Thread Number: 75247  /  Tag: Modern Automatic Washers
GE top loaders, why so much hate?
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Post# 990718   4/14/2018 at 16:11 (187 days old) by Dustin92 (Jackson, MI)        

I've seen a lot of hate toward the "newer" style GE front serviceable machines, but had never had any experience with them myself..Until a few days ago. I took one on trade, the owner said it wouldn't drain. So after loading and hauling it with some water in it (wouldn't even gravity drain more than a trickle), I found it had gotten a sock wrapped in the pump. After a thourough cleaning, it seems to work great. Not too noisy (although it has a similar clunk-clunk to a Whirlpool DD), excellent suspension and balancing, and a huge tub for the era (mine was built in 2003). No clue on longevity, but it seems pretty well put together. Have washed a couple loads and it seems to wash well. Mine is a lower end model, so single speed and single piece agitator, 3 water temps, 3 water levels. Why so much hate toward these washers?

Post# 990732 , Reply# 1   4/14/2018 at 18:35 (187 days old) by Lorainfurniture (Cleveland )        

Where do is start.

First and foremost, they are not reliable. When they break, itís always fubar. Transmissions would blow all their oil everywhere, clutches, timers. The hydro wave washers are even worse. Mode shifters that require full disassembly, motors that had crappy inverter boards mounted on top (not sold separately).

Difficult and ass backwards to put in diagnostic mode, and it never really told you much.

Parts are priced in a way to discourage repair.

Post# 990740 , Reply# 2   4/14/2018 at 19:58 (187 days old) by superocd (PNW)        

I heard somewhere that the Hydrowave washers were better in terms of reliability than the post-Filter Flo washers that used transmissions.

How bad are the Hydrowave machines? I've never owned one, but a cousin of mine has one and never had any issues aside from a scraping sound during the wash cycle (but strangely not during spin cycles--maybe the clutch mechanism pulled the pulley away from the base during spin is all I can think of.). A faulty suspension rod was the culprit. Other than that, no issues that I know of.

I always thought it would be a poorly performing washer since the agitation looked so weak and was barely audible but I guess things get clean pretty well.

Post# 990747 , Reply# 3   4/14/2018 at 20:24 (187 days old) by wayupnorth (On a lake between Bangor and Bar Harbor)        

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My neighbor has one of those GE impeller, junk crap. Saves water, load barely gets wet and have to do 4 loads in what their old top loader Whirlpool did. Energy star rating up up your a.. She cant wait until it dies and hates it and wants to go back to a regular top load that fills to the top, uses hot water when you want it and can do less loads. Told them not to buy it.

Post# 990756 , Reply# 4   4/14/2018 at 21:19 (187 days old) by superocd (PNW)        

I think that GE's impeller machines might be a different design than the Hydrowave. The Hydrowave lets you choose water levels, temperatures and used an agitator. They filled up to the top and did not do spray rinses, they actually filled for rinses too. Most had electromechanical controls.

I do agree that washplate/impeller machines aren't great performers, which is why I own a front loader. As a backstory, I used a TOL Whirlpool VMW while at a hotel. Mind you, this was a consumer machine offered for use by guests, gratis, not the commercial model with a coin box and stripped-down cycle options.

Even with the Bulky setting where the water level increased, the clothes didn't hardly move. They just shimmied in the water. The ketchup stain in a white T-shirt didn't come out all the way, and I used Persil, which is a very good stain removing detergent.

On Normal, the clothes not at the very bottom were just damp. A light grey sweatshirt at the very top still had dry patches on it 3/4ths of the way through the wash cycle. I still was able to smell a faint scent of my Adidas cologne spray on that sweatshirt after the cycle, something I can't do when using my washer at home, where I only smell a faint scent of Persil.

In both cases, these were 1/2 capacity loads. The washer was a TOL model with a huge 4.5 cubic feet capacity (or thereabouts) and had a window so I could see the wash action.

I had never used an HE TL before, so I was curious and I had my chance to use one. Before, I had only seen YouTube videos of HE TLs in action (I was shocked when I saw them, needless to say). After actually being able to use one, I learned enough to confirm my convictions that these kinds of machines don't perform as well as HE FLs and conventional TLs and would not be something I'd want in my home.

