Appliance Repairs and Sales Tips

Maintenance tips for your appliances

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Recent blog posts
Bacteria that Lurks on your Kitchen Appliances!

I know that we have all become increasingly aware of the importance of hygiene in the kitchen. We all routinely wash our hands and avoid cross contamination when preparing our food.

Nevertheless, the kitchen remains the home of much bacterial matter. After the sponge, the items in the kitchen with the most germs are usually the sink and cutting board so these need regular cleaning.

Here are the places on your other kitchen appliances that attract and support bacteria.

Does Your Washing Machine Jump or Bang on Spin?


I often hear concerns about washing machines that jump or bang when they reach the spin cycle. Usually it for one of two reasons.

Firstly, it may be that the load is not balanced properly or that it is overloaded. Alternatively, there may be a fault preventing the load from balancing. If it happens occasionally there is probably nothing to worry about. A regular occurrence, however, can damage your machine resulting in costly repairs.

Which? Says Faulty Appliances Responsible for 60 UK Fires a Week!

Faulty domestic appliances such as fridge freezers, tumble dryers and washing machines are responsible for up to 60 domestic fires a week in the UK according to consumer magazine and website Which?

It claims that its analysis on data concerning fires, obtained via the Freedom of Information legislation, reveals that the number of fires has been at this level consistently for the last five years. It says kitchen appliances have caused some 16,000 fires since April 2012.

The consumer group added that government action to enforce the removal of faulty appliances from homes falls “woefully short”. The new Office for Product Safety and Standards, set up in January this year, has yet to declare how it intends tackling the problem.

The highest risk appliances were faulty washing machines and dryers, accounting for more than a third (35%) of the fires recorded between April 2014 and March 2016. Cookers and ovens accounted for 11% of blazes during the period, dishwashers 10% and fridges, freezers and fridge freezers 8%.

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
Happy Tenants = Happy Landlords!

 

The housing market continues to make the news and there can be no doubt that the lettings market is stronger than it has ever been as people struggle to be able to afford to buy their own homes.

These days it is quite common for appliances such as cookers and washing machines to be included as fixtures and fittings in domestic lets.  If there is a problem or breakdown, then a reliable replacement or repair service is invaluable.

I have no doubt that all domestic landlords and letting agents will appreciate that the key to a successful letting is a happy tenant so you will want to get any issues sorted as quickly and easily as possible.

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
“Why won’t my Washing Machine Drain?”


This can be a common problem, especially if you have just moved into a new home. You connect your washing machine to the u-bend under the sink but the machine doesn’t pump out, even though it has done so successfully may times previously.

The most common reasons are:

• The plumbing drains into a connection on the u-bend and a blanking piece has been fitted which needs to be removed.
• There is an obstruction caused by something inside the machine becoming dislodged and falling into the pump.
• A wire has come off the pump, perhaps in transit, or some other damage has occurred.

None of these problems are especially difficult to deal with. If the house is brand new and no washing machine has been connected before then the plastic connector that the hose drains into will have been blocked off. If the house has been lived in previously it is possible the people moving out have refitted the original blocking cap as a safety precaution.

In either event simply unscrew the connector and remove the blocking cap or any other obstruction.

If you think there is an obstruction of some kind in the pump itself, such as a screw or small coin, check the pump filter carefully.

If you experience any further problems call Gloucester’s friendly experts at Power Point on 01452 730874.

Let Us Save You Money with Preventative Maintenance!

I know that it is all very well when things are going smoothly, but sometimes it pays to plan ahead.  

Like many things, you can just leave your white goods to run day in day out without checking them, but sooner or later you will experience a breakdown which can result in you having a large repair bill or the cost of a replacement at a time of year when money is tight.

As an alternative you can ask us to pop out and take a look at your white goods to make sure they are operating to their maximum capacity.  I call it “preventative maintenance” but you may find you call it a lifesaver!

January is the ideal time to have your equipment checked out or serviced so why not give us a call today and we’ll be on our way.  You never know – we might just save you a small fortune!

For repairs, sales, service and spares for all your white goods throughout Gloucestershire, throughout the year, contact our friendly team at Power Point on 01452 730874 or take a look around our website.

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
Salvaging Christmas Dinner Disasters!

Christmas is a time loved by most with a roast turkey dinner especially looked forward to.  But what if something goes wrong?

I expect you’ve heard the old saying that Christmas dinner it is just a big Sunday roast.  However, it is also a major family occasion where adults will be sitting down to eat awash with alcohol while the kiddies have been stuffing chocolate all morning and are high on the sugar rush.

Don’t forget too that any mishap or break from family tradition will be retold at every future clan gathering.  You certainly don’t want anything going wrong.  But what could?

