThe Gleen take: The Ascenta series is the least expensive of the Bosch of dishwashers and you get what you pay for. As such  there are a few drawbacks:

  • it isn’t as quiet as other Bosch series,
  • it contains more plastic,
  • it offers fewer features and no flexibility with its rack system
  • it doesn't dry plastic dishes well

So, if you’re expecting the same quality as the higher-end Bosch lines, you will likely be disappointed. We’re also not convinced that with all the plastic used in construction, it will last as long as its predicted lifespan of 13 years – however, this is also related to usage per year and water hardness. [Please note, this is our editorial opinion, feel free to disagree or voice your opinion in the comments section below.]

Finally, all Bosch dishwashers use inherent heat to dry the dishes (as do all European-based dishwasher manufacturers), therefore, they will not be as dry as dishwashers that use a built-in heating element such as most of those designed in North America. It means your plastic won’t dry as well, but the energy efficiency is significantly better than most North American brands.

For tips on how to research buying a new dishwasher, see this article.

Want to discuss your dishwasher story? Sign up for our forum!

 


optimal life span of a fridge

When Is It Time To Buy A New Fridge?

If you have an older fridge, have you ever wondered whether it's costing you more to run than to replace it? After all, a new Energy Star certified refrigerator uses only 25% of the energy of a refrigerator from the 1970s. This, despite the fact that it is now larger than in the past. It makes sense then, that if you have an older fridge, you might want to consider upgrading to a newer, more efficient one. Today, the majority of refrigerators sold are Energy Star certified.¹

Energy efficiency improvements 1990 - 2015
Energy efficiency improvements in refrigerators from 1990 to 2015. Source: http://oee.rncan.gc.ca/publications/statistics/cama07/index.cfm

The graph above shows the progressive improvements in energy efficiency in refrigerators over the years.  but after 2009, improvements have been minimal. So, if you have a refrigerator that's 10 or more years old, you might want to consider replacing it. But hold that thought for a minute, there's more to the story....

Do new refrigerators last as long as ones from 25 years ago?

The short answer is no. It doesn't matter who you talk to - repairmen, manufacturers, salespeople -- they will all tell you that a refrigerator will now last between 6 and 10 years. Maybe some in the luxury class, such as Sub-Zero, Gaggenau and Miele will last the 20 years they're supposed to (or maybe fixing them is just worth the effort because they're so much more expensive than other brands), but in any event, keep your eyes open as you embark on your search for a new fridge with the understanding that current lifespans are considerably less than those of old.

What is the current life expectancy of a refrigerator?

The (US) National Home Builders Association states that the average life expectancy of a refrigerator is 13 years. Now, many of you out there have refrigerators that are much older than that, and many of you have had to replace 5-year-old refrigerators because they've konked out too early and weren't worth fixing.

An academic report written in 2004  looks at the optimal age to replace your fridge. Assuming that a refrigerator will last its full life expectancy,  the optimal time to replace the fridge from an energy efficiency and cost perspective is every 18 years. One of the reasons for replacing even a well-running older refrigerator is because the insulation around the refrigerator loses its effectiveness so the running costs increase. The reason the report was written was to help support the replacement of older, energy-sucking refrigerators that were still being used all over North America. Reports like this and others led to programs such as Toronto Hydro's "Refrigerator Round Up" program (discontinued) to help unplug those inefficient appliances. That's no longer a problem because those programs were successful. But the reality is  many of these newer models won't even make it to 13 years before they're recycling bound.

So now I'm going to contradict what I said at the beginning of this post: if you have a well-running fridge that is 10 years old, although its energy efficiency isn't quite as good as the newer ones, consider holding on to it until it's 18 years old. At that point, you can start researching alternatives (including buying a refurbished or used fridge). But from an investment perspective, you might be better off saving your money and sparing yourself the anxiety of appliance roulette.

For more information on how to buy refrigerators, check out our other articles.

