Pros: Large Polymer drum for large loads, washed flawlessly, appealing to the eye!
Cons: Bucked like a bronco & took a full size adult to hold it still!
Along with other Epinionators, I too had a 14 year old Whirlpool washer that went to the big recycling center in the sky. The motor went, and I immediately started my computer and went to Epinions.com to see what other members recommended as far as a dependable washer.
The top rated washers were of the GE brand, and I tend to steer away from this brand in general after watching a 20/20 special on how this company knew it had a coffee maker that caught on fire, and SUPPOSIDLY never did anything as far as a recall until so many people had died. It put a bad taste in my mouth in regards to ANYTHING GENERAL ELECTRIC BRAND, so onto the next best rated brands...
I came upon the Maytag Performa Washer (Model PAV2300AWW). I read all five current member epinion articles, visited www.maytag.com, and I easily found this model had the few things that I specifically required in a washer:
* Oversize Capacity Washing tub - Polymer coated to prevent rusting or snagging of clothes - Large enough to do a full size comforter without straining. I took a tape measure to the store and found the wash drum area was 17 inches wide by 17 inches deep! Looked good to me!***INNER WASH BASKET HAS A LIFETIME WARRANTY IN RELATING TO REPLACEMENT PARTS***BIG BONUS TO ME!
* Bleach and fabric-softener dispensers - bleach dispenser was actually on the left-hand side of the wash drum. It is a recessed area with a hole in it that dispenses the bleach directly into the water without coming in direct contact with fabrics already in the washer. The fabric softener dispenser is a recessed cup that resides on the top of the agitator, located in the center of the wash drum. (It releases thin streams of fabric softener liquid during the first wash spin out time.)Fabric softener dispenser requires "wash out" cleaning after every load - no big deal, just thought I'd mention it.
* Six point suspension that keeps the washer balanced and stable even during large loads - THIS IS THE NUMBER ONE REASON WHY I CHOSE THIS PARTICULAR MODEL. The option of having a machine that will stabilize itself even during the spin cycle when the load is extra heavy due to the fabric or amount of items being washed. A SELF-ADJUSTING WASHER? NO MORE BANGING, POUNDING, AND WALKING AROUND ON THE FLOOR WITH AN UNEVEN LOAD??? THIS WAS LIKE DANGLING A CARROT IN FRONT OF THIS RABBIT!!! SIGN ME UP!!!
* Dual Drive Transmission - IMPRESSED MY HUSBAND - Two-speed transmission that will change as necessary. One speed for normal loads which appears to work at the faster pace, and the second speed that kicks in when the load is heavier and in turn causes the slower speed to aid in slowly wringing out water in an unbalanced or heavy load. Having the dual transmission causes less stress on the washer itself (In our belief)***THE DUAL DRIVE TRANSMISSION HAS A 10 YEAR WARRANTY TERM ON PARTS****BIG BONUS IN MY BOOK!!!
The above mentioned features were what helped me make my decision on this particular product. Other features include:
Color - white was what I desired in a color (not sure if another is offered - Best Buy only carried white).
Load Access - Top load.
Control Configuration - rotary (I was impressed by other Maytag washers that were completely digital, but I thought of the cost of replacement if something went wrong with the electrical board, so I went with the manual rotary option offered by this model).
Cycle Descriptions - Easy care, permanent press
Temperature options - 4 settings available (combinations of hot/warm, warm/cold, etc).
Adjustable "feet" - I think this is standard now in most washers, but if you have uneven floors or want it a smidge higher, you have that option to adjust the washer's height!
Water Level options - 4 options: small, medium (this is equivalent to a large in my old machine!), large, oversize & a reset option.
Sound insulation package - this machine WASHING alone was quieter than my 14-year-old model during the wash and non-spinning drain cycles, but then again, everything is probably quieter at this point!
Motor HP - 1/2 HP - seems pretty standard in most machines I reviewed.
Cabinet Height - 36-1/2"
Product Height - 44"
Product Width - 27"
Product Weight - 136 lbs. (MUCH LIGHTER THAN MY OLD MACHINE)
Energy Usage - 940 kWh per year (Least 177, Most 1298)$75 a year with electric water heater/$34 a year with use with gas water heater... I DON'T EVEN WANT TO THINK ABOUT WHAT MY OLD MACHINE COST ME, BUT THESE FIGURES WERE APPEALING TO ME!
Customer Service via phone or email:
Maytag Customer Service representatives are available by phone weekdays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Eastern time). For questions about your Maytag appliance, please locate the appliance's model and serial number before calling.
Maytag Customer Service
240 Edwards Street
Cleveland, TN 37311
SOUNDS WONDERFUL DOESN'T IT?
The best part was the fact that the list price on maytag.com was $409.00. Best Buy had it on sale for $379.00 with 18 months deferred interest. Wow, couldn't go wrong!!! CHA-CHING!
