I have seen that Bosch have recently added some new colours to their Vario Style range of interchangeable fridge freezer doors.
Introduced in 2017, the Vario Style has proved popular with many consumers and won a clutch of design awards. There are now a total of 19 different shades to choose from.
The idea, as all the best ones are, is pretty straightforward and simple. If you want to give your kitchen a makeover, why not change the colour of your fridge freezer doors to match?
Appliance Repairs and Sales Tips
Maintenance tips for your appliances
I have seen that Bosch have recently added some new colours to their Vario Style range of interchangeable fridge freezer doors.
I am pleased to say that there are few components to a cooker hood so little can go wrong and if something does go awry it is easily identified.
Your cooker hood may be in-built, integrated, island type or chimney style but it will still only have a combination of these components:
• Motor to draw cooking air and odours into the hood and expel them
• Lamp holders which hold the light bulbs for the hood
• The aforementioned light bulbs
• Control switch or panel controlling the lights and the speed of the motor
The most common fault is failure of the lights. This is usually because people often leave the hood lights on virtually all the time. If you do this then the bulbs will fail. Fortunately they are cheap to replace.
I am often asked about the problem of excessive frost, almost verging on snow, that can accumulate in a fridge or freezer so thought I would post some explanatory notes on what it is and how to deal with it.
An obvious cause is a poorly fitting door or one with a faulty seal. If the door seal is not operating properly then it can allow warm moist air to enter the unit. This can then freeze forming a deposit at the back wall or on the shelves.
It may be that the seal is simply distorted and can be manipulated back into the correct position with a warm cloth. If it is too badly distorted, however, it will need to be replaced.
Another possible cause of frosting is if the fridge or freezer is not level. The cabinet may become twisted with the result that the door does not fit properly and the door not sealing as it should. This can lead to gaps which again allow warm moisture to enter.
I spotted a recent article on the BBC News website concerning the difficulty investigators have trying to identify the appliances that cause domestic fires.
If they cannot decide what make of appliance it was, of course, then it is impossible to have the manufacturer issue a recall of the faulty fridge freezer, tumble dryer or washing machine.
Which? claims that of the 3,203 fires in the UK caused by faulty appliances between 1st April 2016 and 31st March 2017, fire investigators were only able to correctly identify the make and model of the product responsible in 33% of cases. In the previous three years they had been able to identify the product accurately in half of the incidents.
I think that one of the most exciting innovations in recent years as far as kitchens are concerned has been the introduction of those double fridge freezers from the United States.
In the current heatwave, they are a positive boon for storing the extra salads, drinks and ice cream we have all been busy buying to try and keep cool.
American style fridge freezers are now a common sight in many UK kitchens. However, even American designed goods can go wrong possibly leaving food spoiled beyond use.
If you are experiencing problems with your American fridge freezer do not hesitate to contact us and we will have one of our expert fridge freezer repair engineers with you as soon as possible, at your convenience.
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.
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.
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%.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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!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!
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.
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:
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