When an expensive household appliance breaks down, you usually have to choose between getting it fixed and replacing it. Repairs will almost always be cheaper than a replacement, but you might get better value for money by purchasing a new machine. So the best course of action will likely depend on your circumstances. Here are a few things you should consider when making your decision.
Do you have a warranty?
If your dishwasher stops working, ideally it will still be covered by the manufacturer warranty. The most common warranty length for dishwashers is just one year, so it’s fairly unlikely that a breakdown will be covered. Some manufacturers offer longer warranty periods for certain components such as the racks, electronics, or tub and door liner.
The major manufacturer with the best warranty period is LG since it offers a two year warranty on parts, five years on racks and electronics, but still only one year on labour costs.
How broken is it?
Fortunately, most manufacturers can help you diagnose the problem with your dishwasher via phone, email, or live chat support. This means that you can (hopefully) avoid having to pay for a technician to come out just to figure out what is wrong with it and how much it will cost to fix.
If you can determine the cause of the problem, this should indicate what the repair cost will be. Of course, the cost of repairing the machine compared to its original purchase price and the price of a new machine will be one of the most important parts of your decision.
Getting your machine fixed will typically be cheaper than buying a new one, but repairing an old machine might not provide as much value for money.
A rule of thumb that people often use is not to spend more than 50% of the original purchase price on repairs since you’re not getting much value for money at that point. Of course, it is up to you how much you’re willing to spend on repairs, but it can be helpful to think of the cost in these terms so that you can easily compare the costs of your different options.
The price of new dishwashers varies significantly – they start at around the $500 mark and can be as much as $2,000 or more. As with most things, you’ll have to pay more for higher quality and more features. Check out the dishwasher buying guide for more information.
How long will repairs last?
If your dishwasher is quite old, you may also need to consider whether it is likely to break down again in the near future. When you get in contact with the manufacturer for support, hopefully, they will be able to give you some advice about how much longer the machine is likely to last.
If the dishwasher is likely to last another five years, it may be worth repairing it and waiting to upgrade, depending on how expensive the repairs will be. However, if the machine is likely to break down again within the year, it’s better to put the money that you would spend on repairs towards the cost of a new machine.
Benefits of upgrading
While buying a new dishwasher will likely be much more expensive than repairing your old one, you will also get all the benefits of having a new dishwasher. Depending on how old your broken dishwasher is, a new one could be a significant upgrade. There are also a range finance options you can consider to pay for a new machine.
Modern dishwashers have a range of great features and benefits over older models. Not to mention, a new machine will probably do a better job of cleaning your dishes. Some of the other potential benefits of getting a new machine are:
- Improved energy and water efficiency
- Half load, eco and other wash cycles
- Flexible shelves and baskets
- Delayed start
- Reduced noise
Whatever you decide to do, it’s important that you have all the information you need to make the best decision for you.