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Should You Repair Your Dishwasher or Buy a New One

If your dishwasher breaks down, you have to decide if you should get it repaired or replaced. Factors to take into account when deciding if you should repair your dishwasher or buy a new one include:

  • 1. How long you can live without the appliance
  • 2. How old the machine is
  • 3. Cost of repairs verses cost of replacement
  • 4. The reliability of the repair
  • 5. Possible energy and cost savings you'll gain from a new appliance

Weighting up the Benefits of Replacement or Repair

How long can you live without the appliance?

In the case of your washing machine, in a busy family household the answer is likely to be not very long at all. When it comes to a dishwasher, most of us can live without it for a few days, maybe even a week. This is relevant because while some repairs can be completed instantly, in other cases you may have to wait for a spare part. Replacement is always a case of going to a shop or ordering online, so there's less waiting time.

How old is the machine?

And, following on from this, what's the expected lifespan? The newer the appliance is, the more likely it is to be worth repairing. You can find some information about expected lifespans of different appliances online, though manufacturers tend to be a bit vague about this. A dishwasher exposed to typical usage is expected to last about nine years.

Cost of repairs verses cost of replacement

One problem with trying to work this out is that most service engineers make a charge just for call out and diagnosis, so by the time you get round to comparing cost of repairs or replacement you've already spent money on getting the machine looked at.

This is where the internet comes in handy. A quick search regarding the problems you're experiencing, or looking up common problems for the make and model on the manufacturers website may give you a good idea of what's likely to be the problem and the likely cost of your dishwasher repairs.

Most householders consider a cost of 25-30% of the cost of a new machine to be an acceptable cost, far less are prepared to go to 50%. Of course the amount that's reasonable to spend will depend on the age of the machine.

The reliability of the repair

Most reputable service engineers will guarantee their work and a new part for at least three months, though a six or twelve month guarantee is better. This doesn't guarantee that the machine won't develop a new and unrelated problem. In the case of a dishwasher that's young enough to have some lifespan in it, and which has given you trouble free performance until now, a repair is likely to be cost effective. If the machine is past its expected lifespan and is showing signs of age, wear and tear, unless the repair needed is very minor, it might be time to replace.

Possible energy and cost savings you'll gain from a new appliance

It's true that all appliances have become more energy efficient in recent years. A dishwasher nearing the end of its lifespan will use more electricity and more water than a new one. However, it's also worth bearing in mind that appliances are likely to become even more efficient in the future.In environmental terms it's generally best to get the maximum possible use out of an appliance, dispose of it properly at the end then replace it with the most efficient model you can get.