Footnotes:

  1. Source: An Insider's Look At The Canadian Appliance Market: Appliance Industry Trends and Facts, by Canadian Appliance Manufacturer's Association/Electro-Federation Canada, 2012, p. 9. [Ed. note: CAMA was dissolved shortly after this report was produced and AHAM doesn't produce these reports, so, unfortunately this type of information is no longer publicly available, which is why these facts are so outdated.]

dishwasher troubleshooting

Troubleshoot Dishwasher Problems

I've been doing a lot of research into reliable and repairable appliances. I tend to "go down the rabbit hole" and get lost in a sea of appliance research. I've found a wealth of information to help troubleshoot dishwasher problems. The problem is, that if you read enough of these consumer complaints sites, you will never want to buy another appliance again. When you read so much negative information, you have to remember that there is almost ten times as many positive reviews for most appliances than negative. As Consumer Reports notes in its testing, all the dishwashers they tested cleaned dishes, it was merely a matter of features (including noise level).

That said, there is a disturbing trend towards a lack of longevity and repairability of major appliances. As competition heats up between the manufacturing giants, they make design decisions that make it cheaper to manufacture appliances but more difficult to repair them. Or, at least sometimes that's the case, and sometimes it's just a pure design or manufacturing flaw.

In addition to the websites listed on our Resources page, here are the manufacturers' websites to help you solve your problems. For best results, have your model and serial number ready.

Manufacturer's Dishwasher Troubleshooting sites:

    1. Bosch: https://www.bosch-home.com/us/service/get-support/service-assistant
    2. Electrolux: https://www.electroluxappliances.ca/Owner-Support/Product-Support/
    3. Frigidaire: https://www.frigidaire.ca/Owner-Center/Product-Support-Manuals/
    4. GE: https://www.geappliances.com/ge/service-and-support/dishwashers.htm
    5. KitchenAid: https://www.kitchenaid.ca/en_ca/service-and-support.html
    6. Maytag: https://www.maytag.com/owners.html
    7. LG Canada: https://www.lg.com/ca_en/support/dishwashers 
    8. LG US: https://www.lg.com/us/support/dishwashers
    9. Miele: https://www.mieleusa.com/domestic/trouble-shooting-guide-391.htm
    10. Samsung: https://www.samsung.com/us/support/home-appliances/dishwashers
    11. Whirlpool: https://producthelp.whirlpool.com/Dishwashers/Dishwasher_Product_Assistance

Independent Repair Troubleshooting sites:

  1. Washer Error Codes: http://washererrorcodes.com/
  2. DIY Troubleshooting: http://www.diytroubleshooting.com/
  3. Sears: https://www.searspartsdirect.com/article/easy-diy-dishwasher-repairs.html
  4. Appliance Repair: https://www.appliancerepair.net/dishwasher-repair.html
  5. Parts Select: https://www.partselect.ca/PartSearchWizard.aspx?Appliance=Dishwasher

 

For tips on how to buy a new dishwasher, check out this article.


appliance repair sites

Top 5 Appliance Repair Sites for DIYers

When your appliance starts making a funny noise, you might ignore it hoping it will go away (or is that just me?). Sometimes that works, most of the time it doesn't. A few years ago the "Start" button on our (13-year-old) Duet frontload washer was starting to break away from the dashboard (like the one in the above image). When it finally broke - it meant the washer couldn't be used because there was no way to turn it on. Whirlpool told me I had to replace the entire electronic panel for the tidy sum of $325 (plus installation).

There had to be a better way to solve the problem without shelling out that much money. Given the age of the machine, I figured a DIY fix was worth a shot. After removing the panel face from the washer I saw that there was a broken plastic lever that was what actually started the machine. I used Crazy Glue to reattach the it, put the panel back in place and it actually worked! The repair extended the washer's life for another year and a half until the front loader drum detached from the body  -- that was a $1300 repair. I accepted defeat at that point.

Sometimes you can decide to try a DIY fix before you call the repair service. It really depends on your own comfort and skill level of "DIYness." There are some great sites to help you diagnose and fix a problem.

