Crappy Constants in the Universe

I suppose it’s good to know there are some constants in the universe. Like, when AT&T says a technician will be there between 8:00 a.m. and noon, you can count on them NOT being there in that time window.

Also, AT&T’s online chat bug is “busy.” Thanks for nothing.


What Is It With This High “Efficiency” Crap? (Maytag Clothes Washer Edition)

When I moved into my first home in 1987, I partially did so to have my own clothes washer and dryer and escape the monotony and tyranny of the laundromat. I bought what would now be considered a “low efficiency,” top-loading washer that worked flawlessly for me for 14 years.

Then, my wife and I bought our first washer together–a “high efficiency” (what a load of crap), front-loading machine, by Frigidaire (the Affinity model). Since then it’s been one problem after another. (See my previous post about it.)

The washer soon developed a mildew stain on the rubber gasket on the front-loading door–despite our care with drying it out after each load and running its cleaning cycles. Turns out, this is a known issue that has affected hundreds of thousands of front-loading HE machines. There was even a class-action lawsuit about it.

To repair it is a major, expensive proposition. If you hire a pro to do it, it costs more than a new washer.

So, we bit the bullet and bought a new washer, donating the old one to a friend. We stuck with HE (big mistake), but got a top loader. Specifically, we spent about $600 at Lowe’s on a Maytag 5.3-cu ft high-efficiency top-load washer (model # MVWB835DW0). It had thousands of positive reviews and an average of 4.5 stars.

The Maytag MVWB835DW in our laundry room.

What a mistake.

From the start, my wife had trouble with lint gathering on her clothes if she hung them up to dry and did not run them through the dryer.

Then, after about a year, it began having a rotten-eggs smell after washing a load. No number of cleaning cycles would get rid of it. Online message boards are filled with complaints about this.

Final straw: This week, 14 months into our ownership of it, the machine began getting stuck in the rinse mode. Won’t go from there to spin without pausing the machine, raising the lid, and re-starting it.

And we’ve never felt that it effectively cleaned our clothes either.

All in all, a piece of crap, and an expensive piece of crap, too.

Are Front-Loading Washers Crap? Why, Yes, They Are

Several years ago, we bought a high-efficiency, front-loading washer—a Frigidaire Affinity.

I have regretted it ever since.

The three main reasons that it is a crappy appliance are:

  1. It’s impossible to keep its door seal (the rubber gasket that fits around the door to keep water from leaking out) clean. It inevitably becomes mildewy and moldy if you neglect to assiduously dry it out with a towel after each and every wash load. And once it becomes moldy, no amount of bleach or vinegar will clean it—resulting in a very expensive repair bill to replace it.
  2. It vibrates like a sumbitch. I’ve worked on leveling it and put anti-vibration pads under it, but it still vibrates the floor so badly that you can feel it on the other side of our house. I shudder to think what it is doing to our foundation. If you don’t have a concrete floor on which to put a front-loader, I would strongly advise against installing one.
  3. It’s inconvenient to load clothes into it. Each wash day I am literally down on my knees, feeding laundry into it.

If new washers weren’t so ding-dang expensive, I’ve had junked this one long ago.