Three Common and Costly Kitchen Remodeling Mistakes to Avoid

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Remodeling a kitchen can add to the value of your home and make it easier to sell, especially if the space is populated with aging appliances and old counter-tops. That being said, if you are contemplating a kitchen remodeling project as part of the plan to sell your home, there are also several commonly made mistakes that can turn costly and potentially make your home harder to sell.

These mistakes include:

• Doing an “Architectural Digest” remodel – The value of your home and the return on investment for a high-end remodeling project will be limited by the comparable prices of homes in your neighborhood, also known as “comps”. Before starting a remodeling project, find out where your home currently stands in value versus other comps in the area. The discrepancy in prices can reveal a lot about how much your home will appreciate in value after a remodel; an older home that is deeply discounted from other comps might benefit from the addition of new appliances and other upgrades while one that is priced close to other comps probably won’t appreciate as much from a kitchen project.
• Trend-following – The nature of most trends is that they will be replaced by newer trends after a relatively short period of time. While kitchen trends can cover numerous design aspects, they are most commonly related to the selection of specific colors for cabinetry and appliances. Trying to sell a home with a kitchen style that has gone out of fashion can actually make for a tougher sale as the new buyers negotiate with an eye on getting rid of “old” appliances.
• Personalizing the kitchen – While you may love a kitchen that looks and feels like diner, not all of your prospective buyers will. Much like going with trendy appliance colors, a “themed” kitchen may not add a lot of value, unless you find home buyers that truly appreciate your vision.

The process of planning a kitchen remodeling project for a home sale is a different than one where owners plan on staying for the long term. For the most cost-efficient remodeling project, new appliances as well as the overall design should stay fairly basic to afford maximal appreciation while appealing to as wide an audience as possible.

How to Care for your Oven Stove Range

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Earlier we covered How to Clean a Smooth Top Range so this is a more comprehensive look at how to care for your oven stove range.

If you have a self-cleaning oven you’ll want to consult the owner’s manual or contact the manufacturer for proper use of that feature. Self-cleaning ovens use high heat to burn off the residue inside the oven’s cavity for easy wipe up. If your oven racks are chrome you should not have them in the oven when using the self-clean feature as this can cause the chrome to pop off and will lead to premature failure of the parts. Likewise, drip pans are usually too thin to use in the self-clean mode and can warp under the heat. If in doubt, always consult the owner’s manual or the manufacturer.

Stained drip pans and bowls usually can’t be cleaned and will need to be replaced typically every 3 years or so.

Light bulbs can and will burn out. The most popular wattage is 40 and they are easy to change. Check with your owner’s manual for the proper bulb’s part number. If you can’t locate it please call our Parts Department at 757-437-1100 and they can help you out.

When it comes to cleaning knobs you’ll want to use a mild, non-abrasive cleaner and a soft rag or sponge. The numbers and letter can rub off over time so be sure to be gentle. If you have one or two knobs you just can’t get clean then put them in a basket on the top shelf of your dishwasher when you run a load dishes. If you need to replace a knob you can contact our Parts Department.

We occasionally hear from customers who have a hard time cleaning the glass in the door of their range. Any glass cleaner should work, but for especially hard to clean spots you can use a citrus based cleaner first followed by glass cleaner to remove the streaks.

Whenever you clean the control panel you should first spray your cleaning rag and use that to apply the cleaner to the panel. Do not spray cleaner directly onto the panel as the sensitive electronics could get damaged.

When doing this standard maintenance on your oven stove range and you come across any parts that should be replaced, just call our Parts Department at 757-437-1100 and have your manufacturer and model number handy. These can usually be found on the frame when the bottom drawer is open.

All the cleaning products needed can be found at all of our Super Store locations in Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and Newport News.

How CEE Tier Information on Appliances can Help you Save on Water and Energy Consumption

The Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE) is somewhat similar to the ENERGY STAR program in that its primary objective is to highlight and promote energy efficient appliances. This agency differs from ENERGY STAR in that it rates appliances that have already earned ENERGY STAR certifications with Tiers that define the most efficient appliances in each category. This intelligence can then be used by consumers to compare relative energy and water usage between appliances during the decision making process.

