Home appliances play a critical role in our day-to-day lives. For some Canadians, replacing a refrigerator, washing machine or range is a necessity. For others, it’s an integral part of a home renovation or build. Whatever the reason, we don’t want you to jump into the complex world of appliance shopping without a few key tips.
Consider Your Options Because, Well, Size Does Matter
A broken refrigerator or stove certainly warrants an immediate online purchase or trip to your nearest appliance store. But if you have the time, consider your daily needs before making a purchase.
Think about your lifestyle, the activities or tasks for which you will use this appliance and what kinds of features will make your daily life easier and better.
For instance, is bigger really better? If you live alone or in a small home, then an oversized fridge or stove probably isn’t the right choice for you. Or, will you really use all of the fancy features? A refrigerator with a fourth door or LED recipe panel may seem really cool, but will you access these features every day?
But then again, you might appreciate some of the fancy features. For instance, most Canadians probably hate ironing. A steam dryer generally includes a cycle that will “press” your clothes to wrinkle-free perfection, so if you do a lot of ironing then this option may be a good fit.
Once you’ve settled on the brand and type of appliance you want, read some reviews. All major appliance brands (LG, Samsung, Whirlpool, Frigidaire, GE, etc.) have product reviews on their websites, and most Canadian appliance retailers do too.
The best person to tell you if this is a good or bad appliance is someone who owns one, and the reviews are brutally honest.
Compare Appliance Purchase Policies, Not Prices
Savvy shoppers will tell you to price shop before you buy. While that is true for many things, Canadian appliance retailers are extremely competitive and almost always price match, so you really can’t compare.
You do, however, want to look at the retailer’s policies. Some common areas to research include:
- Does the retailer price match, or even give you a percentage back, if you find a better price elsewhere?
- What are the return policies and satisfaction guarantees?
- Is there a warranty and what does it cover? How much does an extended warranty cost?
- Do they offer a haul away or installation program?
At The Brick, we offer an extensive price, satisfaction and warranty program that protects you from fluctuating market prices and from malfunctioning appliances. And, if you’re in a pinch, we can install your new appliance too.
No, Really, Size Does Matter
So you’ve made up your mind, and settled on a shiny, brand new appliance. The last thing to consider is will it fit?
Consider your room space. Which way does the door swing, and can it be reversed? How much space do you need for the door to open fully? Is there enough clearance above and around the appliance so you can move it in and out for cleaning, to retrieve lost utensils or socks and even make repairs?
The pathway for delivery is an equally important consideration. While an appliance may be a perfect fit in your space, can it get there? If you can’t fit your new refrigerator down the hallway or around a corner, it isn’t likely to make it to your perfectly proportioned kitchen. And after all that hard work to find and purchase your new appliance, a failed delivery could be devastating.
Additional Peace of Mind
Even though appliances have an estimated lifespan, you never know when they’ll go. You shouldn’t overestimate the need for additional coverage in case something does go wrong.
All major appliance brands include a limited manufacturer warranty. However, buying an extended warranty can go a long way in putting your mind at ease should something break down before the product’s lifespan is met.
Of course, extended warranties vary among Canadian appliance retailers. Ask about and carefully consider warranty coverage details and price. (And, a little insider secret, these warranty prices are often negotiable.)
At the end of the day, you may want a warranty plan that will cover you completely and save you money on possible repairs down the road.
Final Buying Advice
A couple of final tips:
- When you know that you’ll soon need to replace a dishwasher, vacuum or other appliance, but there’s no real urgency to do so right away, sign up for appliance retailer newsletters. At The Brick, our emails regularly highlight new appliance models as well as great deals and financing options.
- Getting rid of your old appliances can be a pain, and installing them may also be a concern. Consider adding installation or haul-away services to your purchase.
Congratulations! You’ve done the research, found the right size and made your purchase. Sit back, relax and enjoy your new appliance.