When appliances break...

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by RoJoHen, Mar 24, 2014.

  1. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2000
    Location:
    QC, IL, USA
    This has been quite the winter for me and home repairs. My washer broke and had to be fixed. My dryer broke and had to be replaced. My pipes froze. I had to replace the float inside one toilet, and I had to replace the wax seal on another toilet. I had a raccoon in my basement (not really an appliance problem, but still!).

    And now...

    MY WATER HEATER IS LEAKING!!! YAAAAYYYY!!!!!!!

    Leaking out the bottom, so it's likely cracked or rusted through, and needs to be replaced. So now I'm shopping for water heaters online and attempting to sort through all the good and bad reviews.
     
  2. Spot's Meow

    Spot's Meow Vice Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    Location:
    California
    My parents' just gave out as well. However they found it was still under warranty, even though it's like 10 years later. They made it in with just 4 months left on the warranty, so now it's been replaced for free.

    I hope your situation runs just as smoothly.
     
  3. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2000
    Location:
    QC, IL, USA
    According to the inspection notice on the side of the water heater, this one was installed in 1988. So...I have a feeling it's not under warranty anymore.
     
  4. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    The visitor's bullpen
    If possible you should try to contact your local water/gas utility, maybe they can provide you with a new water heater. That's how I got mine. (Not for free, but I felt most comfortable letting them do it.)
     
  5. Kirby

    Kirby Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Location:
    Alt: 5280
    I can empathize. In 2011 we had to replace our hot water heater, dish washer, oven, and clothes dryer all within about six months. We bought our hot water heater at Lowe's and had them install it. Totally worth the money!
     
  6. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2000
    Location:
    QC, IL, USA
    Lowes is looking like the best option here, too. Have any idea which model you bought, by chance? The Lowes here seems to have exclusively Whirlpool products.
     
  7. Kitty

    Kitty Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2001
    Location:
    With Demiurge
    We replaced our air conditioner (whole thing), microwave, and part of the furnace this year. Next is the fridge. I remember my mom having her washing machine for 30 years! They don't make appliances like that anymore.
     
  8. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2000
    Location:
    QC, IL, USA
    Well, the new water heater is purchased. Unfortunately, because of the size of my car, I couldn't get it home tonight. I will have to wait for it to be delivered on Wednesday.

    Meanwhile, my basement floods...
     
  9. 1001001

    1001001 Let the Good Times Roll!! Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2001
    Location:
    People's Gaypublic of Drugafornia
    Our dryer just died on Sunday.

    It still has 4 months of the warranty left, so Lowe's is coming out Wednesday to fix or replace for free.

    Of course they can only give me an estimate of "between 12-5", but still, not a bad deal...
     
  10. rhubarbodendron

    rhubarbodendron Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 1, 2011
    Location:
    milky way, outer spiral arm, Sol 3
    Is there no main valve you could close?

    Looks like you are caught in a Murphy-onic field :( My commiserations. I had such a year, 2 years ago and am still trying to recover from the financial impact.
    It's a very weak comfort but after a while there's not much left anymore that could possibly break or go wrong, so that in the long run things can only get better.

    A huuuuge hug to all who have a broken appliance, uninvited guests in their basement, tax forms to fill or other unpleasantness to deal with!
     
  11. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2000
    Location:
    QC, IL, USA
    Well, yes, but there's still about 40 gallons of water already inside the tank that is leaking onto the floor.
     
  12. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    There should be a hose-bib type valve at near the bottom for draining. Close the input and output water valves and shut off the gas, of course, then run a hose from that valve to your basement floor drain, washing machine drain or somewhere else convenient to drain the tank.
     
  13. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2000
    Location:
    QC, IL, USA
    Oh, if only you lived in this crappy house. :lol:

    My washing machine drain is the SLOWEST drain in the entire world. I wouldn't be surprised if there was a dead bear inside the pipe. I get a small flood in my basement pretty much every I wash clothes.

    Anyway, yeah, I should probably attempt to do something. BUT I DON'T HAVE A HOSE!
     
  14. rhubarbodendron

    rhubarbodendron Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 1, 2011
    Location:
    milky way, outer spiral arm, Sol 3
    mmaybe you could just put a bucket under it. Milking the 40 gallons out will take a bit (almost 20 buckets) but it'd be better than the flooding.

    As for the washing machine: did you check if the sieve is inserted properly? Is the rubber o-ring perhaps old and brittle and needs to be replaced?
    If the water leaks out in the back of the machine, where the hoses are attached, then check if they fit tightly. Sometimes they get shaken loose and start to leak. Or if they are old, they might be brittle. You get new ones in every electronics or DIY market for a few bucks.
    It'd be best if you stayed with the machine once while it works, so that you see where the water leaks out. Don't worry - washing machines are really easy to repair, particularly old ones.
     
