By the Numbers: How long will your appliances last? It depends

Consumer Reports News: March 21, 2009 12:09 AM

35 & 6


Average life expectancy in years of a thermostat and a compactor, respectively the longest-lived and shortest-lived appliances in the American home, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Bank of America Home Equity Study of Life Expectancy of Home Components. (See the table below for an alphabetized list of appliances.)

Keep in mind that the life expectancy listed here is just a general guideline—depending on the model and brand of appliances you buy and how well you treat them, your gear might last longer or might need replacing even sooner.

So after you figure out where to buy appliances, be sure to check the brand-repair histories (available to subscribers) of the gear on our Appliances hub.



Appliance Life Expectancy (years)
Air Conditioners (room) 10
Air Conditioners (central) 15
Boilers (electric) 13
Boilers (gas) 21
Compactors 6
Dehumidifiers 8
Dishwashers 9
Dryers (electric and gas) 13
Freezers 11
Furnaces (electric warm air) 15
Furnaces (gas warm air) 18
Furnaces (oil warm air) 20
Garbage Disposers 12
Humidifiers 8
Microwave Ovens 9
Range/Oven Hoods 14
Ranges (electric) 13
Ranges (gas) 15
Refrigerators 13
Refrigerators (compact) 9
Thermostats 35
Washing Machines 10
Water Heaters (electric) 11
Water Heaters (gas) 10
Water Heaters (tankless) 20+

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