Thread Number: 32335
GE Hydrowave FAIL!
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Post# 487600   1/9/2011 at 16:10 (4,936 days old) by wringersteve ()        

While at the hardware store this afternoon, I received a frantic call from my wife, who asked if I could come home right away. Our GE Hydrowave toploader was spinning way faster than normal and was making a terrible racket and emitting a horrible smell.

I got home. My wife had turned off the washer. It was on the final spin, so we took out the somewhat wet clothes and put them in the dryer. I pushed the knob back in and the machine continued its spin and completed the cycle, but I didn't want to take any chances. I unplugged the machine and turned off the supply hoses. The smell coming from the machine was just awful--liked funky burned plastic. Three hours later, the smell is still very, very bad. We've had this machine less than a year. It replaced a 2007 Hotpoint Hydrowave toploader.

My hunch is that the "planned obsolescence" by today's manufacturers is once again rearing its ugly head. I've never been a fan of manufacturers using sophisticated electronics/circuit boards, etc. where they don't necessarily belong (as in washers and dishwashers). We were also burned on the Maytag Neptune disaster of several years ago. Since it's Sunday, I'll call tomorrow for service.

There is, however, a bright side to this story:

1. We purchased the machine from a mom and pop store with a good reputation for service.

2. The machine is still within factory warranty. We purchased an extended warranty, too.

3. I get to have some fun hauling out my Speed Queen wringer washer, which works perfectly.

Sorry for the rant. I realize that anything made by humans can fail, but it sure is frustrating when that failure actually occurs!

Post# 487613 , Reply# 1   1/9/2011 at 16:50 (4,936 days old) by qsd-dan (West)        

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Sorry to hear about your misfortune. Your experiences with modern machines is the reason why I refuse to use or purchase anything built in the last 25 or so years.

I don't know about you, but I find it a bit comical that you're using a several decade old wringer to get the job done where a less than 2 year old appliance failed to do so. Warms my vintage heart :)

Post# 487661 , Reply# 2   1/9/2011 at 17:55 (4,935 days old) by wringersteve ()        
Thanks, Dan!

I agree with you. I'll take the wringer over this Hydrowave any day of the week. It's fun to use. Not only does it clean better, but I can also rinse the clothes better by hand. I wish I had my parents' 1987 Maytag automatic, which has never had a repair.

Post# 487906 , Reply# 3   1/10/2011 at 12:09 (4,935 days old) by Andy (Mount Vernon)        
Stick with vintage

I'm not much of a fan of this modern technology of today. I have seen quite a lot of people have trouble with the new washing machines, and only getting around 5 years out of them these days.

Stick with the vintage equipment for as long as you can. I think it's great that some washing machines are 25 to 50 years old and still going strong!


Post# 491492 , Reply# 4   1/25/2011 at 18:35 (4,919 days old) by toploader55 (Massachusetts Sand Bar, Cape Cod)        
I was at Home Depot today

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I really haven't looked at New Machines in 6-7 years. I usually walk right by them and shake my head in discust.

Today I opened every Top Loader and I just couldn't belive my eyes that I was looking at such CRAP. Plastic, Cheap seals, Top Loader Cylinders that had seams, Shoddy Construction and all of this for $700.00+ ???

A sales rep came over and asked me if I needed any help. I quickly responded No Thanks, not for this Junk. He was about 65-70 I would guess, so I told him briefly about my collection of Machines. He lit up when I told him about the Unimatic, Whirlpool, Speed Queen and the Maytags. As one could imagine he said "Yes, they sure don't make anything like they used to". I agreed, we chatted a few more minutes and I was on my way.

Every so often I get tempted to buy something new, But for the money spent and the short lifespan, I just can't get it though my head to spend $1,000 for a Washer that possibly could have issues within 2 years.

If someone had a gun to my head and told me I have to buy a New Machine, I think it would be a Speed Queen. And not sure if I would get a front load or a top load.

Post# 491562 , Reply# 5   1/26/2011 at 00:08 (4,919 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

same here-the past 10 years or so have bought nothing but VINTAGE swap shop machines.and heck with one of them I deal with if the machine fails within 30 days he will replace it.But the swap shops here re getting those dreaded WP-KN DD blender washers.Keep hanging in there until BD ones come in.In the mean time its a vintage Hotpoint.I don't like the "cheezy" look and materials of the new FL and TL machines that cost so much.TOO MUCH CHEEZY PLASTIC!!!!How can these have any scrap value when they go to Appliance Heaven?Scrap folks want ---METAL!!!

Post# 491583 , Reply# 6   1/26/2011 at 05:36 (4,919 days old) by toploader55 (Massachusetts Sand Bar, Cape Cod)        
Recycling Code

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Look for the Triangle with the number in the middle on the underside of the parts.

Let's see... I'm 55 now and I have 6 washers... Maybe 2-3 more Vintage Machines as a Back up and I should be set until I die ! LOL

Post# 491590 , Reply# 7   1/26/2011 at 06:07 (4,919 days old) by kenmore700bill (Lodi NJ)        

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My friends from the club in my region are trying to convince me to switch to a front loader but I cant get used tot he fact that clothes get clean when you dont even see a water just wet clothes flopping around.( let alone the normal cycle taking 57 minutes) Anyway I feel the same as Ed when it comes to the new machines I have had my share of Kenmore and Whirlpool Direct Drives. As quick as I got them I got rid of them. I have a Maytag Wringer Washer and a Maytag FABRICMATIC (smaller Tub Infinite water level 3 water temp 3 cycle one speed)and I would not trade that for the world. I got the FABRICMATIC Machine for nothing from my Cousins mother in Maryland about 15 years or so ago. All I know is I put a load of clothes in that machine and 1/2 hour later they are done. The machine is real clean instide the cabinet no rust. The only thing I have changed on the Maytag FABRICMATIC was the belts about 4 years ago. And believe me I give that machine a workout.

