How I Started My Appliance Repair Business
Friday November 21st 2014
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HOW I LEARNED TO BE AN APPLIANCE REPAIR TECHNICIAN AND STARTED MY OWN APPLIANCE REPAIR BUSINESS

Home Study Course

Start An Appliance Repair Business

Business

Get a Website Up Quickly

The internet has become the significant resource for finding information, replacing printed phone books. It helps [Read More]

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Repairs

Parts Suppliers with Low Prices

APPLIANCEZONE for STANDARD DELIVERY CLIENT PARTS: Because they consistently have the lowest prices for a dedicated parts supplier (excluding eBay) that I have found as of [Read More]

Learning to Deal with Electrical Repairs

You may be handy or mechanical, but you may have avoided electrical repairs. Getting over your nervousness about electrical repairs is a hurdle, but the more you know about [Read More]

Tools

Special Tools Needed for Appliance Repair

I’m going to insist that you need these tools on your appliance repair service calls, even though you may not [Read More]

Multimeter Basics for True Beginners

A multimeter is an essential tool in appliance repair,  so you’re going to have to learn to use one. The trouble [Read More]

Training

Free Appliance Repair Training vs. Paid Training

Free resources are available on the internet, and some of them are very helpful, but paid training can catapult you onto the next level that free training can’t. Free appliance repair training can also take longer to accumulate the knowledge that paid training can [Read More]

The Appliance Repair Bible

If there is such a thing, I think I’ve found it.  It’s Troubleshooting and Repairing Major Appliances, by Eric Kleinert. [Read More]

Free Training Resources

Free training can backfill your paid training, but it’s hit and miss unless you know where to look. Here are some good resources: YouTube Videos (search on “appliance repair training”) Repair Forums (try appliantology.org) Free Online Service Manuals (a [Read More]

Latest News

The Next Level: High-End Parts Inventory

The Next Level: High-End Parts Inventory

My appliance repair business has been so successful, I am ready to expand – my parts inventory, that is. When I first started out, I stocked up on all the basic appliance parts Uncle Harry recommended, and as time went on added a few of my own “must haves.” I had heard stories of experienced [Read More]

How to Start an Appliance Repair Business

How to Start an Appliance Repair Business

I recently decided to start a major appliance repair business, and I succeeded. Here’s a recap of how I did it: 1.  I looked for appliance repair training, including books, appliance repair training schools, free appliance repair training, and online appliance repair training courses: The best appliance repair book I found was [Read More]

Why Running My Own Business is My Dream Job

Why Running My Own Business is My Dream Job

Running my own appliance repair business is possibly the best job in the world.  I have a phone that rings, rates high enough to make plenty of money per call, and the ability to take time off when I choose. Here’s how I dialed it in: Charging top market rates means I don’t have to bust [Read More]

What Does it Take to Become an Appliance Repair Pro?

What Does it Take to Become an Appliance Repair Pro?

These are the phases I have been through as an appliance repair technican and what it took me to become a pro: PHASE I:  AMATEUR  While I was a real estate investor, I worked occasionally on appliances in my rental properties to save money so I didn’t have to call a repairman.  I fixed maybe two appliances a month. [Read More]

Review of Uncle Harry’s Appliance Repair Training

Review of Uncle Harry’s Appliance Repair Training

I bought Uncle Harry’s appliance repair technician home study course and used it to successfully start my appliance repair business, which I write about in my startup blog.  In retrospect, this is how I feel about the value of Uncle Harry’s materials and support. When I started out, I knew absolutely NOTHING about the appliance [Read More]

Raising My Rates

Raising My Rates

When I started my appliance repair business, I decided to undercut my competition’s rates by 10% to convert sales, book lots of calls, and build a loyal customer base. To be honest, I also charged lower rates so I could feel comfortable during service calls considering my inexperience.  Basically, I wanted to be cheap enough that nobody [Read More]

