DB Appliances - Frequently Asked Questions for Swan
Has your appliance suddenly gone into 'sulk mode'? Is it not delivering expected performance? Perhaps emitting unexpected noises, smells or fluids?
This may not signify disaster, and many common faults have simple solutions that you can apply yourself. Take a look through some that we come up against daily and see if your problem is one of them. Electricity can be dangerous though, so if in doubt, call us out. You will always receive efficient, prompt and friendly service from an experienced, qualified technician.
- What does a repair typically cost?My fixed call out and diagnosis fee is just £25, and from that I will provide a full repair cost for both parts and labour. I appreciate customers hope I can give an instant price for the repairs over the phone, but this is far harder than you might think. With 15 years' experience I often have a good idea of the cause of the breakdown just from a quick description of the fault, but there's sometimes simply no way to decide a cost without inspecting the machine. From diagnosis I provide a full up front repair fee which will incorporate the call out fee and, barring unexpected parts, I always stick to my quoted labour repair charge regardless of how long it takes!
- What region do you cover?I don't set a fixed boundary, working from Easingwold I cover as much of the region as I can and as a rough guide this includes:
Thirsk, Northallerton, Masham, Ripon, Harrogate, Wetherby, Tadcaster, York, Stamford Bridge, Malton, Kirkby Moorside and Helmsley.
Please get in touch as I'll always try to attend an address, especially in the remote areas of the region that can struggle to access repair services.
How long will I have to wait for an appointment, I aim to arrive as soon as possible, normally by the next working day if not same day! Once the problem has been diagnosed I'll provide a price up front to get the machine working again and you can decide whether to go ahead. On most occasions I can fix the machine at the first visit but occasionally will need to order parts, this will normally mean returning within 2 days but I can advise this at the time of the appointment and book a return date to suit you.
- What information do you need?Before booking a visit I always spend time talking through the fault, firstly to see if simple advice may get you back and working again, but secondly to make sure I get a full understanding of what's wrong. To give me the best chance of repairing the machine in a single visit, as much information as possible will help to make sure I will have parts on the van to suit. A photo of the rating sticker from the machine helps to accurately identify the model.
- Can it be repaired and Is it worth repairing?It's very rare that a machine can't be repaired, parts are more readily available than people realise and I carry nearly 500 separate part lines in stock. I encourage reuse not replacement, promoting our need to reduce the demand on the worlds' resources. Sometimes though the cost of parts means a repair isn't cost effective. If that's the case I can advise on choosing a replacement machine and if useful can offer discounted appliances direct from the manufacturer, while arranging for full re-cycling of the old appliance.
- How quickly can you get hold of parts?My trade suppliers generally ship parts out in 24hrs, meaning I can get machines fixed and working again as soon as possible. I always give honest lead times up front so you can make a decision to suit your timescales.
- Is this noise serious?I get asked this a lot, along the lines of "does this sound normal?" Generally, if it's making a noise that it hasn't before, it's a sign that something is going wrong. From rattly fridges to creaky washers, if it's getting worse calling early can prevent an unexpected breakdown at the worst possible moment.
- Is it safe for you to visit?I've been working under Covid restrictions from the very start and I'm meticulous in my routine. Following all advice, I take every effort to ensure I minimise risk to customers and myself in every respect. Before any visit we will talk and work through entering the property and measures to ensure distancing. I'll also use all necessary PPE throughout my visit to ensure both you and I stay safe. The government has classed us as key workers, understanding that a household cannot work without the machines that cook/store our food, or the washers that keep our clothes clean, so don't feel that you shouldn't call on our services as and when they're needed.
- My Dishwasher Doesn't Clean Effectively?Google will give a multitude of reasons and solutions to this question! First clean everything inside, filters and spinner arms, but there are so many other reasons for the chemical balance to fail and the dishes to come out under-par that when the basics fail to fix it, call in an expert! I'll gladly advise on going through the most common self fix issues and if these don't work, can arrange a visit to have a thorough look.
