4 Household Appliance Myths

Nov 24, 15 • DIY Tips13 Comments

household appliance myths and tips Household Appliance Myth Busting

Urban myths are usually entertaining, but appliance myths are another story. These mechanical tales are passed around with the best intentions, but they aren’t based on facts, and some can be dangerous. If you buy into any one of these four household appliance myths, it’s time to bust them with a little common sense and these tips.

1. The Oven Can Heat the House

Leaving the oven on with the door open warms up the kitchen, but at a cost. With the door open the oven overheats causing the bake element or igniter to fail sooner. Wall ovens can be hard on the electronic controls and the cabinets as well. Your oven will last longer between repairs if you keep the oven door closed.

2. A Huge AC Keeps You Cooler

Even in Texas, bigger isn’t always better, but long, hot summers inspire homeowners to install over-sized air conditioners. This myth drives up cooling costs. Comfort is dependent on low humidity as much as a cooler temperature. The house cools down more quickly with a powerful AC, but that fast temperature drop results in short run times that are insufficient to lower the humidity resulting in a cold but clammy house.

3. Drip Pans Need Foil Linings

This myth probably started when someone got tired of cleaning the drip pans on their range. The stove top strategy is supposed to extend drip pan life, but the holes in those shallow, chrome bowls are designed to help ventilate the oven. New drip pans are inexpensive, so just replace them as needed. If you have a self-cleaning oven you can switch to ceramic drip pans which can be cleaned in the oven.

4. Less Use Means Longer Life

Appliances are meant for everyday use. If you think hand-washing pots and pans extends the dishwasher’s life, you’re wasting time in the sink. The seals around a dishwasher’s door are meant to perform in damp conditions, and the material dries out if you don’t run any loads for several weeks. Trust the mechanical muscle in your appliances, and let them flex on a regular basis.

We hope our myth-busting appliance tips save you from extra wear and tear, but we’re here with all the parts you need just in case. From heating elements to drip pans, U-Fix-It carries everything you need for DIY appliance repair at our four locations across the DFW area and here on our online shelves. When you need help fixing it yourself, you can count on us for the parts and the facts.

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13 Responses to “4 Household Appliance Myths”

  1. Rick Smith says:

    It’s good to learn more about appliance repairs. I don’t trust myself to repair our fridge myself, but I still think we don’t need to replace it. I think we’ll hire a professional to come and look at the cooling part of the appliance.

    • Jim Plummer says:


      Refrigerators malfunctions are most often parts that are easily identified and easily replaced. Problems with the defrost system can look like a cooling system problem when ice insulates the cooling coil in the freezer section. Replacing a compressor, cooling coil, or Freon are jobs I recommend leaving to the professional repair tech with the right equipment and training, but 95% of what goes wrong with a refrigerator or freezer can be successfully repaired by the appliance owner with a little free assistance from U-FIX-IT Appliance Parts. Thank you for your comment.


  2. gary ulibarri says:

    Can u clean both glow plug and flame sensor I was told not to touch glow plug and can I sand front of gas burner to clean them on AS freedom 80 1st burner lights then goes out and fan keeps running trouble light blinking steady fast and need heat fast thanks

    • Jim Plummer says:

      I would not clean the glow plug. Nothing good is going to happen. 1. Cleaning the flame sensor, 2. making certain the flame impinges on the flame sensor, and 3.confirming the control board has a good ground will often cure the symptom you have. Look for a sticker on the board or on the furnace door that explains what different flashing light sequences are indicating. They can be very helpful in identifying a specific malfunction.

      Feel free to call the nearest U-FIX-IT Appliance Parts store for free personalized diagnosis assistance.


  3. Libby Smith says:


  4. Thanks for the advice on household appliances and understanding what is and what is not a myth. I had always thought that the bigger the system, the cooler your home would be; however, I guess that is not always the case. My wife and I were thinking about upgrading our system, but now might just repair it instead. Thanks again!

    • Jim Plummer says:

      Yilliang Peng,

      You are exactly right. Size is not the only factor. Humidity removal is just as important as cold air and it takes time of the system running to remove it. You may want to have a heat load calculation done on your home, if you suspect your system is not sized correctly.

      Thank you for your kind words.


  5. In your article, you stated that the seals around a dishwasher’s door are meant to perform in damp conditions, and the material dries out if you don’t run any loads for several weeks and you should trust the mechanical muscle in your appliances, and let them flex on a regular basis. When I went to do the dishes this morning I noticed that our dishwasher was not starting and I didn’t know what was wrong. I wonder if there are some dishwashers that might need maintenance more often.

    • Jim Plummer says:


      It has been my experience that appliances perform better and last longer when they are used regularly. Yes,some appliances can need more maintenance than others, but it usually has more to do with how they are being used. A child standing on a dishwasher door for example. The range of performance from the best to the worst is fairly narrow.


  6. Travis says:

    Thanks for busting the oven myth.

    I always resisted my oven door kept open to warm up the house but none listened. I think this article will educate my family and this busted myth coming from a trusted expert like ufixit makes my job even more easier to convince them not to use the oven for any other purpose than the intended purpose 🙂


  7. David Bell says:

    I accidentally found ufixit. Glad I did.. My furnace blower was continually running putting out cold air. I easily found both the glow plug and the flame sensor and cleaned both (after turning off power to unit of course). As you suggested, I used a mild.abrasive..Scotchbrite pad..worked great!!The parts were not awfully dirty so it doesn’t take gobs of soot, etc to cause malfunctions. Thanks for your US service and America, Bless God!!