Post# 990757 , Reply# 5   4/14/2018 at 21:31 (187 days old) by cfz2882 (Belle Fourche,SD)        
'09 hydrowave in my fleet

I have my hydrowave rotated into use now-it's the model with the fluted plastic tub(3.2 CF ?)wash action is similar to the new agitub SQs,but tub is stationary during agitation.Bought my brand new,minor shipping damage,for $50-so not a lot of run time since it gets rotated in and out of use :)The timer has jammed twice: once on short stoke agitation,once on spin.Wash performance is quite good,extraction pretty decent too. Spin is a little noisy because the motor revs up to ~10,000 RPM for spin:)

Post# 990761 , Reply# 6   4/14/2018 at 22:08 (187 days old) by Dustin92 (Jackson, MI)        

The one I have is the non HE version with a transmission, made in 2003. The transmission does seem pretty small, and it looks like it may have leaked (water) at some point, there is some rust on the base pan. I've run it through cycles with the front off and not seen a drop. No leaking oil to be found, spin cycle runs smooth and relatively quiet, no bearing noise. I'll try to post a picture tomorrow when I'm downstairs. It's disappointing that these have proven to be unreliable, it seems like a good washer. Would it be a bad decision to resell it or should it be ok for a while? I don't warranty used washers, but wouldn't want to have it croak in a week. I usually have good luck with Whirlpool DD machines.

Post# 990770 , Reply# 7   4/15/2018 at 01:24 (187 days old) by speedqueen (Harrison Twp, Michigan)        

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Sell it on a heavy discount, I know of one that couldn't have seen more than 500 cycles before the transmission failed. It was used by a widowed lady for a year or so, then her son for another year of regular usage but in both cases for only one person living in the northern MI house trailer which was sold to one of my father's friends who owned the place and used it as a vacation home and hunting location for another 10 years before the washer failed. Over that 10 years, however, it couldn't have seen more than 10-12 cycles a year. Very little usage, when it failed I think it stopped agitating but would still spin and drain fine.

Post# 990778 , Reply# 8   4/15/2018 at 03:20 (187 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        
Where to begin

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Short fast strokes, poor turn over, poor cleaning, tears clothes, honey comb tub reinforcement the holds dirt/lint/water and molds up, timer advances and drains with lid open, squeaking suspension, machine balances well until it doesn't- the tub will actually slam against the cabinet until it cracks and/or bends the frame. Its happened to me- first time no damage but surprisingly nothing looked out of balance either. And even the drain hose has to punish the user- you can't fit your own.

With a DA agitator however they aren't that bad- you do get some improvement. Rinsing is good. Spin is good. Minus the drain pump spin is quiet. Hydro-wave is really Quiet. The biggest issue however by far is longevity. Around me there are apartment complexes loaded with GEs- hundred unit buildings with these washers. Let me say that scrap pile was full of them, some no more than a a year old. Most common is failed transmission, bearing noise, leaking water, slow pump, bad timer, broken tub straps, broken selectors... even saw a split drain hose. These washers are beyond a joke in so many ways.

What makes it so much more insulting is that these came after one of the most respected washers, the GE filter flo. Seeing GE go from durable and easy to fix to a rip off is really heart breaking. But its not surprise. These washers came at a time when GE decided to maximize profit and take advantage of their reputation built up in the 60s, 70s and 80s. Now even landlords know to stay away from GE and so goes the appliance division to Hieir.

If you really want to sell a washer sell a DD. They last- and are easy to fix- and outperform just about anything money can buy.

Post# 990792 , Reply# 9   4/15/2018 at 07:29 (186 days old) by Wishwash (Illinois)        
Direct drive is better...

... No, I don't think so. Direct drives have the same short stroke, so I don't know how that can be argued as a con of the GE machines. I've always had good cleaning in the years I've used GE and never had anything torn. Direct drives regularly tear my clothes because they're so rough. GE's sure don't put up with abuse like a direct drive, but they're also not industrial equipment like a direct drive.

