WWYD? Haven't bought a w/d since 1987!

pupwhippedNovember 27, 2011

Yes sir, the last time I bought a washer and dryer was 24 years ago! As you can imagine, I'm a bit frightened. HA!

My situation is quite different, as well, and I would love some input on what I should do. Our new to us place is on a lake and there are two seperate buildings. I do our laundry (it's just hubby and me) in a stack unit in the newer house, which works fine for us. It came with the house and is just a plain Frigidaire. We have been remodeling the older place, built in 1952, for the past three years. I am now ready to purchase a washer and dryer for this house. It will be used primarily for doing king size sheets and comforters, therefore I would like to have a large capacity unit. Our clothes will not be washed in this unit. I have never owned a FL and don't know if this old dog can learn new tricks. Maybe? I'm even a bit intimadated by the TL with all the bells and whistles. I don't mind spending money on this purchase, after all, it's been 24 years since I've done so. The only other thing I can think of that might be important is that the flooring in the laundry room is concrete and it is very uneven. Also, the room is only maybe 7-1/2 feet tall....wondering if a FL with pedestals would be too tall? I would not want a FL without pedestals....I'm too old for that. LOL!

Anyway, would love suggestions from anyone who has the time to respond. I thank you in advance for any thoughts.


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Set your criteria and narrow it down:
1) King size sheets and comforters - Extra Large capacity (new standard says: Medium (3.1 cu. ft. - 3.5 cu. ft. D.O.E. capacity); Large (3.6 cu. ft. - 4.2 cu. ft. D.O.E. capacity); Extra Large (4.3 cu. ft. and larger D.O.E. capacity)

2) Easy controls

3) Self-Leveling

4) 7.5' ceiling (mute, this won't affect either TL or FL)

If it were me (and it was 1yr ago), I'd stick with these criteria and do some research. I'm not gonna recommend a brand or form-factor (TL v FL); however, I will mention this - FLs (ALL - and some will dispute this) will develop a mildew smell unless you are proactive in eliminating that smell (open the door, use sanitizers, etc...).

Use this forum, do research.

Here is a link that might be useful: Before You Buy a Clothes Washer

    Bookmark   November 27, 2011 at 12:15PM
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Thank you, Impliedconsent, for your comments. I will say that I am aware of the mildew problem with FL, and for that reason alone, I had decided I did not want one. I am not one to baby a freakin washer! The only thing I've ever done with my nearing 25 year old TL is to leave the lid up...that's it.

I think my main question is that given my odd situation here, with the two different houses, would it be worth my while to try to buy a large capacity washer in hopes of being able to wash king comforters? Or is that just wishful thinking? Maybe it's better to just go to the laundromat as need be and save money on this purchase. Funny though, for many years I have stuffed a VERY puffy king bedspread thing (don't know what to call it?) in my poor old aging washer. It works just fine. At this lake house I have a more substantial king comforter and so far I have taken it to the laundromat. I was just hoping that I might could find a machine that would launder it. Too bad I can't take it up to Lowe's or Sears and give it a whirl in their washers. LOL!

    Bookmark   November 27, 2011 at 7:03PM
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@pupwhipped, are you on septic?

My parents needed a new washer/dryer earlier this year (they are on septic) and decided to take the plunge on a new LG FL. I've been using them for 11 years. My mother, who hadn't had a new machine in 26 years, was a little apprehensive.

She used to do only around 2 loads in one day as it's hard on the septic if you do more. She's thrilled now that she doesn't have to limit the number of loads.

She loves to hang laundry out and also enjoys the delay start so she can wake up and immediately hang a load out.

Of course, they dry so much faster do to the higher RPM spin as well.

She said she finds things are just as clean or cleaner.

I gave her pretty simple instructions on taking care of her machine and she's had no issues yet. Leaving the door ajar after using it isn't really that difficult :)

Just food for thought for you.

I think you'd be hard pressed to find a machine that could handle a king size comforter (a quilt probably). Items need to move a certain amount to get cleaned adequately (in a TL or FL).

    Bookmark   November 27, 2011 at 8:02PM
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It's astonishing to me that many people apparently believe toploaders don't (or can't) catch mold and scummy residue ....

    Bookmark   November 27, 2011 at 9:17PM
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@dadoes, I actually had a neighbor that had a mold issue in an older TL. She complained to me of smelly towels and my "bells" went off. I went through the same thing with another friend and her LG FL.

After I told her what might be causing it she had a good look in her machine. Yep ... black stuff. Especially around the FS dispenser which I think is part of the agitator.

I believe it was also above the water line in the drum.

She ordered some smelly washer and followed the directions for tackling the mold. Issue seemed to be resolved. Towels smell fresh again.

I think FL are just more prone to it due to their sealed design. You must leave the door open to let air circulate while a TL will still get some air even if the lid is closed.

A lot of it has to do with your laundering habits too (which some people will deny).

    Bookmark   November 27, 2011 at 9:58PM
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impliedconsent: I will mention this - FLs (ALL - and some will dispute this) will develop a mildew smell unless you are proactive in eliminating that smell (open the door, use sanitizers, etc...).