CEE Tiers are defined as follows:

* Tier I – This tier approximates the base level necessary to be ENERGY STAR certified, representing that the specific appliance is ranked in the top 25 percent of its category for energy efficiency and that it exceeds mandated standards by 20 percent. Much like ENERGY STAR rated products, these appliances are deemed to be cost effective due to accumulated energy and water savings and are widely available for purchase.
* Tier II – Appliances can earn CEE Tier II rankings by testing out with energy efficiencies that surpass benchmarks by 25%. While the CEE does not provide direct rebates, an increasing number of entities are making rebates available to consumers to ensure that the purchase of these appliances remains cost effective.
* Tier III – These appliances are considered to be the most energy efficient in each category. The purchase price of these appliances is typically at the high end of the range, and rebates are considered as a primary factor in making them cost effective. When available, rebates on Tier III appliances can be almost twice as much as those awarded for Tier II appliances.

CEE Tier information can reveal significant differences in the energy usage of appliances that have already earned ENERGY STAR certification. These energy savings, when combined with available rebates, can turn relatively expensive appliance purchases into cost effective investments that save money each month.

How to Prevent Bad Tasting Ice Cubes

 

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Did you notice bad tasting ice cubes over the holidays? Did a friend, neighbor or relative mention your ice didn’t taste right?

Our service department gets phone calls weekly from customers complaining about bad tasting ice and water, but this is rarely a service issue.

Water filters need to be replaced every six months depending on usage and the cleanliness of your water supply. The more water and ice you use, and the harder your water, the more often you need to change the filter.

Water filters should be changed at least every six months so we recommend having a spare filter on hand at all times.

The icemaker water supply goes through the refrigerator before entering the freezer so food spills, unsealed food, and bacteria growth in the refrigerator can cause bad tasting ice as well. The best way to handle these situations is to regularly and thoroughly clean your refrigerator with a baking soda and water mixture. Do not use bleach or ammonia inside a refrigerator. Your owner’s manual will also have manufacturer’s recommended cleaning practices in the use and care section.

If you’ve completed these recommendations and still have bad tasting ice, please call our service department at 757-437-1100 for more recommendations or a service appointment.

Blu-ray 101

Blu-ray is the name of the optical disc platform that has been designed with the intention of replacing the widely used format of digital video discs (DVDs). The technology gets its name from the blue laser that reads the information on the disc, at a rate which occurs at a higher storage speed than DVDs that are read by red lasers.

The advantages of Blu-ray include:

* Better picture qualityBlu-ray’s better picture quality starts with its increased resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 versus the standard DVD resolution of 720 x 480. The higher number of pixels available in the Blu-ray format results in far greater detail and picture clarity. The Blu-ray format also has deeper colors and enhanced contrasts.

* Better sound quality – Higher resolution audio formats deliver a richer sound experience that can rival movie theater audio.

* The Blu-ray format optimizes HDTV – Owners of HDTV screens can only optimize the picture from discs with the Blu-ray format due to the fact that DVDs are not designed with enough pixels for the display screen. Trying to integrate a DVD with a high resolution screen can result in a lower picture quality than that of a screen that doesn’t have HD technology.

* DVDs work in Blu-ray players – This avoids the situation where a new technology renders the one being replaced as unusable (VHS tapes versus DVD’s, for example). Being able to play DVDs means that a new Blu-ray owner doesn’t have to start from scratch in terms of a movie collection and can continue to play DVDs while adding Blu-ray movies.

As a relatively new technology, buying a Blu-ray player will still cost more than the DVD version. That being said, enhanced viewing experience is the name of the game for virtually all new technology in this category, which places Blu-ray in the middle of the next generation of video-related electronics.

The Reasons some Appliance Dealers Want to Keep Scratch and Dent Appliances a Secret

Scratch and dent appliances have been, as their name suggests, damaged to a minor extent while in storage at the warehouse, being shipped, or on display on the floor of a showroom. Damage to these appliances is cosmetic in nature, meaning that their functionality has not been impaired by any measure and they will run with the same efficiency as the same models that are fresh out of the box.

For consumers, scratch and dent appliances offer a long list of advantages, which is why many appliance dealers would prefer to keep this category a secret. These advantages include:

* Aggressive discounts from full retail prices – For many consumers, a scratch or dent is a deal breaker and retail appliance sellers know that they can’t sell even slightly flawed products at the same prices as those in pristine condition. Savvy shoppers, on the other hand, can buy these appliances at prices that are less than half the price of the same models at full retail.
* You might be able to negotiate an even lower price – As opposed to the regularly priced appliances on the showroom floor, you may be able to negotiate a deeper discount under circumstances that include flaws on the front of the appliance, an item that has been in stock for an extended period, or if the dealer is trying to clear space for newer models.
* The discounts on scratch and dent appliances often don’t preclude warranties – While the perception may be that a flawed appliance would not come with a warranty, scratch and dent pieces can be covered by the same warranty protection as the unblemished models.
* You may not even know it’s a scratch and dent piece once it has been installed – The scratch and dent moniker refers to a blemish on any surface of the appliance, meaning that a flaw on any surface besides the front or the top may be covered up, depending on how the piece is installed.
* Scratches and dents can happen to the best and newest models available – You can add even more value to your scratch and dent appliance purchase with blemished products from name brands.

