Friday, February 13, 2009

Front loader vs Top loader

I need to buy a new washing machine. I am using the stack able unit that I have in the hall bathroom that the older kids use.

I do not want a new washing machine. I like my 15 year old Kenmore. It has seen me through 6 kids. Kids that wore cloth diapers. It has always worked. until last Saturday.

It just quit spinning.

And now I am sad. They make those fancy $1500 front loading washers look great. But then we read the reviews on Amazon and Epinions. It seems as though people have a really bad opinion of front loaders. They break constantly. They flash all sorts of cryptic codes. And Whirlpool seems to have the worlds worst customer service.

I also really hate to spend money. Will I really be able to tell the difference in a $1500 machine versus a $500 one? Because I would much rather spend $500. I do not need pretty colours or cool looking shapes.

I just need clean clothes


kelly bee said...

You are NOT going to believe how quiet the newer washers are. You'll be glad. I think you can find a nice front loader for under $1000 at Sear's or Lowe's. I;ve been looking.

The big advantage of the front loaders is that they use SO much less water. Like 60% less. A big deal since I'm on well and septic and have 10+ loads a week. And they are entertaining to small children! haha

Alice Wills Gold said...

I absolutely HATED my front loader.

I have the biggest Kenmore you can buy...I LOVE IT!

dlyn said...

One of my work at home jobs was for Sears Home Repair, setting appointments for appliance repairs. After that experience, I can tell you I would never buy a front loader - not only a lot of service calls, but a lot of REPEAT service calls - like over and over. Go with the $500 one for sure!

Kristi said...

This is an interesting post because I really like the way those new front loading shiny red washer and dryer sets look and I have been dreaming of the day I could get one. I'm beginning to think maybe they aren't that great. I do like the thought of drying shoes without them shaking the dryer and making lots of noise. I got a really big washer because I wanted to be able to wash my comforter, but it's still too small for that. I do love that I can wait until I have a huge mound of clothes before I do laundry, though, because it holds so much. I hope you find what you are looking for. It sounds like you are not easily swayed by aesthetics which will probably save you big bucks.

Natalie said...

Not sure if you're still in the market for a frontloader, but I feel that based on the previous comments they have gotten a terrible and unfair rap! I sell appliances at Home Depot and personally own a front loader (an LG) myself. They are PHENOMENAL! Are some brands better than others? Absolutely! LG is a GREAT brand and I steer most of my customers that way, unless they are adamently set upon a Maytag or a GE (yikes...) LG's use a direct drive motor, and without getting into the physics of it, is a MUCH better alternative to a tradtional motor. Most companies use belts or gears in their motors, which is the number one thing to cause problems or break in a machine. Plus, LG's motor alone has a 7 year warranty from defect. As far as everything else on here I've read, let me set a few facts about frontloaders straight...

1. They use CONSIDERABLY less water and electricity. 12-15gal on a cycle vs. 35-40 on a toploader. And 150-175kw a year vs. 500-600 in a top loader. Basically - that's a boat load of savings in energy and water usage over a year. 95% of the cost in using your washer goes to heating the water, so therefore - less water = less water to heat, and more money in your pocket!

2. No agitator - which lends to the efficiency factor, but also is FAR easier on your clothing since just a gentle tumbling motion cleans clothes and not the agitator.

3. Less detergent. Yes, HE (high efficiency) detergent is a little more expensive than regular detergent, but you use half as much, if not less than half as much. (And not to mention you MUST use it in frontloaders)

4. Larger capacity AND ability to wash large, bulky items.

As far as odor goes... there are two main reasons why a frontloader would begin to smell. First off, all frontloaders have a large rubber gasket inside the door which seals the door shut and prevents leaks. With moisture, some heat, and being closed up, that rubber gasket can cause some odors to build up. Easiest remedy? When you're done with your wash, leave the door open for an hour - that simple. Number 2 reason, and probably the major reason - people NOT using HE detergent in an HE machine. HE detergents are formulated to be low-sudsing and quick-dispersing to get the best cleaning performance in front-loading washers. Excessive sudsing can cause problems in HE washers by “cushioning” — or even preventing — the tumbling action. HE detergents also hold soils and dyes in suspension in low water volumes, so they don’t re-deposit onto cleaned clothes. Excess suds can cause the washer’s pump to overheat causing premature failure of the pump. These excess suds also cause residue to build up inside the drum and hoses. After a while, your washer will start giving off a moldy funk and infecting your clothes with its faint, musky stink. Low wash temperatures and/or use of regular detergent (which causes excess suds) may prevent some [dirt] from completely rinsing out of the front-loading washing machines. Oily soils and some dirt-type soils are especially sensitive to lower wash temperatures and medium to high suds levels. Over time, [dirt] will accumulate in the washer and lead to the growth of bacteria and mold.

I know that's a WHOLE lotta info for you, but I just want to clear up a lot of the misconceptions I see a lot of people have with frontloaders.

Anonymous said...

I have a love-hate relationship with digital memory because of how prices are always dropping. I hate buying Micro SD Cards for my R4 / R4i at (seemingly) a crazy bargain price only to see it become a whole lot more cheaper a few weeks later.

(Submitted by NetBrowze for R4i Nintendo DS.)