Not trying to hate on Whirlpool machines, but I think there is a herd mentality regarding them and the corresponding dislike of GE machines. I know people who bought GE machines new in 2003 and they're still working today without a single repair. The electronic control Wizard Washer, mind you, not the reliable mechanical controls. I also know people who bought Whirlpool machines new in that same time period and have long gotten rid of them due to the problems they had. It's all about the way you take care of it.

Let us not forget that the GE filter Flo, while a great machine, was a water hog that frequently had issues. I think these were just as cheaply made. I recall in a spin cycle water would come up the bleach dispenser and spill back into the tub and lid switch. Didn't they also have transmission seal problems where the oil would leak into the wash tub and completely ruin the load? And yet these machines hold a strong sentimental value to me.

The same goes for our coveted Whirlpool belt drives. They had plenty of issues after several years of use. Wig wags, transmissions, etc. Even Maytags run into issues at some point.

Post# 990799 , Reply# 10   4/15/2018 at 08:46 (186 days old) by estesguy (kansas)        
No issues with hydrowave...

I have a 2007 WPRE8100 hydrowave with no issues at all. My family and one friend have them as well with only one issue. My son's washer had the mode shifter fail. He tends to overload his machine no matter how many times I've told him not to, so may be operator error. I will fix it when I retire in a few years. I gave him a spare hydrowave I had on hand. I also had an earlier GE transmission model that I ended up giving to my mom, who used it in her house with no issues until she moved into assisted living. Before that I had a 1983 dancing Maytag. Tub was out of balance but machine stayed put on a joist floor, but moved several inches on a truss floor, so out the door for a 2000 Amana Speed Queen clone. I don't know exactly how closely these machines duplicated the SQ machines, but it failed with a bad tub bearing at 6 years, and that's when I bought the 2007 Hydrowave. So overall these machines hold up decently well, as compared to other machines I've had. I can have the drum of a GE dryer out of the machine and onto the floor in 5 minutes. Very easy to service. Replacing the mode shifter will be a challenge, but there are YouTube videos on this, and seems doable. I know nothing about the newer GE's are at that replaced the Hydrowave models. The mechanics look completely different now. I have spare parts laid in and plan on keeping my machine going as long as possible, or until I decide to go with a front load machine some day

Post# 990813 , Reply# 11   4/15/2018 at 11:33 (186 days old) by KenmoreBD (Mass, usa )        

My personal washer is a 2012 Hydrowave, my folks have a 2011. Both do a fine job, although I wish they would fill with a full tub of water. Everything comes out clean, although during spin the washer is rather loud.

Post# 990835 , Reply# 12   4/15/2018 at 14:07 (186 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Killeen tx USA)        
no filter-flo or minibasket

No filter-flo nor minibasket. There's no aircraft suspension anymore so it may seem it will fall apart. I've had one myself.

Post# 990839 , Reply# 13   4/15/2018 at 14:33 (186 days old) by lotsosudz (Sacramento, CA)        
I had a 2000

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It was the top of the line model. I averaged 8--10 loads a week. Mine lasted 12 years. The Mode shifter finally acted up, and I replaced it with Maytags. I had no repairs done in the 12 years I used it, and the dryer never had a single repair. I think folks can be hard on brands they don't care for . I personally don't care for Whirlpool, but that doesn't make them horrible. Just Say'in.

Post# 990843 , Reply# 14   4/15/2018 at 15:08 (186 days old) by ea56 (Sonoma Co.,CA)        

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I had a 2012 GE TL for almost 2 years and never had a problem with it. It filled to the top if necessary and was quick and effective in cleaning. The machine never falied to spin and never went out of balance. The controls were good old fashioned electro mechanical anad easy to use. It had a full fill rinse if the fabric softener option was selected and for all intents and purposes preformed just like an old time conventional TL.

The only reason that I got rid of it was due to the drought we were experiencing in Calif. at the time. I replaced it with an LG FL, that at first was OK, but I quickly became disenchanted with it due to its very inadequate fill levels, the need for water hammer arrestors, the extremely long cycle times due to its inability to go into a spin without trying for sometimes 30 mins to find a sweet spot, and then still not spinning. Sometimes it took almost 2 1/2 hrs. to wash a load of clothes. I want an automatic washer to be just that, automatic, without the need for constant babysitting.

