What to do about your moldy washing machine

WHY IS THERE MOLD IN YOUR WASHING MACHINE

Mold appears only in front loader washing machines. This is because of how the water pools in the door seal or gasket of the unit after every wash. Common door seals for front loader units have multiple folds in the design which makes it much easier for water to seep in and stay there after every wash. The water left behind in the seal is the perfect breeding place for common molds. Although manufacturers have begun creating new designs that prevent mold growth older units may still encounter this problem frequently.

WHAT ARE THE HEALTH HAZARDS TO MOULD

Certain molds have different levels of risk and it may mean that your mold isn’t entirely hazardous to your health. At Camtec though we definitely recommend that if you do come across mold in your unit you should clean it out immediately.

When there is mold in your washing machine it will also transfer onto your clothes, so although it may be visually clean it does not mean your clothes are safe. Viruses that we commonly associate with food such as salmonella can be left behind because of the mold and increase the risk of contracting the illness.

Mold if left alone can cause health issues such as skin irritations and infections, pneumonia and attract bugs such as dust mites or norovirus (the vomiting bug). Now you may be worried about this and it is a possibility but it’s not as common as you would think, many people never contract these illnesses but our technicians at Camtec say it’s better safe than sorry!

HOW TO PREVENT OR GET RID IN MOLD IN YOUR WASHING MACHINE

Mould prevention:

  • Leave your door open after washing- this will allow more water to escape and evaporate from your unit
  • Dehumidify or condition the laundry- letting the hot air escape from your laundry room through open doors, windows or air conditioners will allow all the hot air and steam that helps breed the mold to escape
  • Sanitize the door seals and glass regularly
  • Run a hot water wash with no clothes and use bleach or vinegar instead of detergent
  • Remove washed clothes immediately after they are cleaned
  • Use high-efficiency detergent
  • Ask a manufacturer recommended fan kit to your unit (if available) to help your washing machine to dry faster
  • Run the clean cycle as many times as the manufacturer and your units manual suggests

How to clean mold:

  • Clean the door seal/gasket- Use a rag or towel to clean the rubber and use vinegar or hot soapy water.
  • Clean your unit dispensers
  • Run cleaning cycles
  • Professional help- if your seals are too far gone and you need a replacement or just a good old scrub hiring a professional to supply or clean the gasket can be a lot easier and time-consuming than doing it yourself

THE RIGHT TEMPERATURE SETTINGS FOR YOU APPLIANCES

Making sure your home appliances are at their optimal temperature can be a hassle and some don’t even know how important the level of temperature can be for protecting your food or keeping you warm while being as efficient as possible and keeping yourself and your family healthy.

Below we will give all the information you’ll need to ensure your home appliances are running at the optimum temperature:

 

Fridge/Freezers:

Our fridges are probably the most important item in our homes, how else are we supposed to keep our beers cold and our food safe. The main positive point of these home appliances however is that they slow the growth of bacteria in our food, and making sure your fridge or freezer is at the right temperature can dramatically decrease the level of bacteria that can be harmful to you or your family.

For your fridge the best temperature would be about 4 degrees celsius or slightly lower, this will stop your food from freezing over or overheating and reduces the bacteria in your food. One of the best ways to manage your appliances temperature is to get a refrigerator monitor so you can see and manage your appliance easier. Other ways to manage the temperature of your fridge  is to avoid over packing your fridge, wipe up any spills immediately, keep your food in separate containers, check your expiration dates of your food and clean your fridge out frequently.

Heaters:

It’s always tempting to turn your heater to the max in winter and wear your shorts in the house, but this is not healthy for you and wastes a lot more energy. Th

 

e best temperature setting for your heaters during winter is actually between 20 to 22 degrees during the day. I know that may seem quite low but it ensures you’re not overheating yourself and saves your wallet, it also isn’t as cold as you think it is. However, if you are s till freezing at this temperature then their may be problems with your heater. The main reason for this is that your heater may be too small for the room or even hidden drafts in your room.

Air conditioners:

The summer heat in Australia is sometimes unbearable so it’s really tempting for us to stay inside and turn our air cons to the max, but much like our heaters this can give us those pesky summer colds and max out your wallets. The optimum temperature for air cons during summer is actually between 24 to 25 degrees. This is sure to keep you cool enough while not costing too much. It’s the optimum temperature for your unit during the summer and does not overwork your unit causing it to wear out or fault sooner.