Great Places to Find Appliance Repair Advice

appliance411.ca/appliance411.com. Dan O'Neill and his colleagues are great at helping diagnose problems. There is a place where you can find out how old your machine is by inputting the manufacturer, model and serial number and it will tell you when it was made. We tried it with a colleague's new Thermador dishwasher and it was bang on. Once you've identified your make, model and year it was made, there are forum categories you can search to see if someone else has already had your issue. Otherwise, you can submit a question and Dan or one of the other repair people will respond in a timely manner.

Reddit. This subsite of Reddit states: "Need to fix your stove, cook-top, oven, refrigerator, washer or dryer? Thinking about buying a new one? You've come to the right place!" There is great info on this site about appliances and some lively conversation too.

DIYChatroom has some great advice for appliance problems - from dishwashers not draining to what to do with old, non-working stoves, the chatroom is full of people with helpful advice.

Youtube: There seem to be instruction videos for everything these days. I used Youtube to help me replace an electronic panel on my dryer. I followed the instructions and within 15 minutes, had the dryer back up and working. Once you've diagnosed the problem, you might want to watch the instruction video first to see how easy or complex the repair is before you order the part.

RepairClinic: If you have an appliance with electronic panels, you might get a flashing "F-2" or some other similar code when you try to turn on your appliance one day (that's what happened to me with my dryer).  I used RepairClinic to figure out what the code meant - in my case I had to replace the electronic panel. They also have videos for installation instruction on here as well. RepairClinic has parts for a wide variety of brands, including some of the more difficult ones to track down, such as LG and Samsung.

 


How to sell your used appliance for top dollar

Let's say you've just moved into a new home that comes with some appliances but you've got your old ones too. You're probably going to want to sell an appliance (or two). If you go onto Kijiji or Craigslist, you'll see a lot of used appliances for sale.  If you're savvy and can dedicate some time and elbow grease to the project, you can increase your asking price - because let's face it, used appliances don't generally fetch a lot of money when posted for sale.

sell your appliance for more
Washer and Dryer for sale $150. Inglis model, excellent condition, as advertised on Kijiji

Given the cost of new appliances these days, this pair looks like a great option for someone on a tight budget. As a buyer, you'd be hard-pressed to find a better deal on a washer-dryer set, but as a seller, you might be pretty discouraged.

How to sell your used appliance for more than the average listed price

One general tip is to think like a buyer - "What would I be looking for in a used appliance?" Here are a few ideas to help you sell your appliance in its maximum price range. :

Use online sites

Sites like Craigslist and Kijiji have decimated the newspaper want ads section, and for good reason. Posting is immediate, free, and easy to do. People looking for used items will start with these two sites as a matter of course. There are two newcomers to the field, however, that you might want to consider: OfferUp and LetGo. They are a little more user-friendly and provide easy posting right from your smartphone with their apps. One of the negatives of these latter two sites is that they don't have as active a user-base yet as at the other two sites, however, it costs you nothing to post on more than one site in order to maximize exposure.  (Use caution when selling online. Here is a great article on how to sell things online safely.)

Post several photos 

The more appliance photos you show, the more likely you will get people inquiring about it. Photos demonstrate its condition and without them, few people will bother contacting you. Take pictures of the outside, and interior, and, if possible the model and serial number of the item. Don't use photos from the manufacturer's website as they don't represent the condition of your actual unit.

Link to the manufacturer's owner manual 

If you can identify the model and serial number of the unit, you can use that information to identify exactly when it was made. The manufacturer's website will help you figure out where on your unit you can find the model number. Here's an example from Bosch for their ranges:

identify where your appliance model number is located
Ex. of how to find a model number on a Bosch range. Visit the manufacturer's website.  https://bit.ly/2PoqFFI

Use a site like appliance411.ca to help you determine how old your model is if you don't have the owner's manual on hand and you do have the serial number. Once you've identified its age and model number, you can use that information to find your owner's manual.

