Why Upgrade?

Growing up, my dad would always say, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” This is how I’ve been taught to ‘save money’ and take care of the things I have so they’ll last forever. Unfortunately, Dad, times have changed.

Refrigerators seem to be that appliance that people use until it falls apart; because of my Dad’s philosophy, I have always been a firm believer that upgrading is the last resort. But what people don’t know, is that by keeping that 10 year old refrigerator and passing up the new models, they are actually spending more money and settling for less. The main difference between an old and new refrigerator is the electrical consumption. With better temperature control, new features, more space, and lower noise levels, these new refrigerators are much more efficient, and save you money at the same time!

By consumers ‘indulging’ in new, upgraded appliances, energy use has dropped over 50% between 1987 and 2010. Appliances that have especially helped save energy are refrigerators with the Energy Star rating. Why is this so important? “Refrigerators that earn the Energy Star rating are about 15% more energy efficient than models that meet the minimum federal energy efficiency standard.” That’s 15% more energy saved on top of the amount of energy being saved with a new model refrigerator! If that’s not enough to encourage one to upgrade, switching to a new model is also better for the environment. Using energy efficient appliances in your home will significantly reduce the greenhouse gas emissions that have been a growing concern.

So, if it ain’t broke… that doesn’t mean you can’t upgrade!

Content courtesy of:

Manila Standard Today: http://manilastandardtoday.com/2013/06/04/why-you-should-upgrade-your-appliances/

Energy Star: http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=find_a_product.showProductGroup&pgw_code=RF

Remodeling Your Kitchen on a Budget

So your New Year’s resolution is to finally update that kitchen, but you don’t have stockpiles of cash to do it all at once. Two things to remember:

  • You don’t have to do it all at once. Start with the smaller changes while you save for the big ones.
  • Plan ahead. Have at least an idea of measurements and color scheme of your new kitchen before forging ahead—this will save you many headaches.

As with most goals, we often get too impatient—especially those involving the most popular area of the house. But where we lack in cash, Continue reading

How to Prepare Your Kitchen for the Perfect Thanksgiving Meal

You too can have a deliriously happy Thanksgiving with by preparing your kitchen appliances.

It’s the last thing on everyone’s mind, but the worst thing that could happen on Thanksgiving: your appliances malfunctioning. If your home is the stage for your holiday meal, your appliances are your stage crew. Keep them happy, and the show will go on.

While your recipe selection is crucial to the perfect Thanksgiving meal, those dishes can’t happen without a reliable, functioning kitchen. Avoid “pizza night” by taking a few cues from our appliance experts: Continue reading

Sparks Flying… in Your Microwave?

Did sparks fly (not the romantic kind) while you were in the middle of heating up your pizza pocket?

An arcing microwave, which is the likely cause of the sparks, happens when the center rack isn’t properly fitted in the rack holder. If arcing repeatedly occurs, it could cause damage to the microwave’s interior paint, as well as permanent damage.

If this paint has already worn off and you continue to see sparks in your microwave, you can touch up the interior with an appliance paint, found at any appliance specialty shop like Appliance Factory Parts. Check out our video above for more details.

3 Things You Can Make in The Microwave Besides Popcorn

For some, the microwave is the kitchen. There’s nothing more satisfying than a quick “zap” to turn cold pizza into its original glory from the night before, or the smell of popcorn warming up the kitchen during opening credits. But sometimes we need to mix things up a little. Here are some creative (and quick) recipe ideas for your microwave, from our Microwave Meals Pinterest board.

Quesadillas. These Mexican appetizers are quick, crazy versatile and cost very little to make. They can be eaten alone, served as simple party appetizers or stuffed with gourmet ingredients and paired with your favorite homemade salsas and other sides.
Quick step: Fill with cheddar and/or Monterey Jack cheeses with a dash of your favorite hot sauce and/or salsa. Microwave for 30 to 45 seconds.
Step up: Replace the above recipe with Colorado goat cheese, spinach and sliced portobello mushrooms. To make it a hearty meal, add some grilled chicken breast. Microwave on a dish covered with plastic wrap for 45 seconds to a minute.

Edamame. These fresh soybeans are a popular snack in Asian-Pacific cultures. They’re not only a filling appetizer, but they’re also packed with carbohydrates, protein, dietary fiber and important vitamins. 
Quick step: Steam frozen edamame in the microwave in a zippered plastic bag with a tablespoon of water for two minutes or until not frozen. Serve with sea salt and soy sauce.
Step up: Steam edamame and serve with a dip.