After 15 months of this nonsense I replaced it with a Maytag MVWC415EW HE TL, which I love! It reaches a happy medium in water usage, never fails to spin and consistently completes every load in 50 to 60 mins, depending upon the soil level selected and whether or not I select a pre soak option. The hot water comes out the same temp as my hot water heater, 125 F. Itís been one of my very favorite washers that I have owned out of the 23 different washers Iíve owned over 46 years.

I think that GE TLís got a bad rap, at least the ones that had an agitator. Now the impeller models I have now experience with, and I have noe doubt that they were problematic.

Just my two cents worth.


Post# 990865 , Reply# 15   4/15/2018 at 18:11 (186 days old) by tgm8000 (New York)        
Love my 2007 GE profile washer & dryer

I currently have a 2007 GE profile hydrowave washer and dryer. Still going strong at 11 years old. Love the hydrowave wash system , cleans better and much gentler & quieter then my filter flo. All my appliances are GE and have been very durable. Yes, there are a lot of GE haters on here , but some of us like them !

Post# 990866 , Reply# 16   4/15/2018 at 18:40 (186 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        
DD and Hydrowaves

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DDs on low Speed with a DA provided gentle cleaning which is why Kenmore (and Whirlpool to various degrees) went to low speed on their normal cycle in the early 90s. And I think GE did the same with their electronic models latter on. But GE still could have used common sense and not put "delicate" on an all fast permanent press cycle without soaks and intermittent agitation. However when all is said and done cleaning is better on the DDs then the GEs IMO.

Hydro-waves are a big improvement in several categories including longevity as compared to the model Ts, however as a whole they still somewhat lag behind. I know people say they saw model Ts that lasted 12 years and DDs that failed after 10 months, however as whole taking into account millions sold GEs can not compare in life expectancy. Appliance stores knows that, which is why they often scrap working GEs in favor of fixing broken DDs.

The FFs were not perfect either- but still a lot better than what followed. GE does get hate, but that is GEs own doing. In the mid 90s they just stopped caring making some awful appliances and customer service (don't get me started) in the process. I think GE made their decision then on what to do with the future of their company, dropping trivial branches and heading for the high technology realm. The rest is squeezing what ever money they could out of reputation and then dropping it when word gets around.

Post# 990905 , Reply# 17   4/15/2018 at 23:09 (186 days old) by mrsalvo (New Braunfels Texas)        

We had a mid 80s FF and it was a very good washer that lasted many years, but eventually it started throwing oil and it was replaced with another FF that didn't seem to last very long, again it started throwing oil. The last GE that we owned didn't seem as well built as the 80's model. As much as I would love to say that I'd own another FF, I'd probably pass on it as they used a lot of water, more so than the SQ I currently own. Looks like we may be going into another drought conservation this summer if we don't get more rain in south central Texas, many lakes are very low here now.

Post# 991028 , Reply# 18   4/16/2018 at 21:44 (185 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Killeen tx USA)        
GE went downhill...

From the mid '90's on, GE surely went downhill from there. Washers that shook the entire cabinet during normal/fast agitation/spin, noisy squeaky suspension, and don't even get me started about their customer service! It smelled like a load of smelly sweaty clothes! Their hydrowaves were even worse! In my college dorm, I had to use them. What a joke it was! Agitation was so slow that a full load of darks NEVER made it down even with a full tub of water in it! It was so loud that you could've sworn somebody was doing Cody's construction of his hotel! That was hearing it from upstairs! I swear, the GE's from the mid '90's onward wer built so cheap that if you gently tap the tub it would instantly break apart and cave in on itself! And don't even get me started on the spin cycle. It was so loud that it would wake the dead! I'd like to stab the machine with a stake, but am afraid that the demonic spirits of GE would eat me up and consume me into the muck and dirt of sweaty dirty crusty clothes and drenched with cold water!
I'm done ranting and done being agitated. Now I better clean up my act before I go into the spins.

