You have probably seen or heard media articles recently that indicate clothes dryers represent a significant fire risk, and you may be worried about just how safe your dryer is.

Well, the good news is the chance of a dryer bursting into flames is minimal, so there is no need to panic. This is not to say however that there are not simple steps you should take to minimise the risk to you.

The first thing to look at is the filter. It is recommended that you clean your filter every time you use the dryer, and replace it every year. If you don't keep the filter clean, lint can build up, and get into the heating element. This is what gives the dryer that dusty smell when you use it, and also what creates the risk of fire. When you clean the filter, check for any damage or ripping. If you think it might be damaged, replace it.  For instructions refer to your user manual.

If you are concerned that there may already be a build up of lint in your dryer you might prefer to contact a service agent for assistance.

You may have noticed that your dishwasher appears to be rotting from the inside. All the plastic components become scaly or chalky and literally fall apart.

The cause of this is the water in WA. Over time it can eat away at the components of your machine. You need to make sure that you are using a dishwashing powder that reduces this effect.

Dishmatic dishwashing machine powder is the best powder available for this purpose.  This is the only powder that is recommended by the Service Department of Electrolux who manufacture Dishlex, Simpson, Westinghouse and Hoover and has had proven results in reducing the decay of the plastic components.

The powder comes in large 5KG tubs, so it lasts for ages. It is available from WA Appliance Parts, Part number 7402D, and is recommended to be used in conjunction with the genuine Dishlex rinse aid, Part number 7405D.

Check the user manual for advice on the best product available for your washer.

You have spent good money buying a dishwasher, and if you choose the wrong powder, you may find yourself spending even more money replacing parts for it.  

Extra Tip:

To keep your dishwasher looking like new, and feeling clean, use Dishwasher Descaler (part number ACC023).  This will remove the ugly build up of brown scale that usually forms in the bottom of dishwashers and kettles. Simply shake some into your dishwasher and run it through a cycle empty. Repeat this about every three months, and your dishwasher will sparkle like it did the day you bought it.

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Rangehoods certainly are a great way of stopping the grease from building up on your kitchen ceilings, but the grease has to go somewhere, and often it's a case of out of sight out of mind.

But the truth is that, a grease build-up in your rangehood filter is not only a source of bacteria, but also represents a significant fire risk. A small flare up on your stove can become a much bigger problem, if your filter is clogged with flammable grease and fats.

Your rangehood filter needs to be washed regularly. Depending on the sort of cooking you do, you may need to wash your filter as often as every month. The filter is usually held in with small clips of some sort, which makes them easy to remove for cleaning. Do not use any caustic compounds, as they may damage the filter.

By far the best way to clean rangehood filters is with the new Hillmark Ranghood Filter Kleen which is specifically formulated to remove this grease build up, but wont cause the filter to disintegrate, or rust. Bathing your filter in warm soapy water can also be an effective method.

If the filter is damaged in any way, you may need to replace it. Filters are relatively cheap, and easy to install. They are usually a white mesh filter or one or more aluminium filters. WA Appliance Parts sell these types of filters for most rangehood brands. All you need to tell us is the size of the filter and what it's made from.

Some rangehoods also have black, carbon filters. These filters are for odour removal and should be replaced about every one to two years, once again depending on what sort of cooking you do.

So don't put it off any longer. For the health of your family and the safety of your home, pull your filter out and clean it today.

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Keeping your appliances looking like new is not just about appearance. Particularly where your stove is concerned, using the right cleaning and protection treatments regularly can protect your appliances, and keep them lasting longer, as well as looking smarter.

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Dishwashers are a great labour saving device, but if you have ever experienced the unhappy sight of coming home to a flooded kitchen, you will know what we mean when we say that they can be more trouble than they're worth.

The problem is that a dishwasher is permanently left connected to the mains pressure, and the taps are nearly always left on. Nearly all dishwasher hoses are made from rubber, and have a crimped fitting on the end. Over time the crimping rusts or the rubber perishes, and one day you find yourself with a swimming pool you didn't want.

Whenever you plan to go on holidays, or away from your house for a period of time, always turn the tap off under your sink. (do it on your washing machine too) Ideally you would do this every time you use the machine, but it's just not practical.

The next step to take is to check your hoses for any signs of perishing. If the rubber looks crazed, or the crimping rusty, or if there are any signs of seepage from the ends, replace the hose. Always use a complete hose assembly that is specifically designed for this purpose. A cheap hose from a hardware store is probably not adequate, and never use a clamp on nut and tail to repair your old one. New rubber hoses start from under twenty dollars and are guaranteed for 12 months.  Of course this doesn't cover faulty fitting so always get a qualified serviceman to fit the new hose for you.

The ultimate solution to any dishwasher connection is the PEX hose, which WA Appliance Parts stocks. The PEX hose is a one piece, plastic moulded hose. They can never leak from the crimping, because there is no crimping. They are guaranteed against splitting for 3 years!

Whereas rubber hoses are only available up to 2.5 Metres long, PEX hoses also come in lengths up to 4 Metres, which is great for difficult kitchens. You should always use the shortest hose you can, and NEVER EVER join two or more together!

PEX hoses are a little more expensive, but it is a very small price to pay for complete peace of mind. (note: some insurance policies may not cover flood damage, even if it is from pipe leakage!)

Extra Tip:

Lay some rat baits under your dishwasher and in your cupboards where the hoses are. Dishwasher hoses are a prime target for mice.

No doubt about it, stove elements are expensive, and it can be really frustrating when your solid elements rust and pit, in a much shorter time than they should.

Solid element should last about 5 to 10 years on average, and they can last much longer, if you keep them polished. By applying solid hotplate cleaner (part number ACC033) to your elements regularly you can significantly increase their life expectancy.

Depending on how often you use your stove (long periods of inactivity can be the worst thing for them) you should apply hotplate polish about every two to three months. It comes in an applicator tube, so you just rub it on and then turn the element on to bake it for a minute or two. there's no scrubbing, or elbow grease in involved, and it takes seconds.

The polish will give the element that nice, new, blackened look as well as providing a protective film over the element to stop it from rusting (protecting your element from the elements so to speak)

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Over time fridges, no matter how clean they are kept develop that stale, off plastic smell that can be really unpleasant (not to mention the smells you get when things go rotten in the bottom of the crisper bins!)  Air fresheners, and deodorants only make it worse, and may taint your food.

There is a really simple solution to the problem, that everybody should be following. Simply sprinkle some carb soda on a saucer and put it in the bottom of your fridge or freezer and leave it there for a day or so before removing the saucer.  Repeat this process about every month or two and your fridge will smell like new again (or rather not smell - like a new one!)

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