Chocolate chip cookies (well, just one). Sometimes all you need is one chocolate chip cookie. And not the kind that come in a package that try to feign that luscious, moist texture you can only get from a fresh batch. Hey, guess what? You can get that fresh taste in a solo version!
Quick step: Melt one tablespoon of butter in a microwave safe mug. Add one tablespoon of white sugar, one tablespoon of brown sugar, a few drops of vanilla, a pinch of kosher salt and finally, as many chocolate chips as you want. Microwave for 45 seconds to a minute and enjoy.
Step up: Is there such thing as a step up to a fresh chocolate chip cookie? Let us know by commenting below.

Product Review: “GFE29HSDSS” is French for “Large and in Charge”

By Ali McNally

This French door refrigerator is what GE calls the GFE29HSDSS, also known to non-appliance dorks as a “Pretty Big Refrigerator.” Actually, it’s a French-door, meaning all of your fresh food stays at eye-level and all of your ice cream and pizza treats stay in the freezer drawer on the bottom.

GE recently rolled out an advanced water filtration system for its newer, fancier lines of refrigerators, including this model. These filters remove several pharmaceutical-related substances found in many rural and municipal water supplies. While no one’s sure of the long-term effects of pharmaceuticals in drinking water, it doesn’t hurt to filter out that stuff anyway. Who knows what could happen.

Get in there! Click for a larger view.

Gremlin scares aside, let’s get back to how gigantic this refrigerator is. This GE French door model has about 29 cu. ft. of space, which is almost a studio apartment in some cities. Let’s not forget about how the side-panel lighting makes your food look more attractive, like it belongs on your mom’s Pinterest board.

And don’t be fooled by the rocks that we’ve got in the water and ice dispenser (get it?) , because this refrigerator has another ice maker in the freezer drawer. That’s twice the ice for pranking entertaining.

Finally, this refrigerator also comes equipped with its own cockpit temperature control unit right in the giant drinking water dispenser, which could fit your entire head! …Or a whole water pitcher, depending on what kind of person you are.

MSRP: $2,699
Appliance Factory Outlet: $1,929
You save: $770

Find a location or contact our Internet sales division.

Pros:

  • Tons of space, adjustable shelving and twice the ice-making capacity.
  • French-doors and lighting give fresh food more visibility.
  • Stainless steel finish at a great price.
Cons:
  • Could be too large for a smaller household.
  • Do you really need two ice makers?
Did you buy this refrigerator? Leave a review and let us know what you think!

How to Attempt Stainless Steel Scratch Removal

Stainless steel—it’s modern, durable, and attractive until scratch disaster strikes. Here are some tips to remove stainless steel scratches. While these tips may help lighten scratches, stainless steel scratches can be extremely difficult to remove and often times are irreversible.

Because stainless steel comes in a variety of finishes, it’s always best to first check with your manufacturer for recommendations before undertaking a cosmetic stainless steel repair.

For fine scratches, use vegetable oil. Simply pour vegetable oil on a paper towel and rub it onto the surface. Remove the excess oil with a cloth.

For deep scratches, use a professional scratch removal kit such as Scratch-B-Gone, recommends Frank Benton, a longtime appliance service technician from BrandSource Service in Denver. This product will provide you with a step-by-step process for scratch removal and can help in some circumstances.

Unfortunately, stainless steel scratches are very difficult and sometimes are impossible to remove. While Scratch-B-Gone or another removal product may help some, these products don’t provide a guaranteed solution. We hope these tips have prevented your kitchen from resembling an elementary school’s art room with art projects blocking unsightly stainless steel scratches.

*Always buff with the direction of the metal. If you buff against the grain, you will create additional scratches!

*Beware of using sandpaper or steel wool to buff the scratch. These materials can dull the appearance of the stainless steel finish.

5 Easy Kitchen Upgrades to Increase Your Home’s Value

Layering of Lighting courtesy of loghomes.com

Most real estate agents agree the kitchen remodel is among the safer investments when thinking of changing your home to increase its resale value. You don’t have to be an experienced contractor to remodel your kitchen. There are many simple, do-it-yourself remodels that can result in a significant overall return on your investment.

