Deciding whether to repair or replace an old refrigerator requires you consider several factors including the age of your refrigerator, the cost of repair, and the chance that the refrigerator could break down again. To help sort out the possibilities, we developed this Repair or Replace Chart.
For instance, if you have a side-by-side refrigerator that's seven years old and the compressor breaks, a new refrigerator would cost $1,200 while the compressor repair alone would come to $350. What's more, according to the chart, a seven-year-old refrigerator has low risk of a repetitive failure, so spending up to 40 percent of the replacement cost on repair is a wise move.
If the decision to repair or replace your refrigerator isn't as obvious, consider also that newer refrigerators are far more energy efficient. Energy Star-rated appliances use far less energy and save more dollars in the long run. Shop today's Energy-Star-rated refrigerators, and you'll find models that run on the same amount of electricity as a 75-watt light bulb.
For more examples of whether to repair or replace other appliances including a range, dishwasher, microwave over or garbage disposer, consult the repair vs. replace chart.