Cabrio Washer No Agitator Hard On Clothes/ Doesn't clean well??

cassie22August 21, 2010

Hi All!

I just bought a Cabrio toploader without the agitator --- a new model (cheaper of the 2) WTW5640XW. I read all kinds of reviews on the older models and a few people said it tore up their towels and others said they thought it didn't clean well. So confusing, since other people would say it cleaned great and was gentle on their clothes!

Well, I now have my own (going on 2 weeks) and am of course inspecting all the clothes. It definitely has torn up some new towels, but they are very cheap towels....still, one is completely ruined on the one entire side and some wash cloths are also done for. I think it has also caused strings/fuzzyness etc. on tags that are more "silky" and not the rough material. Also a couple things that have made me question the cleaning quality.

However, I never really paid attention to my clothes in other washers (never bought my own before!!), so not sure if this would have happened anyway and I am just noticing since I'm really paying attention, or if it really is THIS washer. I can see where it would be tough on clothes with them grinding together without much water and can also see where it wouldn't be able to rinse well etc. due to the limited water as well. I've had it past the 7 day return period (Lowes), but under 2 weeks--- wondering if I should take it back if I can. Anyone have any thoughts/experiences with this type of washer??

My only other options (price range!) if I stay away from the top loaders with the washplates is Maytag Centennials or Whirlpool frontloader .... I think maybe the Duets?? Whatever the whirlpool frontloader is, it is on the "low end" as far as price range. Haven't looked into the frontloader yet.


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Which cycle and soil level are you using? People may have a habit from their previous machine of tossing the typical load in and running the so-called Normal cycle at the default settings. These new HE machines are less forgiving of using an overly aggressive cycle, and of not sorting so as to make proper use of the various cycles that are available.

Towels aren't usually very dirty, so try cutting back on the soil level a step or two ... although that may not work so well if you're running towels with other items. Try the Bulky cycle if you have large towels or bath sheets.

To avoid snagging, don't wash items with zippers, rivets, and other such fasteners in the same load with towels or knits or delicates. Even when washing only jeans for example as a stand-alone load, it's a good idea to fasten the zippers to avoid excess abrasion. This applies to frontloaders as well as HE toploaders.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2010 at 6:51AM
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Yesterday, the delivery man who delivered my LG topload washer and dryer told me that he picks up a lot of the Whirlpool Cabrios for returns. He said customers often complain about clothes not getting clean. He didn't mention anything about ruined clothing. Thought I share.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2010 at 3:23PM
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Thanks for the info washerman8 and dadoes.

As far as putting towels on a less aggressive cycle....I've been washing them on normal, HOWEVER, the manual says to wash them on Heavy Duty, which is the highest soil their is. The towels, according to the Whirlpool/Cabrio manual, are supposed to be sturdy, in the same category as jeans. Hmmm. Interesting.

Any other input appreciated!


    Bookmark   August 22, 2010 at 6:29PM
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My Cabrio washer has a sheets/towels cycle that presumably does something to reduce twisting everything into knots, and I always do the 2nd rinse with white vinegar instead of fabric softener to get all the soap out. If you have a "Bulky" cycle I believe it uses more water than Normal and might be gentler on your towels. The only thing my washer ruins is underwire bras. They come out bent all out of shape.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2010 at 11:56AM
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Thanks for the info idrive65. I have the new model---the "cheaper" Cabrio version (there is one more expensive--- more bells and whistles like yours!).

Yes, I do have the bulky cycle. It uses a lot of water and also takes a lot more time. I've only been using it very large items. Will have to try it with the towels. They also are very "not plush"since having this washer. I'm guessing I'm using too much detergent and/or it just won't rinse well.

I think it is ruining underwear as well, and have noticed pulled strings/shredded tags on shirts if the tags are of a silky material. I just don't know---if it is so rough on towels/ underwear etc., then is it just as rough on everything else and I just won't see the effect until later? Hmm....

Had a front loader where we were renting before and pretty much was able to wash clothes like I had always done in a top loader---everything on normal cycle except for my good work clothes/bras on delicate. Looks like washing with this is going to be an adventure! Would love to try to take it back at this point, but I'm not so sure the other options in my price range are any better after reading reviews. I'm afraid to try and maybe end up with something that may be worse.

I'm glad to hear that it only ruins your underwire bras......comforting for me since mine most of mine don't have an underwire! :) Thanks for the info. Will try the 2nd rinse with vinegar as well. How much vinegar do you use?

    Bookmark   August 24, 2010 at 12:45AM
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Experiment with the bulky and delicate cycles. Assuming you aren't dragging your towels through mud they should get clean in the delicate cycle, although you may want to increase the spin speed if that's an option on your machine.

I pour white vinegar up to just under the fabric softener line on the dispenser but I've never measured how much that is.

I needed new bras anyway, LOL.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2010 at 4:41PM
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Try putting delicate items in a lingerie bag. Bras especially. Get good bags, not cheap ones. Woolite bags are good - you want a small mesh fabric. Larger mesh bags just get caught on the things you are trying to stay away from. Buy several bags - don't overload them and always use 2 bags for balance, especially if the load is small. My Whirlpool FL is gentle on clothes but bras and T shirts with decoration go into the bags.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2010 at 3:35PM
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I do use the mesh bags, but my U-wires still occasionally come out looking like V's!