Stainless steel timeless. Image courtesy OurDreamInterior.com
  • Paint: Changing the paint in your kitchen is a simple upgrade with potential for a significant return. Keep paint colors neutral to appeal to a wide range of buyers.
  • Backsplash: Backsplashes add color and sophistication to a kitchen.  While the thought of applying tile yourself might sound intimidating, it’s actually a fairly simple task.  Click here to learn how to add a tile backsplash in your kitchen.
  • Refinish Cabinets: Outdated cabinets have a significantly negative impact on the overall appearance of your kitchen. Add a faux cherry wood finish to your cabinets and upgrade to modern cabinet handles for a simple, aesthetic improvement.
  • Stainless Steel: Stainless steel appliances are highly desired among home buyers.  As your appliances age, replace them with stainless steel upgrades in preparation for when it’s time to sell.
  • Kitchen Island: If your kitchen does not have a built-in island, consider purchasing a rolling island. Islands are a big ticket with home buyers looking for extra counter space with flexible options.

Summertime Recipes! Burgers & Salad

Summertime is here again! The sun is warm, the thunderstorms are a-kickin’ and the smell of good ol’ charcoal or.. propane, if you prefer, is in the air. It’s time to ready up the grill and get cooking.

Here are two easy-peasy recipes for a great summer night: Black bean burgers & Cucumber dill salad.

Black Bean Burger Recipe.

Click to enlarge, then print!

Click to enlarge, then print!

Kitchen Remodeling & Built-in Appliances Before and After

We don’t just sell appliances, we’re also the recommended trade partner of Brand Source Handyman & Remodeling Contractors. Our custom installation crew can do some amazing things with granite countertops, flooring, cabinetry and built-in appliances. Here are some before and after photos– these projects took less than an a day for each project.

Custom Countertops, Tile & Built-in Appliances

Before: Grubby countertops, old black & white appliances.

After: Beautiful granite countertops, custom stainless steel built-in appliances and tile. What an upgrade!

Built-in Stainless Steel Double Wall Ovens

Before: A vintage 50′s wall oven complete with pastel blue porcelain. Definitely time for an upgrade.
After: A beautiful stainless steel and glass double wall oven inlayed into brick. Timeless.

Our custom installation crew really busted their butts on these modifications! Does your home need upgrading? If you’re interested in exploring your options for remodeling your home, call 303-758-5808 to find out what we can do for you. Thank you to the custom install crew for taking photos of their amazing work!

Should I Buy Stainless Steel Appliances?

Stainless steel is a timeless look that matches almost any interior, although some models can be a bit pricier. Some think stainless steel is hard to clean and while it does smudge easier than other appliance varieties, cleaning them is not a huge issue. Here are a few things you should know about stainless steel before you purchase:

  • Stainless Steel appliances can increase the value of your home.
  • Stainless steel is timeless. Color fads come and go, but the metallic finish of stainless steel is here to stay.
  • Stainless Steel lasts longer and doesn’t discolor like other varieties.
  • Stainless steel resists rust, pitting and corrosion.
  • Chromium inside helps the steel “heal itself” as small scratches disappear when oxidation occurs on the surface. The shine of stainless steel comes from the chromium in the metal alloy.
  • Some stainless steel refrigerators are finger-print resistant. If you have small kids, this is a great way to ensure you won’t be wiping down your appliances every two-and-a-half seconds.

See how fancy this kitchen looks? Stainless steel is a timeless look. Image courtesy OurDreamInterior.com

The look of stainless steel is more affordable than you think. Appliance Factory Outlet & Mattresses has a wide variety of stainless steel appliances for 30 to 60 percent off MSRP. We often have stainless kitchen packages for under $2,000—just check out our ad every Sunday in the Denver Post—we also post it on our website.

Mother’s Day Special: The History of Modern Dishwashers

Image from Mental-Floss.com

Making Women Happy since 1886.

The first modern dishwasher was designed and invented by a woman who had never washed a dish in her life. 

Josephine Cochrane, grand-daughter of the man who invented the steam boat, hand-built the dishwasher by making the racks out of wire and placing them into a copper boiler. To make it automated and save her servants the trouble (and saving her fine china), she attached a motor to a wheel that sprayed the water down on the dishes. In 1886, the first modern-day dishwasher was born. When her friends heard of the new contraption, they started ordering them from her, and in 1893, when Cochrane showcased the invention at the Chicago World’s Fair, it became a hit. 

In the 1920s, models became available with permanent plumbing installed, and soon after a man named William Howard Livens invented one small enough for use in regular households. Although his invention was not successful, in the 1940s electric drying elements were added to aid in heating the water and drying. 

