Kitchens are one of the most used rooms in the home. They play a major role in everyday life and without them, no home would be complete. This is part of why people take extra care when designing, updating and maintaining their kitchen space.
Whilst most people consider what colour of cupboards they would like installed when they think about renovating their kitchen, there are also other areas of kitchen maintenance which need to be considered too. Appliances are fundamental to how we cook in the modern age and picking ones that both suit our décor and last a long time can be difficult. Many kitchen design services can help with this but for those who already have the kitchen of their dreams, there’s no need to hire someone specifically to help with appliance choice and upgrades.
This guide is designed to help those who know they will need to get new appliances soon but aren’t quite sure of exactly when and what to consider when buying. By the end, you should be fully prepared to take your kitchen environment to the next level.
When to Upgrade Your Appliance
Before going into the specific appliances and their lifespans, it’s important to mention the best rules to follow when you are looking to upgrade your kitchen devices.
Generally, you should use your appliance until it breaks or is no longer functioning properly. Then, think about its age and decide whether it’s worth investing in getting it fixed, or whether it would be a better use of money to just obtain an entirely new one. A good rule to follow is that if your cost of repair is over half the price of a brand new device and the appliance is nearing the end of its estimated lifespan, then you should just purchase a new one.
Having covered that, we can get to the details of the appliances themselves.
Fridge – Lifespan: Approximately 13 years
It’s hard to imagine life without a fridge. They are used incessantly every day, which is why they require regular cleaning and maintenance to ensure they have the longest lifespan possible. On average, refrigerators last approximately 13 years in the home before reaching a point where they are no longer useable or fixable; though, you will want to replace yours before it reaches this point.
In terms of what to keep in mind when buying your new fridge, always check that your new one will fit before you make your purchase. Measure the space where you want your fridge to be and double-check that the one you are buying can slot in easily. Additionally, consider how you will get it into your home? Will it fit through a door easily or will you need help getting it inside? Some companies offer free assisted installation which can be helpful – simply make sure to do your research and you should be successful.
Gas Hob – Lifespan: Approximately 15 years
Gas hobs, depending on their design, can quickly get grimy, dirty or even sticky depending on what you’re cooking. The material that many hobs are made from can make them easy to maintain and it’s advised to regularly clean your cooker to ensure it looks good for as long as possible.
Despite continual maintenance, over time, gas hobs can have their internals damaged, resulting in broken or disrupted flames and uneven cooking. This is more than just a hassle as if food is blocking the gas from escaping, it can catch fire and result in more serious damage to your kitchen. With this in mind, ensuring your gas hob is replaced or fixed quickly when it starts to show signs of wear and tear is essential.
If you’re picking out a new gas hob for your home, again, make sure to think about the space you have available, as well as the number of hobs that your new cooker will have. You might find yourself surprised by how much you miss that one extra hob you had on your previous appliance. Additionally, it might be worth considering installing an electric cooker instead, though this could require a more intrusive installation.
Dishwasher – Lifespan: Approximately 9 Years
Dishwashers are incredible kitchen appliances that save countless hours washing and drying when you could be relaxing. Dishwashers are another device which can see use every day and as a result, they have a shorter lifespan than the others mentioned on this list at only approximately 9 years.
A lot can go wrong in a washing machine from the electrical aspects to the physical moving parts; not to mention that many simply slowly degrade in quality and end up not washing your dishes at all. One of the best ways to keep your dishwasher in good condition is to use dedicated cleaning products to prevent the piping from clogging up and bursting, though cleaning can only go so far.
When replacing your dishwasher, consider what crockery you have in your home and what types of food that you cook. Some dishwasher layouts are better at dealing with small plates and bowls rather than large mixing bowls or baking trays. Finding the right dishwasher for you is a very personal process so take your time and think It through before making your purchase. Additionally, keep in mind energy-efficiency if you’re keeping an eye on your bills at the moment, many modern appliances have energy-efficient alternatives.
Microwave – Lifespan: Approximately 9 Years
Not all homes make use of microwaves but for those that do, they can prove invaluable. As one of the cheaper items on this list, they do tend to last a little less time even when they’re not used too often, with an expected lifespan of around 9 years.
There’s not a huge amount of maintenance you can do when it comes to microwaves, just make sure to unplug it from the wall when you’re done to save electricity and clean it thoroughly whenever anything spills over during heating. However, when picking out a new one, you should keep a distinct eye on the power, or wattage, of your choice. More powerful microwaves will allow you to do more things with them, offering greater versatility. Note that power doesn’t equate to quality though, just because it has a higher wattage it doesn’t make the microwave better. Different brands focus on different aspects of their microwave designs to do your research to identify exactly what you’re looking for.
Toaster – Lifespan: Approximately 5 Years
Toasters are another cheaper appliance which explains them having the shortest lifespan on this list at just 5 years. Toasters often have crumb trays which should be emptied regularly to reduce food build up within the machine. This, along with unplugging from the wall after use, will help extend your toaster’s lifespan further, though it’s also heavily reliant on how rough you are with the device. With most toasters using spring operation, harsh treatment of the appliance can dislodge, bend or affect functionality.
When finding a new toaster, keep in mind the appliance’s total capacity and any additional features it might have. Some toasters have specialist bagel settings and extra lift functionality for smaller bread products like toasting crumpets. These extras can make your life easier, though you will likely have to pay extra for them. If you’re just looking for something basic, then focus your efforts on picking a toaster which works with your décor and kitchen design.
These five kitchen appliances are some of the most important but there are plenty of others which you might find yourself replacing. When it comes to hardware in the home, always be safe when you are trying to do any DIY fixes and don’t be afraid to replace early if you’re struggling. If in doubt, always consult an expert.