- My Dishwasher Won't Dispense Detergent?Sometimes nothing more serious than a blocked spray arm can cause problems, as it doesn't wash the tablet out of the drawer. Modern gel tablets can gum themselves into the dispenser, but if the simple solutions don't work or the lid has stopped opening completely, give me a call to come and have a look further.
- My Dishwasher Doesn't Dry ?Most dishwashers get the water very hot towards the cycle end, heating the dishes so they dry themselves in the last few minutes. If everything is wet at the end this signals a fault with the heating. If it's just plastic items that are wet or have water on top, this is normal as the plastic doesn't stay hot long enough to dry off the water and they simply need a quick wipe with a towel. After the cycle don't pull out the top drawer first, otherwise as you do water can drip down onto the lower items a wet them again! Best to pull out and empty the lower basket first.
- My Dishwasher Doesn't Get Hot?Normally this will be the heating element, and a straightforward repair. In some instances it can be caused by a faulty control unit or wiring, so a call out is the only way to be sure and fit only the parts needed.
- My Electric Oven/Electric Cooker Tripping the Consumer Unit?Normally due to a faulty element, and so a straightforward repair. As the most common cooker fault, I carry a range of the most common elements on the van so normally can repair them straight away.
- My Electric Oven/Electric Cooker 's Fan Doesn't Turn?Again, one of the most common cooker faults, the cooking residues and steam can make the mechanism stick and the bearings wear out! I carry a range of fan motors for most models and normally fix this straight away.
- What is wrong with my fridge, freezer or fridge/freezer?We rely on fridges and freezers to sit quietly doing their job with very little maintenance, but when they start to go wrong a lot of fridge issues lead to the following questions:
- My Fridge/Fridge Freezer Is Making a Noise?
- My Fridge/Fridge Freezer Is Over-Cooling?
- My Fridge/Fridge Freezer Is Not Cooling enough?
- My Fridge/Fridge Freezer Never Stops?
- My Fridge/Fridge Freezer Builds up Frost?
- My Fridge/Fridge Freezer Is Leaking?
- My Washing Machine Won't Start?If your washing machine won't start, in the words of Douglas Adams, "Don't Panic". There are simple things that can go wrong outside the machine itself, which you can quickly and safely check for yourself before calling an engineer.
The first suspect with any electrical device has to be the fuse, replacing it with a new one takes seconds in most cases and if the machine still won't start, try plugging something else into its socket to see if that works.
If the fuse is OK and the socket works correctly, then you may have a problem with your machine, so the best and safest course is to call us and get an experienced engineer on site to diagnose the problem. You know where you stand too, as you will get a fixed call out fee and labour quote, so the only extras will be any parts that may be needed.
- My Washing Machine Won't Drain?Blockages are one of the most common issues that can affect a washing machine. The first place to look is in the filter. On most modern machines, this is usually easily accessible, although on some older models you may have to look a bit harder at the instruction book. All manner of things can find their way in here; hair, pet fluff, coins, keys, small items and so on are on occasions to be found in the filter.
If the filter isn't blocked, there may be a problem with your machine. Having established this, a call to DB Appliances will bring an experienced engineer to your door quickly to diagnose and fix the problem.
While you are waiting, if you need the contents of the machine urgently, there is very often an emergency drain facility, which will let you release the water. However, be prepared for a mopping up operation with bowls and towels handy. If in doubt, call us and relax.
- My Washing Machine Leaks Water?Washing machines do develop leaks now and again. They have a hard life so respond well to a little TLC from time to time. How to deal with a leak depends on its source, which can often be determined by the position of accumulated water. Safety first though, before you move your machine to look for the water, make sure that it is disconnected from the mains electricity.
Leaks from the front of the machine may indicate a door sealing problem, or possibly from the pump. Door seals can often leak due to a build up of fluff, which regular cleaning can prevent. It's always worth checking the cleanliness of the seal first. If that is OK, then there is a possibility that the seal is worn out or the door damaged. If the leak at the front is from the pump, they are not too difficult for our experienced engineer to change, or quite possibly, replace the seals.