Here are two common festive disasters and how to remedy them:

The turkey is too big for the oven!

Tagged in: christmas fridge oven

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
How to Store Food Safely in a Fridge or Freezer

Last month I talked about the best ways of cleaning a refrigerator.  This time I am going to run through the basics of safely storing food in a fridge or freezer.

One of the worst things we can do is throw out food because it has gone off.  It is bad for the environment and a waste of your money.  Sensible storage can cut down this food waste dramatically.

First things first.  Always wash your hands before handling food, whether it is cooking or putting away.  Most fridges have a meat locker at the bottom of the fridge.  Use this to store raw meat, poultry and fish away from other foods so they can’t be contaminated.

Make sure that the temperature of your fridge is 40 degrees F or cooler and that your freezer is 0 degrees F.

Tagged in: foods freezer fridge

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
5 Key Steps to Clean a Refrigerator

I am sure you are aware of the importance of keeping your refrigerator clean and tidy to ensure your food is stored safely and hygienically.  Here are some tips to help you achieve that.

I always recommend planning a regular cleaning schedule and sticking to it.  In the case of your refrigerator it also pays to run your eye over the interior on a daily basis so that you can clean up any spillages as soon as possible.  

When it comes to cleaning products I favour natural products whenever possible.  Ordinary baking soda, for instance, is fantastic at removing stains and also absorbing any unpleasant odours.  

White vinegar is excellent for cleaning stainless steel including whole doors if you have a stainless steel fridge.  It is usually advisable to try a small area first to check there are no adverse effects.

Under no circumstances is it advisable to use bleach or disinfectant in a refrigerator.  They contain very strong chemicals which could make people ill. 

Some general kitchen cleaning products, such as surface wipes infused with citrus oils are usable but avoid any other products.

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
How to Avoid Laundry Disasters!

I know loading the washing machine seems a simple task, but just remembering a few things can avoid potentially expensive disasters!

To start with, check all pockets are empty.  Look for things like coins and keys, especially electronic car keys which are especially susceptible to water damage.

It also pays to do up zippers and make sure all buttons are undone and sleeves rolled down.  The agitation of a washing cycle can cause buttons to tear in their buttonholes, for instance.  To cut down on possible fading turn dark clothes, such as jeans, inside out.

Finally check care labels in case any items need special laundry treatment.

Distribute the clothing evenly and loosely in the machine and avoid overloading.  The largest load of laundry should not take up more than three quarters of the drum.  If using a top loader, do not load clothes above the agitator.

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
Keep Your Oven Racks Clean!

I know that cleaning your oven racks is a time consuming and down-right dirty job but it is one that needs to be done.  

Here are some simple and practical ways of dealing with the chore.

•    Dryer Sheets & Dishwashing Liquid – Line your bath carefully with dryer sheets and put the oven racks on top of them.  Then fill the bath with enough warm water to cover the racks and add half a cup of dishwashing liquid.  Allow to soak overnight and drain in the morning, wiping the racks clean with the dryer cloths.  The bath can then be easily rinsed clean.

•    Baking Soda & Vinegar – Place the racks in the bath without any water in it.  Sprinkle baking soda over them and then pour on the vinegar.  There should be plenty of foaming, which is normal.  When the foaming stops run enough hot water in the bath to cover the racks.  Let them sit overnight and rub clean the following morning with any old cloth.  Rinse thoroughly before replacing the racks in the oven.

•    Dishwasher Soap Bath – Once again, you will be using your bathtub.  This time line it with some old towels and carefully place the racks on them. Pour in enough hot water to cover the racks.  Add a cup of dishwasher granules and leave to soak overnight.  Rinse in the morning and wipe clean with a cloth.

•    Commercial Cleaning Products – nearly all commercial cleaning products produce toxic fumes so make sure to clean the racks outdoors.  Lay down some old newspapers or similar and place the racks on top.  Put on some protective rubber gloves and spray the racks on both sides.  Leave to sit for at least ten minutes and then scrub with an old cloth or rag.  Rinse thoroughly before replacing the racks in the oven.

Kristie Allsopp in Washing Machine Furore!

Kristie Allsopp in Washing Machine Furore!I don’t follow many so-called twitter storms but the reports of one recently may me smile.

Location, Location, Location presenter Kristie Allsopp announced on social media “It’s disgusting, my life’s work is in part dedicated to getting washing machines out of the kitchen”.

The topic arose in response to a comment from someone saying that American work colleagues were confused by the British practice of siting their washing machine in the kitchen.  It seems that in America and many parts of Europe washing machines are located in bathrooms or dedicated laundry or utility rooms.

"Bathroom, hall cupboard, airing cupboard, google tiny laundry rooms", commented Kristie.