Mostly restaurants and hotels picked up the automatic dishwasher at first, but by the 1970s, dishwashers were a commonplace domestic item in the United States. Over 60% of American homes have automatic dishwashers, and they’ve come a long way since their 1940s counterparts. Though the basics have stayed the same, dishwashers are now available with stainless steel interiors, hard-food disposals and better cleaning technology (like the Maytag MDB6769AW). 

The first dishwasher contraption by Josephine Cochrane.

The first modern dishwasher: I don't think this baby will fit underneath your countertops.

With the immense success of Ms. Cochrane’s invention, she went on to start the Garis-Cochran Manufacturing Company, which eventually got acquired by KitchenAid and Whirlpool. Whirlpool is now one of the largest appliance manufacturers in the world, owning not just KitchenAid, but Jenn-Air, Amana and Maytag, as well. 

As an ode to the mother of dishwashers, we’re celebrating Mother’s Day with special discounts on dishwashers. Stop by your local Appliance Factory Outlet this week to check out what deals we’ve got going on, or sign up for our newsletter to get exclusive discounts.

Most Energy Efficient Appliances: Dishwashers/Part 2 [VIDEO]

Here’s part two in our series about energy efficient appliances. The video features three different dishwashers, and below is a review of the Bosch Ascenta dishwasher.

Best Energy Efficient Dishwashers

The Bosch Ascenta SHX5AL05UC is one of our favorite dishwashers, and with good reason. Bosch is heralded for making energy efficiency work with style, offering hidden controls and stainless steel. The interior is also stainless steel, which traps in heat and sanitizes the dishes without extra energy. The dishwasher also comes with an optimum wash sensor which automatically adjusts water levels to how dirty your dishes are.

The dishwasher doesn’t have a heated dry feature, but uses SaniDry technology that dries dishes through condensation. On top of that, the heating element at the bottom of the dishwasher is hidden—most dishwashers leave that heating element exposed, leaving fragile plastic cups and dishes to get mangled if one were to fall out of dishrack and to it’s doom.

The SHX5AL05UC is also affordable. It costs only $31 a year in electricity and uses 2.38 gallons of water per wash cycle, making it Tier 2 CEE qualified. We offer this dishwasher for just $699 at Appliance Factory Outlet, and you can also get a $100 Denver Water rebate if you live in Denver County.

Counting Calories? This Maytag Refrigerator Can Help

The Maytag MFX2571XEM features a color touch LED screen that helps you count calories.

The refrigerator isn’t always your biggest ally when it comes to your diet. But premium features on the new Maytag MFX2571XEM can help you to stay fit and eat fresher foods.

The new Maytag MFX2571XEM is the latest in Maytag’s “Ice2O” series. It’s a classy French door refrigerator with beautiful shelving and drawer space—the refrigerator has a glass floor, so you can check your produce inventory in the extra bottom drawer while grabbing a glass of no-sugar-added apple juice. That extra drawer adds a ton of space—up to five grocery bag-fulls of your favorite produce or deli meat.

The bottom freezer drawer is even larger—since it sits on the bottom, mini chest freezer, as you can fit large amounts of food without having to “stack it” like in top-mount freezers. It also features two rolling drawers to put every day food items in, such as TV dinners or those delicious pot pies made by Marie Callendar.

But on your healthy diet, you’ll be staying away from those premade frozen meals, right? However, if you’re the only one in the house dieting, it just goes to show that this refrigerator is adaptable to any family environment—whether your focus is on protecting that fresh produce or having quick, convenient access to premade meals (because sometimes we all get a little busy).

The coolest part, of course, is the calorie counting. It doesn’t actually count your calories for you (you still have to hold some of the responsibility for your diet, geez!), but there is a handy nutritional database of common food items right in the LCD touch screen of the water dispenser. I checked it out myself (see pictures) and looked up the nutritional value of my favorite food—avocadoes! Delicious. The database’s food groups include dairy, fruits, meat, and of course, that mysterious “other” food group. It’s really fantastic—say you want that midnight snack but you’re not sure what to eat? Within a few seconds you can find out just how many calories are in that handful of almonds versus a small apple.. and voila, smart and healthy snacking.. even when it’s a midnight snack.

It also has handy food storage tips in order to maximize the life of your fresh produce and meats, so you can eat fresher, longer.

Overall? This fridge is perfect for the sophisticated consumer who’s looking for a refrigerator that fits neatly into your lifestyle, whether you are a busy mom or health food nut. The calorie-counting guide is perfect for those in need of a little helpful reminder everytime they go to the fridge, and it’s available at Appliance Factory Outlet & Mattresses—where we find you the best appliances to fit not just your lifestyle but your budget, too.