For Ex-Retirees Only…

For Ex-Retirees Only…

About 3 months after I retired, the Great Recession came down on me like an avalanche and basically wiped out my savings. I could not start over doing what I used to do, which was real estate investing, because the real estate market had crashed, and I had little recent experience doing anything else. I was over [Read More]

Starting an Appliance Repair Business on a Shoestring

Starting an Appliance Repair Business on a Shoestring

When I started in appliance repair, I had very little money, so I’m going to tell you the absolute minimum I think you need to get started running service calls. THE SERVICE VEHICLE: Although it is a big advantage to have a traditional service vehicle like a truck, van, or even SUV, I will tell you it is [Read More]

Free Appliance Repair Training vs. Paid Training

Free Appliance Repair Training vs. Paid Training

Free resources are available on the internet, and some of them are very helpful, but paid training can catapult you onto the next level that free training can’t. Free appliance repair training can also take longer to accumulate the knowledge that paid training can condense into a much shorter period of time. Paid training  is also much [Read More]

Enter the Stealth Tech

Enter the Stealth Tech

It’s the back half of my second year in the appliance repair business, and I am running at full capacity on service calls all day, every day. I have multiple commercial accounts, one of which is a 600 unit planned development complex that keeps me pretty busy all by itself. My wife now works full [Read More]

Trust Your Stuff

Trust Your Stuff

Let’s face it, before you can know everything about repairing appliances, you will have to run service calls. Especially early in your career as an appliance repair technician you will have gaps in your knowledge and encounter repair situations you’ve never seen before. All I wanted during this phase of startup was to do a [Read More]

Special Tools Needed for Appliance Repair

Special Tools Needed for Appliance Repair

I’m going to insist that you need these tools on your appliance repair service calls, even though you may not think so. I would then ask you in a few months, after running your own service calls, if you still think some of these are not necessary. The good news is, when I add up what I paid for everything [Read More]

Multimeter Basics for True Beginners

Multimeter Basics for True Beginners

A multimeter is an essential tool in appliance repair,  so you’re going to have to learn to use one. The trouble is, if you don’t know ANYTHING about multimeters, you might not be able to even understand the books that tell you how to use them. Believe it or not, it’s really hard to find information on [Read More]

Appliance Repair – Good Business in a Bad Economy

Appliance Repair – Good Business in a Bad Economy

Back when I first considered starting my appliance repair business not much more than a year ago, I couldn’t have accurately forecast what my experience would be. I only knew that it seemed like a good idea, although maybe a little daunting to get the proper training and compete with well established businesses for a [Read More]

What’s So Great About Appliance Repair?

What’s So Great About Appliance Repair?

OK, I have been in the appliance repair business for over a year now, successfully running service calls and making money, but it’s time to stop and think, do I really like it? I invested some time (3 months) and money (home study training, promotional materials, and inventory) into learning to be an appliance repair technician and [Read More]

Paid Leads – Chasing the Dragon

Paid Leads – Chasing the Dragon

I was nervous when I first moved my business to the big city.  How was I going to compete with all the other appliance repair service companies here? I got some of my customers to write reviews for me and worked my way up to the first page of Google, but my website still hadn’t [Read More]

The Customer is Always Wrong

The Customer is Always Wrong

A typical customer these days thinks they know a lot more than they do, but you can’t tell them that!  They have access to the internet just like you do, which means DIY forums, manufacturer’s websites and online parts suppliers. They honestly start out thinking they don’t need an appliance repairman at all, and that [Read More]

Cherry Pick Til You Make It

Cherry Pick Til You Make It

If you want to start an appliance repair business on your own, there is really no way around the hands-on experience learning curve. I armed myself with good training to start with from Uncle Harry, and relied heavily on his support system, but at the end of the day I still had to do the [Read More]

