And the winner is . . . Kenmore 41172/91172 [built by LG]

studio460June 25, 2013

For the last couple of weeks, I've been poring over hundreds of reviews, and dozens of threads here, attempting to decide among the following washer/driers for our new laundry area make-over:

1. LG 24" combo washer/dryer--120V/un-vented
2. Bosch 24" washer/dryer--240V/vented
3. GE 24" washer/dryer--240V/vented
4. Frigidaire Affinity--gas (only 36" tall)
5. Kenmore 41172/91172--gas (standard-size)

The LG combo washer/dryer simply didn't work out due to its extremely long drying times. The Bosch units are very pretty but tend to have very spotty user reviews. And, though the similarly compact GE units will also facilitate an under-counter installation, the 240V condenser driers of both brands will simply murder us in energy costs at our local rate of $0.31/kWh.

So, I pared my options down to between the Frigidaire and Kenmore models, only because they were the only washer/driers I found in white which also had all-white door trim (instead of chrome). The white-on-white lends a more Bosch-ey/Miele-ish look to the products, and really ups its cosmetic appeal in my opinion. But the Frigidaire units are nearly universally poorly reviewed. Even the Lowes' salesperson advised us not to buy them. So . . . Kenmore it is!

The Kenmores (shown below) just went on sale for only $1,298 for the pair.

This post was edited by studio460 on Tue, Jun 25, 13 at 2:40

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izeve

Studio460, that Kenmore looks like a Samsung made unit, not LG. In any event, are you sure you want a FL without an internal heater? In my opinion, heated cycles are necessary to ensure proper cleaning. They also are the best mold preventative you can find.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 9:25AM
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izeve

Maybe consider Samsung WF361BVBEWR instead? Also has the white trim, has an option of a gas dryer but unlike the Kenmore unit it has an internal heater.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 9:31AM
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studio460

Thanks, izeve! I didn't see those. I'll check them out!

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 3:16PM
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studio460

Samsung white-on-white washer/dryer units (standard-size):

3.6 CF washer model no.: WF361BVBEWR $799
7.3 CF gas dryer model no.: DV361GWBEWR $899

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 4:48PM
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studio460

$2,076 total for the above Samsung pair, including Lowes' 4-year extended warranty ($109.97 for each appliance), and 9% CA sales tax (free delivery); 30-day return policy.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 6:23PM
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studio460

Comparing the Kenmore and Samsung pairs:

Kenmore:

3.6 CF FL washer model no. 41172; $599 + delivery (Sears)
7.1 CF FL gas dryer model no.: 91172; $799 + delivery (Sears)

[+] Max. spin: 1,200 RPM
[+] Depth: 29.75"/29.89"
[-] Sanitary cycle: No

Samsung:

3.6 CF FL washer model no.: WF361BVBEWR; $799 + free delivery (Lowes)
7.3 CF FL gas dryer model no.: DV361GWBEWR; $899 + free delivery (Lowes)

[-] Max spin: 1,100 RPM
[-] Depth: 31.5"/31"
[+] Sanitary cycle: Yes

This post was edited by studio460 on Tue, Jun 25, 13 at 19:11

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 6:40PM
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studio460

Kenmore units built by LG or Samsung?

Both the Kenmore and LG series of washers promote similar "6-motion" and over-the-phone diagnostic features, leading me to believe the Kenmore machine is an LG-built product. Both the Sears and Lowes salepeople claimed these particular Kenmore washer/driers are built by LG.

Kenmore brand-specific features:

Kenmore Connect (diagnostics data transmitted via smartphone)
Smart Motion Technology ("custom unique motions;" "uses motions such as rolling, tumbling, stirring and cradling . . . ")

LG brand-specific features:

SmartConnect (diagnostics data transmitted via smartphone)
6motion Technology (" . . . combines up to 6 different wash motions")

This post was edited by studio460 on Tue, Jun 25, 13 at 19:09

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 7:08PM
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QuitePossibly

A depth of 29 3/4 inches almost guarantees that the Kenmore is an LG machine.