Now to save more money, we picked up the washer at the store itself the same day we purchased it because we were lucky that they had four in stock. We loaded it into the back of our pickup, and you couldn't wipe the smile off of my face all the way home!
After bringing it into the house, removing the plastic bottom support that was attached to the "feet" area, and reading the installation instructions, my husband grabbed his tools and began hooking up my new "knight in shining armor". I couldn't wait to wash something! I ventured up into the storage part of my attic and pulled out the nastiest looking, dustiest thing I could find, and waited for my "green light". It only took my husband about a half an hour to get me ready to rumble.
I first noticed the increased water pressure in this machine compared to my old washer. The tub seemed to fill a lot quicker - the intake pump must be much stronger, but I couldn't tell you exactly the difference in filling time, but it was definitely faster!
I selected a medium setting and filled what my old washer used to consider medium (I believe my old washer had a 2.7 cubic washing area, where this model is a 3.2 cubic washing area). Those pieces seemed like they were in the Grand Canyon! The water exceeded the clothing by about 3 inches higher than I expected, and when the gentle hum a washing began, I stood there watching the pieces rotate - similar to watching a gold fish swim round and round. Pathetic isn't it? Anyhow, I had a light blue item that I watched completely circle the washtub over and over. It moved that one piece completely around several times in the six minutes that I selected this particular cycle to wash. The water seems to spin in a circle inward towards the agitator, then down under, and back up again. Very strong movement. The water changed color almost immediately after one minute of washing! Wow did it look dirty! I only put in average daily wear items along with one dusty curtain panel. Nothing enough to turn the water the color it was. What I must have been seeing was the old residue that my previous washer was unable to dissolve! Again I stood like a child watching this cycle for six minutes!
Ready to drain! When the washer started to drain, the amount of pressure amazed me! I have an older home with old pipes, and I started to wonder if this increased draining pressure was good for my plumbing! I think this washer pressure washed my pipes from the inside out! No chance of buildup in that drain I thought! The initial drain before spin was at least a minute faster then the old Whirlpool, and before I knew it the washer started to spin. Now I'd see how this "Sound insulation package" was supposed to work in keeping my washer quieter than competitor brands....
If it was supposed to be quieter than a 747 taking off in my laundry area, I guess it was. Just imagine me anxiously watching the washer of my dreams violently shake, rock, and start walking towards me! But this was only a medium load of light materials - THIS WASHER MUST BE POSSESSED!!!!
I felt like I was in a bad B rate movie where the killer washer was coming closer, inch by inch, second by second. I was physically holding this washer in place and attempting to push it back to where it wouldn't rip the hoses out of itself and it to try to run back into the wild! I was almost horizontal trying to hold this bugger into place! My husband came in to see what the problem was, and I could tell by the smile on his face, he thought this was funny to see me this way. The last thing he heard was me droning on and on about the dirt in the water! His smile dropped and he turned off the machine when it appeared empty enough to try to adjust the "feet" to make sure they were level. Perfect level on every side! Something is wrong here!!!
We struggled to hold this washer in place after the rinse cycle finished. My five-year-old daughter asked for a ride on the washer during this time! She's 50+ lbs. and with her on top, and me holding it (I am still horizontal at this time against a wall), the washer still walked. It was like a really bad dream! Not my new baby!
We emptied the washer when it was finished, and I have to admit, the dirty item I had specifically christened my new washer with was immaculate! Wonderful wash job, too bad I had to dance with it during the spin cycle!
We ran another load with just water, and Bucking' Bill started dancing across the floor. We immediately called Maytag's number, but realized it was Saturday night, and no one was there. I was so distraut!
We called Best Buy the next morning and we explained the problem. We believe the Tub itself was never balanced in the factory, and we were advised to return the washer to the store for a refund - defective.
The Appliance Manager that we spoke to at Best Buy that morning stated that she herself owned this model washer and didn't have this problem. She did admit that her washer was much noisier than originally expected, but it never asked her to dance either! There had to be a problem.
I watched my new baby leave at noon that day. Only one night together left a lasting impression. Great washer for removing dirt, but everlasting nightmares of being chased by a washing machine for life!!!
We've considered getting another Maytag, but have decided against it due to our experience. Our faith in this brand has been shattered. We just don't want to bring another Maytag home and have the same problem again. We have a dark cloud that follows us everywhere, and if there is another defective model in the remaining stock, we'll probably pick it!
We are purchasing an Amana Washer that has the same requirements that I desire, and hopefully a name brand we can trust... After viewing an article on Amana products (found at Ivillage.com), I have heard that Amana is top rated at this time by their team of Testers, so this is why I am chosing it at this time.
I hope when we pick it up in a few days that I will have a positive article to write about it.
Thanks for sharing my experience with me, and hope that you keep in mind that this is probably a jinxed washer, but I won't try another Maytag any time soon!