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Questions to Ask Before Hiring an Appliance Repair Service in San Diego

In San Diego, the average cost of repairs for a home appliance is around $234. Maintaining your faulty refrigerator, dryer, garbage disposal, microwave, or range for this price is obviously cheaper than a new replacement. While it is tempting to try and save money by hiring an unlicensed appliance repair man, doing so can cause higher liabilities including extensive damage to your equipment and even electrocution if mishandled.

Before you hire a San Diego appliance repair service, it's essential that you thoroughly check their credentials to verify if they are capable of handling the repair job effectively. To confirm, you can ask your potential appliance repairman in San Diego the following questions:

Are You Licensed to Practice as an Appliance Repair Service in San Diego?

Individuals involved in the maintenance, repair, and installation of household appliances and electronic equipment like televisions, radio receivers, refrigerators, microwave ovens, dishwashers, and computer systems in San Diego are statutorily required to register with the California Bureau of Household Goods and Services (BHGS) before offering services in the city.

Any repairman who fails to comply with this requirement will be guilty of a misdemeanor and could be fined up to $1,000 or jailed for six months. However, registration for individuals who have been licensed as contractors by the California Contractors State License Board (CSLB) is not required, as long as they are working under the scope of their contractor license.

The BHGS allows individuals to register as:

  • Major home appliance dealers
  • Electronic service dealers
  • Combination service dealers

As major home appliance dealers, these individuals are authorized to offer services like maintaining and repairing various appliances used in homes, including microwave ovens, room air conditioners, washers, and dryers. Meanwhile, as electronic service dealers, these individuals can offer their services to other consumers, such as maintaining and repairing electronic equipment such as televisions, computer systems, and vehicle radios. Lastly, a combination service dealer can perform various maintenance and repair activities on various electronic equipment and appliances.

An interested individual who wants to register with the Bureau of Home and General Services must first fill out a Service Dealer Application for Registration Form. The applicant must send the completed form accompanied by all necessary documents and applicable fees via mail to the address indicated on the top of the form.

It is important to note that electronic equipment and appliances repairmen must register their businesses and drop-off locations with BHGS wherever they are accepting repair work in San Diego. This registration is required regardless of whether or not they perform actual repairs.

Before hiring a home appliance repairman, make sure that he has been thoroughly registered with the BHGS. This can be done through the bureau's online license/registry search tool. If the repairman claims to have a CSLB-issued license, you can check this through the board's Check a License platform.

Appliance repairmen are also required to get the necessary certification from the EPA if they are working on refrigerators, freezers, or any other appliances or equipment that contain refrigerants. For more information about the registration process under EPA at (916) 999-2041 or by email. You should also check the claims of certification that the repairman possesses with the appropriate organization like the International Society of Electronics Technicians and the United Appliance Servicers Association.

How Much Do You Charge Compared to Other Appliance Repair Services in San Diego?

Various factors influence the cost of appliance repair in San Diego. This includes but is not limited to the type of equipment that needs repairing, level of appliance damage, accessibility to the appliance, the cost of parts and labor, and location.

Before you hire a new appliance or electronics repairman or company in San Diego, it's essential that you thoroughly research the individual or company's history and reputation. Doing so will help you avoid getting ripped off by fraudulent repairmen. It is also good to ensure that the repairman inspects the device before submitting any quote for the planned repair service. The written estimate must clearly state the scope of the work performed. Note that some repairmen require the payment of diagnosis fees before coming up with their quotes.

Appliance repairmen in San Diego earn an average annual wage of $45,670. Provided below is a comparison of the average hourly salary for appliance repair men in San Diego with those of these technicians in other areas of the State of California and several other locations across the United States:

San Diego Appliance Repair Man Average Hourly Wage
California Appliance Repair Man Average Hourly Wage
Los Angeles Appliance Repair Man Average Hourly Wage
Phoenix Appliance Repair Man Average Hourly Wage
New York City Appliance Repair Man Average Hourly Wage
Chicago Appliance Repair Man Average Hourly Wage
Houston Appliance Repair Man Average Hourly Wage
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Are You Certified by the Manufacturer to Repair the Appliance in San Diego?

