From leaks to a melting ice cream, a broken refrigerator can cause too much hassle for any homeowner. You’ll have to somehow get rid of the leaking, check every part of the appliance to see what’s wrong, and quiz yourself on how to fix it.
But as troublesome as it can be, repairing your fridge first is less expensive than buying a new one. That is if your fridge is still repairable.
If you want to fix it, then you’ll have to learn how much does a refrigerator repair cost.
Average Refrigerator Repair Cost
The average price for repairing a refrigerator costs about US$200 to US$400. According to Home Advisor, the said cost applies for the repair of a refrigerator/freezer combo and includes labor and replacement parts.
To give you a better idea, let’s take a look at the sample cost to repair fridge as recorded in Pennsylvania. According to the Homwyse calculator, the lowest price for a basic repair in the area is US$292.33 while the highest is US$413.56.
The said costs include more than two hours of labor (assuming that the site conditions are favorable), planning, equipment and material acquisition, area preparation and protection, set-up, and cleanup. Also included is the price of related materials and supplies used for the repair.
You may also spend about US$60 to US$100 for a diagnostic fee. Companies usually charge the said fee when you call a technician to perform an in-house diagnosis of your fridge. Usually, diagnostic fees are waived by the company when the client agrees to the repair.
Other factors that may affect the exact cost to repair fridge include the brand of the refrigerator, repair of other parts of the appliance, warranties for parts and labor, and discounts given by repair companies.
Aside from the typical refrigerator repair cost, you would also have to add another US$300 if you want the technician to fix your ice maker. One sign that your icemaker has a problem is when it produces noises that are louder than usual when water flows into it.
Another part that could add to the cost to repair fridge is the compressor. If your fridge is buzzing or humming, or it can’t keep your food cold anymore, your refrigerator’s compressor may not be working properly. If that’s the case, you would have to add another US$20 to US$200 for its repair.
There is also a possibility that the fridge’s defroster is not functioning well if the motor starts to make noise. If it gets extremely loud, then you’ll have to replace it, too. The price for the replacement will be about US$100 to US$200.
Lastly, if the evaporator fan motor of your fridge starts making strange noises and pushing the door switch won’t help stop it, you would probably have to replace it, too. The motor replacement cost will be about US$200 to US$250.
Prices from Repair Companies
The pricing for fridge repair services varies widely depending on the company and its location. Most of these companies will give you the exact repair cost after performing a diagnosis and determining what parts of your refrigerator need fixing.
For instance, Ace Appliance Inc. charges US$64.99 for an in-house diagnosis of any general brand appliance. For elite brands like LG and Samsung, the company charges a higher rate of US$89.99.
After the diagnosis, they will hand you a complete written estimate of the work required to fix your fridge. The said estimate details labor and parts charges. It also shows the total bill for the repair. If you choose not to go with the repair, then you’ll only have to pay the diagnostic fee.
Another company in Winnipeg, Canada, City Wide Appliance, has the following rates:
- House call charge: $75
- Labor rate: $1 per minute
- Additional appliance: $10
- Return fee: $35
With the many options available, how will you choose a company?
One would be to search for repair services near your area. This will prevent unexpected expenses like travel fees. Although it is wrong, some technicians or companies may charge you the said fee saying that the long drive took too much of their time that it is basically part of the labor.
After finding the companies available in your area, call them or browse through their website. Ask or look at their rates and compare them. If it is possible to get an estimate, request one.
If you’re leaning toward hiring a service company that charges by the hour, keep in mind that the average time to repair a fridge takes about two to three hours. The labor will only take longer if your appliance has more complicated problems.
With that said, you should ask how long it would take the technician to finish the job after the initial diagnosis. If the answer is more than 3 hours despite your fridge having no major problems (such as a compressor or ice maker malfunction), it would be better to not go with the repair and look for another service provider.
Also, beware of companies that charge extremely low fees as some of them may provide services that are equally “cheap”.
You would have to put some effort into researching and weighing the pros and cons if you want efficient service. But know that it would be all worth it if you get the result that you paid for.
To Repair or To Replace?
Some refrigerators may not properly function anymore no matter how many times you repair them. The only solution then, if you want to keep your food cold, is to buy a new fridge. How do you know if it’s indeed time for a replacement?
The general rule, according to Thumbtack, is to replace your refrigerator if the repair cost exceeds half the price of purchasing a new one. After all, it would be more cost-effective to buy a perfectly functioning fridge that doesn’t need repairs than keep on spending for the maintenance of an old one.
Repairing or replacing your refrigerator will both cost you a considerable amount of money. Thus, the best thing you can do is to avoid spending altogether for the appliance by properly taking care of it. As all other appliances, your refrigerator will last longer if you clean, check, and maintain it on a regular basis as much as you use it.
Let your fridge serve you longer and save money!