For some of us, when electronics stop working, it’s time to call it a day and shop for your device’s replacement. Before dropping more money on another pair of headphones or a new TV, consider if the issue is something you can take care of at home! Here are five home electronics you can repair yourself instead of replacing.
Your Old Headphones
We all know to stick earbuds in rice if they get waterlogged, but there’s more you can do to save old headphones when the damage goes beyond surviving a wash cycle in the laundry machine. The constant bending of earbuds, especially near the jack, causes the wires to fray and break. You can fix costly earbuds by resoldering ruined connections at home.
Anything With a Plug-In Cord
Several devices in our homes rely on power cords to function. Often, your cords will get chewed up by pets, kids, and the usual wear-and-tear, leaving exposed wire. Instead of tossing your lamps or computer chargers, buy a replacement plug, cut off the old connection, strip the cord to expose just enough wire, and set said wires into the replacement plug. Just be sure to leave enough insulation that the exposed wires stay inaccessible in the new plug.
There’s still hope for anyone with circuitry knowledge and a TV that doesn’t work like it used to. As long as parts get handled with care, most televisions have limited, easily replaced components. A TV showing nothing but vertical lines may just need board connections tightened at the end of the day.
Your Home Oven
Some home oven issues are worth fixing, like a broken door or a heating element too gross to clean. So long as the cost of replacement parts doesn’t exceed the cost of a new oven (or the experience of bringing a new oven up a flight of stairs), break out the screwdriver.
Laptops and Smartphones
While repairing computers isn’t always possible (and in fact, some brands go out of their way to make it difficult), many of the issues that cause us to toss our phones and laptops are easy to fix. Look to community forum boards and brand help guides to see if your gadget’s problem is as easy to fix as uninstalling and reinstalling a driver or two.
That said, not all the home electronics you can repair yourself are easy. If you’re digging into circuits and wires, always remember to wear the proper safety equipment and keep any electronics you’re repairing unplugged the entire time.