DO YOU KNOW THE LIFESPAN OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD ITEMS?
Have you ever had your microwave stop working, then in the same week you need to replace your oven, your water heater, then the fridge decides to tag along for this ride, with no warning whatsoever? As you probably bought them all at the same time when you moved into your new home, it’s not a coincidence that they all decided to pack up together! Everything in your home has a lifespan, and not just the appliances.
The appliances in your home are some of the easiest things to fix, and some of the more inexpensive to replace. While some people replace appliances as newer technology emerges, it’s most cost-effective to use them for the duration of their lifespan.
Microwaves: Usually, they last anywhere from 5–15 years, and sometimes even longer depending on usage. When using your microwave, clean it often and avoid slamming the door.
Dishwasher: Depending on the make and model, a dishwasher can last anywhere from 7–12 years. If you start to notice your dishwasher isn’t washing well, give it a good cleaning before giving up on it. To properly clean it, unscrew the drain and clean the filter monthly to prevent clogging. Once the filter is clean, empty the dishwasher completely (racks and all) and running it with a cup of distilled white vinegar inside it.
Ovens: These days they last anywhere from 10–20 years. Don’t wait until you start ruining meals to replace your oven. To ensure it’s running properly, inspect coil burners for deformities and replace any damaged ones.
Taps & Fixtures: Properly cleaned and maintained taps and fixtures can last anywhere from 10–20 years. However, if they are not properly cleaned they can last less than 10 years. If you want to make them last, clean out hard water residue often.
Windows & Skylights: These last so long that often people forget they need to be replaced at all. Good windows will last most people from 25–35 years or more, but you will know it’s time to change them when they start looking warn, begin to suffer damage or are not insulating your home properly. Be sure to clean window tracks twice yearly to prevent buildup and prolong their life.
Kitchen Worktops: It’s smart to invest in stone worktops such as granite or quartz because they last so much longer than laminate. Laminate worktops will last anywhere from 10-12 years, while a well-maintained stone countertop can last over 100 years! Keep your investments safe by avoiding contact with hot surfaces or cutting directly on them.
Mattresses: Your mattress is typically used more than most other things in your house and can collect dirt, dust and grime. It’s important to get a new mattress if yours starts to look or smell dirty, or if it’s losing its firmness.
Most people get a new mattress every 7–10 years, which is a good rule to follow. Make your mattress last longer by rotating it 180 degrees from head to foot every two to six months.
In general, as long as you properly maintain your appliances, fixtures and household items you should get fairly long lives out of most of them. If you also save the recommended 1% of your home’s value every year for repairs, you won’t be blindsided when a costly repair does need your attention. Use this list to anticipate your product’s lifespans and enjoy stress-free home repairs!