Archive for the ‘Ranges’ Category

Three days left to get an appliance stimulus rebate

March 4, 2011

If you haven’t registered yet, you still have three days left to cash in on the 2011 Appliance Stimulus.

The deals are pretty exceptional, seeing as you get at least a $100 rebate on most dishwashers and refrigerators and our average customer buying a washer and dryer pair is getting a $150 rebate ($50 each, plus a bonus $50 for buying a qualifying pair).

Plus, that stove or dryer you needed last March that didn’t qualify for a rebate? This time it does. You can get at least a $100 rebate on most stoves.

See our appliance stimulus webpage for full details on rebate amounts, participating brands and — most importantly — how to register.

Missed last year’s ‘Cash for Appliances’?

February 23, 2011

We WERE the news for a couple days.

My appliance career peaked too early, last March to be exact.

The apex of discount appliances happened March 1, 2010 when the “Cash for Appliances” appliance rebate reservations began in MN.

The appliance stimulus, as we refer to it, promised money back on refrigerators, freezers, washers and dishwashers.

I was in heaven for that week. People got as excited about appliance deals then as we are every day here.

Many tried to take advantage of those appliance rebates, but only about 30,000 got to cash in their appliance “clunkers.” Many others were left without the appliance deal and are still waiting to replace.

Our appliance sales remained good in the months that followed, don’t get me wrong, but people still asked about the possibility of getting a big rebate for replacing an appliance. And we missed having a appliance rebate stimulus, too, frankly.

So we made our own :)

Beginning now, you can reserve a Appliance Stimulus Rebate at Warners’ Stellian, good Feb. 26 through March 6.

What’s different?

  • We decided to included non-Energy Star products so people could get rebates things like ranges/stoves, dryers, ovens and cooktops that didn’t qualify for the government appliance rebates.
  • You’re not limited to just one rebate, which means you can get up to $1,200 total in rebates. Buy a laundry pair and get rebates on both the washer and dryer (and grab an extra $50 on qualifying pairs!). You are, however, limited to one rebate per appliance category with the exception of cooking; for instance, you can get a rebate on both a cooktop and wall oven.
  • Most major brands are participating, though we can’t offer rebates on UMRP products (see store for details)
  • See more details here

You must register for a rebate online so we can e-mail you a confirmation page. Print it out and present it at any of our 7 Minnesota kitchen showrooms, and we’ll help you get a super good appliance deal on something you’re just going to love putting in your home.

Here we go again!

How long does a stove last?

February 17, 2011

This post is the latest in the series “How long do appliances last?”

Yup, you're stuck with it for the next 16 or 17 years. So you better be sure it's the right fit for you and your family (see how I just made another baby-with-appliances pic happen?).

The average lifespan of an electric range and gas range is 16 years and 17 years, respectively, according to data published by Appliance Magazine in 2010. The life span reflects how long the first owner of a range owned it, which doesn’t necessarily mean that it broke down.

Considering your range, statistically, will be able to drive before you kick it out of the house — the longest lifespan of any appliance in this series — you should probably invest the most in it.

(Or at least that’s my rationalization. But you may borrow it.)

I love comparing appliances to cars (here, here and here just to name a few), and this reminds me of my Toyota Corolla, which I hate. I shared my feelings with my dad, who asked, “Then why did you buy it?”

Being practical, I of course bought it for the reliability.

Being wise, my dad replied, “That just means you’re going to hate it for longer.”

Dang him being right.

The good news is our sales associates do a pretty good job asking you the kind of questions that really get at what you like, don’t like and really need in a new appliance. I like to think we’re the eHarmony of appliance retailers.

Verdict: Buy a range you love, because you’re going to be loving it for a long time. Or else you’ll end up cooking on my Toyota Corolla…or something like that.

 

How long do appliances last?

January 21, 2011

Dramatization. Warners' Stellian responsibly recycles all replaced appliances.

Replacing a broken down appliance ranks among our least favorite situations as a retailer, because our customers might not be so excited to getting a new refrigerator as we would hope. Instead, these shoppers meet us in many points along the appliance mourning spectrum (denial, anger, bargaining, depression).

I recall countless conversations consoling those bereaved, especially, of more “recent” appliance purchases — which, though a bit longer than 10 years ago, struck owners as not lasting as long as they should. Or certainly, not as long as “the old one.”

“They just don’t make ‘em like they used to,” I offer, and most agree and move into the last stage of appliance grief: acceptance.

What we didn’t generally get into was how they make ‘em today. Specifically, how long should your appliances last?

Over the next few (indeterminate unit of time), I will get into that. And I will throw in some other fun number factoids (bonus!).

Stove drip pans cleaning tips

January 20, 2011

I've got you covered on cleaning conundrums.

Drip pans for stoves rank among the toughest cleaning jobs in the kitchen.

