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MOVING IS THE BEST TIME TO BUY NEW APPLIANCES

Moving is one of the best times to replace your new home’s old appliances with more modern models that cater to your personal whims. Newer appliances are often so much more energy-efficient than older ones that they will recoup their purchase price within the first year or two.

We’ve got some great resources for how to purchase the best new appliances, what you should expect from them, and how to keep them running at peak efficiency for longer.


— Mark Brezinski
    Senior Writer, Home Appliances

Mark Brezinski started at Reviewed in 2007 and has helped launch dozens of new review categories over the years. Currently he's a senior writer, specializing in home appliances.
Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors.
Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.
10 QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD ASK BEFORE YOU BUY AN APPLIANCE

By Mark Brezinski and Cindy Bailen
Image Credit: Getty Images / 97 / Reviewed

We've been testing and reviewing appliances for more than a decade, and we know which of the latest and greatest models are worth your money and which aren't. To help you narrow down which appliance is best for you, you'll need to answer some questions first.

1. What’s my budget?
Fortunately, there are good appliances at a variety of price points. If your budget is generous, you can go for the top of the line, but a high price isn’t always a guarantee of quality.  You can often get a better deal by buying appliances in suites, which means buying a refrigerator, range, and dishwasher as a bundle. Also, check for brand rebates before you purchase.

2. How much room do I need?
Even if you’re doing a new build or total kitchen renovation, you may have constraints — for example, if the side of the room that has the water or gas hookup is narrower than the rest of the kitchen. When measuring the space where the appliance will stand, don't forget to measure the depth as well as the width. 

3.  What’s the usable storage capacity?
You want to be able to pack as much food into your fridge as is reasonable, but looking at an image of the outside doesn't tell you much about the amount of space inside. Look up capacity online beforehand, then visit the appliance at a local retailer to ensure it's the right size for your family.

4. What style should I buy?
If you're artistic, create a mood board to help you decide whether an appliance suits the look of your kitchen or laundry area.

5. What is the best appliance finish?
Classic black and white will never go out of style, but there’s a world of other finishes out there. Stainless steel has a sleek, professional look that has dominated kitchen design for the past several years. If you want a fashion-forward finish and you’re willing to pay more to get it, black stainless steel can be your go-to. But every brand has a different take on black stainless steel, which can make it hard to match appliances made by different companies.

6. What are the new appliance features I want?
Make a list of the features you want before you start shopping. We recommend checking out a few reviews of the top products to get a better sense of what extra features you can expect for your money. Be flexible — you may have to compromise. 

7. Have I checked the look and feel?
Do your best to get hands-on with an appliance before you order it. What you discover can prevent you from making a mistake.

8. Have I read the reviews?
Be aware that user reviews won’t give you the full picture. People who write them are often those who had either a very positive or very negative experience. If you can get a personal recommendation from friends or family, start there. 

9. What are the delivery options?
Some stores consider delivery to be a drop-off in your driveway. Other retailers will bring your appliance into the home, but may charge extra for every stairway on the way to the kitchen or laundry room, or may cancel the delivery entirely if certain conditions aren't met. Measure every stairway, hallway, and doorway your appliance will need to pass through. 

10. How do I dispose of an old appliance?
The retailer may offer a haul-away option, usually for extra cash. Some municipalities let you leave an appliance by the curb for pickup, but you still have to get it to the sidewalk. If your appliance is in good working order, you can find a charity that will accept appliance donations. 

 

REVIEWED'S TOP APPLIANCES RECS
 Refrigerator 
Bosch B36CD50SNS

This French-door stunner maintains unwavering temperatures and smart features. 

Compare all the best refrigerators
 Dishwasher 
Miele G 5266 SCVi SFP

The G 5266 blows most other dishwashers out of the water. If your budget can accommodate its premium price, it's one of the best models you can buy.

Compare all the best dishwashers
 Range 
Whirlpool WGE745C0FS

This double-oven electric range is the best we've tested because of its effective burners, spacious ovens that evenly bake food, and sleek look.

Compare all the best ranges

Includes electric, duel-fuel, and induction
 Washing Machine 
Maytag MHW8630HC

This awesome washer combines excellent stain removal, a massive drum, and an internal water heater that helps eliminate common illness-causing bacteria.

Compare all the best washing machines
 Dryer 
Maytag MED7230HW
This mid-range dryer from Maytag offers a host of convenient features, straightforward controls, and good, reliable drying performance.
Compare all the best dryers
HERE'S HOW TO PRIORITIZE ENERGY EFFICIENCY

By Leigh Harrington
Image Credit: Getty Images / monkeybusinessimages / Reviewed

We sat down with Jessica Petrino, an educator and appliance expert at appliance and home retailer AJ Madison, to talk about what’s important and what you should look for when buying new large appliances.

Here are her top five tips, as well as a peek into what energy-efficient large appliances she uses in her own home.

⚡️ Using an appliance can be more efficient than not using an appliance at all.
For example, Petrino says that washing dishes by hand can use 25 gallons of water per hand-wash load. Instead, “an Energy Star dishwasher uses 3 gallons per load, and that’s a huge, 75% savings.”