When it comes to repairing or replacing a faulty appliance in San Diego, ensuring that the person you hire has been factory-certified is essential. Factory-certified technicians have been trained and approved by the appliance manufacturer to handle the specialized repairs and replacements that are offered. This ensures that they have the necessary skills and knowledge to handle the job effectively.

There are several advantages of hiring a factory-certified technician for your San Diego home appliance repair needs, and these include:

  • The manufacturer vets these professionals to ensure that they have the necessary skills and knowledge to support their customers. They can also access authentic parts and technical support.
  • Unlike their non-factory-certified counterparts, these individuals have the necessary skills and knowledge to handle various types of repairs on different brands of appliances.
  • Having a factory-certified repairman on your side provides you with the peace of mind that your appliance will be handled properly. They can also ensure that any existing warranties on your appliances are not voided.

The model and make of your appliance will determine the availability of qualified appliance repair men in your area when you need to hire one. However, in certain situations, such as if the warranty on your appliance has expired, you might want to consider hiring a non-certified factory repairman. Many of these non-certified repairmen have extensive training and experience in appliance repair. They can also provide the same level of services as their factory-certified counterparts. However, you should confirm that they have been registered by the Bureau of Household Goods and Services and have the necessary equipment to carry out the job.

Will You Get the Appliance Parts and Accessories Required by the Manufacturer?

Before working with a San Diego appliance repairman, you must know what type of appliance parts they will use for your project. There are two categories of appliance parts:

  • Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM): This component is made and supplied by the appliance's manufacturer.
  • Generic Appliance Parts: This component is usually made by a third party, usually not affiliated with the manufacturer.

Compared to generic appliances, the cost of an original part from an established manufacturer is typically higher. However, this component is also more durable and comes with higher quality. In addition, by using a generic part instead of an original one, you might void the warranty on your appliance. In some cases, an appliance repairman might not be able to provide the required OEM parts for your project due to the manufacturer's decision to stop making these components. This can happen because the parts are no longer available in stores or online marketplaces.

Regardless of the type of parts that you need to purchase for your appliance repair, make sure that the repairman issues a product and workmanship warranty. This covers the actual work that will be performed and the parts used during the repair. Also, make sure that you understand the terms of the warranty that has been given to avoid voiding it.

What Kind of Appliance Repair Services Do You Offer?

Having a good understanding of the type of services that the appliance repairman in San Diego can provide is very important to ensure that you receive the best possible service. This will also help avoid misunderstandings down the line. Aside from regular maintenance and repairs, repairmen in San Diego also offer installation, maintenance, and repairs for various electronic equipment such as televisions, washing machines, and microwaves.

Before hiring an appliance repairman in San Diego, make sure that the repairman has the necessary skills and knowledge to handle your specific needs. Also, ask for a written estimate from the technician before signing any contracts. The following are common estimates for various appliance repair services that are typically requested in San Diego:

Central vacuum system installation
$2,005 - $2,977 (for existing typical four-bedroom home)
Dishwasher repair
$75 - $220
Dishwasher water and drain line installation
$157 - $181
Dryer repair
$100 - $220
Electrical appliance installation
$147 - $201 (for basic appliance hookup only)
Electronics repair
$65 - $345
Garbage disposal unit repair/installation
$415 - $530 per hour (labor only)
Gas appliance installation
$160 - $215
Ice maker water line installation
$95 - $215
Microwave oven installation
$149 - $167 (labor only, for basic microwave installation)
Microwave oven repair
$75 - $245
Refrigerator water line installation
$115 - $214
Washer repair
$120 - $370
Stove repair
$75 - $325 (labor only)
Refrigerator repair
$95 - $320 (labor only)

How Do You Handle Issues of Product Repairs Going Wrong?