Post# 991047 , Reply# 19   4/17/2018 at 04:39 (185 days old) by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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My sis had one from around 95 or so.  It started leaking oil and was slipping badly when trying to spin.  I bought her a very nice orbital Maytag and she gave me her GE to tinker with.  Found a new trans on ebay and swapped it out.  Sold it for a profit.  On a side note...when I took the basket out, I was shocked at all the Serratia marcescens that was on the outside of the tub in the molded plastic reinforcements.  I doubt she ever used hot water, let alone any Clorox in that washer.  I scrubbed it best I could and when I reassembled it I poured a whole bottle of Pine-sol in it, filled it with hot water and let it go to town.

Post# 991066 , Reply# 20   4/17/2018 at 07:46 (184 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
See Reply #1

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Ge has not built or sold a durable laundry appliance since around 1995, they have sold a number of machines that perform pretty well, you can always tell how serious a laundry builder is by how well their commercial versions of their washers and dryers are received.


Take it from two company's that are in the service business working on laundry appliances GE is NOT a durable brand, and it is NOT and easy brand to do repairs on either.


Yes there are lots of people that have had a fairly good experience with GE laundry appliances, just as there were always stories of people that actually had good service out of WCI , Westinghouse and even Norge machines in the past, but it does not make them a good bet and they are not something a reputable company such as Eugene's or ours that we would ever promote and sell.


John L.

Post# 991068 , Reply# 21   4/17/2018 at 08:16 (184 days old) by Lorainfurniture (Cleveland )        
Just to clarify

I donít have any gripes about the performance of the Ge washers. My issue is with build quality and parts pricing.

They didnít make these Machines to be repaired. All Ge products are the text book definition of a throw away washer.

Post# 991069 , Reply# 22   4/17/2018 at 08:17 (184 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Killeen tx USA)        
GE's shameful laundryproducts and service

Gee, I never thought how shameful GE's laundry products were, until I read consumer reviews. The hydrowaves were the worst! Until GE returns back to the filter-flo, I will not buy one. Their washers were so violent during agitation that you swore it would cave in on itself dumping laundry detergent and fabric softener water EVERYWHERE! Shame on you GE!

Post# 991078 , Reply# 23   4/17/2018 at 08:53 (184 days old) by John76 (USA)        

I like the new GTW460ASJWW. Dual action agitator, allows you to select 4 water levels, extra rinse. I canít think of any other current TL models with those features.

Post# 991080 , Reply# 24   4/17/2018 at 09:52 (184 days old) by Pierreandreply4 (St-Bruno de montarville (province of quebec) canada)        

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the only way you could get a true ge filterflo would be to buy vintage because I highlydoubt that in 2018 and in the near future that ge filterflo washer dryer sets ever returns.

Post# 991087 , Reply# 25   4/17/2018 at 10:43 (184 days old) by Yogitunes (New Jersey)        

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I have used a number of Hydrowaves....seriously a decent machine, if I had to live with a GE as my only machine, this would be one of them....had my doubts until I operated one....

very gentle wash action....slow full length strokes...

yes, they didn't not fill to the top, a simple set screw adjustment fixed that...

when it comes to fixing/ that is another question......

definitely not a fan of their regular machines and find them mostly in new homes as a contractor grade setup....and you will find them by the curb within the first year....not even worth picking up for scrap value

Post# 991095 , Reply# 26   4/17/2018 at 11:31 (184 days old) by johnb300m (Chicago)        

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And I thought I had an eccentricity with hyperbole.

Post# 991152 , Reply# 27   4/17/2018 at 17:29 (184 days old) by Dustin92 (Jackson, MI)        

I did find out the price of parts vs. say Whirlpool, the clip that holds the drain hose in place was broken, so I ordered a new one... $6.25.. On eBay. Cheapest I found for a small plastic clip. SIX DOLLARS AND TWENTY-FIVE CENTS! Anyway, it should be ready to go as soon as that gets here. I'm really surprised about GE having a poor reliablity record, we have a GE refrigerator from 1999 and it's been in constant use since new, never had a repair whatsoever. All that's been done is the coils vacuumed occasionally.

