Monday, January 25, 2016

Oven Maintenance


Keep your hood and fan/filter clean. They catch the grease and moisture from your cooking and need regular cleaning. Do not clean exposed metal with abrasive pads or powders. You can use a properly mixed ammonia and water solution to clean grease and dirt. You need to dry filter/parts before re-installing. You may have a filter that needs to be replaced and not cleaned. Check your manufacturer's instructions for filter cleaning/changing and cleaning your fan.
Gas Range
If you have gas, clean your burners and grates regularly with hot water and detergent. Do not use scouring powders as they can clog the burners' holes. Use a stiff wire to clean out burner holes. Do not use anything that can break off in the burner hole such as a toothpick.
Cleaning your cooking system regularly and properly can prevent dangerous grease fires, and improve it's operating efficiency.
Your oven should be cleaned according to the manufacturer's instructions.
If Your Unit is Not Working
If you have a problem with your range or oven not working, as with all systems or appliances, check for blown fuses, tripped circuit breakers and proper power first.

Clothes Dryer Maintenance

Clothes Dryer

Keeping your dryer entirely lint free is easy, improves energy efficiency and safety from lint fires.
Inspect & Clean
Annually you should inspect the vent pipe from your dryer to the outside of your house (where the flap door is what opens when the dryer is on and venting). It should be cleaned of lint and dust and properly attached with no holes or cracks. If it is damaged, it must be replaced or repaired properly.
Clean the floor under, behind and around your dryer to remove lint and dirt that naturally collects. You will need to safely move your dryer to do this properly.
Level Your Dryer
Make sure your dryer's feet are level on the ground as this balances the dryer properly and will extend the life of your dryer.
Dryer Flap
Make sure the flap on the outside of your house opens and closes properly to prevent the loss of energy from your home. Pests can enter through flaps that don't close properly and your dryer will run longer, wasting energy and life if the flap does not open properly.
If you have a gas dryer, the burner should be cleaned and inspected according to manufacturer's instructions.
If Your Unit is not Working
If you have a problem with your clothes washer not working, as with all systems or appliances, check for blown fuses, tripped circuit breakers and proper power first.

Clothes Washer Maintenance

Clothes Washer

It is a good idea to check your washing machine for leaks, examine the hoses and clean filters about once a year to make sure you do not experience damage from any water leaks.
Visual Inspection
Visually check all of the hoses, water inlet valves, the tub and drainage system. Hoses should NOT have cracks, leaks or be damaged in any way. If you find this, unplug your washer immediately to avoid contact with electricity. Any leaks or damages must be fixed/replaced.
Clean water inlet filter or lint filter (if you have one) according to the manufacturer's instructions.
If Your Unit is Not Working
If you have a problem with your clothes washer not working, as with all systems or appliances, check for blown fuses, tripped circuit breakers and proper power first

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Appliance Guide for Landlords

Appliance Guide for Landlords

With every rental property, landlords must think about maintaining each part of the unit, from the walls and windows to the electrical and plumbing systems. One significant area that landlords deal with is the unit’s appliances. Because there is no single approach to appliances—from providing them in the first place to keeping an inventory or repair list on them—many landlords struggle with the ins and outs of appliances. This appliance guide for landlords can help streamline your efforts in approaching and dealing with appliances, from start to finish.

What Exactly Are Appliances?

Appliances are generally considered to be an individual piece of equipment for use in the home in the performance of domestic chores. By this definition, a dishwasher, refrigerator or stove would be considered appliances, but a water heater, garbage disposal or a toilet would not. In most rentals, the landlord often provides some or all of the following appliances:
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove/oven
  • Dishwasher
  • Clothes washer
  • Clothes dryer
  • Microwave
It’s not uncommon for landlords to list the appliances that come with the rental unit and what is not. In fact, a discussion about appliances is one of the top things applicants want to know about when inquiring about a rental property. Landlords who provide appliances can often charge a higher rent than they would if the property came with no appliances.

Must Landlords Provide Appliances?

There is no law requiring landlords to provide appliances in a rental unit, and most states don’t consider an absence of appliances to violate the habitability requirements that landlords must meet. In other words, a rental property must have working electrical, heat and plumbing systems, but there doesn’t necessarily have to be any appliances hooked up to those systems.
It’s rare for a rental property nowadays to not provide any appliances, because they are highly desirable for renters who most likely don’t own appliances of their own and are seeking rental properties that provide them. In order to stay competitive with the competition, many landlords specifically mention provided appliances when marketing their rental units.