Here is the anticipated dispute. We have had only front-loading washing machines in our family for 75 years. We never have taken any proactive measures whatsoever to eliminate "that" smell, because we never have had a mildew or mold problem with any of our front loading machines. However:

It never occurred to us to close the washer door until the latch clicked after we removed the clothes from the washer. We never leave the door wide open; we just shut it to the point just short of the latch engaging, that's all. And:

Since roughly the time (spring of 1995) that we bought our last previous washing machine, we have been using a scoop (about 1/3 cup) of 20 Mule Team borax in each washload. We did not start to use borax because we were intent on eliminating odors from the washing machine; there never had been any odors from the washing machine to eliminate in the first place. We started using borax just to boost the cleaning effectiveness of our detergent, which it has done. But we cannot discount the possibility that borax also aids in reducing the likelihood of mildew formation. Like the elephant bane on our front lawn, the borax must be effective because we have seen no elephants on our street in years. Or mildew in our front loading washing machines, ever.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2011 at 10:54PM
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Thank you all for your responses. Food for thought for sure.

I am not on septic so that is not an issue. But the more I look at the space for the units, I don't think a FL is going to work. The doors would open, but it would defnitely be a cramped feeling. I guess now I back to a TL.

I got all hyped up with the after Thanksgiving sales and was trying to hurry my decsion. We ended up staying longer at my MIL's house for the holiday then originally scheduled, so we didn't get to purchase anything. Just as well, I think I need to give this more thought. Right at this moment I am leaning towards getting the largest TL I can find with an agitator. I don't think there is any at home washer that is big enough to handle my particular king comforter.

Thanks once again!

    Bookmark   November 30, 2011 at 12:17PM
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In 1987 you almost could have bought a new car for what that W/D will cost you today.

I have washed both of our King Sized comforters in our HE TL with no problem at all.
Neither are a super thick or fluffy comforter it is more like thick heavy Fleece and the other one is like a King size quilt, probably only about an inch thick.
We have also washed our over size (90X98") Queen comforter that is very thick and fluffy 600 fill Goose Down and the only difference in that and regular King is just a few inches and we washed a 3'x2' bath rug along with it with plenty of room.

I think it is probably the largest non commercial washer you can get at 4.5cu.ft.

I don't think I have ever seen a washer with a center post type agitator that can handle a King Size comforter.

We got the LG WT5101H washer with matching Dryer.
So far really like them.
Paid $728 each.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2011 at 6:07PM
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Oh dear, I think the time has come. Notice I originally posted this back in November of last year, but now we are going to buy "something" in the coming week. Begging here for just a bit more help.

I do know now that it must be a TL....a FL simply will not fit in my space. I did go to Lowes today and got a great deal of help from a nice guy. I initially was looking at Whirlpool because, oddly enough, I want a dryer that has a drop down door...not one that opens to the side. Okay, call me nuts, but that's what I like. But then there's a more top of the line Whirlpool that is slightly taller and has a bigger, easier to open side door on the dryer. You know what I'm talking about....or, clear as mud? Anyway, the matching washer also has an internal water heater which I think would be good for me. Maybe even a deal breaker for me. The Lowe's guy told me that if I wanted hot water like I get from my 1987 Kenmore model, I would want a washer with a heater. Also, the line from my washer to hot water heater is quite a ways. I still don't believe that my poofy of a poof king size comforter will work in this large TL (4.6, I think?) but I don't wash it that often anyway. Ewwwwwwww.

Can someone point out anything else I should be thinking about? Now that I am considering more top of the line with the big oversize side opening door, I could also look at the Maytag brand...I was just looking at Whirlpool at first because of the drop down door issue. And also, on another issue, I was doing a little searching on here and saw a thread about some of these washers requiring a 39" high water pipe thingy on the wall....mine is only 35" tops. Can anyone comment on this???

I'll shut up now...I'm rambling a bit....I always do. But as you might imagine, having not purchased a w/d since 1987, this process is crazy! Back then, I was mostly concerned with color....I went with a lovely grey ensemble. HA! And it's still pretty to this day.....and the only repair I've EVER had was to replace the knob on the washer. Those were the days!

Thanks for any suggestions.


    Bookmark   January 21, 2012 at 7:49PM
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pupwhipped: "... oddly enough, I want a dryer that has a drop down door...not one that opens to the side. Okay, call me nuts, but that's what I like."

That is a rational decision; a good preference. Stand by your gut.

"... the matching washer also has an internal water heater which I think would be good for me. Maybe even a deal breaker for me. The Lowe's guy told me that if I wanted hot water like I get from my 1987 Kenmore model, I would want a washer with a heater."

Why do you need a matching washer? You will save literally hundreds of dollars buying the Whirlpool drop-down door dryer that you prefer on the merits instead of a dryer the only merit of which is that it looks like a caricature of the washer. That saved cost will allow you to get a washer -- probably not matching the styling of the dryer -- with an internal water heater, which is desirable in its own right. Does style trump function?

    Bookmark   January 24, 2012 at 10:01PM
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pup....I am also looking for a W/D...I was just told yesterday that Maytag is a Whirlpool product. Just an FYI.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2012 at 8:03AM
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Maytag IS Whirlpool, and most Kenmores are probably Whirlpool as well.
4.6cu.ft should do all but the biggest and thickest king size comforters.

For the most part ANY HE washer especially that are Energy star rated will not give you hot water at all unless it has an internal heater.
If you want actual "Hot water" then you need to either get the absolute cheapest washer you can buy that has an agitator in it that has just 3 selections, one knob and one button. Pick hot,warm,cold then push On type washer and those should actually fill the tub with how water from the water heater.
Those will not wash your king size comforter though.

I would get an LG Waveforce washer and then get the Whirlpool dryer you want with the drop down lid.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2012 at 10:45AM
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It's a done deal now. I bought the Speed Queen washer and dryer yesterday. It will be delivered tomorrow. I will try to comment after I have used them for awhile.

Thanks to all for your help!

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 4:54PM
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