It’s important to manage the temperatures of your home appliances, not just to protect your wallet but also protect your appliances and the health of you and your family.

Apartment living horror stories

More and more of us are living in apartments, units, flats, terrace homes and other high-density housing. Living in such close proximity to other human beings comes with its share of challenges, from enduring the yapping of the dog downstairs, to the “balcony rain” when someone up above you waters their plants.

But some of the frustrations that come from apartment living can be solved through the clever application of the right appliances.

Here are three apartment living problems and how to solve them:

The Kitchen… That CRAWLED!

Hip and cool urbanites have better things to do than wash the dishes. Just stack those plates up in the sink, we’ll wash them later… Next thing you know, the whole place is covered in soiled crockery, which starts attracting wildlife.

While this issue is by no mean exclusive to apartment-dwellers, the problem does tend to become more pronounced in their smaller kitchens. It only takes one or two lazy, “I can’t be bothered washing up” days to render a small kitchen practically unusable.

If only there was some kind of… household machine… an appliance, if you will… that could… WASH the DISHES for you.

Some kind of… dishwasher.

Okay, so a lot of apartment kitchens are too small to comfortably fit a dishwasher without sacrificing a significant amount of cupboard space. Plus, because many apartment-dwellers are also renters, adding a new built-in appliance to the landlord’s kitchen may not be a viable option.

There are still a couple of options available, though. Slimline dishwashers are specifically designed for compact kitchens, leaving more storage space free w

hile keeping your plates nice and clean. And if your landlord isn’t ready to get the kitchen remodeled, consider a bench-top dishwasher.

These appliances aren’t huge, so they can only realistically handle a limited percentage of your total washing up, but they make up for it with their simple installation (no cabinetwork required!) and the fact that when your lease runs out, you can take the dishwasher with you to your next place.

The Strange Case of the Cable Underfoot and the Wireless Wizard

As most of us aren’t international recording superstars (if you are, call me!), most of us don’t have access to a small army of roadies to tape down any cables snaking across our floors to minimise the tripping hazards.

Whether it’s old-school blue internet cables, or leads for surround sound speakers, having wires running all over the place is particularly frustrating in apartments with relatively limited floor space, as you’re likely to pass through these high-traffic danger zones far more often during your everyday puttering about than you would in a larger house.

That’s why the rising prominence of wireless networking has been an absolute miracle for apartment dwellers. Fewer cables means fewer chances to potentially faceplant yourself while walking down the hall. Plus, to get different electronics talking to one another, you no longer have to plug one thing into another thing, then that thing into a third thing.

All of these appliances and many more can help to deal with your apartment living horror stories.

Stacking kits, how to organise your washer and dryer

Our appliance technicians at Camtec come across problems with washer and dryers all the time, especially in cases where these units are stacked on top of each other which cause a hell of a lot of issues if not done properly, this is why they generally always recommend our customers to use stacking kits or other alternatives designed to protect these units. Below are some of the most common questions we get asked about stacking kits and how to organise your laundry appliances.

What are stacking kits and what do they do?

The most common way to save room in laundries have always been stacking, this is where a dryer is put on top of a washing machine to reduce the space that would be taken up if they were placed side by side. What many people do not realise is that you cannot just stack them you generally need accessories or tools such as stacking kits. Stacking kits are designed  to fit in between a washer and dryer and distribute the weight of a dryer on top of a washer while also absorbing the vibrations from both appliance while they are running.

Are stacking kits universal?

Stacking kits are not universal and are designed to suit a specific brand of washer and dryer. So if you are hoping to just drop by the store and pick up any old stacking kit then you would be wasting your time. Generally stores want you to buy their products and what better way then practically forcing you to do it by only providing specific and necessary accessories for them.

Alternatives to stacking kits?

Have no fear if you have already bought different unit for you laundry there are alternatives to using these stacking kits. For example some companies have invented rubber mats made specifically to replace stacking kits, these simple products absorb vibrations, reduce noise levels and add some extra stability on uneven floors.