Grime on aluminum burner pans, which fit under the electric coils on your range, often seemed to me to be resistant to scrubbing.

And they probably are, if you’re using regular cleaners and scrubbers.

Look familiar?

But my two tricks for cleaning drip pans — one for weekly cleaning and one for deeper cleaning — will keep them looking new and thus, keep you from replacing them so often!

Bonus: Clean drip pans for your electric stove don’t just serve cosmetic purposes; keeping the surface reflective ensures the most efficient use of heat, meaning you’ll use less energy when you keep your burners and drip pans clean.

Spot cleaning burner pans

For day to day drips and stains, make sure the burner’s completely cooled and pull it up and out from the stove top (see photo below). I usually remove the drip pan to my sink to avoid peripheral messes. Wet the drip pan and sprinkle on a liberal amount of my co-favorite household cleaner, Bar Keeper’s Friend (name the other in the comments for a gold star). Use a rag to work the cleaner into a paste and polish off the mess. Rinse and dry thoroughly before replacing the pans.

Carefully remove the electric burner before cleaning its drip pan.

Deep cleaning drip pans

Pick a time when you don’t need to use your sink or stove for several hours, like right before bed or work. Again, wait until the stove is cool and remove the burners. Put each burner pan in separate gallon plastic bags. Add 1/4 cup of ammonia to each and fill the remainder with hot tap water. Close the bags and let them sit overnight (or for several hours).

Then, drain the bags and scrub off the loosened mess. Rinse well before applying any other cleaners, as ammonia can create toxic fumes when mixed. Rinse and dry thoroughly before replacing.

 

Let me know if you try this and how it worked for you!

HOW TO: clean an oven without oven cleaner

January 19, 2011

After an attempt to broil salmon last week prompted cacophonous disagreement with our smoke alarms, my roommates and I entered into a game of chicken with our manual clean oven.

Basically, it needs to be cleaned, and we don’t want to clean it.

I know it’s silly because my mind contains more appliance cleaning and maintenance knowledge than God graces on just anyone, but you know what they say about the cobbler’s kids.

Plus, it’s a royal pain. And it’s easy to make the excuse, “But I don’t have any oven cleaner!” or “I hate the idea of using harsh oven cleaner!” or “‘The Biggest Loser’ is on!”

Well, in efforts to invalidate the first two excuses and motivate me — and probably you too — here are three non-oven cleaner cleaning methods that really work.

  1. Ron Popeil solution
    For the “Set It And Forget It” overnight set: Pour ¼ cup ammonia and 2 cups of warm water in a bowl in your oven, and close it up tight. If you’re at home during this, make sure you open a window so no one gets sick. You can clean out the dirty oven with a scrubby sponge the next day.
  2. Mike Wallace solution
    If you have 60 minutes, fill a spray bottle with 1 tablespoon Borax (which also works great as a cheap laundry detergent booster and all-purpose cleaner!), 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil dishwashing soap and a quart of warm water. Spray the oven walls, scrub it clean after an hour and rinse thoroughly.
  3. Jesus Jones solution
    If you want it clean right here, right now, a paste of baking soda and vinegar left on the oven cavity surface could work well. Be careful to cover the holes of the gas line if you have a gas range really REALLY well, because if they get clogged, that’s a bad thing. If you go this route, you should be able to scrape off food mess with a spatula. Wipe out the oven thoroughly afterwards.

DIY Network to feature our kitchen showroom on remodel show

December 30, 2010

Appliance specialist Joe Warner suggested this LG gas range for Carrie and Robert, who enjoy cooking and baking.

The DIY Network filmed again yesterday at our Warners’ Stellian Edina showroom, this time for “I Hate My Kitchen.”

Each episode, homeowners receive smart design help to maximize their budget to make their dream kitchens a reality.

>>See photos of the filming

It was fun to watch the crews document the shopping experience of our customers, homeowners Carrie and Robert.

Carrie and Robert are doing a “gut job” of the kitchen in their South Minneapolis home. (Carrie joked that she didn’t let Robert buy a snow blower last winter because she was so set on saving for their kitchen remodel!)

First, we learn about Carrie and Robert:

  • They enjoy cooking (lots of soups!) and baking, and are ready to move from electric to gas cooking.
  • While still a good size for a South Minneapolis kitchen (the home was built in the 1920s), they still want to maximize their space.
  • The current dishwasher is too noisy and doesn’t really offer them much versatility.
  • Carrie and Robert plan on spending a good deal of time in this current house.
  • The appliances will need to complement custom cabinetry, new floors and counter tops.

