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F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

Posted by measure_twice (My Page) on
Mon, Jun 2, 08 at 23:14

Do you think the F&P top load clothes washers and dryers are reliable for frequent use? What would you suggest as a very, very reliable set? The washer and dryer could be different brands, I don't care.

I do not care so much about super-efficiency and a bazillion settings. My adult children have developmental delays. They are responsible for their own clothes. They fill the machine and turn it on, period. The damp-sensing dryer is a blessing. Each machine get 4 loads per day, minimum.

I could repair our current washer and dryer again (early Frigidaire Gallery FL washer broken struts again, and dryer with worn out front and rear bearing surfaces again) but they will only break again because of design flaws.

The F&P sets have great features, but I have read on several forums of reliability issues, it seems to be mostly due to electronics.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

I have two F&P washers. A GWL08 that's coming up on 9 years old, and an IWL12 that's coming up on 4 years old. Neither one has given any trouble ... except the GWL08 has once (in nine years) gotten clogged at the tub outlet with accumulated strings & lint from old frayed towels, requiring the pump be removed to clear it ... which doesn't even require any tools to do that.

Slap a good-quality surge surpressor on them, and the electronics should be OK.

The most common problem areas I've run across are the divertor valve and cold or hot water valves. Both are inexpensive parts. Occasionally the pump, but it's also relatively inexpensive. Sears PartsDirect www.searspartsdirect.com carries F&P parts at reasonable prices.

Using the washers is super-easy. Load, press Power, press a cycle button (Regular is the default), and press Start. Each fabric cycle can be preset for specific options for ease of use.


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

After 37 years of marriage I've managed to own 5 washer/dryer sets and the F&P is by far the best one out of the bunch.

I've had a F&P GWL10 Ecosmart since 2001 but it's no longer available. No problems other than we had to replace the plug-in cord because in our new house it had a different style box to plug it into. We recently replaced the water hoses.

-Plenty of washing room - 3 cu. ft. in a stainless steel tub. You can wash a King-sized comforter.

-At the time, it was one of the most energy efficient washers (TL) available. The average water consumption is 26 gallons, but with the precise auto water level sensing I'd guess I use much less than that.

-Increased reliability with no transmission, belts, brakes, clutches or pulleys to fail. A do-it-your-selfer can do many of the repairs.

-Grainlady


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

I have seen some complaints about issues with the top load dryers. Not a lot, grant you, but some. Also seems like there's been issues with damage in delivery, especially on the gas dryers but I'm not seeing anything on that for a long time. Perhaps they've resolved the issue.

I am so impressed with the design of the top load dryer (being top load and also for the reversing tumbling to lessen tangling) and I really wanted to buy one and had pretty much decided to splurge and get it when I had to buy one, but in the end I decided against it in favor of a Whirlpool Gold dryer, primarily because the Whirlpool was well over $500 cheaper and additionally it held 25% more than the F&P. That's quite a difference and I'm rather disappointed in the size of the F&P dryer, especially for the price. I think they should be doing better. After a year's use, I don't regret getting the one I did.

That said, I'm impressed with the F&P washers too. Very few problems with them from what I've seen. They change models quite frequently, but they're improving as they go. Prices are pretty stable and they're reasonably priced.

Yes, the electronics concern me, however as dadoes said, you should put a good surge protector on it, as you should with anything electronically-reliant. Most of the washers these days are electronically controlled. Most do quite well. But you should take precautions to protect your investment.

I'd definitely recommend you give F&P serious consideration at least for the washer. You could save some money by going with a non-matching dryer. Otherwise for a basic, solid top load washer, check out the Speed Queens. If you do large loads, the GE Harmony has an avid following too. For what my opinion is worth, and probably not much, you won't go wrong with the F&P washer. Oh, and if you get one, dig back through the old posts. Dadoes has given a bunch of tips and tricks for programming and using the F&P. You'll get that much more out if it if you want to program for various cycles. All depends on your needs. The basics are very sufficient for the average user.


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

A surge suppressor ! The light slowly seeps in. I will bet irregular line voltage and spikes are the demise of many appliances. It never occurred to me to put my washer and dryer on a suppressor. $600-$1600 for appliances, and a big $50 surge suppressor looks cheap.

I have suppressors and UPS on just about everything now. I have a UPS for my cable modem and phone adapter because I am no longer on the very reliable copper phone service.

Thanks, we will now look at the F&Ps. I really like the idea of a top-load dryer for my children because they frequently drop wet clothes transferring to the dryer. It is not just the developmentally disabled. I drop lots, too.


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

Yes, they are dependable. I discussed them with my service guy prior to buying and he thought very highly of them, and also said they were easy to repair when it was required. I've had a GWL15 for about 2 years and have had no problems with it, its very easy to use, does a great job on cleaning the cloths, and is efficient to boot.
Use HE detergents with the washer.

For a dryer, I suggest you do what I did. Get a Kenmore or Whirlpool dryer with the moisture sensor, whichever one you can find the cheapest that has the features you want.
Good luck.


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

I have the original DEGX1 model topload dryer. I've had no trouble with it. I also have a "traditional" Whirlpool dryer (27"-width cabinet, front filter, I think it's 7 cu ft vs. 6.2 for the F&P). The F&P slightly smaller capacity has never been a problem. While the Whirlpool is a fine machine, the F&P's reverse tumble DOES make a difference for sheets and blankets. VERY large, overstuffed items such as a queen-size comforter may still need rearrangement and 20-min recycle (sometimes twice), but that's better than multiple recycles that a traditional dryer may require. I love the 24-hr wrinkle guard, as I often start a load drying before going to bed and unload the next evening.


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

Um, I just realized an electric dryer is 240V, 40A even if it has delicate electronic circuits. What kind of plug-in surge suppressor has that capacity? Or is a whole-house suppressor the way to go?

(Side gripe: Why do the appliances not have a filtered power supply?)


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

I've never seen an outlet-type surge surpressor for 240 volts. I don't have a surpressor on my dryer. If there is such a device, I'd like to know where to get one. My neighbor has a whole-house surpressor through the electric company and seems to have trouble with electronics (A/V equipment and PCs) going bad more than is reasonable, so I can't say the whole-house type is very effective.


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

Thank you all for your responses about the reliability of the F&Ps.

Thanks dadoes, with your info n suppressors I did some research.

I found the whole-house surge protectors are designed to protect "white goods" which are appliances such as refrigerators, washers, dryers, and the like. They frequently offer warranties(example - 3 years and $1000 per appliance)

I found the whole house suppressors are neither designed nor warranteed for electronics and audio-visual equipment. For that you should at least get plug-in suppressor power strips.

For my computer and TV, I actually prefer line conditioning units that take the ragged input line voltage and deliver 60 Hz smooth waves and reliable voltage. For example, APC offers a variety of UPS and line conditioners. Similar to those power bricks you see in Staples.

I see Square D has a plug in suppressor for their QO panels. Thank heavens I paid a bit more for a big, standard QO panel. About $85, but worth it to protect the "white goods".


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

I have two "1500" APC UPS units for my computers, and a Panamax line conditioner (altho without battery backup) for my A/V equipment.


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RE: F&P washers and dryers dependable? or look elsewhere?

I was also curious as to the reliability of the FP washers when I was looking for a new unit a couple of months back. I was told by one retailer that they sold a bunch of FP washers to a mining camp that was looking for a reliable washer. I was told by another that the FPs are popular in penitentiaries. Both said that they are extremely reliable units with low return rates.

I've had my GWL15 for the past two months and I am extremely satisfied with my purchase.

Hope this helps!
AW


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