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What to look for in a washer and dryer

Last post Wed, Jul 21 2010 10:09 PM by GerryK. 10 replies.
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  • Mon, Jun 21 2010 11:20 AM

    • Pat
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Tue, Mar 6 2007
    • Colorado
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    What to look for in a washer and dryer

    A reader has a question about washers and dryers. While she knows to look for scratch and dent pieces and overstocks, energy ratings and so on, she wants to know what else she should look for. What would you look for in a washer and dryer set?

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  • Mon, Jun 21 2010 11:31 AM In reply to

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

    I would look for energy star ratings and independent evaluations from organizations such as Consumer Reports (if you can't find the reports on line, a trip to the library is worth the time it takes).
  • Mon, Jun 21 2010 11:52 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

     If she has large or heavy items that she washes, she may want to check capacity to be sure the machine will handle her loads.

    We bought the cheapest set we could find. My full size comforter fills the drum, if I had a queen size, I would have to take it to the laundromat.  

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  • Mon, Jun 21 2010 10:05 PM In reply to

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

    Consider front-loading machines. I have them, they are more energy-efficient, take less detergent, and can handle quite large loads. Mine were scratch-and-dent, too, as was my freezer, but only small scratches and dents. And go for just inexpensive. These machines are in investment and should last many, many years, so in the long run, paying a bit more is a lot stretchier

  • Tue, Jun 22 2010 12:45 AM In reply to

    • Becky
    • Top 100 Contributor
    • Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007
    • Posts 574

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

    When looking for the washer and dryer consider the front loads but do not discount top loads, they have come a long way from the old days and do have water saving features.The one good thing about top loads is if you need to you an interrupt a cycle, stop it and let it sit, without draining. With front loads, at least mine that is not possible. Also, with front loads they recommend that you leave the door cracked on the washer when not in use. If you do not have the washer in an area with enough room, this is hard to do. Mine is in a small laundry room and there is a door into the garage, and one into the house as well. I cannot leave the door cracked as it is in the paths of both doors...closing the washer up tight and leaving it that way between washings will cause it to mildew, and if you forget a load even for just a few hours, they will often smell and you will have to rewash them....

  • Tue, Jun 22 2010 6:59 AM In reply to

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

    I'd look for a brand that can be repaired locally; service calls from larger cities are expensive. I'd look for one that had a good rating on repairs, etc.

    I bought a dryer back when I was married that was within a certain price range.

    I was lucky; my current washer and dryer were the top of the line when Mom got them in 2003. I have had to have the washer repaired just once and it was under $100.00. I had to have something replaced due to hard water build up.

  • Tue, Jun 22 2010 7:19 AM In reply to

    • Toni B.
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    • Joined on Sat, Apr 5 2008
    • Seneca Falls NY
    • Posts 3,826

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

    Consider the size of the family. For one or two people, you may not require the newer models. Also consider what the largest item that you would be washing. If you're constantly doing bedding, then a heavy duty washer and dryer would be a good investment.
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  • Sun, Jun 27 2010 10:35 AM In reply to

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

     If buying new, get EnergyStar and check for vibration. Current article somewhere noted that front-loaders run a bunch of vibration and may be better on a concrete floor.  This isn't limited to front-loaders, though--our new water-saver walks all over the place and has to be shoved back constantly.

    For used, go to moving sales or pre-foreclosure sales.  Moving sales are preferable but check how many kids they have so you don't get a machine that's run to death. You want someone who's being transferred and has a  nearly new machine.  

    Not that I ever followed the rules--I did quite well for years with fifty-buck Maytags, but Maytag's reliability is not what it used to be. 

  • Sun, Jul 11 2010 12:27 AM In reply to

    • daviddurick
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    • Joined on Sun, Jul 11 2010
    • Bozeman, MT
    • Posts 6

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

     The best thing I ever did was make sure and get a front loading washer.  Pure in simple, it's way cheaper in a ton of ways to a top loading washer and here's why.  It uses less water, breaks down less, uses less soap, and never tears up your clothes so in every aspect the front loading washers cost less to use and keeps your clothes in good condition longer.  I bought my first one just 4 years ago and I'll NEVER go back to top loading washers.

  • Sun, Jul 11 2010 11:26 AM In reply to

    • Becky
    • Top 100 Contributor
    • Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007
    • Posts 574

    Re: What to look for in a washer and dryer

    Front loaders in many ways are superior. However, the top loaders have come along way. They have improved on energy efficiency and water usage as well. As for breaking down less, I had a top load Maytag Washer and Maytag Dryer. The pair lasted for 24 years, and only the magnet on the dryer door and the belt had to be replaced one time...I know Maytags are different now but that history says something. As for my front load, that replaced the pair previously mentioned, it had a door seal replaced in the washer within 6 months, the computer was replaced within the first year, and the dryer had to have the drum replaced within the first year. This was all due to manufacturing issues and not missuse. When it comes time to replace them, I will be researching both top and front loads. If the top loads continue to improve I may just go back to one...

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