Speed queen and new baby

hundredwatersApril 15, 2014

Dear garden web readers..

My wife and I are about to have a new baby and are getting new laundry machines in the basement. We can only fit a top loader through the hall I the basement (tried .a front loader and it was too big). Speed queen looks the best but my wife is flipped out that the drum is too small for a family with a new baby (no other kids) and won't consider it. The other alternatives look much worse though - all HE. Can anyone comment on the drum size of the speed queen and it being adequate for a new baby...? Or any other guidance?



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Families have been using 3.3 cu. ft. top loaders for ever.

I don't think you can wash a thick queen sized comforter in one, (you really need a big front loader for that).
But for every day loads (towels, sock & underwear, sheets, jeans, shirts, pants, sweaters...etc), it should do an excellent job.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 11:04PM
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I suspect she'll like it better than the HE alternatives. It will do your loads in a shorter time. If having a baby is anything like the care-giving situation I concluded last fall, that quick turn-around is a real help.

During that care-giving time, mom's 20-something-year-old Maytag finally died. At the time, I had seven years experience with a big-drum HE/FL at my own house so I was very familiar with the differences. Had the money and had the room....but I bought the Speed Queen for the application as opposed to the bigger-drum HE machine. Never regretted it. That quick turn-around really saved the day on MANY occasions.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 11:04PM
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thanks forth replays... has anyone regretted a speed queen purchase due to too small a drum/capacity...?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 1:12AM
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Having gone from a FL Bosch 500+ (about 4 cu.ft. drum) to the 542 Speed Queen), I find I can fit about as much as in the FL. Granted there are times when I have to use the reset to add more water but still I feel my clothes are cleaner. I can easily wash 2 sets of queen sheets, or a full quilt and set of sheets in one load.
If you will be cloth diapering, i would recommend the SQ. You get a true hot wash. the newer HE machines have been dumped down so that hot is really warm. And by the end of this year, even more gov. regs. will be put into place. I would also recommend the 542 as it gives you more options. One thing is that SQ's are more reliable. The last thing you want is to have the washer break down with a new baby.
I know a lot of folks on here will disagree, but that is just my opinion.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 3:36AM
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I find the speed queen I have is very adequate for capacity.The last washer I had was an 'High Efficiency" top loader without an agitator. The Speed Queen by comparison can wash as large a load more effectively than my "HE" washer could because the Speed Queens are the last true "HEAVY DUTY"washers left on the American market.

Congratulations on your first baby by the way!

The other benefit with the Speed Queen is you will be able to soak if you are using cloth diapers for as long as you wish.
I say go for the Speed Queen. Excellent warranties that no other manufacture offers and the salespeople won't be pushing a service contract on you.
God bless!

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 5:58AM
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Thanks again for everyone's input... Any regrets for anyone buying a speed queen over a high efficiency top-loader?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 9:42AM
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Not one regret. I looked at the you tube videos of the he tl before i got the speed queen.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 2:30PM
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My situation somewhat similar to yours in that positioning the HE/FL in my own home's laundry closet required removing the folding doors. That machine worked wonderfully and I actually preferred it to mom's old Maytag (SQ is similar to the old Maytag but it's built better and the tub's larger) but it was a little like parking a car in there.

There were HE/TL's that would have fit but HE/TL's just don't do what they represent they'll do, in my experience. Local dealer whom I've known for twenty years reinforces my opinion with his own service experience with various HE/TL's over the years. He doesn't have problems with the SQ's he sells.

When mom's old Maytag failed at her home I had no hesitation replacing in-kind (that's where the Speed Queen came from) because of the short cycle time, ease of use (fellow care-givers didn't have anything to learn) and substantial water-use -- all beneficial in my care-giving situation with it's "bursts" of laundry requirements. I suspect having a baby may be somewhat similar that way.

Since switching out my HE/FL for the new SQ after mom's passing, I've had no regrets. Thing just sits there and runs...and I have my house back.

Unspoken so far is the factory warranty...the longest in the business. 3 years.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 3:28PM
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Speed Queen has also changed their transmission warranty from 10 years to 15 years.

