Need Washer Recommendation

khriosSeptember 21, 2010

The old Whirlpool finally bit the dust. I would appreciate your washer recommendations. These are our needs:

1. We have a large family, and do about 13 loads per week.

2. Simplicity of operation is important. My elderly mother is not very comfortable with touchpads and electronics.

3. Water efficiency. Water is expensive in No. California.

4. It should handle heavy loads, such as jeans and bedding.

5. It should clean the clothes. We have a son with very sensitive skin, and detergent residue would be a problem.

6. Finally, it should be reliable, and built to last.


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I have a Maytag Bravos that I do like a lot. It has touch pads, but once you set them for a cycle, you simply dial the knob to the cycle you want and your mother wouldn't have to adjust a thing (unless you want to add or delete an option). It is HUGE and can wash comforters (full or twin) easily. Ironically, I have this now that I my husband and I are the only ones at home full-time. But when my college son comes home with a week of laundry, we could fit the entire load into one washer load.

It also has a water saver setting (which I never use). And, I never have felt that there was any residue left on the clothes (I always use the extra rinse option).

I have included the link below to the one I have had for almost a year and am very satisfied with.

Here is a link that might be useful: Maytag washer

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 2:23PM
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While I do not own one (I plan on getting one when mine finally dies) ... many on this forum would recommend a Miele.

I believe it would do all the things you are looking for.

From what I've been told by appliance people - only Miele is built to last anymore. Many of the other brands are built to last only for so many years (7-9).

You will pay more for it but I have not read many negative reviews/comments about them.

I took this from their site:
Miele, the world's recognized leader in quality garment care, is fighting back against the water crisis with state-of-the-art technology to protect your clothing.

Our washers and dryers employ a patented Honeycomb DrumTM designed to extend the life of fabrics at least four times longer. And the longer your garments last, the more water is saved in the manufacturing and production of raw materials.

In addition, intelligent features like Automatic Load Recognition ensure that only the minimum amount of water and energy is used, for effective, high-quality results.

Here is a link that might be useful: Miele USA

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 8:23PM
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If it were only me using the machine, I would likely purchase a Miele. However, I am concerned my mom will be utterly confused with the Miele's electronic controls.

Can anyone chime in on the ease of use of the Miele?

I was looking at the Speed Queen FL. The controls seem very straighforward. Does anyone have any experience with this machine? Can they handle heavier loads?

I looked at the Maytag Bravo, and it seems it would fit the bill. However, I am concerned about reliability and durability.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 9:19PM
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We had a Whirlpool Duet FL pair for five years averaging 25-30+ loads a week. They went with the home when we sold it. No repairs. But the washer was developing the common problem of water leaking into the drum after the cycle was finished. Not only a savings in water and hydro over top loaders, but in detergent too.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 10:00PM
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Hi. Speed Queen makes a solid machine but vibration control can be a problem, also, the machine is only going to have average washing performance due to the short washing time (FL need longer to clean well). Front loaders are stingy with water, so make sure you buy one with extra rinse options. There are many good front loaders on the market for around $700 USD - expect to get about seven years (average) of lifespan out of it. To get more lifespan you'll have to pay more $$$ ($2000 for a Miele). Best of Luck.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2010 at 12:36AM
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I am very pleased with the Electrolux IQ washer and dryer. Just turn the dial and push the button. It does a great job,holds a huge amount of laundry, and I never have to use bleach.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2010 at 10:01AM
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I've owned the Samsung WF330 front loader for a month now and am so happy with it. What an improvement over my old top-loader. I can wash king sized bedding in it as well as tiny loads. It has so many helpful settings: quick wash, bedding, sanitize, gentle spin. So far it has cleaned beautifully any kind of laundry load I've had.

Below is a link to some reviews.

Here is a link that might be useful: comments on Samsung WF330

    Bookmark   September 22, 2010 at 8:43PM
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I own a Samsung 337 and I wouldn't recommend it because I have found the instructions are so confusing you have to guess how to set the controls. Too much redundancy between the buttons and the control nob. I would look for a washer that doesn't use a computer to regulate the amount of water used, for energy ratings. Get a lower line of any make you choose.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2010 at 11:46AM
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Our new home came with the Whirlpool Duet. It is ok and suppose to save water. Recently it started to make the clothes smell, some research indicates with the front loaders you have to run special soap, which I won't do, I use Arm and Hammer. It is also suggested to buy a special cleaning soap from Whirlpool for 8 dollars, no chance, or use Borax soap, set on super hot to clean it out about once a month or so. Additionally, some people recommend putting white vinegar in the fabric softner dispenser to clean out the machine. Our last home we had the midrange Whirlpool top loader (400-500) dollars and never had a "smell problem". So when this Duet dies, I'll go back to the front loader.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2010 at 8:27AM
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I'm sure there's some sense in there someplace.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2010 at 9:11AM
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I made my selection, an Electrolux IQ. In the end, I realized I couldn't get everything I wanted in one machine.