Appliance Inventory Lists

When it comes to managing and monitoring a rental property’s appliances, you should take a certain approach to ensure that they are inventoried and well-maintained. Some landlords don’t find a need to document anything about the appliances, and simply have a “wait until it’s broken” attitude, but you will save time, money and stress if you develop a start-to-finish approach to your rental property’s appliances.
An appliance inventory list is a comprehensive document that tracks the purchase, repairs, inspections and more for each appliance in a rental property. There are many all-in-one forms available to keep this task from being time-consuming and it keeps all the relevant information in one convenient place. You can go online to find one or create your own.
Remember the more rental properties you have, the more appliance inventory forms you need to keep you from getting confused and stressed about what’s going on. An appliance inventory list generally has the following categories:
  • Property name/address/unit number
  • List of appliances
  • Dates of purchase
  • Any warranty information
  • Each appliance’s model number and serial number
  • Detailed description of each appliance
  • Repairs list
  • Inspection/maintenance list
  • Misc. notes about appliances
  • Photos of appliances (optional)
As part of your ongoing management duties, having a document for the appliances in each rental property can save you a lot of trouble down the road. Remember, this inventory form is in addition to the move-in inventory and current condition form for appliances that gets filled out as part of your walk-through inspection with your new tenant. That form, which should also include a detailed description of appearance and working condition and be signed by both of you, doesn’t need all the other info about serial numbers and so forth. Keep the master inventory document for yourself, and the walk-through form with the tenant’s paperwork.
It’s important to point out that a combination of written documents and photos are the best way to keep track of appliances for many reasons. Whenever you take a photo of an appliance, make sure it is time stamped with the move-in or inspection date. Those photos, combined with a signed checklist by you and your tenant are extremely hard to dispute in court if the tenant damages, breaks or steals them. If there is pre-existing damage like scratches or discoloration, make sure to get close-ups for your records.

Appliance Repairs:

 Who is Responsible?

Probably the hottest topic between landlords and tenants after late rent is appliance repairs. Because there is so much gray area on who is responsible, it opens the door to a lot of confusion, miscommunication and bad feelings. As a landlord, you’ll be much happier if you can head off conflict before it even starts by clear communication and a solid lease agreement.
The bottom line is that there are no across-the-board laws for who is responsible to repair a broken appliance. In other words, whatever a landlord includes about appliance repair responsibilities into the lease agreement will generally hold up in court. If the lease agreement says that the tenant is responsible for appliance repair starting from the first day of occupancy, then the court will uphold that. If the lease agreement states that the landlord is responsible, then that will also be upheld.
No matter which way the lease agreement handles repairs, it is critical that you and the applicant have a discussion about responsibility before the lease is signed. You may even want to include an appliance repair addendum that outlines the specifics of responsibility. It goes without saying that if the tenant is supplying their own appliances, they are completely responsible for repairs, plus any damage that their appliance might cause to the unit, like water damage from a leaking washer.

Lease Language for Appliance Repair

If you want to include language in the lease agreement or addendum that puts the responsibility of appliance repair onto the tenant, you can put in a clause that states that you have provided the appliances for the tenant’s use but they are not part of the rent. In other words, once the tenant takes occupancy, the use and any repairs as a result of that use, become theirs. Some landlords take a middle ground and differentiate between damage or breaking vs. normal wear and tear. For example, if a refrigerator needs repair due to tenant damage, he or she would be responsible for the repair. If the refrigerator just stops working due to age or normal wear and tear, the landlords handles it.
Also, many landlords include language that puts responsibility on the tenant if they fail to report a problem with the appliance, like a leaky dishwasher, and the delay causes more damage to the appliance or surrounding area. If the tenant does contract out for repairs, make sure your agreement states that you get a copy of the invoice for your records. Never assume that tenants understand your approach to appliance repairs without discussing it, simply because every landlord will handle it differently. If your tenant has come from a rental where the landlord did fix appliances whenever they broke, he or she would have no reason to think your lease would be any different unless it was pointed out to them.
Likewise, many landlords automatically assume that if they provide an appliance, they must repair it whenever and however it breaks, no matter what. If the tenant is supplying their own appliances, then you can have an addendum that states the tenant is responsible for any damage to the unit caused by that appliance. In summary, make sure you are clear with your expectations in writing, and take the time to have the conversation with the tenant about everyone’s repair responsibilities. As with everything, communication is key to avoiding conflict.