Based on what he found out from Carrie and Robert, our appliance specialist (and my brother!) Joe Warner suggested the following:

LG 5-burner gas range in stainless steel (LRG3093ST)

Carrie and Robert currently has an LG ceramic top electric range. They like the brand, but want the power and responsiveness of gas cooking. The four main burners offer a range of temperatures, for a low simmer at 5,000 BTUs to a power boil at 17,000 BTUs — and the burners can all be rearranged. So, Carrie can simmer two soups on the back burners while using higher heat on the front-most burners. Also, the fifth burner offers a place to heat oblong pans or place a skillet for breakfast items. The heavy-duty grates offer a continuous surface to easily move pots and pans around.

The oven, with a gorgeous blue finish, is a big, 5.4 cu. ft. capacity, which can accommodate pretty much anything Carrie and Robert will throw at it.

Basically, I’m super jealous.

LG fully integrated steam dishwasher (LDF7932ST)

At 50 decibels, it doesn’t get much quieter than this LG dishwasher. It’s so quiet, in fact, that LED lights tell you when it’s operating and when it’s not. Adjustable racks will accommodate nearly any size pot or pan Carrie and Robert throw at it, and there are even wineglass holders (which Carrie noted will get plenty of use).

Steam bursts through hardened on messes for pots and pans, yet is gentle enough to use with those wineglasses.

Perhaps best of all, the fully integrated finish tucks away the control panel on top of the door and the stainless interior means Carrie and Robert can enjoy the looks for a long time.

How gorgeous is that? Robert and Carrie like this model because:

  • An automatic ice maker means Robert can retire that title from his own name :)
  • The freezer on the bottom configuration and wide, two-door refrigerator allows for plenty of eye-level fresh storage within easy reach
  • The shallow, counter top-depth maximizes the space in their 10′-12′ kitchen

I’m so excited for Carrie and Robert to get delivery on the appliances they picked out. I’ll post pictures afterward in a couple weeks, but unfortunately, we’ll have to wait until the episode airs in September for the big reveal of their custom kitchen remodel.

Convection oven baking tips

December 20, 2010
.christmas snowflake food

It's cookie season. Do you need to brush up on your convection baking knowledge?

 

Are you taking full advantage of your convection oven (if you don’t know what that is, read What is convection?)?

You probably already know to decrease your oven temperature 25 degrees and decrease the bake time about 25 percent for convection oven vs. conventional oven.

But if you already know how to use convection cooking — and you probably do if you partake in holiday baking and cookie exchanges — I bet you’ll still learn something from Dacor’s convection oven baking tips (PDF).

Also, if if your convection oven cooking times seem to be longer now than when you first bought your convection oven, perhaps you need to clean your convection filter.

In a convection oven, the fan draws air through the filter. So especially if you do a lot of roasting,  grease particles will stick to the filter and could obstruct the airflow. Check your use and care manual for instructions on how to clean your filter. Some, like Dacor convection oven filter, are dishwasher safe.

Cleaning tips: How to clean a stove

December 1, 2010

Not sure how to regain a clean stove after all that Thanksgiving cooking? Cleaning stove tops can be a pain, but consider that dirty cooking surfaces don’t reflect heat as well, meaning that you waste energy and compromise performance when using a messy stove.

Instead, try these useful stove cleaning tips that have worked for me.

When cleaning a smooth top stove, first use a razor blade (yes, I’m serious) to gently scrape off any burnt on food residue. Sometimes smooth top stoves burners discolor with time, but I’ve found that Mr. Clean Magic Eraser works well to fade dark stains. Apply cooktop cleaner (which we sell for about $5 at all Warners’ Stellian stores) with a soft rag or paper towel for general cleaning. Cooktop cleaner also gives a nice, smooth finish to glass- and ceran-top stoves you can’t get from soap and water, sorry!

To clean a gas stove top — like I have at home — remove all grates and burner caps to the sink and simply use soap and water to clean. I scrub off all the food residue that ends up around the burners by sprinkling on some Barkeeper’s Friend and rubbing it off with a moistened towel. Again, the discolorations (I have a white stove) are removed by Magic Eraser and some elbow grease.

The most important tip I have for cleaning gas stoves, though, is properly replacing the now-clean burner caps, as misplacement could cause stove lighting issues.

Any other good tips on how to clean a stove top?

Cyber Monday appliance deals on kitchen packages, refrigerators, washers and more

November 29, 2010

Note: this post refers to the 2010 sale prices. see my posts tagged Cyber Monday for current postings about Cyber Monday deals.

Click for more deals

Click for more deals

I don’t usually get this sales-y, but we’re offering our best Cyber Monday 2010 appliance discounts ever this year.

Seriously, Warners’ Stellian has great deals on refrigerators, washers and dryers, dishwashers, stoves and ranges and microwaves, as well as kitchen packages.

Click for more deals

Click for more deals

Our Cyber Monday Sale is two days only (while quantities last), with some deals ending today.

And remember, we deliver for free to the Twin Cities metro on orders $499 and up and ship for free nationwide on appliance orders $1,999 and over.


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