Pros: Affordable, Bigger batches, nice looking, if used with matching washer drys quickly
Cons: Rips tears holes in clothes
Taken from my blog. FOr an update follow the link.
Starry eyed over fron Loaders?
Do you have a very large family or an average sized family and very little time?
Do you have aspirations of moving mountains of laundry and freeing up your time?
I certainly did. I wash more clothes each week than many with my 7 children ranging from 16 on down to age 3 and me, Mom and Dad.
I bought a set of Maytag Performa appliances 6 years ago during the dark days of Maytag and wore them out in record time. So, when the time came a couple of months ago for me to replace my machines I had stars in my eyes and dreams of even larger loads of laundry moving through my laundry room.
My previous next door neighbor went into debt for Sears biggest best super gigantic front loaders (3.7 cubic feet) and has loved them every minute. She has enjoyed very clean clothes and great service from her machines. Of course she spent much more than I did on her set and can wash many more clothes in each batch than my super duper capacity Maytag machines were able to wash.
I walked into Sears with starry eyes and an ethereal feeling wanting to buy the same thing that she bought and then I swallowed my gum at the price and left empty handed and debt free.
I looked at the consumer report and settled on the "Consumer report best buy" 3.5 cubic foot Frigidaire Gallery front loaders with the radio dial. I took delivery and have loved them with exception to one or two little quirks.
The dryer makes an occasional meal of my lighter weight fabrics. The sloppily fitted drum sags in front from about the 8:00 position to the 5:00 position on the front of the drum. The drum is loose exposing the felt seal allowing the clothing to do the pinch and rip routine. The other little quirk? Do your kids ever walk through the irrigation water in their socks? I wish mine wouldn't. My front loader just does not do the best job of tackling that kind of mess. It handles the silty jeans, but not the socks. The top loaders will agitate the fibers right out of the fabrics and fill up your lint filter, but they get muddy silt out of socks. So, occasional yucky socks aside...
The Solution, if you can call it that-
I called Frigidaire, and two repair men later the only repair Frigidaire offers for the sagging drum is another felt seal at the top of the drum after 2 months of ownership. UGH! The long and the short of the whole thing is Frigidaire has built a big machine, but has not solved the issue of supporting the drum.
The repair man told me I just need to wash all of my lighter weight fabrics in mesh bags. (The repair man claims that the other front load brands tell you that you have to use mesh bags. I have not done any research to confirm this.)
So, my once starry eyes are looking a bit weary as I contenplate shoving all of my mountains of whites and t-shirts into mesh bags for washing and drying and then removing them again.
The Dream Shattered-
I had visions of washing mountains of laundry for my family in record time. Short of building a laundromat in an unused corner of the backyard as a dear friend of mine suggested after visiting a couple of them on vacation back east with her family of 6 children, Mom and Dad... I am on my own. Starry eyes, now crossed as I consider the option of owning multiple mesh bags. The solution? If we can consider putting everything light weight in a bag, what about sheets? I already sort laundry carefully, so I will assign each hamper a mesh bag and ask that the owner of the clothes place the offending lighter weight items into the bag as they are worn. Then ideally, I can just drop the offending lightweight fabrics into the washer. I'll let you know if I find a way to get the 8 other people in my household to comply with this request. (Not a very satisfactory solution to me.)
But, look at the bright side maybe fewer socks will get separated in the laundry.
The reality is the mountains of laundry go through the Gallery machine faster than they did with my old Super Duper Maytags, but the only perfect solution is a second laundry room and a second set of machines that do not eat clothes. (And maybe a second me to keep up with it all. Remember Barbara Streisand's song desiring a perfect twin? Only problem is, then I would just expect twice as much of myself and my twin. No, not a good solution.) Maybe about the time the kids are raised we will be able to have a second set of machines. Giggle. Okay, that was a negative thing to say, but one can always dream. When I buy that second set, I'll buy the Best Super Duper hugeomatic machines that Sears has. But, beware Sear sells my Gallery machines with the Kenmore name on them.
Looking for the positive-
I still really like the machines since they will wash about a load and a half at a time as compared to one load in my old super-dupers, imperfections aside. Wash On!
Update, Leg work-
I visited the retailer that sold me my machine this morning to investigate their floor models. Here is what I found. Of the 4 Frigidaire machines on the sales floor, 3 were tight all the way around the drum. (2 sets that looked just like mine a Gl series and a FE series, and two Affinity.) I could not push my fingers in and feel the felt gasket. 1 of them however had a very minor area that I could push my fingers into, it was a GL series machine like mine. The spot was no more than 2 inches long though, nothing like the gap in mine.
My conclusion? I got a bad one.
Possible solutions to run by the manufacturer-
I can either take the pro-rated rebate from Frigidaire depending upon how close it will come to replacing my machine. (I will call on Monday to see how close it will come to coving my 2 month old machine.) Or I can investigate asking them to replace the whole front panel and pray I get a good replacement panel. That is "IF" the manufacturer will even consider doing this. The tech told the second repair man to repeat the same repair that did not fix the problem 2 weeks ago. Even after he told the tech. the customer would not be happy with this.
I really do want to be fair with Frigidaire and I'd like to be treated fairly also.
I would like to dry clothing without a garment bag. Sheets and t-shirts in a garment bag?
How many women would be satisfied with having all of their clothes wadded up in a garment bag? I can see doing this with bras and other delicates to prevent them from tangling. I can even see this as a solution for an old bucket of bolts while you save for a new one.
I don't think I even need to justify my position, so I will stop doing so.
Wish me luck.
Mom to Many