Another more common alternative to stacking kits are using wall mounts to attach your units to your laundry wall. Wall mounts are just brackets that attach to the unit and the wall and take away the hassle of trying to balance your appliances on top of each other. This is also a great alternative if you prefer a top loader washing machine. However there are two important things to keep in mind if you are planning to use wall brackets.

  1. The first is that you can only wall mount vented dryers, which blast out the moisture they removes from your clothes in the form of hot steam. Condensor dryers, which collect moisture in a tank are too heavy to wall mount safely, but they can be stacked.
  2. Many vented dryer models can actually be wall mounted upside down, which keep their controls in a more easy to reach position. Models like this will generally have a set of stickers or decals that can help you to relabel your controls when they are upside down; but always make sure to check whether the unit  you have purchased can be put upside down.

Can I stack a washing machine on top of a dryer?

Definitely not! Washing machines are way more heavier than dryers and will damage or even crush your dryer if it is placed on top, and that without the added weight of water and wet clothes. Also washing machines tend to vibrate way more than dryer when being used which means a higher chance that the vibrations will cause the unit to fall off.

Can I stack a washing machine and dryer on their own without a  kit or rubber mat?

Under no circumstance should you stack your appliances without using some form of protection. Not only could this damage your appliances but also damage your laundry floors benches and anything in your laundry that is close to them. The vibrations alone could be enough to knock your units off, so always make sure you appliances are somehow stabilised.

 

Gas heaters what do you want and need to know

It’s now winter in Australia and time to get your gas heaters cranking, but if you are looking into a gas heater and not sure how to possibly choose, then not to worry because we have come up with a list of the important questions you need to ask yourself when you’re looking to get your new gas heater.

1 To flue or not to flue-

First off what is a flue? A flue it the duct or pope that allows exhaust gases from your gas heater to travel straight outside, to stop your home from being filled with dangerous emissions. There are a variety of different gas heaters that have flues and those that don’t.

 

 

Ones that don’t have flues are better for renters or homeowners who don’t want the cost or fuss of installing a flue. It also important to note that these heaters SHOULD NOT be used in bathrooms, bedrooms and other small or badly ventilated spaces as these units still require some ventilation for safe operation. Unflued heaters are great because they are portable and easily moveable, are more energy efficient, less expensive to run and can be taken with you if you move house; however, they cannot be used in small confined spaces for safety reasons and without proper ventilation build-up of condensation can easily occur damaging the  unit.

Flued heaters are a more permanent option and are great to use in smaller areas and are a better solution for those suffering asthma or people suffering from certain allergies or respiratory problems. However these units do cost more and are not as efficient as unflued gas heaters.

 

2. Bayonet or bottled gas-

The next question to look at is whether you want natural or LPG gas. Bottled gas heaters of LPG gas heaters connect to a tube that is connected to one or more gas bottles, these bottles can be located either in the room with the heater ( not very recommended) or connected by hose that goes outside of the house. These heaters are great if you want to be able to move your heater around your house (that is if the bottle is inside) or if you don’t want to spend extra if you don’t have an already existing bayonet fitting, they also have minimal installation costs.

 

Bayonet or natural gas heaters connect to your homes gas supply instead of directly to a gas bottle. Bayonet is the type of gas fitting for these units that use natural gas. These types of heaters are great as they are cheaper than the standard LPG fuelled gas heaters and there is also no need to keep on refilling your gas bottles. However they do need female bayonet fittings that are permanently attached to your homes wall or floor, otherwise another will need to be installed at an extra cost.

3. How important is size-

Size is very important you don’t want to buy a heater too small for your room and you also don’t want one that’s too large and dangerous for that space. In order to determine which is the best size look at things  like-

 

  • Gas heater output
  • Ceiling height
  • Climate zone
  • Flooring types and home insulation

 

4. Types of gas heaters-

There are so many different types of heaters you can choose from such as Unflued portable radiant heaters, flued radiant heaters, convection gas  heaters and radiant convection gas heaters.

 

 

Appliances that need dedicated circuits

Every home has a circuit board, they are the boxes on the walls in your garage or on the outside of your house that is full of switches. Each of these switches provides power to certain aspects of your home; for instance one switch may control your lights while the other controls your water heater.  They basically control the electrical currents in your home to prevent you from overloading appliances (which is why they power turns off if you happen to be to using your microwave, oven and kettle at the same time). To prevent this happening it is better to ensure that most of your appliances have an individual or dedicated circuit, this will not only stop your power from going out so often but will also be better for you appliance and home.