As said above, you should go to You Tube and watch a SQ in operation.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 4:12PM
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I had a Sq top load for 10 years while having 4 boys under 6 yrs at one time. It kept up great with mounds of laundry. I only had a full size comfort or, which fit great, so no comment on Queen comforters.

SQ is 25 5/8 wide, I don't think any other major manufacturers are less than 27 inches for "full size" equipment. A Miele front load might fit down the stairs, they seem a tad smaller and narrower, but big $.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 6:17PM
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I think that many people are too caught up in the bigger is better mindset. I thought the "HE" washer I had without the agitator would hold more clothes; truth is those machines work best maybe 2/3 full.
At lest with the SQ you are getting a commercial 1/2 h.p. motor with a 5 year warranty.
The bravos x I had always sounded like it was laboring with a big load. Not knocking HE washers, just wish they would make them more user friendly and more reliable and heavy duty.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 7:13PM
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sweet_betsy No AL Z7

My commercial heavy duty super capacity plus Speed Queen is rated for 16 pounds of laundry--one of the best purchases I have ever made.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 7:26PM
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The agitator in the SQ looks to be a hybrid surgilator/powerfin which is much better IMHO than any dual action agitator. The wash action in the SQ I noticed is pretty powerful. Really moves the water and clothes around. Good on Speed Queen for sticking with single action agitators.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 7:53PM
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I had a HE top loader and got rid of it after it started eating my sheets. I now have a SQ 542 and it does so much better. The agitator is very gentle on clothes and doesnt beat them to death like my old Non HE top loader did years ago. in 30 minutes, you have a load washed. If a front loader is not a choice for you, then by all means go with the SQ, you wont regret it at all. I too like that I can soak clothes over night if I need too, cant do that in a HE top loader

    Bookmark   April 17, 2014 at 3:14AM
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I have two teenagers in sports, mega laundry and has to be done when they get home after games and ready to head out in the morning. I lived with a front loader for 5 years, hated it, but figured out how to make it work. Less clothes, over an hour to wash, 45 minutes to dry and towels were stinky, no matter water temp or cycle or detergent. When it died I was was thrilled to find an old fashioned washer. I actually spend less time doing laundry, each load holds more and cleans better than my 4.0 front loader, 30 minute wash, 50 minute dry (yes 5 minutes more a load but the loads are larger than when used the front loader). Run to the speed queen.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 9:30PM
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" Posted by sweet_betsy (My Page) on Wed, Apr 16, 14 at 19:26

My commercial heavy duty super capacity plus Speed Queen is rated for 16 pounds of laundry--one of the best purchases I have ever made.


Which model is this 'commercial' washer?

I used a TopLoading SQ (guessing that it was 3.3 cf) at a commercial laundry yesterday and also a Front Loading SQ (larger capacity, maybe 4.5cf+) and the results of both were impressive.

I'm leaning toward the 542 despite my angst for a washer at home that can deal with king and queen size comforters. But this post implies that it might be possible to obtain a 'commercial grade' top loading SQ solution that is larger in capacity? Not sure what 16lbs of laundry translates to, in terms of cu.ft capacity.

Also, not sure if vendor recommendations are prohibited here, but looking for any preferred on-line vendors (CA delivery)?

    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 10:49AM
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I believe all three top loading models 412,432 and the 542 are all rated for 16 lbs. I have the 432 and can wash a queen sized comforter in it, but is is an older comforter and not very bulky.
Its probably best washing king size and queen sized down filled comforters at the laundromat.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 9:21PM
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All the top load SQ washers are labeled "Commercial".

    Bookmark   April 22, 2014 at 2:20AM
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My son and daughter-in-law have a set of used Speed Queens they bought 2 years ago. They have a 14-month-old baby and use cloth diapers. They love the SQ set, in fact they just moved to a new city and the W/D are going great. Don't forget, just a few years ago a 3.5 cu. ft capacity was considered ultra large. When you have a baby, W/D reliability is more important than giant capacity. SQs get top marks there. Do get a washer that has the extra-rinse button, very important for baby clothes and diapers.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 6:56PM
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