One of the perks / annoyances with being a home owner, is that time where an appliance finally gives up the ghost and needs replacement. Over the past 10 years I’ve replaced my fridge, oven, boiler, water heater, and pretty soon my dishwasher and washing machine are going to head to that grand recycling yard in the sky.
Honestly – I really don’t need to replace the dishwasher, but here’s the catch. A brand new 24″ dishwasher will run me about $800. New racks? $400. It really makes no sense to me that half the cost of a dishwasher are these flimsy metal racks which eventually rust out, wear out, and fall apart. It makes me really wonder how much the rest of the hardware is actually worth.
Now I always heard the phrase “they don’t make them like they used to anymore” and never really got it. Truth be told, I always aligned with the mantra “new is always better.” Who doesn’t like shiny new things? While that is not entirely true (look at the reviews of any big appliance, there really isn’t any option that someone hasn’t complained about).
Tonight I decided to see just how old what I’ve got left actually are. Washing machine? 1994. Not bad. Dishwasher? 2007. I guess that’s OK. My old boiler was a solid 25 years old before the cast iron cracked and it began to leak water all over the floor. It was a good run. The water heater I had? Maybe 10 years before it needed to be swapped out.
Then there’s this thing.
I took down the model number and translated it. February, 1978. I did not really believe it until I found this…
It is older than I am, works as well as the day I moved in 10 years ago, and I am pretty sure if I was so inclined I could make beef jerky in it. It is not pretty. It has no wifi. No app. It is certainly not energy efficient. Back in 1979 though? I could walk into a store and pick it up for $188. In today’s money, factoring inflation, that is about $700.
Today I could walk in to the local Lowes and for a little over $700 get a brand new GE 7.2 cubic foot electric dryer. White. No wifi. No app. Plain and simple. The question is though – will it last over 40 years like the one I have? The reviews are good, but unless the one I’ve got is rendered into ash – I’ll be keeping it, because they simply don’t make them like they used to.