Post# 991162 , Reply# 28   4/17/2018 at 18:46 (184 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Killeen tx USA)        
My hate for GE... wishful thinking

My hate for GE washers started when I used the hydrowaves in my dorm. They were coin operated and did a shower rinse. I had to start the stupid thing over again just to rinse the laundry detergent and fabric softener out. I wanted the fabric softener to be mixed in! Same was for the dryer. I had a full load of darks in the dryer. It didn't dry even on high heat/cottons! I wish GE would bring the filter-flos back! I know... wishful thinking. They should've left the filter-flo pairs alone!

Post# 991192 , Reply# 29   4/17/2018 at 23:26 (184 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        
Serratia marcescens

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And you think hot water and bleach would fix that? LOL!!!!!!! (Sorry, not trying to be rude or anything) You are talking to a person who abuses hot water, 150 at the time on the electric water heater. My GE TL was absolutely putrid when I pulled the basket out. There was even some mold toward the top. It was so bad I considered ordering a new basket but did not want to go through the social BDSM of their customer service. But OMG- it was appalling. Up until that point in time I never saw anything like it. The tub is almost scientifically engineered to trap moisture and line. The machines by the dumpsters were not better- actually worse. What first aroused my suspicion was when I would on occasion find grey slime wads on my clothes at the end of the cycle. I could not figure it out until I found what I was better not seeing.

As you might guess my hatred toward GE started with a 97 GE top-loader that I was forced to use for several years.

The dryer was another bummer. It was quiet, but on PP it would shut off prematurely even when set to max needing to repeat the cycle 3 times on average (yahh 3), and on Regular it would just bake the clothes. I remember looking at the tech sheet and apparently there are a half dozen cycling thermostats and some complex heater lead/lag concept. For the love of God, its an economy dryer. Just use one heater, one cycling state and one bias. Add more time on the PP. ITs not hard. (And there is already a biased thermostat in there mind you LOL.) I mean its what BOL Whirlpool Roper dryers did without issue. I swear GE is a mix of ego, to smart for their own good and a lack of common sense.

@Dustin92: Their Fridges from the 90s/2000s weren't bad in terms of longevity. I saw very few by the dumpster. Ranges even less unless they were dated and being thrown out due to a unit reno. About the only issue was the bottom shelf braking to which GE came out with a reinforced one which held up well. In fact it was the older self defrost fridges from the early 80s that made up 98% of the refrigeration pile. Common failure mode was refrigerant leaking. Where I don't know, but the evaporator plate coil (it would make up the floor and surface of the freezer) would be absolutely gnarled up. Looked like people were maybe scrapping the frost off. Probably were. Those things took like 12 oz of R12 btw.

As for Ranges they are better than Whirlpool if you ask me in many key areas. I currently have a GE range and I am very pleased with it.

Post# 991193 , Reply# 30   4/17/2018 at 23:45 (184 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        
And Oh...

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One thing that I want to share/vent on here since I know you guys will get what I am talking about... It was GE and code making panel members who work for GE which put GFCI protection for Dishwashers into the code. The ROPs cited end of life failures and potential fire... So now the NEC basically mandates that we pay to correct poor engineering.

Post# 991317 , Reply# 31   4/18/2018 at 20:16 (183 days old) by sambootoo (Moody, AL)        

One more positive comment here. We bought our new GE toploader in Jan. 2004 (wife's choice.) It is not a hydrowave. It has been in full service since that time with no repairs whatsoever. It does feel and sound cheaply made but everything has always came out clean. I never expected it to last this long when we bought it! I picked up a matching dryer about 2 years ago and thought for sure that having a matching set again would mean certain death for the washer! Now that I've bragged on the service of this washer, it'll probably die tomorrow!

Post# 991325 , Reply# 32   4/18/2018 at 21:46 (183 days old) by Pierreandreply4 (St-Bruno de montarville (province of quebec) canada)        
my part of the story

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from my memory I know I have wash laundry in a ge filter flo and that was back on 1998 after the big ice storm was on vacation with my mom they forgot or suitcase so once we where check in the rental home had to do laundry and the washer dryer was a ge filterflo I wish I could go back in time tro when my mom and I move I would of suggested to my mom to buy the ge filterflo but can not go back in time lol

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