  15. Peach Wookiee

    Peach Wookiee Cuddly Mod of Doom Moderator

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Location:
    Peach Wookiee
    I think we just lease our hot water heater from the gas company. As for long-lived appliances, we used to have a deep freeze that was 50 years old when it died. It had belonged to my grandparents.
     
  16. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada
    We used to be a big fan of Panasonic microwaves. Our first microwave was a Panasonic and lasted us a decade at least and I hear older Microwaves in general lasted even longer. When that particular microwave died, we continued with Panasonic. That lasted about 5 years. Since then, we've had 1-2 replacement models in the span of 2 years. The one we got to replace the one lasting 5 years, started experiencing a weird inverse issue where the turntable started spinning with the door open, which spooked the hell out of me at first since it happened so suddenly, which kind of sounds like a prank someone would pull now that I think about it. We returned that one to the store, got a replacement model, and now, less than a year in, that model is experiencing issues as well where half the time it just refuses to work, unless you open the door and slam it closed. Ironically, this hasn't been costing us a cent as they've all been under Futureshop's replacement plan, but if it weren't for that, I think we'd be looking for a different brand by now. Either our luck has been terrible or quality has gone down drastically.
     
  17. rhubarbodendron

    rhubarbodendron Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 1, 2011
    Location:
    milky way, outer spiral arm, Sol 3
    I think it's the latter. Many apliances nowadays are made with cheap plastic parts instead of expensive but solid metal. I think it's done systematically: an appliance that's almost indestructible needn't be replaced = doesn't earn the manufacturer money.

    I have 2 mp3 players. Same model, different year. The old one is 8 years old, the newer one is 3 and about a year ago, almost at the same time, both started to experience malfunctions. So the old one worked 7 years, the newer issue only 2. And according to the user ratings and comments that's not an exception but the rule. The current model has an average livespan of 6 months. So I grudgingly bought a new one (different brand, though, with better ratings) yesterday. It's a shame as the old one was really excellent. I'll miss it.
     
  18. farmkid

    farmkid Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2005
    Longevity has certainly decreased over the years. We replaced our microwave maybe 3 years ago. The one we replaced was an old one we had picked up at a yard sale. It was maybe 25 years old but it worked fine. We just replaced it because it was too small. The new one, while being considerably larger, weighed quite a bit less. The older one had a much larger coil in it that will run for ever. I expect the newer one to burn out at some point.

    I'm not sure I believe that this is done with the intent that the appliances wear out faster. I think it's more likely that manufacturers found that lower quality items sold better. They can make them cheaper and the lower price leads to more sales. If you go into a store and see two microwaves there, both look similar and have similar features, but one costs 30% less than the other, you're more likely to go with the less expensive one. You won't see the difference between the two for another 3 years when the cheap one is dead and the more expensive one is still going, but you can't know that at the time you buy it. As society has become more consumerist, we have become more become more price sensitive, and more willing to take a chance on a possibly lower quality item because it's cheaper. In the end, it means we all get crappier stuff. I think it's more a side effect of our consumerist society than anything else.

    Another factor is that things are getting much more complicated and that generally means less reliable. Back to the microwave example: the first microwaves were a box with a coil to produce the microwave radiation, and and a simple mechanical timer. Modern ones have all sorts of electronics and different settings. That's a lot more things to break and therefore a greater chance of something going wrong.
     
  19. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Location:
    Northern Ontario, Canada
    Yeah, I think it's likely a combination of both factors, maybe luck and the fact that things are made much cheaper now. It is actually quite interesting if you think about it. At the same time, I find it sad that what was once considered a long-term appliance can now have a very short life. The first microwave was actually a gift my parents received as a wedding anniversary gift, and I remembered it had been around $400, and that was the one that had lasted us a long time before we finally had to retire it, for microwaves that were much cheaper in terms of a price point. One of the things we did immediately notice was how much lighter they were. In a way though, I think consumers pay more for less these days, and we expect things to last, which is only reasonable.

    Though I'll say this, the Futureshop replacement plan, or whatever you want from Bestbuy, certainly has its uses and has saved us a lot of money in the long run.
     
  20. propita

    propita Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2001
    Location:
    fresno, ca, us
    We bought our house 11 years ago--and all the appliances. So we’re expecting to have issues in the next few years.

    And the exterior will have to be repainted. And the awnings have to be replaced before they’re in tatters--almost too late there. And we may have to re-do the plumbing before a serious issue arises--the house is 72 years old and most of the plumbing is original. And doing the plumbing may mean redoing some bathroom/kitchen tile work and possibly floors. It’s never-ending.