another tell me what to buy...specific criteria--please chime in

kaliOctober 13, 2012

Hi folks. I've been a member here for 10+ years, but have rarely visited or posted since DH and I finished remodeling our current home in 2006. (Based on advice here, I bought a Kenmore HE3t washer, which is still going strong!) We just bought a new house and need to buy a washer and dryer in the next 3 weeks.

I know "what should I buy?" is a very subjective and personal question that gets asked here often, but I do have some criteria, and hope you all can make some suggestions. My budget is $2,500 - $3,000 for both machines.

My criteria for the washer, in order of declining importance:

-has on-board heater

-front loading (I have a notion that these clean better, are gentler on clothes, and are more efficient, but feel free to educate me!)

-very large capacity (I wash our king-size comforters at least twice a year, and every week wash a huge load of sheets and towels)

-reliable, easy to service (I've heard of problems of availability of parts/qualified techs for LG/Samsung. Also, our LG fridge has been a DISASTER)

Criteria for the dryer, again, in order of declining importance:

-the effective duct length is about 80 feet (this is non-negotiable, as the house is already built, and dryer ducts are already installed)

-reverse tumble, or other technology that mitigates tangling.

These will be on the second floor of our house, so noise and vibration are also a consideration. By the way, I don't care one whit if the machines match (brands, colors, etc.), although it would be great if they could stack somehow. I would have LOVED to buy one of the German washers, but they seem to have phased out the large capacity ones.

So, at this point, I'm thinking of the Electroluxe Wavetouch washers, but don't have any ideas about the dryer. Please give me your experiences and suggestions.

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one model, w/o turns allows for 90 feet. with turns, you are screwed. other models don't go anywhere near as long as 80 feet. good luck !!

    Bookmark   October 13, 2012 at 6:11PM
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Dave's link also mentions the possibility of getting a booster fan, which might be needed in your situation. I'd talk to some knowledgeable installers about this, to make sure you work that long run out safely. Honestly, I know very little about dryer venting, but I have about 9 months of experience with the Electrolux Wavetouch washer and dryer--the 70 series. I've been very, very happy with the performance of this set. I also wash a king sized comforter, and while it washes just fine, it does come out of the dryer somewhat wrinkled, because it expands so much while drying. Not too much of a problem, as the wrinkles disappear once I shake it out and put it on the bed, but if your comforter is very puffy, you may also experience this issue. I also do multiple big loads of towels a week, and I love it for the huge capacity. I find that the washer is quite flexible--it washes a few small things well, or it washes a large load equally well. I can tailor the cycles to do what I want them to do, and I've saved a few custom cycles to add things like prewash, allergen rinse, etc. I find that I like being able to save a custom wash very much--more than I actually thought I would. I also like the "shrink guard" feature, which tumbles the load and shakes it up a bit before you put it in the dryer, helping to minimize wrinkling. "Fast wash" is great for when one of the kids forgot to wash something that's needed immediately--but honestly, I mostly used it when the set was new for extra rinsing. I was coming from an old top loading set, so there was a learning curve to dosing detergent. :-)

The dryer is great--it has several features that I've come to really like. First, it can be set to keep tumbling the load for up to 3 hours--so if it's not convenient to drop what I'm doing and go get the laundry, it's no problem. It'll just keep it tumbling till I'm ready for it. Also, it cools the load down while it's tumbling, so that when I do get to it, clothing doesn't wrinkle up in the laundry basket while I'm folding it. I'm in love with this feature, as clothing and sheets come out beautifully smooth--no wrinkles! I do not have any trouble with my king sized sheets or jeans tangling.

I know you're on a timeline here, but definately check and see if any of the vendors you're thinking about buying from is running a rebate on the Electrolux pair. They run them regularly and they're worth waiting for if you can. I also bought the pedestals for my machines, and they are tall enough to be very useful in storing bottles of detergent, old towels for cleaning, and a number of different other things.

If you have any questions about these, feel free to ask or pm me. I'm happy to answer as best I can.
Best of luck with the move!


    Bookmark   October 14, 2012 at 10:19PM
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Thanks for the replies. I've been busy with the house, but we closed today (yay!) and signed a contract with a contractor who will be doing a few renovations yesterday, so can turn my attention back to this purchase.

It turns out I was wrong about the duct length. I still don't know how many turns, but have been assured by the builder that the effective duct length is 59'. It looks like the the Electroluxe dryers can handle this.

CJ, I really appreciate your review on your Wavetouch, and for your advice about waiting for a rebate offer. Any thoughts on my other criteria? Does the Wavetouch have an on-board heater? And does the dryer do the reverse tumble thing (I think this means it changes direction periodically to prevent tangling.) Also, if anyone can advise, I could really use some guidance on differentiating between the various E-luxe models. Are the Wavetouches a higher line than the IQ models?


    Bookmark   October 17, 2012 at 1:25AM
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Kali, yes, the washer has an onboard heater. The dryer also does the reverse tumble thing to keep things from tangling, and it works very well. The feature is called "perfect tumble". The Wavetouch models are a step up from the IQ models, slightly larger (not enough to make much difference) and the Wavetouch has a different control panel than the IQ touch. The IQ has lots of buttons to make your selection, and you scroll through the menu on the Wavetouch. It also has a few more features, I think that the "Perfect Tumble" feature is a Wavetouch feature that is not found on the IQ sets (at least not when I was looking, this may have changed). The Wavetouch allows you to program 3 different custom washes for 3 different users, IQ does not. I think you get one programmed wash.

The Wavetouch has a lot room for customization, and I like that. It makes me feel lik the set is working around MY preferences, not me working around it, if that makes sense.

For a more detailed comparison of the two models, I suggest that you download the operating manuals. There is a page with a grid on it that shows all the cycles and options--if you print out that from each manual you have a clear way of making comparisons of the features. I did that and it helped a lot.

Best of luck, with the new house,

    Bookmark   October 18, 2012 at 3:22PM
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