The discounts available on scratch and dent appliances can either enable the purchase of models that might not otherwise fit into a family’s budget or make the purchase of a second appliance possible. In fact, with discounts of over 50%, it’s almost like having your own “Buy one, get one free” sale every day of the week.

East Coast Appliance and Electronics’ Witchduck Builder Store Announces Major Renovations in the Works

East Coast Appliance and Electronics is pleased to announce major renovations that are in the works for its Witchduck Builder Store. The renovation plan also includes moving the store down the street to its new address: 117 South Witchduck Rd., Virginia Beach, Va. 23462. The move to the new location will also nearly triple the size of the sales floor from the current 2500 square feet to 7000 square feet. The move and renovations are expected to be completed by January 1st, 2013.

Renovations at the Builder Direct store include:

• 15 vignettes featuring refrigerators, dishwashers, cooktops and wall ovens in a variety of configurations, designs and styles – Each vignette will be created with kitchen appliances from name brands including Fisher and Paykel, GE Monogram, Viking, and more.

• A Manhattan warehouse look and feel – The new design will feature the open architecture of a Manhattan warehouse with raw finishes and an industrial affect.

• An expanded inventory facilitated by the near tripling of the square footage of the sales floor.

The Builder Direct store, an offshoot from the East Coast Appliance and Electronics superstores, caters to architects, builders, and general contractors with personal service committed to providing the best solutions for any type of kitchen or electronics configuration. The services and solutions include professional deliveries of electronics and appliances, as well as flawless installation. These customized solutions and services also come with low price guarantees backed by East Coast Appliance and Electronics.

East Coast Appliance and Builder Direct can guarantee these low prices based on the company’s buying power as well as its membership in the Nationwide Marketing Group. Nationwide’s membership is comprised of over 3000 independent storeowners selling appliances, furniture, electronics and installation services with combined revenues of over $12 billion. The accumulated buying power of the members inside this group leads to low unit pricing on appliances and electronics that puts East Coast Appliance and Builder Direct in a position where those low prices can be passed on and guaranteed to its customers.

“The new Builder Direct Store will be a great extension of East Coast Appliance and Electronics’ commitment to providing the best prices, products and services”, said Rob Nicholson, president and owner of East Coast Appliance & Electronics. He added, “We are very excited about being able to offer our commercial customers continued exceptional service, an expanded inventory, and everyday low prices at our new location.”

In addition to the Builder Direct store in Virginia Beach, East Coast Appliance & Electronics operates superstores in Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, and Newport News, Virginia. The company also offers parts and service through a separate location in Virginia Beach.
East Coast Appliance & Electronics is the largest independently owned appliance and electronics operation in Virginia, offering all the major appliance and electronics brands. For more information on the Builder Direct store, visit: http://eastcoastappliance.com/index.html

Press release distributed by Gervais Group. See original press release at https://www.gervaisgroupllc.com/newsroom.html

Counting Kitchen Appliance Features with Frigidaire Dealers

While Frigidaire dealers try to tally the total number of new features in the new releases of Frigidaire kitchen appliances, let’s take a look at just some of the options and features that come with their new refrigerators, ranges, and dishwashers.

Frigidaire refrigerators:
• Frigidaire’s French Door refrigerators have been engineered for more storage space on the inside while maintaining the same dimensions on the outside so you can store more of everything.
• The new water filtration system is the best in its class, providing crystal clear water and ice.
• Crisper drawers that monitor and control humidity levels to keep fruits and vegetables fresher for a longer period of time
• French Door models are designed with full width storage drawers to make storing wide items a snap.
• Larger bins give you the option of storing large containers (up to a gallon) on refrigerator
shelves or in drawers.

Frigidaire dishwashers:
• Frigidaire dishwashers are designed with spraying arms that encompass the entire interior to provide better cleaning.
• Frigidaire’s SaharaDry technology gets the wash load completely dry to eliminate the need for towel drying.
• These dishwashers are certified by the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF), meaning that they eliminate 99.9% of all bacteria in every wash load
• Frigidaire has expanded the wash load capacity to be able to wash up to 14 place settings. The utensil basket has also been expanded to be able to hold up to 180 items, reducing the need for running multiple loads or hand washing items that don’t fit in smaller dishwashers.
• Smudge and fingerprint resistant exteriors so that the machine always looks great and is easy to clean.

