Home Appliances

Home appliances are the essence of convenient, contemporary living. They define how we take care of the many tasks we accomplish in our homes, from cooking to refrigerating foods and washing clothes. Because they’re so important to our daily lives, they’ve become amazingly sophisticated both in the duties they handle and in their efficient use of energy. Our challenge is to buy the best appliances for our needs and to know basic techniques for using, repairing, and caring for them.

Diagram of an electret electrostatic air cleaner, with internal parts and direction of air movement.

Air Cleaners

A new air purifier or air cleaner can do an amazing job of cleaning up your home’s air—you just have to know the type to buy for solving problems with your home’s air. This article looks at the various types of home air purifiers and cleaners available.

AC - Window & Room

If your home doesn’t have central air conditioning and you’re looking to affordably and effectively keep it cool this summer, one or more room air conditioners may be your answer.


Expert advice on outdoor barbecues and kitchens, with buying guides, DIY installation instructions and diagrams, repair and maintenance tips.

Woman vacuuming around a wooden and tiled floor.

Central Vacuums

Because the vacuum canister can be larger than a conventional household vacuum’s, it can do a more powerful job of collecting dust, pollen, dander, and other airborne pollutants.

Diagram of a Typical Clothes Dryer

Clothes Dryers

Clothes dryers are among the most truly convenient appliances of modern life, and, where the space and utilities are available, a clothes dryer is the natural companion to an automatic washing machine.

whole-house ducted dehumidifier


Showering, running a washing machine or dishwasher, cooking—all of these activities put moisture into the air, which can be problematic, especially if you live in a climate where humidity levels are already uncomfortably high.

A man removing an internal part of a dishwasher.


Because an estimated two-thirds of U.S. households have a dishwasher, it’s likely that you are already well acquainted with the joys of their convenience.

Garbage disposal underneath a sink, including interconnected pipes running through an outlet.

Garbage Disposals

Is your garbage disposal jammed, clogged, leaking, or not draining? This complete garbage disposal troubleshooting guide will help you quickly diagnose and repair the problem.

cool mist humidifier


When your home’s interior humidity level—the amount of water vapor in the air—drops too low, interior air can become uncomfortable, damaging, and downright unhealthful.

gas stove stainless vent hood wood counters

Ranges & Ovens

Cooking appliances are the heart of a kitchen. Ranges, ovens, cooktops, microwaves: all of these are critical to cooking, a kitchen’s primary purpose. For this reason, it’s very important to have cooking appliances that operate properly and efficiently.

Frigidaire refrigerator

Refrigerators & Freezers

In the United States and many other developed countries, refrigerators are taken for granted. But, the fact is, the refrigerator is a relatively recent invention.

Plastic tray below the front-loading washing machine.

Washing Machines

Everything you need to know about washing machines.

installing a water filter

Water Filters

Unless issued by your local health department, “free home water testing” offers are usually a come-on to get you to buy water-treatment devices after a couple of carefully staged tests.

Cut-away diagram of electric and gas water heaters, including internal and external parts.

Water Heaters

Whether or not you are in the market for a new water heater right now, read this article. It’s important to be prepared for the day your water heater gives up the ghost.

Man connecting a blue water softener to a house’s hot-water supply plumbing.

Water Softeners

What is a water softener? Water softener systems (often misspelled “water softner systems“) are products that solve hard water problems. Hard water is simply water that is rich in minerals such as calcium, magnesium carbonate, and manganese.

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