Indian Head Gasket Shellac Changed My Life

Indian Head Gasket Shellac Changed My Life

Sometimes I do a repair precisely by the book, leaving absolutely no possibility for error.  Then, at the moment of truth (i.e. testing the machine after reassembly), my heart sinks straight into my belly as I stare in disbelief when the appliance behaves just as if I never touched it. This recently happened to me [Read More]

Country to City – Moving My Appliance Repair Business

Country to City – Moving My Appliance Repair Business

Just as things were building up a head of steam in the remote rural town of 18,000 people where I successfully started my appliance repair business, my wife landed a job in a city with a metro area of 1.3 million people.  So, I moved my business. Here I am in a completely new business situation, cashing in on the up [Read More]

My Ten Problem Call from Hell

My Ten Problem Call from Hell

Most of my posts are positive examples of overcoming challenges with victorious endings. I wish every call could go that way, but sometimes I get that call where nothing goes right, and in the interest of keeping it real, that’s just as important to write about as all the cool victories. The two-part customer complaint [Read More]

So How’s Business?

So How’s Business?

Business has been very good for me.  In fact, it is growing much faster than I originally predicted it would be at this time in my first year. I have gotten so busy that I really haven’t had time to blog, and that’s the simple answer as to where I’ve been. I have been astonished [Read More]

Six Month Review

Six Month Review

I can’t believe it’s been six months since I successfully started my appliance repair business! I am surprised at some of the things I have learned along the way.  Many things have been easier than I thought, and a few harder. Here are a few things I have observed so far: Overall I have surprised [Read More]

Getting Past the Fear

Getting Past the Fear

With a few service calls under my belt I am finally starting to get past my initial fear of going into other people’s homes and fixing some appliance that I have never seen before. Honestly, I have a long way to go before I feel totally comfortable, but I was surprised at just how nervous I [Read More]

The Random Nature of Service Calls

The Random Nature of Service Calls

OK, I admit it, I’m a bit of a control freak.  I spend my life organizing and planning the events of my day. When studying appliance repair, I found myself choosing to study the appliances that I thought would be most in demand for repair FIRST and the least likely to get service calls LAST. [Read More]

The Customer So Nice, I Got Called Twice

The Customer So Nice, I Got Called Twice

Not only did I get my first repeat customer call, but it came from my first ever customer It was for the same appliance that I serviced just a few weeks earlier – the good news is the problem was unrelated to my first repair. After the first call this guy thought I was a genius, [Read More]

It’s Not What You Study, It’s What the Customer Needs Fixed

It’s Not What You Study, It’s What the Customer Needs Fixed

Another service call came in, but this one threw me way off!  Customer says she has a GE microwave that is dead and wants to know if I can come take a look at it. I kept a cool tone, but my stomach was in a spin.  I knew I hadn’t touched ANY of the [Read More]

Ever Have That Feeling You’re Being Watched?

Ever Have That Feeling You’re Being Watched?

It was a conspiracy of ironic bad luck that sent me on my second ever service call.  I had no idea when I rang the doorbell just how challenging fate was going to make my next experience. It was not because the customer was some terrible jerk that demanded unreasonable results with no intention of paying [Read More]

My First Service Call (For Real) Part 2

My First Service Call (For Real) Part 2

The part came Fedex at around 1:00 PM the next day.  I called the customer and arranged to come by at 2:00 PM. When I got there, the customer let me find my way to the laundry room – we were old pals by now. There was a load of unwashed laundry in the washer waiting [Read More]

My First Service Call (For Real) Part 1

My First Service Call (For Real) Part 1

Today I got my first real service call.   (Thanks to the “dress rehearsal” last Thursday, I wasn’t half as nervous taking this one. ) It was a straightforward call.  The customer said his wife had broken the door latch on their Whirlpool Duet washer (GHW9200LW). I told the customer I’d come by at 1:00 PM, and actually [Read More]

My First Service Call (Almost)

My First Service Call (Almost)

On the day before New Year’s Eve I got my first call off a free directory listing on the internet.  The customer said he had a leaking Whirlpool top loader that wouldn’t spin. From my training, I told him the spin problem could be as simple as a broken door latch or at the very worst [Read More]

