Before long, I am going to be in the market for a new washer and dryer. I was thinking about purchasing one of the front load (FL) models. They are not only attractive but they are suppose to be much more energy efficient.
My husband and I went to Lowe’s to check them out. Initially, I was thinking about GE or Samsung but the salesman cited mold problems with those, and several other brands. However, he raved about the Whirlpool Duet and said that’s what he and his wife have. My husband was ready to buy the Whirlpool set on the spot but I wanted to come home and do a little research.
Oh. My. Gosh. After reading reviews, I am more confused than ever! There seems to be so much conflicting information on front loader washers. People seem to either love them…or hate them with a passion.
Complaints of mold issues seem to be rampant! By far, mold appeared to be the #1 complaint with front load washers. The Whirlpool Duet model that the salesman had pushed had far too many complaints about mold to make me want to rush out and spend
my my husband’s hard earned money on this washer/dryer set!
It wasn’t just the Whirlpool brand though. Every website I visited cited problems with mold growing on the door gasket and detergent dispenser, a pervasive moldy smell in clothes and towels—sometimes appearing only a few months after the machine was purchased. There were also complaints from front load washer owners that they and/or their children had serious health issues related to the moldy smell in their homes and “clean” clothes etc. I even found class action lawsuits have been filed against several of the leading manufacturers of front loaders.
Some owners said they got little satisfaction when they complained to the companies who made their FL washers. Reportedly, some companies refused to even acknowledge mold problems, claiming they had never had any other complaints! But if they did admit they knew about the problem, the FL washer owners reported the companies were quick to point the finger at the consumer for things like not using the special HE (High Efficiency) detergent, using too much detergent, or adding fabric softener…which is apparently a big no-no for FL washers.
Many FL washer owners reported they were given additional tips on how to reduce or eliminate the mold growth in their FL washers. Some of those suggestions included leaving the washer door and the detergent dispenser open when the washer wasn’t in use, wiping the interior of the washer and the door gasket completely dry at the conclusion of the last load, frequent hot water and bleach loads, and even the addition of washer cleaner products specially formulated to eliminate the unpleasant moldy smell i.e., Affresh and Smelly Washer. But it seems a large majority of owners reported little or no success with these methods of preventing or dealing with the mold issues. If they did help, oftentimes it was short-lived and the problem would quickly return.
But I can’t help but wonder… if you have to frequently wash in hot water or run special hot water washes, keep re-washing clothes in an attempt to remove the moldy smell, replace towels that always reek of mold, or add other products to keep the mold at bay, doesn’t that negate your savings on water and electricity?
Apparently nothing but FL washers have been used in Europe for years, as well as many Laundromats here in the United States and they don’t seem to have mold problems. I wonder why that is?
Anyway, after researching front load washers available for home use here in the US, and reading all the negative comments and reviews, I am having SERIOUS second thoughts about purchasing ANY brand of front load washer.
photo source: CanadianHome&Garden.com
I would like to know what you think or know about front loading washers.
Do you have a front load washer that you love…or hate?
What brand and model is it?
How long have you had it?
If you have had problems with mold or a moldy smell, how have you handled it?
If you don’t own a FL, tell me the experiences your family, friends and neighbors have had with their FL washers.
I’m all ears…