Totem Appliance Service Blog - Vancouver, Calgary, Fraser Valley

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Stay tuned for appliance repair information and interesting appliance topics
By Laura on 2/24/2014 8:19 AM
Many of us remember tape cassettes quite well and some even remember record players and maybe even A-tracks.  As is the way with technology, pretty much everything becomes dated within weeks and moves to dinosaur status given enough years.

One thing that has stuck around for a very long time is the traditional incandescent light bulb. It has been a slow progression phasing out 75 watt and 100 watt light bulbs but it is about to become illegal to manufacture or import.

This means consumers have the sole options of halogen, led, or cfl bulbs. Halogen bulbs are the most similar to incandescent but are still more expensive. Clf bulbs and led are siginificantly more expensive than incandescent. Cfl bulbs as we mentioned in an earlier article are very efficient but contain mercury and can NOT be disposed of as they are toxic to the environment. Leds are highly efficient and have a lifetime of ohhh about a decade but you pay a substantial cost up front. They are said to generate a savings of around 70 to...
By Laura on 2/17/2014 7:16 AM
Stickers can be a major shock when you go to look at a new appliance. There are usually tons of them and the numbers and words on them don’t all make sense unless you’re the one writing them. One sticker that stands out on appliances is the big yellow ENERGYguide sticker. This label shows the estimated energy that an appliance will use in a year based on averages for common households combined with the energy efficiency rating of the appliance.

One of the convenient parts of the sticker gives you an average cost for the appliance usage within a year based on national averages for the fuel or electricity costs. This way you can get an idea of how much the appliance will cost you throughout the year.

Another neat diagram you will find on these labels is a bar scale. It has a range of efficiencies for appliances in the same range and shows where that appliances falls on that scale.

This label displays the energy electric appliances use with kWhs(kilowatt hours). This is what power companies...
By Laura on 2/10/2014 8:48 AM
If you’re looking for a new appliance or even just doing research because you’re curious, you’ll notice there are a lot of stickers on appliances and electronics that may make no sense. Well then this blog is for you!

Of course anything you buy is going to have the manufacturer’s sticker on it which will have the manufacturer name and brand stickers as well as any features or proprietary functions specific to that product so we can’t hit all of those on here but we can tell you the common ones that you will see on most appliances.

One of the most common stickers you’ll see is generally present on all appliances. Quite frankly, if it isn’t, you should be cautious. “UL” stickers are the stamp of the company Underwriters Laboratories which is an independent safety science company that has been around since 1894 trying to set standards for safety around the world. They are most known for their electrical device standards but there is almost nothing they don’t do at this point with over 20,000 product...
By Laura on 2/3/2014 8:37 AM
If you have any cotton clothes that you wear often, you’re probably familiar with the pills that end up on the clothes in spots where they rub. Under the armpits, on a shoulder you carry a bag on, under your arm sleeves where your arms lay on a desk are common places to see pills. There are several options for getting rid of those pills such as lint shavers, combs, razors, etc. All of these methods risk cutting the fabric but if you’re careful they will generally all remove the pills. Keep in mind that you are cutting the fibers of the fabric so the more you do it, the thinner the material gets and the more susceptible the fabric is to pilling even more.

Unfortunately, the only real solution to preventing pills is to either stop it from rubbing or to not wear it. Not wearing the item isn’t a realistic solution but if you really like a garment, then only wearing it when you really want to isn’t a ridiculous option. Also, you can try to cut down on wear spots by not wearing a strapped bag over the...
By Laura on 1/27/2014 12:40 PM

If you’re new to the area or want to keep up to date with what’s going on in Vancouver, take a look at the city’s website for some current news as well as a bunch of places in the city you may not have been to yet:
By Laura on 1/20/2014 11:35 AM
Resolutions generally aren’t a big hit since most people feel even more depressed if they don’t live up to them. However, I do know many people that have stuck to them and changed their lives forever, so I refuse to believe that they never work. I can tell you that the most common resolutions that succeed are ones that are realistic. “I’m going to change the world” or “I’m going to lose 50 pounds and go into the Olympics” quite frankly are absurd and I don’t know what I was thinking.

If you want to make some changes in your life, then start with a small goal and you can set another goal when you reach the first. For example, I want to have a healthier diet this year but I know if I say “NO MORE FASTFOOD” that I’ll be lucky to last a month before I completely blow that resolution and start eating even worse out of shame… again.

A realistic version of this is to try to plan meals ahead so you can think through what will be in a meal and realize what is healthy in it and what isn’t. If you’re like...
By Laura on 1/13/2014 9:13 AM

It’s another year yet again and there are so many things we could do to try to make changes in our lives in resolutions. I’ve found that most people don’t stick to written resolutions but there are certainly lots of things that we probably should make changes with.

Eating habits are a common problem especially for those of us with busy schedules. I have come across a lot of great healthy delicious recipes but I thought we’d share this great find that has an entire list of great recipes to try this year!

By Laura on 1/6/2014 7:51 AM

Now that the holidays have calmed down and we’re getting back to our everyday schedules, we may still be cleaning up and even figuring out what to do with some of the gifts we got. If you received any gifts that require batteries but didn’t come with them, sorry! Make sure you read the owner’s manual if the battery size is not listed directly on the device. Sometimes in a rush, people will try to cram the wrong size batteries in a device and end up destroying it or potentially starting a fire. That’s not fun, trust me! Even if you have the battery it calls for but it doesn’t fit, do NOT force it in. Something is wrong either with placement or the manufacturing so don’t try to shove it in if it isn’t going in correctly.

By Laura on 12/30/2013 6:11 AM
As we welcome in 2014, we'd like to thank you all for another year of loyal customers.  On behalf of all of us at Totem Appliance, Happy New Year!
By Laura on 12/23/2013 7:02 AM

Technology has come a long way and some companies are already posting commercials of how automated some things have become. For example, some cable companies are offering home security systems that can be controlled and monitored from your phone. Another commercial shows someone going through the house from another location shutting down all the powered devices.

This sort of technology and remote access is just getting started. Even appliance manufacturers are in the process of developing their own apps for devices and incorporating the technology into their latest appliances that are already more or less equipped with the computers needed to harness this capability.

So picture not being certain that you shut your dryer off and being able to turn on your phone and just push a power button from anywhere in the world to make sure it’s off!

Metro Vancouver
Vancouver and Lower Fraser Valley
#110 17 Fawcett Rd., Coquitlam, B.C.
Phone: 1-866-933-1333
Service Email:
Greater Calgary
Calgary, Airdrie, Strathmore,
High River, Bragg Creek, Cochrane
Unit 2160 – 3961 52nd Ave NE, Calgary,
AB T3J 0K7
Phone: 1-877-700-5414
Service Email:
Upper Fraser Valley
Mission, Abbotsford, Chilliwack
Rosedale, Harrison
Phone: 1-888-909-5160
Service Email: