When to Replace 8 Household Appliances

Do you know when it’s time to replace household appliances in your home?

If you’re wondering, here’s how you can tell!

There are items in your home that you know to replace on a regular basis, such as a toothbrush, air conditioner filter or water heater.

There are also things in your home that you may not replace until they are worn out, when in fact, most household items also have a shelf life that you should follow for efficiency, safety and health reasons. This post contains affiliate links.

Find more sanity saving home tips to help make your house run more smoothly.

8 Household Appliances You May Need to Replace - How do you know it's time

When to Replace Household Appliances

Here are eight household items that could need replaced:


According to “Good Housekeeping,” there are several signs your fridge is going from running to walking. If it no longer cools to below 40 F or is more than 15 years old, it’s time to check out the appliance aisle.

You could consider getting it repaired, but first weigh the cost savings of investing in a new one versus paying for potentially recurring repairs.

A general rule of thumb: pay for repairs only if the cost is less than half the price of a new refrigerator.


Generally, microwaves last 10-12 years, but it varies based on the amount of use.

Some internal issues that often arise include longer than normal time to properly cook food or worn out gaskets inside the door.

However, some outward ways to tell it might be time for a new one, include the keypad sticking or it sounding like a lawnmower when warming up food.

Find a new microwave here!


While any household appliance can be a hazard, toasters are particularly temperamental as they get older. If a toaster isn’t cleaned regularly, leftover crumbs inside have the potential to catch fire from.

Six to eight years is the recommended maximum amount of time you should wait before replacing your toaster.

Find a new toaster here!

The Kitchen: Chapter Six (Final Reveal!)


According to a Mattress Firm and Oklahoma State University study, mattresses more than eight years old contain large amounts of fungus and bacteria, which can increase allergy and asthma symptoms.

An old mattress can also contribute to aches and pains in your neck, back and shoulders.

While there are some proactive measures you can take, such as using a mattress protector, it is best to replace your mattress every eight years to ensure you’re getting a great night’s sleep.

Find a new mattress here!


Between makeup, dirt, hair products, dust and sweat, your pillow collects debris – just like your mattress – that can affect your sleep.

While proper care of your pillows, including washing every two weeks, can help keep this problem in check, it is best to replace pillows every 18 months to two years.

Find new pillows here!

GE WCVH4800KWW 2.2 Cu. Ft. White Stackable Front Load Washer - Energy Star


If your washer is more than 10 years old, it may be close to its last spin cycle.

Dryers generally follow the same shelf life.

These items are often expensive to fix, plus by upgrading to an energy efficient model, you save money in the long run by reducing your energy bills.

Find a new washer or dryer here!


While the EPA suggests replacing your vacuum cleaner every five to eight years, people tend to replace them more frequently.

Replace belts, bags and filters as recommended by the manufacturer to extend the life of your machine, but once it won’t start or is no longer sucking up dirt and dust, it’s time for a new one.

Find a new vacuum!

Smoke Detector

The U.S. Fire Administration recommends testing your hard-wired smoke detectors at least once a month and replacing the batteries yearly.

A chirping sound is an indicator that it could be time to replace the unit altogether.

Find a new smoke detector.

To get the most out of your household essentials, make sure you replace them regularly.


  1. My rule of thumb is to replace them when they quit working, the cost to repair is too close to or exceeds a new one, or we have extra money and want a better model. Note: that last one hardly ever happens.

  2. You mentioned that generally, microwaves last 10-12 years, but it varies based on the amount of use. Do most appliance service companies have certain appliances that they can repair and ones they can’t? My wife has had the same microwave our how marriage and it finally is showing some wear. Finding a professional to look at it might be a good idea.

  3. Wonderful article Jennifer. One of my refrigerator have become pain in hands as it asked for so many repairs in last 7 years! I was almost feeling like replacing it with the latest Avanti 2 door and after discussing it with my wife, we replaced it. You are right on that point about calculating the cost of the new one and whether it’s really required or not!

    Thanks again for the helpful article.

  4. I like that you mentioned that if your washer is more than 10 years old then it might be at the end of its life. I think that if I was going to get my washer replaced I might want to find that will last a long time. I think that if you don’t buy one that will last a long time then you might have to spend more money than you want to on it.

  5. Thank you for this informative article. It looks like my mattress needs to be replaced. This article can be used as a guide for every homeowner. I am looking forward to more information on other products as well.

  6. It’s good to now that washers and dryers basically have the same life span. My aunt’s washer recently stopped working, and she’s debating whether to replace the dryer as well. Although it might be good to hold on to the dryer since it’s still working, it’s a good indicator to be prepared to invest in another one sooner or later.

  7. Thanks for bringing to my attention that refrigerators older than fifteen years should be replaced. My fridge is having problems getting cold enough, but it’s only about eight years old. Since it still has quite a bit of use left, maybe it would be better to have a professional come and repair it instead of replacing it.

  8. I agree that if you have some appliances that are getting pretty old, you may get more out of replacing them rather than repairing them. Sometimes a fresh model will be more of a benefit to you than an old one that is more susceptible to break down. It’s good to know that, for the most part, appliances have a pretty long life span.

  9. Upgrading your appliances is a must thing because some old appliance can harm you and your family members as they getting old they losing their freshness.

  10. Thank you for your helpful article! my wasing/drying is old and isn’t working efficiently. You are right ! its expensive to fix the replacing with a new, energy-efficiently model is the the better way to go !

  11. You mentioned that generally, microwaves last 10-12 years, but it varies based on the amount of use. Do most appliance service companies have certain appliances that they can repair and ones they can’t? My wife has had the same microwave our how marriage and it finally is showing some wear. Finding a professional to look at it might be a good idea.

  12. Thank you for sharing such good info! May I also add a few words about water heaters? Since a water heater is an internal part of each household, we all should know when it’s a high time to replace it. Tank water heaters tend to last about 10 years. With proper maintenance, a tank water heater tank should last to 12 years. A tankless water heater can last for more than 20 years, which makes a tankless option a better investment.

  13. Thank you for sharing such a helpful article. Since we spend much energy and money on heating and cooling our homes, we should remember about HVAC system replacement. The thing is, outdated HVAC units tend to consume more energy to do the same job, making your home energy inefficient.

    Generally, if your furnace is older than 13 years, you will soon need to replace it. Even if it is still running, once it is 10 years old, it is probably not running at peak efficiency anymore.

  14. Good article! However, you didn’t mention anything about furnaces. The old furnace may be a big fire hazard and cause high utility bills. Also, it can reduce the air quality in your home. Frequent breakdowns and old age (15-20 years) may be good reasons for furnace replacement.

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