Totem Appliance Service Blog - Vancouver, Calgary, Fraser Valley

Author: Created: 3/21/2012 6:35 AM RssIcon
Stay tuned for appliance repair information and interesting appliance topics
By Laura on 12/20/2012 1:07 PM
If you’re reading this, then apparently we’ve all survived the end of the world. Since we’re all still around we should probably start those New Year’s resolutions after all. I’d start off with simple stuff like filling in the schedule that you left blank past the 20th. There are a lot of things that you could do differently going into 2013. For one, you could start reading our blogs since they’re full of marvelous information! Plus, we have a fantastic Facebook page that you could “Like” and a Twitter feed that we tweet on like it’s our job... because it is.  We are an appliance repair company first and foremost but our job is to provide a quality service to our customers and in doing so, we have learned a LOT about appliances and have a great deal of information that could help you save money. We are extremely thankful for our customers and those of you who have given us repeat business and recommend us to your friends. Thank you for your business in 2012 and we promise to continue to provide the best...
By Laura on 12/20/2012 1:03 PM
As we are cartwheeling into the holiday season, make sure you aren’t putting yourself or others in danger. As we get busy, we sometimes overlook potential hazards and sometimes misusing appliances or not being conscious of the potential hazards if neglected and cause serious bodily harm. Please take a minute to read these quick tips for safety’s sake and have a wonderful holiday season! Never turn on appliances and leave them unattended. If you are taking off for several days, don’t fire up your dryer or rush cooking something and forget to turn off your oven! Double-check that every major appliance (except refrigerators) are turned off before taking off on trips. Even washers can be a potential hazard as they could potentially flood if left unattended. Turn off your main water valve! As you’re decorating, keep in mind what could cause safety hazards. Lights and decorations can be beautiful but make sure you’re not hanging anything flammable over the stove. Avoid putting any decorations over the cooking surface if possible and only put non-flammable decorations on top of the stove....
By Laura on 12/17/2012 6:26 AM
When we get into a cooking project, it’s not uncommon to lose sight of some simple things that could be potentially dangerous like leaving a burner on after we’re done using it or worse. There are a lot of things you should be sure to not overlook when it comes to safety in the kitchen. Here are a few that come to mind: While you’re cooking, make sure the handles of pots and pans are turned inwards to avoid hitting them or bumping them and knocking them off the stove. Only use potholders that are dry. If one gets wet or gets cooking oil on it, put it somewhere you won’t accidentally use it. If you grab a scorching hot item with a wet potholder, the liquid can transfer the heat right to your hand as if you weren’t even using a potholder! When moving boiling liquids, be extremely careful to avoid splashing.  This may seem straightforward but take the time to make sure your path to where you’re moving something to is clear so there’s no way you could trip or bump anything causing you to drop or splash the liquids....
By Laura on 12/10/2012 6:16 AM
Microwaves can make quick work of many things you need to cook. Unfortunately, they can also start fires very quickly if you’re not careful. Metal objects in the microwave can spark and start fires very easily so never use aluminum foil or metal objects. Be careful that even your coffee mugs don’t have any metal accents or anything that could set off a fire when you’re heating your coffee. Only use microwave safe containers and dishes in the microwave to avoid melting or breaking. Melting plastic can cause spills but hard containers that aren’t capable of withstanding rapid temperature changes could not only rupture in the microwave but even worse could rupture when cold air hits it as you open the door.  When you open containers, make sure you open them away from your face so no hot contents pop up into your face including any hot steam. This as well as using a hot pad to handle the container should help you avoid burns. ...
By Laura on 12/3/2012 6:08 AM
Cooking is the number one cause of house fires. Most of us have sat around a bonfire at some point roasting marshmallows and chatting. Fires are great when they’re somewhere they’re supposed to be and are kept contained. If you’ve ever had something ignite in your home then you know this doesn’t bring any of those good feelings. Oven fires are extremely dangerous and unfortunately more common than most of us want to admit. Sometimes all it takes is leaving something on a heater coil that boiled over from the last baking project and the bottom of your oven erupts into flame when you open the door. The most important safety advice is to never leave cooking unattended. At the very least, check on what you’re cooking every 20 – 30 minutes and never leave the house while anything is cooking. Turn off any cooking appliance as soon as you’re done cooking to make sure you don’t forget to. Keep appliances clean and wipe all surfaces of any debris from spills or crumbles. Be particularly diligent in keeping your oven...
