Getting several quotes for a repair when your dishwasher, fridge freezer or vacuum cleaner breaks down could save you hundreds of pounds, Which? research has found.
Which? called more than 400 independent appliance repairers across the UK for quotes for fixing a major problem with a dishwasher, fridge freezer and vacuum cleaner. We found a difference of £184 between the dearest and cheapest quotes for repair of a fridge freezer, £120 for a dishwasher and £47 for a vacuum cleaner.
We also called some manufacturers for quotes – and found some large price differences between the average independent repairer quote and the manufacturer’s. For a Hoover fridge freezer, for example, the company quoted £91 more than the average independent quote.
Buying the best appliances
Appliances from reliable brands are generally less likely to develop serious problems. You can find out the most reliable brands of dishwasher, fridge freezer, vacuum cleaner and a host of other appliances in our section. There’s also information about the most common problems Which? members experience with their appliances.
Which? receives more responses to our reliability surveys about washing machines than any other product. Brands including Bosch, Hotpoint, Indesit, LG, and Miele are featured in our washing machine reliability survey results.
If your washing machine develops a fault, our new interactive washing machine repair tool can diagnose the problem and recommend whether it needs to be repaired or replaced.
Consumers throw away 3 million electricals every year that still work or could be easily fixed.
Our investigation found that not only is it often cheaper to repair appliances than replace them, many faults can be fixed yourself. Problems such as water build-up in a fridge or a broken vacuum cleaner belt can usually be fixed without calling in a repairer, saving up to £80 on call out and labour charges.
Highly-rated Which? Local repairer Barry Jacob says: ‘Too many customers are replacing appliances after a couple of years without getting quotes or even realising that some appliances have parts guarantees lasting longer than a year.’
Which? members can read a breakdown of appliance repair costs and do-it-yourself fixes for vacs, fridge freezers and dishwashers in the full ‘Repair or replace?’ article, in the April edition of Which? magazine. If you’re not already a Which? subscriber, you can sign up for a trial of Which?