List the appliance's features

The owner's manual will give you a lot of great information about the appliance that you may have never known (or forgotten about). Things such as whether or not it's Energy Star certified, whether it conserves water, and if it's a dishwasher, its noise level rating (in decibels) will be listed in the owner's manual. Especially if you are selling a high-end used appliance, you will want to make sure the advantages of the appliance are featured in your listing.

Prepare the appliance for sale 

To get the highest price possible for the unit take steps to make it as easy for someone to buy as possible. Clean it thoroughly and touch-up any blemishes that might exist. This is a little easier with a white appliance than a stainless-steel appliance as you can buy white touch-up paint at any hardware store for less than $5. Stainless steel requires more effort and only minor scratches can be repaired at home. Replace any knobs or dials that have gone missing or broken, and ensure that it is fully functional (for instance, if it's a range and one burner is broken, repair it before you list it for sale).

Store for a short amount of time in a dry, pest-free place 

This part is a bit tricky - a buyer is going to want to likely see/hear the appliance in action, but from a safety perspective, you don't really want a stranger coming through your home. If you can store a range or refrigerator in a garage and plug it in when the buyer arrives to show it working, that would be ideal. It's a little more difficult for a washer, dryer and dishwasher (where you need water or venting). If you are selling appliances in a house you are moving out of you can permit people to come in after the movers have cleared out everything.

Pricing

Use online listings in your area to determine what a reasonable price is for your appliance. Using competing listings, evaluate your model versus others of the same year or model number and features to judge how much you can list yours for. As with cars, if you're selling older, luxury appliances such as Sub-Zero or Miele, you can demand a higher price based on their reliability and repairability compared to mid-priced models.

 


Tips for buying a refurbished washer

7 Tips For Buying A Refurbished Washing Machine

Your washer usually breaks at the most inconvenient time – You’ve just returned from a two-week camping trip and everything smells like a campfire, or it’s in January when your December credit card bill is due. Or perhaps you want a front loader but just can’t quite swing the cost of a new one (they are typically more expensive than their top-load counterparts). You should consider buying a refurbished washer. It has had its worn pieces replaced and will clean as good as a new one for considerably less money. There are certain things to keep in mind if you’ve decided to go down this path.

  1. Measure: As with any major appliance, measure the doorways, hallways, landings, stairways, and the space the washer is going into to make sure it will fit. It will also help you select the models you are able to consider.
  2. Style: Front-load or top-load, compact or standard? These are the common types of machines and both are widely available as refurbished models. Narrowing this down will help you determine which options are available to you.
  3. Visit the store: Use Craigslist or Kijiji to locate local vendors of refurbished machines. If you have very specific dimension requirements you might want to call vendors first to see if they carry machines that fit your needs. Take a tape measure to check dimensions of potential candidates. (Check out our resources page for more options.)
  4. Model and Serial number: If you see a machine you like, you might want to do a quick search of the model number to check out reviews. In particular, check out repair sites to make sure the model overall doesn’t have any glaring problems and to find the year it was manufactured. You can also see if there are complaints about noise, vibrations, cycle time, and other factors that might influence your decision. Check the model hasn’t been discontinued or getting parts in the future may be difficult.
  5. Durability: Check to see how solid the washer it. Open doors and turn the drum with your hand to make sure everything works smoothly. Look on the body for rust, check the hoses (on a refurbished machine, they are often replaced with new ones), check the hose joints to make sure they’re in good condition (or new). On newer washers with electronic panels, it will have buttons – make sure the buttons work and are not too worn or you will end up having to replace the panel in a few years.
  6. Warranty and Service: Ask how long a warranty the vendor offers. This will vary widely amongst refurbished model vendors. It can range from three months to one year depending on the store. Also, check to see if they service the machines themselves or partner with a service company. One clue will be if you can see old machines waiting for refurbishment in the back of the store.
  7. Transportation: Most vendors will provide transportation of your new-to-you machine and removal of the old one for a fee.

For more information and tips on washing machines check out our washers page.