Looking for Hands-On Experience

Looking for Hands-On Experience

I still want hands-on experience before I start taking calls because customers give you about 10 minutes to diagnose a problem.   That’s one I learned the first day from Uncle Harry – he says they don’t want to see you standing around scratching your head. I have tried to hook up with a local discount appliance [Read More]

Learning to Deal with Electrical Repairs

Learning to Deal with Electrical Repairs

You may be handy or mechanical, but you may have avoided electrical repairs. Getting over your nervousness about electrical repairs is a hurdle, but the more you know about it, the more comfortable you will get. These basic tips from the UPenn Electrical Systems Engineering Labs lab safety guidelines on principles of conductivity of the human [Read More]

Who the Heck is Uncle Harry?

Who the Heck is Uncle Harry?

 I had been reading the appliance repair bible Troubleshooting and Repairing Major Appliances, by Eric Kleinert) for about a week, and I realized I needed more practical training. I needed to see a real appliance being worked on, how they figure out what’s wrong with it, get the dang thing open and what they do once they’re [Read More]

Appliance Repair Makes the Cut

Appliance Repair Makes the Cut

After realizing that appliance repair might be a good option, I started to look at it more closely. First, it’s not regulated, so you don’t need a license or a 4 year apprenticeship or anything like that.  Second, you can make some good money doing it.  So far, so good.  How do I start? First thing [Read More]

Choosing Appliance Repair

Choosing Appliance Repair

I have owned rental property and been my own property manager for 15 years, but with the real estate meltdown, economizing on hiring outside help became critical. During the past year, I began repairing appliances myself whenever I could, the fixes I was comfortable with.  I also found out I could buy my parts inexpensively online. This year [Read More]

The Appliance Repair Bible

The Appliance Repair Bible

If there is such a thing, I think I’ve found it.  It’s Troubleshooting and Repairing Major Appliances, by Eric Kleinert. [Read More]

Customers Expect a Fast Diagnosis

Customers Expect a Fast Diagnosis

How do you deal with customer expectations for a fast diagnosis and resolution of their problem when you’re new to appliance repair? Prevention is most of the solution. Get the basic problem information and the model number over the phone from the customer, then set the service time a couple of hours out so you can research [Read More]

Get a Website Up Quickly

Get a Website Up Quickly

The internet has become the significant resource for finding information, replacing printed phone books. It helps customers to quickly and easily find out more about your business and the products or services you have to offer. The internet levels the playing field.  With a well-designed site, your small business can project the image and [Read More]

Free Online Business Directories

Free Online Business Directories

  These are links to websites that are free to submit your business listing to so you can get phone calls coming in and traffic to your website. You have to join to submit listings to all of them, but they do generate free leads. Manta is a business directory that gets high search rank on Google.   This [Read More]

Cheap Online Sources for Printing

Cheap Online Sources for Printing

You are going to need business cards, invoices, etc., to manage your business professionally. Online resources have basically changed everything from researching and troubleshooting repairs, to generating leads, to printing services. We have found some good cheap, excellent service online sources for the fundamental printing jobs you will have in [Read More]

Low Cost Toll Free Numbers

Low Cost Toll Free Numbers

A low cost toll free number can give your company a professional and credible appearance.  Toll free numbers encourage your clients to call you, especially if you live in a rural area where long distance charges are frequently incurred. The toll free number can be forwarded to your cell phone with a code indicating it’s coming from [Read More]

Tools to Carry Into the Home

Tools to Carry Into the Home

This kit will fix 3/4 of what you find in a house and it’s all you need to carry in with you (according to Uncle Harry): Philips tip long shank screwdriver Flat long shank screwdriver 1/4″ nut driver 5/16″ nut driver 15 torx driver 20 torx driver insulated cutters needlenose pliers large channel lock pliers multimeter [Read More]

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