Needed? Or Am I Just Crazy?

We have had our washer/dryer since about 1999. They’re your basic top-loading, non-high efficiency washer/dryers from that time. In the last few years, the washer sounds like it’s going to come out of the laundry room and attack me in the kitchen whenever I’m doing laundry. The dryer takes at least an hour to dry a large load of clothes. Ash has worked on the washer multiple times, so I know it’s not just off-balance. There’s actually something going on with the tub itself to make it do the shimmy whenever it’s supposed to be cleaning my clothes.

Now, though, it seems like my clothes aren’t getting as clean as they used to. Is this possible, or is it just that my kids are making bigger messes on their clothes? I mean, I got through the “bib” years where it seems like there was some sort of orange or green food on their clothes every time I put them in the washer. I also got through Ava’s milk intolerance and all havoc that left on her outfits. (and believe me, at times it was havoc.) It seems like I use more stain fighters, laundry additives, and bleach than ever and yet I can’t get stains out of our clothes. In addition, whenever I get clothes out of the dryer, sometimes there are these weird grease-looking stains that I know weren’t there before I put them in.

My question is, can it be my old washer and dryer or is it all in my head? I’m so frustrated that I want to buy a new set, but Ash is convinced we don’t need new ones. (then again, he doesn’t really do the laundry that often either) Believe me, I know these appliances are not inexpensive and I’m certainly not the person who, if given the choice, would spent my money on laundry cleaning. There are a lot more fun things I would rather have, but at this point I’m at wit’s end.

Give me some advice, do you think I need a new washer/dryer or just better cleaning skills?

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9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ash
    Jan 22, 2011 @ 16:59:33

    I just had to present my position. Char and I agree, in principle, to use things up before getting something new. Cars for instance, we will use cars until they break or it is cheaper in the long run to get a new or less used product. The Washer and Dryer work, fine in my opinion. Granted I do not use them as much, but I do use them. The washer is very finicky with respect to tub balance but it does not always move, which tells me it may have more life left. Also, I do not ever have mysterious stains show up on my clothes, so perhaps the kids are finding new stains. As for the dryer, it probably is taking longer, maybe 20-25 percent longer at the most. It still gets very hot and will shrink clothes if you’re not careful. Guess we could work math and determine what the right thing to do is but I am looking forward to your comments! If these comments are compelling, we will purchase and report. Also would be interested to know if you like your washer and dryer and what kind they are.

    Reply

  2. Christina
    Jan 23, 2011 @ 00:05:37

    I’d buy new ones. But that’s because we just did. I don’t know how old the washer/dryer we had were (they were here when we moved in) but I’d guess around 10 years. The washer was loud and rocked like crazy and the dryer took *forever* to dry things. When you have as much laundry as we do, that’s a huge deal. I *LOVE* our new LG washer and dryer. SO much faster and quieter and we’ve already noticed a difference in our electric bills. If you can afford it and you find a good deal, I say go for it.

    Reply

  3. Leanne
    Jan 23, 2011 @ 15:14:51

    Y’all already know how I feel…it is totally possible for a washing machine to loose it’s washing abilities…I expeience it every.single.day! We found out on Friday that Zach’s brother is buying a house, and all I could think of was, “I get my washer and dryer back!!!” I cannot wait!

    “Our” washer/dryer is the Kenmoore Eco Care System. It is a stackable front load and we LOVE it!

    Reply

  4. sarah
    Jan 23, 2011 @ 21:40:10

    you know that I am going to say go new, but I do have reasons. I am sure that the energy savings and clothes shrinkage issues could probably add up to make up for the cost. We have had ours for about 6 years now and they are still in awesome shape and do a wonderful job cleaning and drying in a timely matter. When you do as much laundry as you do, you will feel like a new woman (or man). Trust me. I would say you got all of your use out of them at this point – but that is just me. 😉

    Reply

  5. E.
    Jan 24, 2011 @ 01:53:33

    First, the mysterious greasy spots coming out of the dryer — make sure none of the kids are leaving chap stick in their pockets. We had this problem for years before I ever figured it out. Not sure why it took me that long. Maybe because my husband does most of the folding, so he would find the washed chap sticks,throw them away, and, for whatever reason, never put two and two together. No, instead he would just say, “What are you doing to my laundry? Why do only my pants keep getting these weird, greasy stains on them????” Hmm . . . because you leave chap stick in your pockets????

    NO, no. I”m not bitter about that or anything.

    Anyway, as much as I like to live by the whole, “Use it up and wear out it, make it do or do without,” motto . . . if your clothes aren’t getting as clean *and* you have the money to buy now, I’d buy new now. Part of that is because this economy scares me. *If* hyperinflation hits and the dollar continues to devalue, as some are predicting, you might not be able to afford it later.

    Reply

  6. Tracy
    Jan 24, 2011 @ 18:55:55

    I LOVE my front load washer and dryer. They can take much bigger loads and they way more efficient. I do so much laundry and they have definitely made things easier.

    Reply

  7. asmalltowndad
    Jan 25, 2011 @ 13:38:23

    I do very little laundry, but I do know that chap stick and lip gloss has ruined so many clothes of ours do to the kids leaving it in their pockets. My view is that most try to do to large of loads instead of several smaller loads, Jane does a lot of laundry but in smaller amounts. I have a friend and his wife demanded a front load mega washer and dryer because the load capacity, the problem is that she can do more laundry at once, but because there is so much of it, it stays in the dryer because it’s to much to fold at one time now. If you have the money get what you need, but do it logically and economically.
    or save the money and come to see us in Indiana! LOL

    Reply

    • metaphase
      Jan 25, 2011 @ 17:31:41

      Ooorrr, you can come here to see US, AND we’d still be able to get the appliances! tee-hee.

      I know it’s not chapstick or anything b/c I have a husband with a penchant for leaving pens in his uniforms, so I’m a compulsive pocket-checker. It’s like there’s some sort of stuff coming out of the dryer itself, like a lubricant for the turning tub or something. It’s mildly greasy looking, but not full-on grease.. Make sense? I thought not.. 🙂

      Reply

  8. Ash
    Jan 26, 2011 @ 03:05:43

    Well, i see Char has circled the wagons on me. The washer and dryer we have now have lasted 12 years and we paid less than $800 for both. I understand that is what one unit cost these days. Guess we will start looking for price point opportunities.
    Char does the work and gets 51% of the vote on this. We just need to find a good model at a good price now, that may take some time.

    Reply

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