Timely Repairs

If an appliance does break down and you are the one responsible for repairs, the law steps in and ensures that the tenant doesn’t go without for too long. Most states give a deadline of a reasonable amount of time—usually anywhere from 14 to 30 days—to arrange for a repair. If you fail to get the repair done in that time, the tenant has the right to repair and deduct the cost from the next month’s rent.
For example, if the dishwasher broke and the tenant notified you, you have a reasonable time to hire a service person and/or replace the appliance. If the problem is not solved within that time, the tenant can arrange a repair and deduct that from the rent, along with a copy of the invoice as proof of the expense. It’s always a good idea to develop a list of services and contact people that you trust and can rely on to provide affordable, effective repairs on all your appliances.
Don’t wait until that refrigerator or that stove is broken, because then you will most likely be thumbing through the online directory just looking for a place that you hope will do a good job. Do the research ahead of time and find a company that has a good reputation, good references and affordable rates. Don’t forget to check if that broken appliance is still under warranty, because the approach to repairs will differ slightly.

Keep Appliances Under Control

Appliances can be amazing amenities for your rental property that can put it above the competition when it comes to attracting quality tenants. However, without some kind of organized approach to tracking purchase, maintenance and condition, managing the appliances within your rental properties can create way too much stress and work for you. To protect you, your tenant and your wallet, develop an appliance inventory system that works for you.
Do you have an appliance inventory system? What are some tips you’d like to share on how you make it work?

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Dangers of clogged dryer vents

If there’s one appliance most homeowners rely on to get chores done, it’s the clothes dryer. Don’t let your dryer become a fire hazard because its not cleaned regularly and properly.
According to the U.S. Fire Administration's National Fire Data Center, clothes dryers are responsible for approximately 15,600 structure fires around the country each year. Eighty percent of these fires start with clogged dryer vents, and result in 15 deaths and 400 injuries on average annually. Thousands of other home occupants are treated for symptoms of poisonous gas fumes that back up into the home due to blocked dryer vents.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Common Signs That Your Washer Needs Repair.

Each year, the average American family does nearly 300 loads of laundry, which adds to a lot of wear and tear on your washer. Whereas you can repair certain appliances yourself, not all washing machine troubleshooting is that simple. You may need the assistance of a repair service to fix your equipment properly. 
Although hiring a professional to repair your washer will cost you money doing the job yourself when you are not completely sure of the problem may cost you even more. 
Rather than going to the laundry mat or washing your clothes by hand, get the issue fixed as soon as possible. Look for these signs that you may need to call a professional
  • The washer makes excessive noise. If you're hearing a ton of noise while washing your underwear, socks and other apparel, your washer may be off balance. Try rearranging the clothes so they're evenly dispersed. If, after several attempts, rearranging clothes is not successful, try moving the washer so it's level and as close to the floor as possible. If this doesn't help, your drum or motor mount may be loose. The fix itself is easy, but accessing the drum or mount is tricky. You may want to call a washer repair service.
  • Water doesn't fill the drum. If the water isn't filling up, there are many possible causes, such as a kink in your hose, a delayed cycle selection or the hot and cold water faucets not being turned on. A clogged filter or a water intake valve may be to blame. When addressing these issues does not correct the problem, you may want to seek professional assistance.
  • The drum isn't turning. If the drum isn't spinning, try checking the belts and the lid switch. While the belt is fairly easy to replace, the lid switch is another story. This part requires a great deal of work to replace. If you're not completely sure how to do so, contact a professional.
  • Water remains in the drum. Once the laundry finishes its cycle, there should not be any remaining water. Check to see if clothing has tangled up and blocked the pump. You also may want to evaluate the drain hose for clogs. If these aren't the problem, the cause may be your water pump.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Washer not spining help

If the washer won't spin the lid switch assembly might be defective. At Mr Rogers Appliances in Tampa we can help,his is a very common problem. The lid switch assembly can fail and your washer will not sping,our  experts at Mr Rogers Appliances will fix the problem just give us a call @ 813-870-6868.