Have you noticed that your gas cooktop burners are not igniting flames as well as they used to?  Chances are that they haven’t been cleaned properly.  Not only will simple cleaning mechanisms improve the overall efficiency of your appliance but will also prevent blackening of the bottom of your pots and pans.

 

Cleaning your gas cooktop burner is extremely easy and can be done with a damp cloth and either a thin piece of wire or pin.  You may also want to keep a small piece of sand paper and a wire brush close by.  Before undertaking any cleaning project, make sure that the appliance had cooled down from any prior use and that the power has been disconnected.  Once this is done, you are ready to begin.

 

Start by removing the burner grates and burner caps, if your appliance allows for it, to ensure an open area for cleaning.  Soak the grates and caps, if applicable, in your sink in very hot water until you have completed cleaning the rest of the cooktop.  In the meantime, use a cloth that has been dampened with warm soapy water and begin wiping down entire cooktop surface.  Make sure to avoid excessive water on the cloth and or around the cooktop as water may leak into areas connected to electronics.

 

During cleaning, take a close look at the igniters individually.  The igniters are easily identifiable – they are small round white ceramic pieces located on the cooktop.  Often times, they become covered by a film, grease or oil buildup.  Igniters should also be cleaned and we recommended you use a wire brush or a small piece of sandpaper to remove the grimy accumulation.  Next, the holes of the surface burners should be cleaned.  Using a thin piece of wire or a pin, you want to be sure the small holes are completely free of any blockage.  Lastly, remove the grates and caps from the hot water, wipe them down with a clean cloth and replace them back into the slots.

 

In addition to the above, we do suggest you wipe down your stovetop after each and every use, waiting until the cooktop has cooled down.  Routine maintenance goes a long way in maximizing the life and efficiency of your appliance.

 

Although we would love to service your appliances, we do hope these tips will save you from having to pay for a service call!

 
Until next time – Happy Tip To You Tuesday!

Of all the appliances in your home, your refrigerator is known to use the most energy.  Accordingly, it would make most sense to ensure optimal efficiency when it comes to this appliance.  Refrigerator condenser coils are an important element of the unit.  One easy trick to ensure energy savings is condenser coil cleaning.  While a simple task, many often forget to implement this maintenance procedure.  We suggest condenser coil cleaning at least once a year – sometimes twice, especially for those that have pets in their homes.

 
Where to find the condenser coil?
On older model refrigerators, the coils are often located in the back.  Newer models generally have coils in the base of the refrigerator in the front, hidden behind a grill cover or kick plate.

 

What do you need to clean the condenser coil?
A screw driver and refrigerator coil brush, which can be readily purchased at a home improvement store such as Home Depot.  You can also use a vacuum with a crevice tool in place of a refrigerator coil brush but the brush is known to remove dirt in between the coils, which the vacuum may not.

 

How to clean the condenser coil?
First, PLEASE make sure you unplug the appliance from the wall.  Then use the screw driver to remove the panel covering the coils.  Next insert the brush between, over and under the coils and pull it back out several times to clean.  In the alternative, use the crevice tool of your vacuum for cleaning.  Once you are done, return the grill cover to its place and screw it back in.  Lastly, plug in your machine.  That’s all there is to it!

 

Although we would love to service your appliances, we do hope these tips will save you from having to pay for a service call!

 

Until next time – Happy Tip To You Tuesday!

Do you find that the ice maker in your Kenmore, Whirpool, GE, KitchenAid, Frigidaire or Jenn-Air refrigerator is producing small or hollow ice cubes? Although small or hallow cubes can be annoying, they can cause damage to your unit as they easily find their way to the ejector blade in the ice maker, which hinders the proper operation of the ice maker, leading to flooding!  If you are regularly experiencing this problem, we suggest the following tips:

 

Water Pressure:  Low water pressure is the most common cause for small or hallow ice cubes, as this results in the ice maker filling slowly.  In order to check the water pressure, you will need a water pressure tester (gage), which can be readily purchased at a home improvement store such as Home Depot.  In order for proper operation of the unit, manufacturers suggest the water pressure to be between 30 and 120 psi.

 

Water Dispenser:  Ice makers are on a time fill, which means they are programmed to fill for approximately 10 seconds.  In order to determine whether the water dispenser is properly operating, place a measuring cup under the dispenser and manually fill for 5 seconds.  At least 3 ounces of water should have dispensed.  If you see anything less, there may be a problem with the water.  We suggest starting by making sure the water shut off to the fridge is completely open.  If it is, we then suggest checking the water line by shutting off the power supply to the refrigerator, removing the water line from the unit and placing the water line into a bucket.  Once this is done, run the water to determine whether there’s a slow stream of water.  If you notice a slow stream, you may have a plumbing issue that’s attributed to your water shut off.  It might be best to contact a plumber.

 

Water Valve:   A faulty water valve may also lead to faulty operation of the ice maker.  If the water pressure is fine and there are no issues with the water dispenser, we suggest checking the valve.  The valve is generally located under the kitchen sink.  There should be a screen located inside the valve.  Make sure the screen is clean as buildup of minerals or debris is common and leads to improper operation of the machine.

 

Lastly, we suggest three other things:  First, make sure the water line to the refrigerator is free of any kinks as this will slow down the water to the machine.  Second, make sure the water filter is replaced at least once a year.  Lastly, it is highly recommended that the water line to the refrigerator is made from copper or a braided hose.  If the water line is made of plastic, we suggest changing it as plastic is known to become brittle and crack.

 

Although we would love to service your appliances, we do hope these tips will save you from having to pay for a service call!

 

Until next time – Happy Tip To You Tuesday!