You basically want a dedicated circuit for all of your major home appliances, these include:

  • Fridge and freezers
  • Electric range
  • Microwave
  • Water heater
  • Washer
  • Dryer
  • Dishwasher/ garbage disposal (if you hav e one)
  • Furnace
  • Heat pump
  • Air conditioner
  • Sump Pump
  • Spa or sauna (for the lucky ones)

 

The basic rule on whether you should have a dedicated circuit for an appliance is if it is fixed and has its own motor or if it’s critical to your comfort or safety, it probably needs its own circuit.

But why do I need dedicated circuits for my appliances?

Our local technicians in Perth explain why this is so important in homes. The main reason it is important is that it protects your appliances. By having multiple major appliances on a single circuit it is more likely that the circuit will overload or trip the breaker halting the flow of electricity. If the circuit trips too many times it can eventually wear down the breaker and soon it won’t trip. Now this may sound like a good thing however, if the power doesn’t trip the electrical overload will overheat the wiring insulation and could possibly lead to an electrical fire.

What circuit sizes should I get for my appliances?

For mid-range or small items like hair dryers and toasters you would only need about 20 amps; but for larger and heavier duty appliances like dryers, dishwashers or air conditioners you would want about a 30-50 amp circuit. Although when looking into circuit breakers at Camtec we always recommend getting a professionals opinion as these are just a rough guide, by hiring a professional they may even be able to provide you with a more cost effective solution.

Here is a short list of the types of appliances that should have specific amps:

15 to amp circuit:

  • Microwave
  • Electric oven
  • Garbage disposal
  • Washing machine
  • Trash compactor
  • Space heater
  • Refrigeration
  • Split system air conditioner
  • Gas furnace

30 or more amp circuit:

  • Electric water heaters
  • Electric ranges
  • Electric dryer
  • Ducted air conditioning/ central air conditioning system
  • Electric furnace
  • Backup heating for heat  pump

Guide to recycling electronics or e-waste

Australians are among the highest users of technology in the world, with 99% of Australian households having at least one TV while a further 55% have at least two and that’s just our TVs! Of all these new technologies only about 10% of products will end up being recycled leaving the other 90% polluting our country further. This e-waste is major problem for our environment but  there are easy solutions in order to safely get rid of your TVs, phones and any other technology you have in your home.

What is e-waste

E-waste is waste electrical and electronic equipment that is dependent on electric currents or electromagnetic fields in order to function. They include common technology such as:

 

  • Consumer/entertainment electronics (e.g. televisions, DVD players and tuners). 
  • Devices of office, information and communications technology (e.g. computers, telephones and mobile phones). 
  • Household appliances (e.g. fridges, washing machines and microwaves). 
  • Lighting devices (e.g. desk lamps). 
  • Power tools (e.g. power drills) with the exclusion of stationary industrial devices. 
  • Devices used for sport and leisure including toys (e.g. fitness machines and remote control cars).

 

E-waste is such a major component of everyday Australian life and here is what you should in order to safely dispose and recycle your products:

 

  • Don’t throw electronics in the trash

 

The main reason that no e-waste should just be chucked in the bin is because it is dangerous, not only for the environment but also for people working in places such as landfills or the rubbish collectors themselves. Basically all technology today is made of toxic and highly volatile materials like battery acid, arsenic, lead and other toxic chemicals. Not only would they injure someone who got these chemicals split on them because they unit may be leaking or damaged by imagine what these chemical could do to the environment. By safely disposing of your e-waste you protect not only people but also the environment.

 

  • Donate for reuse if possible

 

So we know you shouldn’t just chuck any kind of tech in the bin so what can you do to get rid of your unwanted TVs, phones, tablets and Ipads? The next best thing would be to donate your items. If your product is in good working condition  then go and drop it off in a good sammies bin or even re-sell it to someone else, just make sure that if there is any personal data to remove it.

