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Supply chain problems mean it can take months to get a new washing machine or dishwasher these days, so keeping your appliances running as long as possible is more important than ever.

It really doesn’t matter if you are talking about a washing machine, dryer, refrigerator, or wall oven. A little bit of maintenance can mean the difference between an appliance lasting 5 years or 15 years.

1. Refrigerator coils: Vacuum the coils underneath or in the back once a year. Otherwise, Lahey said “It will work harder than it used to, it will shorten the life of the compressor.”

2. Dryer filter: Clean the lint filter every load.

3. Dryer vent: Clean the outdoor vent at least once a year.

“Most people ignore it until there is a problem, but that can lead to problems with heating elements, thermostats things like that,” said Lahey.

In addition, a clogged dryer vent can start a house fire. Vacuum it out, or better yet replace it for $10 to $20 if it is a foil vent.

4. Dishwasher drain: Unscrew and clean the drain filter at the bottom, which many people don’t know even exists.

“You have the bottom part, which gets buildup on it,” Lahey said, which can then clog the water flow.”

Read more tips here.

Another useful tip for maintaining your dishwasher is to run it with just a bowl of vinegar in the center of the racks. Doing so will help remove the white scale buildup that is a common issue with dishwashers. Also, if you don’t already make sure you’re rinsing your dishes before putting them in.

The team at Apple Valley Eagan Appliance offers appliance repair to residents in the Twin Cities region. Call us at 952-953-0080 to have one of our technicians diagnose your appliance problem!