TAMPA,Fla. -- As an appliance repairman in a hot, humid city, Ralph Feldkamp is used to busy weeks.
What he's not used to are almost all of them being due to power outages or surges.
"We're in an age of electronics," He said. "Electronics are susceptible to voltage drops, or power going away ... that can be from power generators or from the power source itself."
According to Feldkamp, generators used during the storm may not have provided sufficient power at all times to allow appliances to function optimally.
"Electronics are designed to have a steady voltage sent to them," he said. "When the power comes and goes or flickers and things like that, it can start tearing up compressor relays and controllers."
Feldkamp said the issues often show themselves through codes or signals from the affected appliances. "PF" is a common term that stands for Power Failure and will show up on modern appliances displays when there are internal issues.
While an expert like Feldkamp can diagnose issues, he said there are steps you can take before calling them.
First, he suggested completely unplugging the appliance and letting it discharge over time. Secondly, he said you can try and diagnose any error codes using the manufacturers manual.
While each case could be different, Feldkamp said often times a repair is more affordable than a full replacement and if you can't self-diagnose the problem, it might be worth the cost to seek an expert.
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