However it is not that simple with British homes.  Unless they are built with a laundry/utility room the washing machine seems to be logically situated in the kitchen.  Don’t forget that there are no electrical sockets in UK bathrooms for safety reasons.

The debate went on.  "Really?  We live in a moderately-sized, four-bed semi and couldn't fit a washing machine anywhere other than the kitchen!" remarked one Twitter user.

Attempting to defuse the debate Kristie commented “Please note there is a degree of humour in this debate, no need to take it quite so seriously”.
 
Someone called Nick had an alternative solution.  “I keep my washing machine at my Nan’s house.  Saves her getting the bus to mine”.    

How thoughtful of you Nick!

 

Dealing with Ice Build-Up in Fridges & Freezers

To my mind this is one of the most common problems that occur with fridges or freezers but one that can be readily dealt with.  The visible sign of a problem is the build-up of one of two types of ice.

Most often powdered ice is the problem.  It has the appearance almost of snow and is found in freezers or ice boxes.  The cause is condensation.  Warm air from outside the appliance is somehow getting in and then turning to ice when it meets the cold air inside.

The things to look for are:

•    Door seals not sealing properly
•    Door not closing properly
•    Door seals that are distorted, torn or split

The other type of ice is solid ice and is usually the result of a water leak of some kind.

If it is possible, arrange to defrost the fridge or freezer.  The safest way is to turn it off and let it completely defrost naturally.

Do not attempt to chip the ice off with a sharp implement.  You run the risk of damaging the evaporator which will effectively kill your appliance.  Your warranty will not cover what is described as ‘customer misuse’.

I do not recommend using electrical means to try and speed up the process such as utilising a hairdryer.  Having electricity and water in close proximity can be extremely dangerous.

If you would like us to take a look at your frozen freezer, give our friendly team a call on 01452 730874 and we’ll arrange for an engineer to visit.

Tagged in: cold fridge ice

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
So we Sent the Team on a Course …

Tuesday 9th May saw some of our staff hard at work on a course – a golf course, that is!

We were pleased to support the latest James Hopkins Trust Charity Golf Day and, although our team didn’t win, we had a marvellous day out mixing with other Gloucester business people.  

The event was held at the magnificent Tewkesbury Park Golf and Country Club.  Starting the day with bacon butties, we set to on the impressive 6,500 yard par 72 course.  I reckon our lads deserved their carvery after spending the day battling through woods and avoiding the water hazards.

The James Hopkins Trust is a Gloucester based charity set up in 1989 to care for babies and children under 5 who have life limiting or life threatening conditions.  At present they are supporting 90 children and their families and have helped over 500 children since the charity’s formation.

I am very pleased to say that the day raised just under £10,000 for this fantastic cause.  Our team photo features (left to right) Mike Dowdeswell, Josh Fivash, Paul Fivash & Martin Lea.

You can find out more about the James Hopkins Trust here:

http://www.jameshopkinstrust.org.uk/

Tagged in: charity golf team

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
How Long Should My Appliance Last?

A question I am often asked is how long a washing machine, dryer, dishwasher or fridge freezer will last.  I am afraid that there is no set lifetime for any white goods.

I should point out that there is no legal requirement for an appliance or piece of equipment to last a certain time.  There are a number of factors which could affect its likely lifespan, however, including the following:

•    How often the appliance is used.  With cars it is often the case that certain parts have an accepted lifespan and are likely to fail after so many miles have been clocked up.  There is no similar rule for appliances, however.  As a very rough rule of thumb, low end washing machines are likely to need repair after 600 hours use while the higher end can last for 10,000 hours or more.  Logically the more often an appliance is used the quicker it is likely to fail.

•    If the appliance is right for the job.  A person living on their own is likely to use a tumble dryer fewer times than a family of five so can expect the same appliance to last longer.  It really helps if you explain to the salesperson when purchasing an appliance how often it is likely to be used, say once a week as opposed to once a day.

•    Breakdowns and component failure.  “I only bought my machine two years ago and it needs a new wotsit costing £xx.  Can I claim under consumer legislation?”  Probably not.  Breakdowns and components filing are just facts of life.  No appliance will last forever.

For repairs, sales, service and spares for all your white goods throughout Gloucestershire, contact the friendly team at Power Point on 01452 730874 or visit our website http://www.powerpointglos.co.uk

Posted on in Appliance Repairs
Keeping Your Appliances Safe!

I don’t want to alarm anyone but I’m sure you have all seen stories in the press recently about tumble dryers being recalled and replacements offered because of the risk of them catching fire.

Unfortunately it is not just tumble dryers as all white goods and many other appliances can be fire hazards.  Here are four simple steps you can take to make your home a little bit more safe and secure.

