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All I Want for Christmas is An Appliance That Won’t Conk Out: 2015 Follow Up

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All I Want for Christmas is An Appliance That Won’t Conk Out: 2015 Follow Up

There’s no worse time than Christmas for your appliances to break down. Avert disaster with our fridge/freezer and oven repair & maintenance tips.


Last year, we brought you the post ‘All I Want for Christmas is An Appliance That Won’t Conk Out’, which was full of handy appliance repair tips to ensure your Christmas ran as smoothly as possible.

Unbelievably, another whole year has passed. Before you know it you’ll be slaving over the turkey, baking mince piece and defrosting the ice cream for your Christmas pud once again.

There’s no doubt about it: the festive season is a time when a broken down appliance would really stuff up your plans. So to give you a helping hand, we’ve decided to bring you a follow up post, with even more oven and fridge/freezer maintenance and repair tips to get you through this Christmas.


The Oven

Can you think of anything more awful than a broken down oven on Christmas day? Avoid disaster and make sure grandad gets his Brussel sprouts with these tips.

How to maintain it

  • Keep it clean – dirt and grease can build up quickly in your oven, and can catch fire. You should thoroughly blitz your oven every few weeks and clean up any spills after you cook.
  • Replace the door seal – an old or damaged door seal will allow heat to escape from your oven, which will affect your oven’s temperature. Regularly check the seal and replace it if necessary.

Diagnosing and fixing common problems

  • The oven is smoking – a smoking oven may simply need a good clean! Alternatively, it could be caused by a short in an electric oven – in this case you’ll need to call out an engineer.
  • The oven won’t heat up – an oven that won’t heat up is usually caused by a faulty heating element, which can be easily fixed by replacing it with a spare part.
  • The oven is overheating – the most likely cause of an oven that’s overheating is a broken thermostat, which will result in the oven heating to the wrong temperature. You can easily fix the problem with a spare part. It could also be caused by blocked vents or a broken heating element, as above.
  • The oven won’t turn on – a faulty fuse is a common cause of an oven that won’t turn on, and will need to be replaced. The issue can also be caused by a digital timer stuck on automatic, which will need to be reset, and by an interrupted electricity supply.


The Fridge and Freezer

Imagine coming down on Christmas day and finding that your fridge or freezer isn’t working and your festive feast has spoiled. Prevent this catastrophe with the following tips.

How to maintain them

  • Regularly defrost the freezer – you should defrost the freezer when there’s half an inch of ice on the interior walls. This will prevent you from having to force open drawers, which can break them.
  • Regularly check your fridge’s temperature – on some fridges, it can be easy to knock the temperature dial, which will spoil food. Check daily that it’s set to the right temperature.
  • Frequently clean the condenser coils – if your appliance’s condenser coils get dirty, it can prevent it from cooling properly. Regular clean the coils by dusting and then hoovering them.

Diagnosing and fixing common problems

  • The fridge isn’t cold enough – in some cases, the fridge’s fan blades may have become frozen, which you can fix by defrosting the fridge. However, it could be that the fan’s motor is broken and needs to be replaced.
  • The freezer is overly icing up – the most common cause of a freezer with too much ice is a damaged seal. To fix the issue, just replace the seal.
  • The freezer isn’t cold enough or isn’t working – if your freezer isn’t working at all, it could be due to an electrical fault, which will require an engineer. If it simply isn’t cold enough, it could be due to an obstructed evaporator fan (which circulates cool air) – to fix this, just pull the contents of the freezer away from this fan. Sometimes, the evaporator fan may be damaged and need replacing. Other potential causes of the problem are a damaged seal or improperly closed freezer door.


Christmas is a time when food is incredibly important, so a broken down oven or fridge freezer could really mess up your plans. However, with some maintenance and repairs, you can save the day and stop grandad from going hungry.



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