 

  • Find a responsible recycler

 

If you tech is not in the best condition then there are heaps of recycling programs that will take and safely dispose of your waste for free! Retailers like office works or Harvey Norman are approved to dispose of e-waste and in WA we have the National Television and computer recycling scheme in order to reduce Aussies e-waste. The link below is to a site where you can find the closest e-waste disposal company to either drop off your products or even get them collected.

 

Related Tags: Appliance Repairs Perth | Electrical Appliance Repair Perth

WHAT IS HDR TV?

HDR TV or high dynamic range TV is the future of our tellies! HDR gives better contrast, greater brightness levels and a wider colour palette on your unit. Its main function is that it basically makes the images look more lifelike and real than traditional TVs. It does this by preserving details in the darkest and brightest areas of a picture which our eyes can preserve much more easily as well as allows for more natural and true-to-life colours that are closer to how we see them in real life.

What makes an HDR TV

There are two aspects that define a HDR TV, these are their contrast performance and the number of colours they can display.

The level of contrast is a main factor that determines how good a TV picture looks. What contrast basically means is the difference between light and dark, and the greater the difference the greater the contrast. The peak brightness of a unit and the black level (both measured in nits) determines whether a TV can be considered a HDR TV.  A unit can only be considered as HDR if it can manage at least 1100 nits of brightness while at the same time pulling off dark scenes with only 0.05 nights of light emission.

The other important aspect is colour. The level of bit in a TV will determine how many colours the unit can produce. For instance generally appliances such as blu-rays use 8-bit colour which comprises of about 16 million different colours, while the new HDR TV can process 10-bit colour which roughly equates to over a billion different colours. This means they can produce a vastly expanded range of colour shades and reducing overtly obvious gradations between shades.

How do I know if a TV is HDR compatible

The best way is to look for the Ultra HD Premium logo. This means that the UHD alliance (a group made up of technology firms and content producers) have approved the technology of that unit. The UHD Premium label proves that the TV has met the minimum specifications needed to be truly HDR compatible.

Will everything I watch be in HDR?

Unfortunately no much like the IMAX screens we go to see in the movies, contact has to be specifically mastered for HDR in order to work. Thankfully through advancements in online streaming from sources such as Netflix and the creation of Ultra HD Blu-ray content creators will be able to deliver more HDR content more easily.

How do I start watching HDR content

There are only really two options at the moment to access HDR content. The first would be to buy a new Ultra HD Blu-ray player or to stream HDR videos from streaming sources such as Netflix. Most importantly though your TV must comply with the HDMI2.a standard or any TV with the Ultra HD Premium label.

It seems that HDR TV has much to offer in regards to home viewing and there is still so much improvement and enhancement going on in this new sector of technology, in our opinion it is certainly worth looking into this amazing new home tech!

Related Tags: Appliance Repairs Perth | Camtec Appliances

THE BEST PRODUCTS THAT PROFESSIONALS USE TO CARE FOR YOU APPLIANCES

We use our appliances every day whether it’s our fridges, microwaves, ovens or stoves. So how can after months and years of usage keep your appliances looking brand new if they are covered in scratches and dents?

Here are a few tips our professionals at Camtec use themselves to repair the damage.


• Cutting compound- This handy material is generally used by panel beaters for cars and other vehicles, however they are also perfect for buffering out any shallow scratches on appliances. To use you just mix the compound with a bit of water and rub it on the scratch, then buff it out a bit and the scratch should just disappear! Good cutting compound may be hard to find but stores such as supercheap auto offer some brands.

• Enamel Paint- Is best for deep scratches or peeled paint, we recommend to use it for microwaves and fridges. Generally it would be best to hire a professional however if you want to have a go all you have to do is tape around the scratch or mark, paint over the section and then buff it back to make it level and seamless.

• Touch up paint/pens- These are easy to find in auto stores they are used for very small or shallow marks and scratches. They help make the marks less visible and sometimes even completely remove it!

As you can see these materials are generally used for vehicles but are also super handy to keep your unit looking brand new.


Below are some brands that we also use to regularly clean out our customers units and have a personal guarantee by our professional appliance technicians here in Perth, they include:

Method. Glass and surface- This product is a great surface cleaner for appliances that use no harsh chemicals. This cleaner is plant based and easily eliminates dirt, dust and handprints for only about $10!