Post# 491776 , Reply# 8   1/27/2011 at 04:15 (4,918 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

Recycle code-many scrappers don't want to bother with plastics becuase the value of plastic scraps varies so widely-metal values are more stable-so the scrappers want metals instead-You would be suprized how much plastic scrap goes to landfills instead of recycled becuase of the low value.The scrap dealers don't want to bother.and worse if the plastic is very dirty or has age cracks.WP DD outer washer drums-have seen that in off to the fill they go!!!the metal drum would have more recycle value.

Post# 491784 , Reply# 9   1/27/2011 at 06:48 (4,918 days old) by mrb627 (Buford, GA)        

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I'm sure if I put my SQ Imperials out at the curb they would be gone before I could walk back up the driveway...  Perhaps not, they are heavy as hell.



Post# 492061 , Reply# 10   1/28/2011 at 08:57 (4,917 days old) by roscoe62 (Canada)        

Steel & Speed Queen:
I have to say we had a speed queen growing up and it never stopped,it was extremely reliable and now I can't see one anywhere here in my region? I'm wondering if it's because of consumer demand coupled with people not wanting to spend the money on the equipment?If I could I would buy another Speed Queen, a friend of mine had a campground with a small laundromat and you guessed it Speed Queen machines, he said he'd never have anything else for a laundromat because of the service the machines provided to him.
I like the look of the new FL/SQ's they kept the panel of the new machines simple not fussy which seems to be eminent of the new technology and from what I have heard in recent years from people in the market for a new machine they refuse to spend the money there when they can spend it else where.Too bad they don't make the connection that anywhere from three to five years they are in the market again for a new machine because they are told that they would be lucky to get ten years out of what they are buying.It's as if we have become, should I dare say, a disposable society?

Post# 492075 , Reply# 11   1/28/2011 at 10:08 (4,917 days old) by mrb627 (Buford, GA)        

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But what people don't understand is that while the SQ FL washing machines run about 1600 for the model with the heater, a dryer can be had for between 400 and 500 bucks.  Wouldn't you rather invest in a higher quality washer?  I mean 1500 for a dryer is a bit ridiculous.



Post# 492083 , Reply# 12   1/28/2011 at 10:56 (4,917 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        

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Very well stated Malcolm the price of a pair of SQs is about the same as many other high end pairs. Here in the DC area we sell the SQ FL washer W-out the heater for aprox $1300 and W heater aprox $1400 including normal del& installion and if you want to drive over and pick one up we can knock off another $100. SQ estimates that thier FL washers have an estimated life of 25,000 loads. At ten loads pre week this machine could last 50 years, thats longer than any other automatic washer in history.

Post# 492090 , Reply# 13   1/28/2011 at 12:05 (4,917 days old) by mrb627 (Buford, GA)        
SQ Duty Cycle

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I seem to recall in speaking to SQ directly, their FL washers have a duty cycle of 20 loads per day.  That's pretty good especially if they are willing to warrantee for 3 years.



Post# 492177 , Reply# 14   1/28/2011 at 17:51 (4,916 days old) by roscoe62 (Canada)        


One would think wouldn't one, especially when the washer would make the drier more efficient with drying time.
I had a similar situation where I refused to pay close to $1000 for a dryer simply because it matched the washer and the dealer wanted to clear it off the floor, because the set at the time had no signage and had to be "cleared-out", go figure.
So for me I bought the washer for $900. which originally retailed for $1400 I left the dryer there that was selling for $800. it made no sense to me.

Post# 492640 , Reply# 15   1/30/2011 at 14:18 (4,915 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

Has Speed Queen fixed the problem with the cycles being too short? And how much water does their FL unit use?

Post# 492665 , Reply# 16   1/30/2011 at 15:46 (4,915 days old) by Andy (Mount Vernon)        
Sea of white

Last time I went to Lowe's, I went through the washing machines. They all look the same to me from a distance and even up close, a sea of white. White cabinets, (a few almond, or bisque, or whatever they call that) white control panels, white plastic knobs, and some, even white tubs and white agitators.

I, too, shake my head and just think to myself, "This stuff isn't worth hauling home." It sure didn't take much to slap them together to work for maybe 3 or 4 months before it blows a motor or a transmission. I'm ashamed of this new stuff, most of it.

I've heard Speed Queen is about the only one that's kept a "classic, old school" design, and unless they change their design, it will mostly likely be my next washing machine.

Post# 492680 , Reply# 17   1/30/2011 at 16:58 (4,915 days old) by mrb627 (Buford, GA)        
Short Wash Times

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The wash time on the regular cycle on my FL is 24 minutes.  The entire cycle including extra rinse is about 51 minutes.  Plenty adequate in my book.



Post# 492745 , Reply# 18   1/30/2011 at 23:11 (4,914 days old) by kqkenmore (memphis tn)        
Speed Queen

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I have had a lot of  Front Loader and these new HE toploaders and they suck I just got rid of my Samsungs they are sending me a refund I bought a Speed Queen top load and am getting a Speed Queen dryer and later a front loading Speed Queen. The price of the Speed Queens are not that bad when you figure the cost of these new washers and the contract that you have to get because you know that they are going to break. So Speed Queen is the better buy.  Carl

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