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Old 03-10-2011, 12:55 PM   #1
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Front load versus top load


Hello,

I'm reading mixed reviews about front load washers. How much more efficient is it? And with the "mold" problems, will it be worth the trouble of purchasing one? Thanks.

-new homeowner

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Old 03-10-2011, 12:55 PM   #2
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Front load versus top load


Sorry. This is for a washer...

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Old 03-10-2011, 01:13 PM   #3
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Front load versus top load


Hey Cvillian21,
In the market for a new washer huh? I just bought a new set myself and I went with a front loading washer. I haven't had any mold issue so far. I think in older model front loaders the seal for the door collected water and could cause mold, but they have changed that for the most part. Any appliance you buy will need routine maintenance and for a front load washer you will need to clean the seal regularly and run it empty every now and then.

Front loaders use around 50% less energy than top loaders. The estimated yearly cost of a front loader is much less than a top loader. You do need to get HE soap for a front loader which can be more expensive per bottle, but you use less soap (because front loaders use less water), so it just about evens out. I hope this helps. -Gregg
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Old 03-10-2011, 01:13 PM   #4
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Front load versus top load


I think they are worth the cash but you have to decide for that yourself. The top loaders use about 40-45gals per wash cycle. I have a front loader and it uses, on avg, 15-20 gals per cycle but exact amount depends on load size. If you live in an area where water is not a problem, then cost/benefit analysis does not show a clear winner. In terms of efficiency, less water, less electricity usage, less detergent usage per load. You do have to use HE detergent which is more expensive. There are ways to reduce cost of detergent (like making your own) but I think arguing on the basis of detergent pricing here is pretty much a wash (pun sort of intended :- ). Because the thing spins out at high velocity, you will use less dryer time overall. This has been true for me.

For front loaders, the mold or mildew issues come from people closing up the washer after it is done. It is an air/water tight box then. What you have to do is leave the washer door open, wipe down all the wet areas after you are done, and possibly rinse out the detergent tray. It is a little bit more of a pita than a TL but not that bad. I have not had any mold problems at all. If it gets funny smelling, you can run an empty cycle with hot water and bleach. Read the manual for the model you have though.

The extra cost hitters are the things like pedestals and table tops. I would opt out of the pedestals if i had to do it over but if you have back problems, then they are good to have. The pedestals are not really something easy to add on after the sale/delivery.
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Old 03-10-2011, 01:37 PM   #5
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Front load versus top load


Also take into consideration that with a front loader you aren't just saving in water, but you are saving in HOT water. Which means you would be saving in electric or gas as well, depending on what kind of water heater you have.

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Old 03-10-2011, 02:11 PM   #6
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Front load versus top load


not only is there an efficiency benefit of frontload washers, I believe it cleans the clothes better. When I had a top loader, my jeans would end up stiff. With the front load they are much softer. I believe that is due to better rinsing removing more of the soap.

I have had a front loan for about a year. Never had a problem with mold. It gets used on nearly a daily basis so nothing sets for long.
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Old 03-11-2011, 09:45 AM   #7
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Front load versus top load


Just to add to other posts; the F/L require a solid floor or you'll have vibration/walking prob's..they're also much more techie. they don't tolerate small loads well.. don't buy a T/L that's only using a little water[Hi-E rating, most don't have standard agitator]. they are,so far, a failure. read the complaint sites on the units a yr or two old, which is what you would be getting..i have the GE F/L--6800. used correctfuly it's fine..
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Old 03-11-2011, 10:21 AM   #8
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Front load versus top load


standard top load washers will soon be a thing of the past as manufacturers phase them out to meet government energy mandates. Front load washers have come a long way over the past 3-5 years. Most have fixed the mold problems, the vibration problems and the cleaning problems. I've owned front loaders for over 12 years and would have nothing but that. The energy savings is unreal, not only from the water usage but from dry time since clothes come out of the washer almost dry, that alone is a big energy saver, only draw back in my mind is the long wash cycles, typically 1 hour per load.

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