If you look at the LG machines, you'll find most of them are 29 3/4 inches deep. The Samsung machines are typically deeper.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 10:20PM
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studio460

Didn't occur to me to check that! Good thinking, QuitePossibly--thanks! If in fact they are LGs, we currently have, basically, the same LG washer/dryer now, but in stainless. The only difference is that the Kenmore units are slightly more-current, but most importantly, are white-on-white. In general, we've been pretty satisfied with the performance of our LG machines, so I'm pleased to know these are actually LG products beneath the Kenmore nameplate.

Even though our six-year-old LG machines are still working, I'm spending money on brand-new machines purely as a cosmetic refresh--a bit frivolous, I know. Since we're finally re-doing the laundry area (it's last part of the house that needs remodeling), I thought it was worth the expense.

This post was edited by studio460 on Tue, Jun 25, 13 at 23:46

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 11:43PM
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studio460

Weird thing about the Kenmore (and the near-identical LG model). There are options for "wash cycle temperature" on the front panel, but NONE for the rinse cycle. Huh? No mention of choosing a temperature for the "rinse" cycle anywhere in the user manual. Does this mean the machine simply defaults to "cold" for the rinse cycle? Again, no mention anywhere on adjusting rinse-cycle temps.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 11:26PM
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izeve

Yes, it's "All cold rinses" now in the LGs (see the note in the Kenmore manual p. 20 (the picture of the temp selecor)).

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 10:48AM
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whirlpool_trainee

Warm rinses have practically disappeared from all washers.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 9:31PM
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studio460

Oh. Thanks! Our current LG has the warm/warm, hot/cold, etc., selection options. If it defaults to all-cold rinses in this Kenmore, I guess that's fine, since I've always used cold rinses anyway. Come to think of it, why would anyone would use a warm or hot rinse anyway? Thanks again for your replies!

    Bookmark   June 28, 2013 at 10:32PM
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whirlpool_trainee

Historically, warm rinses were needed to remove soap (real soap) from clothes before detergents came along. Also, warm rinses can yield better rinsing results as fibers swell in warm water and release detergent more readily. Because fibers open up in warm water, the spin cycle following a warm rinse can also remove more moisture - thatâÂÂs why many washer/dryers also do a spin during the drying phase. Warm wash + rinse is also good for wool as it avoids shrinkage.

OTOH, warm rinsing consumes more energy and can wrinkle clothes if spun too fast.

I'd be interested in how hot the hot cycle on that LGmore gets. I looked at some reviews and an Amana front loader got up to 101F . A Speed Queen FL got up to 118F on its thirsty bulky cycle. Both of them without an integrated heater, of course.

Alex

    Bookmark   June 29, 2013 at 12:52PM
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studio460

Thanks, whirlpool_trainee! Our tankless is set to 120ð. How could you accurately measure the water temperature of the wash cycle? Will let you know if I figure it out.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 1:17PM
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studio460

Ha! Just a couple hours ago, our current gas dryer quit! Turns, but won't fire--won't get hot. It's likely either the fuse or the thermostat, but I have absolutely no interest in attempting that repair, so I finally pulled the trigger on the new Kenmore [LG] front-load washer/gas dryer set!

Sears has a 30%-off appliance sale, now, through Friday, July 6, 2013:

Kenmore 3.6CF white/white model no. 41172 = $549
Kenmore 7.1CF white/white model no. 91172 = $699

We were in the store two weeks ago, and they really were 30% more expensive then! Delivering Friday! Woohoo!

    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 1:34PM
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whirlpool_trainee

I didn't do the testing - I was referring to washerdryerinfo.com. They state that they'd use iButton sensors to take temperature readings.

Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.washerdryerinfo.com/how_we_test

    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 7:12PM
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