Appliance Repair Training: Common Problems You'll Learn to Fix

Imagine life without your fridge, microwave, oven, or washing machine. Most of us could barely last a single day without these conveniences—even though modern versions have only been around for the past 50 to 60 years.

In a relatively short amount of time, we've become totally dependent on our home appliances. But that's great news for appliance technicians, who are always in demand for installation and servicing. And it's definitely a positive trend for anyone considering appliance repair training.

Want a little preview of the kinds of issues you'll face on the job and learn about during appliance training?

Here's a roundup of the home appliances that always seem to need servicing, how they break down, and what you'll check first.


1. Washing Machine Woes

Nothing's worse than having to pull sopping wet clothes out of a washer that won't spin or drain properly. Or a machine that won't even start, even though it's brand new and seems to be in perfect working order.

These are some of the most common issues appliance technicians get called in to troubleshoot: washers that won't drain, don't spin, or refuse to even get started.

What are your go-to steps for fixing these problems? Here are the root causes you'll learn how to check in appliance repair training:

  • The power supply at the outlet (to make sure the machine is actually getting power)
  • Blocked water hoses and intake valves
  • A faulty lid switch, motor, or timer
  • A clogged drain
  • Overuse of detergent
  • A defective motor
  • A stripped agitator spline
  • Transmission failure


2. Dysfunctional Dryers

Dryers are just as likely to break down as washing machines. And they do so in fairly predictable ways.

When you get a service call from someone stuck with a load of wet laundry, it's probably because the machine wouldn't get hot, the drum wouldn't tumble, or the unit wouldn't turn on.

How will you find the root cause of a dysfunctional dryer? You'll start by checking to see if you have a:

  • Blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker, interrupting power flow to the dryer
  • Faulty door switch or start switch
  • Broken thermostat
  • Seized-up motor
  • Worn-out or broken drum belt
  • Malfunctioning heating element or burner
  • Blown thermal fuse (one of the most common reasons a dryer won't heat up)


3. Misbehaving Microwaves

Ah, the microwave. A standard feature of pretty much every modern kitchen since the late 1980s. Most people don't realize how much they rely on this little device until it stops working properly.

Microwaves come in a wide range of makes and models, but they all break down in similar ways. The most common issues you'll see include a unit that runs but won't heat anything up. Or a microwave that keeps stopping, even though it hasn't finished heating or defrosting what's inside. You'll also encounter a lot of microwave tables that won't turn—so food comes out only partially warmed.

Here are some of the most likely causes for these problems:

  • A blown diode (this will stop cooking energy from flowing through the unit, so it won't get hot)
  • A damaged magnetron tube
  • A defective high-voltage capacitor (you'll test it with a specialized VOM meter)
  • A faulty door switch
  • A failed transformer
  • A defective fan motor
  • A faulty touchpad
  • A burned-out motor underneath the turntable


4. Faulty Refrigerators

A pool of water slowly seeps out from underneath the fridge. Everything in the freezer melts. Before you know it, you've lost a week's worth of groceries. What's wrong with the fridge!?

This is exactly what your clients will ask after they've tried to troubleshoot the problem themselves and end up making a desperate call to the local appliance repair shop.

Some of the most typical issues with fridges revolve around water leakage and cooling failure. What's usually at the root of these problems?

Here's what fridge repair training will teach you to look for first:

  • A clogged or frozen defrost drain
  • A leaking water assembly unit
  • A cracked water inlet valve (or a valve that's not tightly secured to the water supply line)
  • Dirty condenser coils
  • A faulty condenser fan motor
  • A faulty evaporator fan motor


5.  Uncooperative Ovens

It doesn't take long for an uncooperative oven to become a major problem in any household. There are only so many meals you can make in the microwave, right?

And most people know better than to start poking around in an electrical or gas oven, trying to solve the problem on their own. This job definitely requires the skills of a properly trained service technician.

So what most often goes wrong with ovens? The most common issues are units that won't heat up, don't cook evenly, or won't self-clean properly.

An appliance repair program will teach you how to troubleshoot your way through each of these problems. Some of the root causes you'll be looking for include:

  • A damaged heating element
  • Lack of power to the unit
  • A faulty igniter or gas line problem
  • A broken thermostat
  • A clogged air circulation duct
  • A bad lock assembly or door switch
  • A defective selector switch

We could definitely continue this list of common household appliance issues—but by now, you've probably got a clear picture of what you'd be fixing as an appliance repair technician. And how these units usually break down.

Think you'd have a knack for solving these kinds of problems? Want to learn more about starting an appliance technician career in Ontario? Read on for your next steps.


Learn More About Appliance Repair Training

Herzing College offers appliance repair training in both Toronto and Cambridge. The course runs for just 24 weeks.

Students learn how to troubleshoot and fix a full range of major home appliances, supplied by our training partner Whirlpool Canada.

Have more questions? Your next step is to speak with admissions.

An advisor will guide you through the training and explain costs, financial aid, how to apply, and more.

Chat live with an advisor now. Or click below to start exploring appliance repair programs at Herzing.

Learn More About the Appliance Service Technician Program



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