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Here's How Often You Should Replace Every Appliance in Your Home

Double-check those warranties, people.

The dishwasher, the washing machine, and the fridge are such an integral part of your daily life, that it would be nearly impossible to live without them, even just for a day. But are you doing your part to ensure your trustiest home appliances last as long as possible before they need to be upgraded? "Appliances last the longest when the consumer follows the manufacturer's suggested use and care of the product," says appliance specialist Anthony Starck, owner of Long Island-based Showcase Kitchens.

According to Starck, many people routinely neglect the more detailed aspects of the maintenance process, and this ultimately results in a shorter appliance lifespan. Want to how long you can expect your home appliances to work for you as long as you're taking good care of them? Read on for the average lifespan of 15 major home appliances that'll help you be prepared before they give out. And for more ways to help keep your home in tip-top shape, check out these 30 Helpful Supplies You Don't Have in Your Home But Should.

Washing machine: Every 10 to 20 years

clothing in the washing machine laundry folding tips

According to 2007 data from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), you can expect to get a decade of use out of your typical washing machine. However, your machine's longevity also depends on the type you choose. Todd DePole, owner of Todd's Appliance Repair in New York, says a top-loading washer could easily last two decades. And for more help with your cleaning supplies elsewhere in your home, here's How Often You Should Replace Your Cleaning Essentials.

Clothing dryer: Every 10 to 15 years

appliance lifespan

You're likely to get about 13 years of use out of your average dryer, per NAHB. And buying a pricier product doesn't always mean you'll get more use out of it. "My rule of thumb with customers when it comes to dryers? I tell them to buy the cheapest dryer they can get ahold of. A dryer is a dryer is a dryer," DePole says. "The other stuff—the bells, the whistles—are just things that are going to break too soon." And for more home investments to stay away from, check out these 25 Home "Upgrades" That Actually Devalue Your Home.

Water heater: Every 6 to 13 years

appliance lifespan

Luckily, replacing your water heater isn't a task you have to undertake too often. According to Crisafulli Bros., a plumbing and heating company in upstate New York, most residential hot water heaters last between six and 13 years, though keeping a heater for longer than 12 years is usually pushing your luck. The company also suggests replacing your hot water heater regardless of its age if there's a strange tint to your water, if it's making loud gurgling sounds, if there's water pooling around the unit, or if there's a lack of hot water. And for more on those pipes that keep water flowing in your home, check out these 21 Ways You're Damaging Your Home, According to Your Plumber.

Refrigerator: Every 10 to 20 years

a woman with a refrigerator

Fridges typically cost a pretty penny. Thankfully, you probably won't have to worry about buying a new one anytime soon. According to the appliance authorities at AJ Madison in Brooklyn, New York, the average lifespan of a refrigerator is 10 to 20 years. That number varies by type, but the average freezer-top or side-by-side refrigerator lasts approximately 13 years, while a single door unit can last up to 20 years. And if you're looking to replace your kitchen appliances, read up on The Best Places to Score Savings on Kitchen Appliances.

Freezer: Every 11 years

Woman opening freezer clothing hacks

Your freezer should serve you well for over a decade, according to the pros at NAHB. Just make sure that you clean its condenser coils regularly if the manual calls for it. And for more cleaning and maintenance tips, check out these 27 Ways to Clean Your House Like a Pro Housekeeper.

Stove: Every 13 to 15 years

food pot on the stove stovetop

Good news: "Of the major appliances in a home, gas ranges have the longest life expectancy: 15 years," according to NAHB. The typical electric range isn't too far behind, generally lasting about 13 years.

Microwave: Every 9 years

African-American man uses microwave to cook dinner in kitchen

It may be one of your less expensive appliances, but that doesn't mean your microwave will necessarily have a short lifespan. NAHB says that most microwaves will continue working for the better part of a decade. And for more on using your kitchen properly, avoid the 17 Things Your'e Doing in the Kitchen That Are Unsafe.

Dishwasher: Every 7 to 12 years

woman loading dishwasher,

You can expect your average dishwasher to keep those plates and silverware clean for approximately nine-and-a-half years, according to home product review site Prudent Reviews. Just make sure you're cleaning its filters and seals on a regular basis. Want more tips on how to use your dishwasher most effectively? Nix these 17 Ways You're Loading Your Dishwasher Like a Total Amateur.

Vacuums: Every 8 years

vacuuming carpet

Through a reliability survey, Consumer Reports found that most vacuums last a median of eight years. However, you may be able to prolong their lifetime by cleaning their filters frequently and replacing their belts when needed. And for more advice on keeping your vacuum running for a decade, avoid these 17 Ways You're Vacuuming All Wrong.

Toaster: Every 5 years

Red toaster

Daily use certainly takes its toll on your toaster. So if you're browning up some bread every morning for breakfast, be prepared for your countertop cooker to only last about five years on average, per a 2011 Energy Star report.

Thermostats: Every 35 years

reasons you're tired

While most experts note that thermostats don't technically have a set lifespan, NAHB says they generally can be used safely for up to 35 years. This means that you'll most likely go through life without ever having to replace one, though improvements in technology—like the advent of smart thermostats—might have you eager to upgrade sooner.

Boiler: Every 12 to 30 years

appliance lifespan
Shutterstock/Dmitry Kalinovsky

You should be prepared to replace that boiler in your basement before it breaks so you don't lose heat—but that won't be for a decade or two after you buy it. According to Weil-Mclain, a heating system manufacturer based in Indiana, residential boilers tend to need to be replaced around every 12 years, while cast iron boilers can regularly last 20 or even 30 years.

Garbage disposal: Every 8 to 15 years

garbage disposal kitchen utensils

You can pretty much keep scraping those plates right into the garbage disposal in your sink for a good decade. However, after anywhere from eight to 15 years, you may notice the blades wearing down or the motor burning out, according to John Wayne Service Company, which serves San Antonio, Texas. At that point, it's time for a replacement.

Air conditioners: Every 10 to 15 years

air conditioner

An air conditioning unit that is used frequently will, on average, last only around 10 to 15 years. One that is used less frequently, on the other hand, may be good for 20 or even 25 years, note the pros at AC Designs, Inc., an air conditioning and heating services company in Jacksonville, Florida.

Furnace: Every 15 to 20 years

appliance lifespan
Shutterstock/Charles Knowles

Depending on what kind you have, you can get a decade or two of use out of your furnace, according to NAHB. Electric warm air furnaces typically retain functionality for 15 years; gas warm air furnaces tend to last for 18 years; and oil warm air furnaces have a typical lifespan of 20 years. And for all the things you're doing in your home that are preventing your appliances from operating at top levels, check out 55 Ways You're Ruining Your Home and Don't Even Know It.

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Sarah Crow
Sarah Crow is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, where she focuses on celebrity news and health coverage. Read more
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