Career and Job Search Guide

Home Appliance Repair Technician

Mechanics that repair home appliances, commonly referred to as in home service professionals, maintain and install appliances. Some mechanics specialize in small appliances, such as microwaves, while others work with larger appliances, such as refrigerators and washing machines. In home professionals connect appliances to water or gas pipes and conduct tests to determine whether there are any leaks. In home professionals additionally act as customer service representatives since they answer their clients' questions.

To diagnose problems with appliances, mechanics examine them to look for any fluid leaks and loud noises, and sometimes mechanics will take appliances apart, inspecting parts to determine if they are working properly. To diagnose problems, mechanics use diagnostic tools and rely on service manuals.

If a problem is discovered, home appliance specialists either repair defective parts by lubricating or cleaning them, or install new ones. Specialists use pliers, wrenches, and other basic tools, as well as more complex ones such as soldering equipment. If an appliance containing electrical components is defective, mechanics often install new circuit boards.

During refrigerator and air conditioner maintenance, mechanics must carefully handle chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) and hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) compounds since the proper documented disposal of these compounds is required by law.

In home service professionals prepare cost estimates, maintain work records, and send bills. Those performing repairs on appliances under warranty must contact the appliance company to get paid.

Work environment. In home service professionals who work on small appliances spend their days in well lit, properly ventilated shops. If they repair large appliances, they will often spend a portion of their day traveling to clients' homes to perform repairs, and sometimes they are contorted in awkward positions while reaching around larger appliances to perform repairs. There are few hazards performing appliance repairs, but in home service professionals must be careful to prevent electrocution and take proper precautions lifting heavy appliances.

In home service professionals usually perform their jobs without being supervised by their superiors. They usually work 40 hour weeks but during the summer usually work overtime repairing air conditioning units. Some professionals work mornings, nights, weekends, and often respond to emergencies during any hour of the day.