1.    Don’t leave appliances running unattended.  Now I know it is not possible to watch over every single appliance while it is in use.  However, a little common sense goes a long way.  It really isn’t a good idea to start the washing machine, dishwasher or tumble dryer and then go out to work or shopping.  And it is not wise to let them run while you are in bed overnight either.

2.    Read the manual.  Boring I know, but it is important to know how to use your appliance safely.  User misuse and ignoring manufacturer’s warnings are major factors in many fires caused by appliances.

3.    Have smoke alarms and fire extinguishers.  I realise smoke detectors can be a problem in a kitchen but do considering placing them near your white goods.  Having a small fire extinguisher handy that is suitable for dealing with electrical fires is another useful precaution.

4.    Register your appliances.  Registering your appliance with the manufacturer is vital these days as it allows them to notify you of any safety issues that they become aware of.  In fact, it is worthwhile registering to get regular safety updates too.

So don’t have nightmares but do think carefully about the safety of your white goods and a serious incident may be avoided.

For repairs, sales, service and spares for all your white goods throughout Gloucestershire, contact the friendly team at Power Point on 01452 730874 or visit our website http://www.powerpointglos.co.uk

“Why Does my Laundry have Small Holes in it?”

I am sometimes asked why clothes come out of the wash with small holes in them so I thought I’d do a bit of research.  The obvious culprit is the washing machine, but it may not necessarily be so.

The first couple of things I noticed were that the washing machines involved were of different makes and had differing drum sizes.  Also the items of clothing affected varied greatly including cotton shirts, t-shirts, denim jeans and skirts and corduroy items.

Possible causes of the problem include:

•    The wrong spin speed.  This is often the machine manufacturer’s stock answer, that people are selecting a wash cycle with a final spin speed that is too fast.  To check you are using the correct programme read the instruction manual or go to the manufacturer’s webpage.

•    The drum is overloaded.  People often don’t realise that different types of laundry have differing wash load capacities.  If these are exceeded the overloading may lead to reduced efficiency or possibly damage to clothing.  Once again check the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Preventative Maintenance – Get Your Servicing Done Now!

I am the same as everybody else – if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Now that is all very well when things are going smoothly, but sometimes it pays to plan ahead.  You can quite easily leave your white goods to run day in day out without checking them.  The chances are, though, that at some stage there will be a breakdown which can result in a loss of stock, lost revenue and a large repair bill.

Alternatively you can ask us to pop out and have a look at your white goods to make sure they are operating to their maximum capacity.  I call it “preventative maintenance” but you may find you call it a lifesaver!

January is the ideal time to have your equipment checked out or serviced so give us a call today and we’ll be on our way.

For repairs, salesservice and spares for all your white goods throughout Gloucestershire, contact the friendly team at Power Point on 01452 730874 or visit our website http://www.powerpointglos.co.uk

Would You let a Stranger use Your Washing Machine?

I was amused and slightly worried to read that Electrolux think we should be sharing our washing machines with friends, neighbours and even complete strangers.

In a recent interview in the Financial Times, Electrolux CEO Jonas Samuelson suggested that we should be applying the same model as Uber use for car sharing.  If you are not using your washing machine, he suggests you invite someone else to and charge them for the privilege.  

I’m not sure about you, but I don’t relish the idea of a stranger using my machine to wash their smalls.  In fact, I’m not even keen on letting my friends use it ether.  That’s before you start to consider how a booking process would be set up and the security aspects.

Thanks very much, Mr Samuelson, but that’s a non-starter as far as I can see.

For repairs, sales, service and spares for all your white goods and appliances contact our friendly and professional team at Power Point on 01452 730874 or visit our website http://www.powerpointglos.co.uk

Xmas Dinner – What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

A few years back a friend of mine suffered the ultimate nightmare at Xmas; their cooker broke down halfway through cooking the turkey for lunch.

Fortunately their neighbours stepped in and offered to cook the bird in their oven.  They had their own bird to cook first, however, so my friends didn’t sit down to ‘lunch’ until gone 6:00pm, by which time several of the adults were pretty pickled.

All of which helps to explain why Powerpoint have a priority oven repair service in the run up to the Big Day.  If your oven breaks down or needs servicing during December we will treat it as an emergency and get someone out to you as soon as possible.

We will still be carrying out other repairs and servicing as usual of course but will try and give special attention to faulty ovens.  After all, with the weather as cold as predicted you can always put the contents of your fridge outside to keep it cold!

One thing I would add, though, is that our engineers need to spend time with their families over the holidays too, so do be aware of our Xmas opening times.

For repairs, sales, service and spares for all your white goods and appliances contact our friendly and professional team at Power Point on 01452 730874 or visit our website http://www.powerpointglos.co.uk