    Bookmark   August 25, 2010 at 6:53PM
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Underwires weren't really meant to be machine washed. They should really be hand washed, but that is a dirty word to many, including me. If the wire is actual real metal wire they may get bent. Some bras have new "plastic" wires that wash better in a machine. They also have a little case you can put them in that keeps it shape but I haven't tried it.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 11:56AM
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I've had my Cabrio 5700 about 2 weeks now, and none of my towels or clothing are perfect, but I've had zero damage. I think most of the reviews I read prior to buying them were people who simply liked front loaders better, and were not using correct cycles or something....there is no space under the wash plate, so I don't see how any damage could occur. But, Whirlpool specifically states in the booklet that if there are loose strings, there could be damage, and that goes with any washer, top loader or not. I'm a top loader person, so front loaders were not an option. I actually hate them, and think they are a fad that will eventually fade, for numerous reasons. Oh, and by the way, my clothes have never been cleaner, especially the whites.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2010 at 5:13PM
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I love my FL, not because it is a fad, but due to the fact that it clean better than any conventional top loader that has been on the market. Revies even show that they clean better than any new HE toploader also I have nothing against a HE toploader, in fact I would buy one if I was in the market for a new washer. FL's have been used in europe long before they hit the US. Natural resources have always been more protected over there, due to their lock of abundance. On top of that, FL's just clean better. Most people how have bought a FL and have had poor cleaning results and so forth, have never even opened up the owners manual and read it, not to mention admitted to it also, and admit they wash everything together, pack full of clothes and wash in cold water....go figure..

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 9:22AM
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Some people's bad impressions of front-loaders are due to having owned a poor front-loader.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 10:09AM
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Front loaders are a fad? I suppose that's why they are ubiquitous in the rest of the civilized world and all of Europe.

If you want to test how gentle your machine is, wash a good quality paper towel with a full load of laundry. If you end up with shredded paper at the end of the cycle, your machine or cycle is too rough. Your paper towel should be exiting the cycle unscathed.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 12:35PM
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To all of those in support of front loaders, note; I said **I** think they are a fad. I feel the same way about stainless steel appliances. You don't have to agree, nor do you need to be disrespectful of my opinion. Having said that, I'd put my top loader up against any front loader, any day.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 10:12AM
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By the way, here's an interesting article;

Here is a link that might be useful: Consumer Reports

    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 10:28AM
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@lynne22: Disagreement â disrespect. More popular â better product.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 11:39AM
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I will and have put my FL against my best friends TL. He had a Maytag TL when Maytag was still Maytag. I took his o already Washed sheets,and mattress pad and washed them in my washer. To make it more fair, I did not use the sanitary cycle, just the white cycle and the same brand detergent he uses, only in the HE form. No bleach or additive expect FB were used. Tide was the detergent used. Well my FL smoked his Maytag to the ground! Not only did they come out whiter, fresher smelling, it took the stains out that he couldnt get out. HE went that day and bought himself a FL with my assistance and hasnt regretted it yet and it has been over a year now.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2010 at 9:07AM
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Hard on clothes, wrinkles clothes, recommends extra rinse cycle? How does that save on water. Must use H E Detergent, that cost more money. Once a month, you must clean it with a special rinse, that whirlpool probably sells? Bought it the other day, delivered today, going back tomorrow to exchange it. I should have know, read many other post that said clothing was wrinkled, hair and dirt aren't removed. Think about it, the old washer, would fill all the way up and the clothes would float around and the hair would float off. you could pull the dial/button out on the old model and your clothes could soak, or you could delay your wash that way while you waited for someone to bring down there clothes to include in that wash. You could "spin" your good dress shirts only 3 minutes and open the lid and take them out so they would not wrinkle by spining till practically dry like this model does. You can't open it, it locks. Oops, forget a sock, or a last minute blouse, TOO BAD. Loved my older washer, although it was a Maytag that only lasted 6 years. Then today I read the link that I attached and I'm afraid to get one of these high energy top loaders, horrible reviews. GIVE ME AN OLD FASHIONED WASHER WITH AN AGITATOR ANY DAY!

Here is a link that might be useful: consumer affairs

    Bookmark   February 24, 2011 at 11:45PM
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Kdmsd, I can open my LG He TL anytime unless the water is too hot from the heater....He detergent is the same price as non HE. When I had my FL for 10 yrs, never had to Clean it cause it never got stinky or gunked up. I can delay start mine if I want. Also it will fill all the way up with certain cylces. as far as a full tub of water and hair floating off of the clothes, it just settles right back on them when it drains. I never had a issue with dog hair in my Front loader or my HE TL. I guess your not happy with the cabrio. Well that doesnt mean all HE TL are bad. Im glad your hapy with your agatator wash...keep it

    Bookmark   February 25, 2011 at 10:50AM
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