In 1986 Tom Stabler’s parents, who owned an appliance store in Woodland, bought Edwards A-1 Appliance store in Placerville. Tom and his wife Pam had been working in the Woodland store, and were sent to run the Placerville store.
They both agree it was a good move. It’s still a family affair. Tom takes care of ordering and does outside service. Pam does the bookkeeping. Daughter Becky Clark handles sales, along with niece Katie Stabler. Son Bryan is responsible for service in the shop.
David Bannister has been with Edwards since he was 17. Bannister does the deliveries and takes outside service calls. Margaret Springer, who works in the office, and Chris Kenny, who handles outside service calls, round out the extended Edwards A-1 family.
Actually, the Stablers are the third owners. Edwards A-l Appliance first opened in Placerville in 1947. Over the years, technologies have changed, but attention to service hasn’t.
In 1947 the first spin-dry washing machines were replacing wringer washers. They were advertised as being 25 percent more efficient and “a miser with soap and water.” At a time when some women were still using a scrub board, the happy housewife in the ad says the spin-dry “does a week’s worth of wash in an hour.” Amana brought the first upright freezers to the market.
In 1965 microwave ovens were the newest thing in cooking and automatic dishwashers were going under the counter.
When the Stablers took over the store in 1986, quality was the big selling point. KitchenAid advertised a “No Roar” dishwasher and Maytag’s “Lonely Repairman” was still sitting by the phone waiting for a service call.
Edwards A-1 still has a full range of residential kitchen and laundry appliances, from basic to deluxe, Clark said. They carry the major brands: Maytag, Whirlpool, Amana, GE, KitchenAid and Hotpoint.
And Edwards A-1 keeps their prices competitive with the big box stores. “With our service, there’s no reason to shop anywhere else” Clark added. Their service is top-notch. “Nothing is subcontracted. All service is done by us, in the shop or in the home.” They have a full parts and supplies section.
They deliver locally and as far as El Dorado Hills, Strawberry, Georgetown, Volcanoville, Greenwood and Grizzly Flat. They will also dispose of your old appliance.
Every technological advance has decreased the average life of appliances. “When we started, the average life span was 15-20 years, then it went to 10-15. With digital, the average life span is around 6-8 years,” Clark said.
She recommends taking good care of appliances so they last longer. “Common sense things like not overloading the washer, making sure the dryer has good ventilation and cleaning the coils on the refrigerator will extend the life of your appliances,” she explained.
And the family also looks forward to extending the life of their business another 25 years, with the community’s support.
“Our customers are loyal,” said Pam Stabler. “They’ve kept us in business through the lean times and the good times.”
Edwards A-1 Appliance is located at 698 Placerville Drive, Placerville. The telephone is 530-622-4273. The hours are 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday.