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Home Appliances

Home appliances make life easier, but what's really going on inside them? HowStuffWorks Home Appliances articles take a look inside common household appliances.

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Why is the back of a refrigerator painted black?

The color of the back part of your refrigerator really has nothing to do with being visually stimulating, so why did the back of your fridge arrive painted black?

Can anyone hear my baby monitor?

I have read that it is possible for people to listen in on baby monitors. Is this true? Can people hear my baby monitor?

How does a fluorescent starter work?

Fluorescent starters are used in several types of fluorescent lights. The starter is there to help the lamp light.

How Dry Cleaning Works

Want to know what happens to your clothes after you give them to the dry cleaner? Do they actually stay dry? Take a behind-the-scenes look at the dry-cleaning process!

Inside an Electric Razor

A fascinating look inside an electric razor!

Inside a Bathroom Scale

For many people, their bathroom scale is an indispensable part of watching their weight and keeping healthy. Learn how your weight – no matter how much or how little – is evenly distributed to provide an accurate measure of your weight.

How Microwave Cooking Works

Microwave ovens are popular because they cook food in an amazingly short amount of time. They are also extremely efficient in their use of electricity because a microwave oven heats only the food -- and nothing else.

How Thermometers Work

Thermometers are used in everything from medicine to cooking. Find out how thermometers gauge temperature and learn how to make your own!

How Thermoses (Vacuum Flasks) Work

How can the same device keep hot things hot and cold things cold? Find out what goes on inside a Thermos!

How Three-Way Switches Work

You probably have at least one light that is controlled by two separate switches -- either switch can turn it on or off. Find out how the light knows what to do with two sources of input.

How Toilets Work

The toilet. The john. The loo. The commode. The porcelain throne. No matter what you call it, there's no doubt it's a true technological marvel. Look beyond the commonplace bowl and see what a sophisticated water-handling system your toilet is.

How Water Heaters Work

You probably don't give it much thought until the shower goes cold, but water heaters are part of our daily lives. Find out how these ever-important appliances produce hot water -- and what may be wrong if they don't.

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