The Miele came close, but if I was going to spend that much on the 4842 model, it better be perfect. Judging by Larsi's experience, it isn't.

The Speed Queen was durable and reliable, but really too small.

The Electrolux is large,cleans well,and the controls are simple. It may not be as well built, or reliable as the other two mentioned above. For that reason, I purchased a 5 year extended warranty.

Now, I have moved on to finding the perfect FL detergent, for our hard water. Being that I live in Sonoma County, CA, STTP's are not an option.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2010 at 11:52AM
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I'm a newbie to laundry / washers, but even I realized that Totsuka's post is very misguided.

"..supposed to save water". The water savings of a front loader vs. a top loader is huge. There's no "supposed".

"Some research indicates with front loaders you have to run special soap" - research is not necessary; all manufacturers say front loaders need HE laundry detergent. HE stands for "high efficiency". HE makes less suds. HE laundry detergent is available everywhere, at various price points. Sears has really good HE detergents at low prices, and they often run sales on them. Totsuka's favorite Arm & Hammer comes in an HE formulation, though Arm & Hammer is higher priced than most. But, as I already said, walk into any supermarket, Target, Walmart, Costco and find HE detergent easily and at various prices.

"It is also suggested to buy a special cleaning soap from Whirlpool for 8 dollars, no chance, or use Borax soap, set on super hot to clean it out about once a month or so. Additionally, some people recommend putting white vinegar in the fabric softner dispenser to clean out the machine." Never heard of any of that, but as I said I'm a newbie. All my friends have front loaders, of varying brands. From what I understand, just leave the door open and there'll be no smell. But anyway, if the vinegar story is true, it doesn't sound too hard or too expensive.

"When this Duet dies," That could be a long way off.

" I'll go back to the front loader" OK!

    Bookmark   September 25, 2010 at 12:01PM
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I do not recommend the maytag bravos. I bought the top of the line. It is a top loader, high efficiency washer. It has and electronic key pad. This is a washer that you have to read the entire manual and make notes in order to wash the clothes on the settings (length of time, temperature, etc) that you want. How I wish to have simple wash time, temperature, etc. I really am not sure how much water these washers save. I have had to wash my clothes twice because they don't get clean. It handles heavy loads, but the thicker fabrics come out more wrinkled than the lighter ones. (Never realized the washer could have an influence on wrinkles.) I cannot remember ever making a major purchase that I was so dissatisfied with. (or even remotely dissatisfied with.) Perhaps this is a problem with all high efficiency top loaders. Oh, and the automatic temperature control does not allow the warm to get warm enough to get the clothes properly clean.
The reviews are good for longevity, but who knows if that is even true. I would go with a cheaper old technology washer that has dials not electronic pads. They make them to throw away these days, but they also cost a lot less than they used to.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2010 at 9:41PM
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OP, except for (was it?) #2 on your list -- electronic controls -- the Maytag Bravos definitely fits your bill. The controls were a learning curve for my teen dd (more so than for me), so I kept the manual handy in the laundry room. After about a week, she had it down pat.

We used to do at least 10+ loads of laundry each week. Now, because of the washer's huge capacity, we do 3-5 loads each week! This is a huge savings of time, energy, and water. I love being able to wash a king-size comforter and huge loads of laundry.

Someone said: The water savings of a front loader vs. a top loader is huge. There's no "supposed".

Just wanted to say: This depends on whether the top loader is an HE washer, or not. My washer uses MUCH less water than my former agitator washers, while washing much-bigger loads than they could hold.

Also -- if you want to be able to wash in true hot water (at least 140 F), be sure to buy a washer with an internal water heater. The extra bit of expense will be well worth it!

Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2010 at 4:53AM
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Whatever brand of washer you choose, get one with the internal heater in it, especailly if you wash in warm or hot water. Any washer is as good as the owner using it. It always amzes me when parents say there kids come home from college and wash a weeks worth of clothes in one wash. I assume that includes, darks, whites, and towels all combined in one load...not a smart way to wash in my opionion for optimal results, but Im not he one wearing the clothes so I do care. You have to decide on what features you want, and will use, and budget if that is an issue for you. There are many great choices out there to choose from. Take your time and read owners reviews, but keep an open mind to them also. If someone washes everything in one load, and then complains about the results, toss that opionion to the side. No one in any manufactures owners manual will it state, to just throw everything in and turn it on for the best results

    Bookmark   November 8, 2010 at 12:36PM
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