⭐️ Consider Energy Star-rated appliances.
If you look at the raw numbers, the cost per year to run an energy-efficient, Energy Star-rated large appliance may not be that different from a less energy-efficient machine. However, when you make comparisons between the decade-old large appliance you’ve been running to the new one you’ll be buying, the difference is much greater.

💪 Maximize the special features of your appliances.
Petrino says, “LG came out with a refrigerator that has an InstaView door, so if you’re having a midnight snack, you can check on the contents of the fridge without opening the door.” 

When it comes to the laundry room, front-loading washers tend to be more efficient, because they spin more quickly, which makes the clothes it's washing drier at the end of a cycle. This means your dryer has to work less hard to get your clothes dry. Petrino also suggests considering a dryer with heat pump technology, because they are designed to recycle the air inside the dryer.

🤗 Embrace brand technologies that create efficiencies.
It’s easy to get lost among the marketing terms that brands use to describe the special features fitted to their appliances. While some may be gimmicky, others are actually highlighting incredible innovations unique to the brand. For example, how dishwashers dry dishes matters — some methods use energy, while others don’t.

Petrino says she has a Fisher & Paykel refrigerator, an upmarket appliance brand based in New Zealand: “They have an adaptive smart technology, and it will learn how you live and adjust the functionality of the [refrigerator] compressor and cycles on and off to be most efficient.”

🖼 Consider the big picture.
Even if a large appliance isn’t Energy Star-rated, you may be able to make energy-efficient choices when it comes to replacing a large appliance. Petrino says, “I ended up replacing an old coil-top stove with a Bosch induction stove. To this day, stoves are not necessarily Energy Star-rated, but I ended up going with an induction stove, because it has less residual heat loss.”

Upgrading your refrigerator can save you money

Refrigerator technology has made leaps and bounds over the past few decades. This is good because, compared to other appliances, they’re more energy-intensive, typically consuming 7% of our residential power—and we can’t easily live without them.
HOW LONG SHOULD APPLIANCES LAST?

By Cindy Bailen
Image Credit: Getty Images / k0wkin / Reviewed

It’s true that most appliances you buy today will die faster than the ones your grandmother owned years ago. Her appliances were in it for the long haul, and probably lasted 25 years or more. While you can still buy a Speed Queen washer that has a commercial-grade construction that's made to last for decades, in our tests, it didn't perform as well as many modern washers.

If you want to make sure you get all the useful life out of your appliances, we’re here to help. We talked to Adrienne Berrain-Normann and Travis Robertson, experts from Sears Home Services, about appliance life expectancy. 

Dishwasher lifespan: 10-13 years
While you don't have to pre-wash your dishes before putting them in the dishwasher, you should always scrape dishes before loading them. If you see food particles redeposited on your plates, it can mean that the filter is filled with gunk. Every couple of months, reach in, remove the filter, and clean it with a soft bristle brush. Be diligent about this — severely clogged filters can cause odor and draining problems.

Washing machine lifespan: 10-13 years
Wipe a front-loader’s gasket after you’ve finished doing the laundry, and leave the washer door ajar between loads, so it can dry out. To reduce residue build-up in any washer, use low-sudsing HE (high-efficiency) detergent if your washer calls for it. Also, cut back on your use of liquid fabric softener.

Dryer lifespan: 10-13 years
To prevent dryer fires, clean the lint trap every single time you use your dryer. This will help your clothes dry more quickly, too. The vent hose matters — those foil accordion-style hoses accumulate lint when they sag. A rigid metal hose is safer. And look for highly-recommended professional cleaners to clean your dryer vent once a year.

Oven range lifespan: 10-15 years
Use a pin or a pipe cleaner to clear gas burner ports from time to time. Clean the vent hood filter regularly, too, to prevent grease built up.

Refrigerator lifespan: 10 years
When condenser coils get dusty, they can’t push out hot air, causing the fridge to run continuously to keep its cool. Locate the coils and dust them with a vacuum cleaner attachment or long brush a couple of times a year.

 WHEN TO REPLACE AN APPLIANCE 
Usually, you’ll know when it’s time to replace an appliance. Either it quits working entirely or presents problems that cost more to fix than the unit is worth. Once the warranty expires, it's important to know approximately when you’ll need to buy a new appliance, so you can budget for that eventuality.

 MAKING APPLIANCES LAST LONGER 
Our experts suggested you read user manuals—they're full of tips. If you can’t find the booklet anymore, a site like Manualsonline.com or Manualslib.com might come to your rescue. It’s important to understand how your appliances are supposed to work, because if you don’t know, you’re not getting all the life out of them. While you can't expect appliances to work forever, by doing some basic maintenance, you might be able to make them last a little bit longer.

Is Amazon really the best place to get a deal on a large appliance

In short: No. We advise against it.

COMING UP NEXT: Time to get ready for the big move. We've got your ultimate moving checklist, five mistakes to watch out for, and more.
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