Frigidaire ranges and cooktops:
• Frigidaire offers several induction cooking options including hybrids that incorporate both induction and electric/gas heating elements. The largest of the induction heating elements can power up to 3,400 watts to bring even your largest containers to a boil quickly.
• Ovens are offered with single fan convection options to distribute heat evenly through the oven.
• One touch buttons to cook items perfectly – Options for one touch cooking range from chicken nuggets to pizza.

Frigidaire dealers have the high-tech solutions for households of any size and kitchens of any configuration. For more information, visit: http://eastcoastappliance.com/index.html

The Thing that Makes Samsung Dealers So Happy

Stores that can consistently offer appliances and electronics that deliver value, quality and high performance at everyday low prices are constantly busy with repeat and new customers who arrive knowing that they are going to find exactly what they want. This is why Samsung Dealers and their customers are so happy; and why not, with appliances and electronics that are loaded with next generation features that can turn televisions and refrigerators into communication hubs and allow wash and dry loads to be monitored and controlled via smart phone.

Here are just a few of the Samsung products that are making Samsung dealers and their customers very happy:

Samsung Plasma TVs – Samsung Plasma TVs have built their reputation on their lifelike high definition pictures and have now added interactive features that both enhance user experience and facilitate various other services such as web browsing, numerous app options, games, calendar/scheduling, etc. Samsung Plasma TVs can also be reconfigured and updated with new technologies as they are introduced in the next generation of upgrades. These televisions are also ENERGY STAR rated with energy savings that exceed requirements by approximately 26%.
Samsung refrigerators with LED screensSamsung’s web-connected refrigerators are engineered with a variety of apps that can suggest recipes, provide weather updates, stream music via Pandora, run a Twitter feed, and keep the family connected with scheduling, calendars, and notes. The refrigerators are also ENERGY STAR rated.
Samsung’s washers with LCD screens and remote capability – New technology in Samsung’s front load washer’s can shorten wash cycles by 15 minutes on average. These washers have also been engineered to be monitored and operated via an app on a smart phone so that owners don’t need to be home to check on or control their wash loads.
Samsung dryers with LCD screens and remote capabilitySamsung dryers feature moisture-sensing technology that assesses when items are dry and then shuts off the drying cycle. This reduces wear and tear on items in the dryer and less drying time saves energy as well. These dryers can be operated via the same type of smart phone app that enables remote control of the above-mentioned washers.

These new products are making both Samsung dealers and their customers very happy. For more information on the next generation of Samsung products, visit: http://eastcoastappliance.com/index.html

The Three Things Whirlpool Dealers Wish You Knew

When you’ve got something good, you want to tell people about it and Whirlpool dealers want you to know about their ranges, refrigerators and dishwashers. Whether you are doing a complete refurbish or replacing a single appliance, Whirlpool has products that deliver great performance while complementing the overall design and appearance of any kitchen.

Whirlpool offers a wide variety of ranges that make cooking easy, save time, and save energy while looking great. These ovens are packed with features including:

Many of Whirlpool’s ranges offer large capacity ovens – Having an oven that doesn’t restrict the meal size means you’ll be able to create any number of different meals whether you’re cooking for two or for your extended family.
Easy convection cooking – Whirlpool takes the mystery out of convection cooking with a feature that converts regular cooking temperatures to their equivalent in convection cooking.
Fast preheating – Whirlpool puts all the heating elements in its ranges to work to preheat at 25% faster than normal ovens.

Whirlpool refrigerators come in a variety of sizes and styles to make them at home in any kitchen. Optional features include:

FreshFlow technology – This intelligent technology monitors and regulates the environment in the refrigerator to keep food fresh for 25% longer than other refrigerators.
Select models that set the standard for energy efficiency – Many of Whirlpool’s refrigerators are ENERGY STAR rated, meaning they’ll also save money on your energy bills.
Adaptive Defrost – This technology keeps frozen foods tasting great while saving 12% in energy costs.

Whirlpool dishwashers can save time by eliminating the need for pre-scrubbing pots, pans, and dishes while turning amazingly clean wash loads. Features include:

PowerScour – The PowerScour technology uses 40 jets to get rid of baked and/or dried on foods without a pre-soak or pre-scrub.
Sensor Cycle – This feature monitors the load to ensure that the right amounts of water and energy are used to get silverware, dishes and cookware clean.
Energy Savings – These are the most energy efficient dishwashers in the category.

So now you know what Whirlpool dealers want you to know about Whirlpool kitchen products. For more information, visit: http://eastcoastappliance.com/index.html