If you are not satisfied with the service provided by your appliance repairman in San Diego, the first step to take is to contact the repairman directly. The repairman will typically try to resolve any problems by going over the work done and fixing any lapses that you may have noticed. Otherwise, refund the amount of money you paid or make a partial payment.

However, if you have difficulty reaching an agreement with the appliance repairman, you can also contact the Bureau of Households Goods and Services (BHGS) or the Better Business Bureau. These organizations can help you identify the deceptive practices of the company and can provide you with the necessary regulatory action.

You can file a complaint with the BHGS online or by filling out and submitting a completed complaint form to the address indicated on the top of the form.

Likewise, the San Diego office of the Better Business Bureau can be contacted at:

4747 Viewridge
Avenue #200,
San Diego, CA 92123
Phone: (312) 694-858

You also have the option of filing a legal action against the repairman. For instance, you can file a small claims action against a repair technician in the San Diego County Superior Court if the compensation you are seeking does not exceed $10,000. Before taking this type of action, it's essential to get legal advice from a lawyer. You can find lawyers through the State Bar of California's Need Legal Help website or the National Association of Consumer Advocates online directory.

Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Appliance Repair Services in San Diego?

Although there are no insurance requirements for registered appliance and electronics repairmen in San Diego, you should still ensure that your intended repairman carries general liability insurance. In addition, ensure they are carrying workers' compensation for their employees. Doing so will protect you from potential financial losses should an accident occur while a repairman is working on the job. It also prevents you from having to make costly out-of-pocket expenses in the event of an injury.

Before hiring an appliance repairman, make sure that they have the necessary insurance documents. Note that if your appliance repairman holds an electrical or low-voltage communications systems contractor license issued by the CSLB, they must maintain a $15,000 bond to maintain their license. For more information regarding bonding requirements for license holders, you can contact CSLB at (800) 321-2752.

How to File a Complaint Against a Bad Appliance Repair Service in San Diego

Over 2,500 consumer complaints about the actions of appliance repair professionals and other licensed individuals were reported to the California Department of Consumer Services in 2020. Even though most appliance repair men in San Diego are highly skilled and provide excellent services, there is still a chance that you may end up dealing with a fraudulent repairman. These individuals typically use various schemes to trick unsuspecting consumers into giving them money.

  • In most cases, these individuals will lie that they are registered with the California Bureau of Household Goods and Services (BHGS).
  • They will typically demand full upfront payment for their services and provide shoddy and often ineffective repairs.
  • They will also exaggerate the job's complexity they are supposed to fix to get a higher price.

If you're planning to hire a contractor to repair your home appliances in San Diego, here are some tips that can help prevent you from falling victim to these scams.

  • Get and compare estimates from multiple appliance repairmen near you.
  • Ensure that the repairman is registered with the BHGS and you can confirm by utilizing the license/registry search portal maintained by BHGS. Also, if the repairman holds a CSLB-issued contractor license, you can verify this license through the Check a License platform of the CSLB.
  • Ensure you understand the term and conditions of any warranty on your appliances to prevent the warranties from voiding.
  • Request for references from friends and family members who have used the services of repairmen. You can also check out the reviews of other customers on third-party review websites like the Better Business Bureau and Google Review.
  • Avoid paying the total cost of the repair service upfront.
  • Make sure that they have a service receipt and an invoice for the work. This will allow you to track the cost progress of the repair.

If a repairman in San Diego has defrauded you, or you suspect a fraudulent repairman, you can file a complaint with the California Bureau of Household Goods and Services (BHGS). You can file a complaint online or by filling out and submitting a pdf complaint form via mail to the address indicated at the top of the form. You can also file a complaint with the San Diego County District Attorney's Office by filling out a complaint form and sending it via mail to

Office of The District Attorney
Hall of Justice
330 West Broadway
San Diego, CA 92101

For more information regarding the complaint filing process, you can contact the San Diego County District Attorney's Office at (619) 531-4040.