Is It Better to Repair or Replace Your Washing Machine?

By Erin Hynes | Oct. 25, 2021 9:08 am PST

Should you repair or replace your washing machine

So your washing machine stopped working, and you’re wondering if you should fix it or get a new one.

Here’s a key information you need to start making the repair/replace decision: The average lifespan of a washer is 12 to 15 years.

So repairing your washer when it’s only a few years old typically pays off — it should have many years of service left. Conversely, replacing a 15-year-old washer makes sense, because if you repair it, odds are that it could need another repair soon.

But if your washer is 6 to 8 years old — halfway through its expected life — the decision can be tough. Consider these factors when making the repair/replace decision for a middle-aged washing machine.

How Much Do You Use the Washer?

If you do only few loads of wash each week, your washer can last for several years beyond the average lifespan — especially if you’ve cleaned and maintained your washer well. In that case, you can reasonably expect your middle-aged washer to last another 8 to 10 years, and repairing the washer is a safe bet.

On the other hand, if your washer has seen heavy use for more than 8 years, the machine may be headed toward the end of a shorter-than-average lifespan. Replacing the washer is likely your best option in this situation.

How Much Does the Washer Repair Cost?

The estimated cost of the repair plays a big part when deciding whether to repair or replace a washing machine that’s about halfway through its life. Sears Home Services trained appliance repair technicians can help with the repair/replace decision by giving you an estimate for the repair.

If your washer needs a major repair such as a new motor, tub or transmission, you’re often better off replacing the washer rather than repairing it; a major repair often costs more than half the price of a replacement washer.

If the washer has a minor failure such as a bad lock on the lid or door, it’s usually better to repair the washer instead of replacing it. Completing a minor repair on a well-maintained washer with more than 8 years of expected useful life remaining is typically more economical that replacing the washer.

How Much Does a New Washing Machine Cost?

When making a washer repair/replace decision, the cost of a new machine factors into your decision.

It’s often more economical to replace a less expensive middle-aged washer when it breaks down. You’ll pay a few hundred dollars more that you would for a repair, but your new washer will probably have newer technology and more features.

If you have a high-end washer, it’s clearly worth having a minor repair done. If your washer needs a major repair, it still might be more economical to repair it than replace it with another high-end washer.

Washing Machine Repair You Can Trust

When the time comes to repair your washing machine, schedule an appointment with Sears Home Services. Same-day and next-day appointments are available in some areas.