Glitz. Stainless steel cleaner- This is one of our favourite products for our stainless steel units. It cleans, polishes and protects the unit through its unique formulation which dissolves and removes most grease and dirt marks. It also repels dust and fingerprints.


• Simple Green. All-purpose cleaner- This great smelling product is a non-toxic and completely biodegradable option. This product is not only phosphate-free and septic safe but it also contains no harmful chemicals such as bleach, alcohol or ammonia while simultaneously clearing dirt, streaks and more!

• De-solv-it. This product is definitely one of our favourites because it smells great but works so much better. We generally use it to remove unsightly sticker marks or other types of dirt and grease. Like most of our other products it is completely biodegradable and made out of oranges!

• Aktivo. Is one of our new favourites, they do cleaning products ranging from cooktop cleaners, laundry liquid and powder, dishwasher powder and all-purpose cleaners! These guys are an Australian owned and run company and all their products are made from natural ingredients. We have a heap of their products ready and in store in our Canning-vale showrooms so you can pop by anytime to check them out

We take pride in sticking to mostly natural and biodegradable products when it comes to cleaning our customers units especially if they are close to food. There are many alternatives to these products but we use these ones on a daily basis to ensure your appliances are looking spick and span. So if you want your appliances to look brand new try some of these products out!

For more information Click Here to visit our website!

 

Related Tags: Washing Machine Repairs Perth | Oven Repairs Perth

HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR APPLIANCES, BEST PRACTISES

Our appliances are some of the most important parts of our home, how could we live without our fridges, microwaves, vacuum cleaners and TV’s! That’s why caring for them is so important and its not very hard either.

When it comes to any appliances that we use regularly we at Camtec suggest on doing a quick clean once a month and a deep clean about every six months to a year. This is across all appliances and will ensure that they last a lifetime.

TV

The best way to clean your tellie is to not use water as that can damage the unit, dusting is the way to go when cleaning. Ensure that you dust the front and back of the unit to prevent shorts in the wiring. Another good tip is to make sure you turn the screen off when you’re not using it as leaving the unit  on for long periods of time can damage the screen.

TV

Vacuum

Vacuums need a much more frequent cleaning than most other appliances just because they collect so much dirt. The best way to make sure your unit is at the top of its game is regularly clean or rinse your filters to get rid of dirt build up (make sure your filters are made of foam and not paper if you decide to rinse with water). Another way to keep your vacuum secure is to store it carefully, making sure that it is stored well actually helps lengthen the life of the unit by a lot.

Washing Machines

Washing machines are relatively easy to clean because you can buy actual machine cleaner or just use regular detergent and run it on an empty cycle for a deep clean. If you notice that your unit shakes alot when running this means that it is not level and can cause damage in the long run. If this is happening to your unit we suggest you fix it as soon as possible. Another easy way to care for the appliance is to leave the door open, by doing this after every load it will allow the water in the drum to evaporate reducing the build up of mould and water.
Microwaves

Microwaves

One super easy way to keep your microwave smelling fresh is by heating 1 cup of water with ½ a cup of lemon juice and let it sit there for about 10-15 minutes. Also by cleaning the door seal regularly with a wet rag will prevent build-up in the door causing heat to leak out.

Fridges

Like with microwaves it is recommended to clean the door seals to prevent build-up. We also recommend cleaning out your unit about once a week, a quick rinse should be enough. Another easy way to maintain your unit’s power is to keep it full with products, they absorb extra heat in the unit meaning it doesn’t have to work as hard.

Air cons

The best way to care for you unit is to regularly clean the filters which can be done even once a year! Another good tip is if you have an outside condenser unit, in this case you must ensure that the surrounding area is kept clear to allow adequate air flow. An important point for cleaning air cons though is that you must make sure that the unit is completely turned off before going ahead with cleaning to ensure your safety.

DishwashersDishwashers

The best way to deep clean your dishwasher is by pouring one or two cups of vinegar into the bottom of your dishwashers and run it on a normal cycle, this will help clean out any leftover food. Another good tip is to run your hot water in the sink first; this helps heat up the water ensuring your first rinse cycle is warm. Another easy maintenance tip is to always rinse your dishes before putting them in the dishwasher to decrease the amount of food you are putting in the machine.

 

Related Tags: Appliance Repairs Perth | Electrical Appliance Repair Perth