By Laura on 11/26/2012 12:04 PM
Cooking appliances are essential if you cook a lot. They are particularly vital when you’ve gone through all the efforts to prepare a meal only to discover that your oven isn’t up to the task. If you are trying desperately to get your oven going in a pinch, here are a few guidelines to help you diagnose your problems in case it’s something that can be easily fixed to get back to preparing a meal: Gas Range:

It doesn’t work at all: Check to make sure it’s getting power. Check for tripped circuit breakers or a blown fuse. Check the wall socket for power by plugging something else in. Top burner doesn’t work: This could just be a clogged burner so check to make sure it is clean and free from any obstructions. If your model has a spark igniter instead of a pilot, the problem could be very difficult to diagnose and you’re likely better calling in the experts. It doesn’t bake: first off, make sure your oven is set to manual bake and it’s not on a timer. If that isn’t it, the most common problem is a burned...
By Laura on 11/19/2012 1:11 PM
Dishwashers are a great appliance and when used properly they can actually save you money. Follow these tips and you’ll be well on your way to keeping more of the green you like for what you really want to spend it on. When picking out a dishwasher, choose a dishwasher that fits the amount of dishwashing you do. If you serve for a large family, you’re going to need a large capacity dishwasher to make sure you can get a day’s worth of dishes in it without having some left over. If you live by yourself and are only home for one meal a day, you aren’t going to want a huge dishwasher you would never fill.  Get an energy efficient dishwasher. If you have the option of choosing a dishwasher, get one with high energy efficiency ratings. Energy Star ratings are a great indicator since anything with their sticker on it is required to be at least 25% more efficient than the mandated minimum.  Get a full load before running. Don’t run the dishwasher with only a few dishes in it. It goes through the same amount of water and cycles regardless of how many you put in, so make the best of it and don’t be wasteful....
By Laura on 11/12/2012 6:29 AM
As you could imagine, hanging clothes on a clothesline to air dry is by far the greenest method of getting your clothes dried after a wash. Unfortunately, this is significantly less convenient than using a dryer. When you don’t have time to use the free drying method, here are a few tips to help you keep wasted energy to a minimum: Where possible, keep your dryer in a warm room of the house. This will cut down on how much heating the dryer has to do to. If you live in a residence with same floor living this is likely not an issues but some homes have their laundry in a basement or areas without climate control where temperatures may get down to cold levels causing the dryer to have to work harder to get it to operating temperature. When purchasing a dryer, make sure you purchase one that has a moisture sensor to detect when the clothes are dry and shut itself off to prevent it from running for excess time after the job is already done. A dryer works by forcing hot air into the drum. In order for this air to be effective in drying out your clothes, it has to have an unrestricted exit back out of the drum with the moisture. Cleaning out the lint trap keeps the air flowing properly and in turn keeps the dryer running as efficiently as it can in order to cut down on wasted energy....
By Laura on 11/5/2012 6:31 AM
The average North American household is estimated to do an average of 400 loads of laundry per year. Combine that with an average clothes washer using 40 gallons of water per load and your average household burns through 16,000 gallons a year just keeping their clothes clean! Are we that dirty?! Even if you don’t care about the environmental aspect of how much water you could be going through, this costs you more than just the water expenditure. Even if water is cheap, heating it for the washer to use it is not cheap. 85% to 90% of the energy used during a wash cycle is that of heating the water. If you have the option of using a washer that uses 13 gallons of water versus one that uses 40 gallons, you could be saving a lot on your energy bill! Washing machines have made a huge change in improved efficiency but they can still consume huge amounts of energy heating the water. Washers don’t require a minimum temperature to wash the clothes so unless you’re trying to get out deep stains, there generally isn’t...
By Laura on 10/29/2012 5:37 AM
Seven percent of all the energy used in your home is from your refrigerator! This is a huge percentage when you consider how many things are left on and how many other appliances you use throughout the day! Refrigerators have advanced a lot over the years but there are many things you may not know you could be doing differently to conserve a lot of energy with your existing refrigerator. Many older refrigerators can have their seals start to leak or even begin to fall off. This may seem like a minor nuisance but they could cost you a lot of money. At first it’s just leaking a little bit of air making the refrigerator run harder and longer. In the long run, just leaving a seal in this condition will cost you high energy bills AND the cost of a new refrigerator. New seals generally cost a few dollars to replace versus the price tag of a brand new refrigerator. Shut the door! Were you raised in a barn? Refrigerators are closed units for a reason. They need to hold the cold air in otherwise it’s stuck completely...
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