Leaks underneath can sometimes be caused by blockage in the drain hose. A tell-tale sign can be a collection of rust flakes in the bottom of the drum. The hoses are relatively easy to remove and clear if a blockage is suspected, or if you have better things to do with your time, then our engineer will be delighted to help.
- My Washing Machine Is Jammed Shut?The first thing to check is whether there is still water in your machine. If there is, indicating that the cycle didn't drain, then the most likely cause is the safety interlock switch that prevents the door from opening during operation.
Carrying out an emergency drain operation and checking the filters in this case is a good step. It could well be that once the water has gone, the switch will release the door.
If there is no water present, then the cause is most likely to be with the catch itself or the pressure switch. Occasionally, the switch may still be energised due to the cycle not resetting to empty. It is worth trying a 5-10 minute disconnection of the machine to see if the switch resets when plugged back in.
Failing that, the fault may be with the catch itself, and the safest way to deal with that is to call our engineer in to give it specialist attention. Washing machine door catches can be a little fragile and there is always a danger of causing more damage by forcing the door open without years of experience.
- My Washing Machine Won't Complete a Cycle?Stopping mid cycle can often indicate a timer fault with your machine. More modern machines with digital timers may display an error code that is explained in the manual, whereas older machines with analogue timers may suffer from the rotating parts of the timer sticking.
The issue can also be related to the temperature control of your machine. If the water is not being heated sufficiently, the machine can stop early in the cycle, whereas if it is overheating, the failure may occur later.
It may also be worth checking the filter and drainage hose as draining problems can cause some machines to abort their cycle part-way through.
Finally, the cause may lie with some bad electrical connection inside the machine. Washing machines are a fairly hostile environment for electrical components and if a connector is building up a high resistance, it can affect the timer and heater functions. Without specialist equipment, this is difficult to find, so once you have checked the error codes and blockages, if the machine still fails to finish its cycle, call DB Appliances for an efficient response from your local engineer, who is experienced and equipped to locate and repair such faults quickly.
- My Washing Machine Won't Fill with Water?This is not necessarily a problem of your machine, so fault finding should start at the taps and hoses. A kinked hose or fouled/corroded tap is just as likely as anything to be at the root of the problem.
If you can safely move your machine out far enough to see the hoses, checking for kinks is simple enough, and if there is one, then repositioning the machine very slightly may well be enough to relieve it. If there are no kinks apparent, you can try disconnecting the hose(s) from the back of your machine (turn the taps off first), and then turning the taps on with the hoses in a bowl to check for good flow rate.
If that is OK, then reconnect the machine and try again. Having established you have flow through the taps and hoses, and there is still no water ingress, then the most likely culprit is the valve. These have filters which can become clogged, but are somewhat awkward to access and very delicate. Having narrowed the fault down to this stage, call your local DB Appliances engineer who has the necessary experience and equipment to deal with valve and filter problems quickly.
- My Washing Machine Is Making a Noise?Many of the noises that washing machines make can be attributed to what we have put into them. All sorts of debris can fall out of pockets, having been forgotten by the wearer of the garment. Brasiere wires are a frequent culprit. These can protrude through the drum drainage holes and make a fearful scraping noise. No matter how careful you are, it is always worth checking these things before calling an engineer.
Another common source of noise in washing machines can be the rumbling of drum bearings. This is a quite distinctive sound so should be fairly obvious when it manifests itself. Other noises can be more serious, such as the drum itself sustaining damage, or corrosion cracking in the drum spider, which supports the drum at the rear. These are under tremendous strain while the machine is in operation. Imagine swinging 9Kg of wet washing around at 1400rpm for minutes on end before bringing it all to a controlled halt.
As the old saying goes If you don't like the noise, call one of our boys… Well, maybe not an old saying, but it is worth giving us a call if your machine is sounding unwell, once you have checked the obvious, anything in there that is making a noise can lead to more damage, or even be dangerous in use.
- My Washing Machine Won't Spin Dry?One of the most frequent causes of a machine to refuse the spin part of its cycle is a blocked drain pump. Myriad small items find their way unbidden into washing machines. Coins, keys, fluff and animal hair all contribute to the clogging of filters and pumps, so this should be the first item checked when spin problems arise.
Most machines won't spin if the load is unbalanced too. Having one bulky and heavy item in a wash is often enough to cause this problem. If you spread the load evenly and your machine still won't spin, the cause could be the brushes in your motor having worn beyond limit. The brushes pass electrical current to the armature via a commutator, usually of copper. They are made of carbon, intentionally soft to wear to suit the commutator surface. When they have worn beyond their limit, the contact can be disrupted, causing poor performance from the motor.
As the spin cycle is the one that puts the heaviest load on the motor, it is usually the first one to exhibit problems. If you have checked the filter, made sure your machine is level and loaded evenly, but still no luck, give us a call and one of our skilled engineers will be on site quickly to get you spinning again as soon as possible.
- My Washing Machine Trips the Consumer Unit?If your consumer unit it tripping out when you turn on your washing machine, it may or may not be the cause. There is always a possibility that another item plugged into the household supply is really the culprit, leaving your washing machine to take the blame by being the straw that broke the camel's back.
This can be easily tested by turning everything else off, then setting your washing machine going. If it is the cause of the problem, it should cause the trip right away. If not, by turning on other electrical items one by one until the RCB gets tripped, you can pinpoint the real cause.
If it is your washing machine, there is possibly a fault that could be dangerous, so using the machine in that state is not advisable. Often this can indicate a dead short somewhere in the system. There isn't much that can be tested from the outside, but taking a good look at the mains cable and plug for signs of damage is always worth doing.
If they look sound the the safest way forward is to call out your local DB Appliances engineer to remove the covers and trace any electrical faults with a test rig. Such a problem can seem massive due to its dramatic effect, but can also be caused by relatively small faults like damaged wiring insulation. Safety first though, if in doubt, get professional help.
- My Washing Machine Won't Heat the Water?If your washing machine isn't heating the water, in many cases, modern ones will display an error message that you can either look up in the instructions or quote to an engineer.
Usually heating problems go back to one of two main causes; either the heater element itself or the thermal overload cutout switch.
On occasions, the machine's computer may have run into a problem. This often manifests itself by the machine staying in mid cycle and washing continually. It may not be possible to stop it so if you have this situation, calling an engineer is the best option.
In the absence of an error code, when the water isn't heating, a visit from one of our engineers will give a quick diagnosis with a test meter and a rapid, cost-effective repair.
- My Washing Machine Isn't Using Detergent?If your machine isn't using the detergent you put in the top drawer, it can be quite a simple fix. Some fabric conditioners are quite thick and viscous, with colouring and scent agents that can deposit themselves on the surfaces and nozzles within the tray.
Likewise, the spray nozzles can become clogged with limescale if you live in a hard water area.
The first thing to do is to thoroughly clean both the detergent and the conditioner trays with a soft brush and some clean water. Then use a limescale remover spray and a small brush to clean the nozzles. Once done, test the tray by pouring in some water. If it goes down the hatch, job done!
If the water still goes away, there could be a more serious blockage in the detergent channel, which will need an engineer to trace in the depths of your machine. Luckily, your local DB Appliances engineer can be on site quickly and has the experience to quickly locate such a blockage and remove it, all within a fixed callout labour charge.
- My Washing Machine Displays an Error Code?Error codes are built in by manufacturers to inform users and engineers that something has gone wrong. This can be something simple like a door not closed correctly, or an imbalanced load, up to a code for complete electrical failure.
Mostly, these can be found in the instruction manual that came with your machine. In case your copy has become lost or destroyed, we keep an up to date list of codes from all manufacturers, so if the lcd display on the front of your machine is showing some unexpected letter/number combinations, then give us a call for more information and recommendations about how to restore your machine to normality.