Thread Number: 91375  /  Tag: Modern Automatic Washers
Permanent Press Cycles are Overrated
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Post# 1158803   9/5/2022 at 20:17 (584 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

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Reading another thread about how Speed Queen combined PP and Heavy Duty into a single cycle, IMO this is another example of Permanent Press marketing strikes again negatively impacting performance and the environment.

While some washers over the decades did a half tub drain followed by two low speed spins, others spun on high with only a 10 second spray in the first spin acting as a cool down. GE filter flos did a continuous spray rinse, however my understanding is that clothes in the back bottom of the tub never actually had the cold water go through them thus still being hot at the end of the spin.

Of all the PP cycle variants in use, I've never heard or seen anyone being able to tell difference. Questioning people over the years, most didn't seem to know what PP actually did, or made the assumption that PP was a wash action between normal and delicate.

The way I feel about PP being that it significantly impacts washer performance, energy and garment life without providing anything in return.

What I think people have been assuming/looking for/ actually needed is low speed agitation and a high speed spin instead of high speed agitation followed by wet clothes, longer drying and wasted water.

How do others feel?

Post# 1158809 , Reply# 1   9/5/2022 at 20:39 (584 days old) by bradfordwhite (central U.S.)        

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I think it was just a marketing ploy from the beginning to add the illusion of complexity to certain models. Like the enzyme soak and the "just push a button" campaigns.

Post# 1158812 , Reply# 2   9/5/2022 at 20:49 (584 days old) by foraloysius (Leeuwarden, Friesland, the Netherlands)        

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This is what it was all about.

Post# 1158813 , Reply# 3   9/5/2022 at 20:54 (584 days old) by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

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Whirlpool's/Kenmore's vintage W-n-W/Perm Press cool down process with multiple drains/fills was helpful when line/hang drying.  The heated air and ending cool-down of tumble drying effectively eliminates the need for the special washing process.

Post# 1158827 , Reply# 4   9/5/2022 at 23:09 (584 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        
Wash n Wear

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Wouldn't wash 'n' wear require delicate agitation and high speed spinning? I can't imagine 800 rpms causing thread breaking during the spin.

Also, wouldn't the dryer relax the wrinkles on medium heat then prevent them in the cool down?

Post# 1158828 , Reply# 5   9/5/2022 at 23:11 (584 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

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@Dadoes: I missed your reply, but yes, I would say you're correct. The dryer would do all the work.

But I can see garments like this needing regular agitation. If anything whats being shown hear are fabrics that are some category between normal and delicate in terms of wash care.

Post# 1158829 , Reply# 6   9/5/2022 at 23:12 (584 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

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*can't see garments like this needing normal agitation.

Post# 1158837 , Reply# 7   9/6/2022 at 03:56 (584 days old) by foraloysius (Leeuwarden, Friesland, the Netherlands)        

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You need high agitation speed to get things clean. The man made fabrics can handle that. Lower spin speed because they are dry in no time, those fabrics don't hold a lot of water. And you need some water left for the finish in the dryer. If they are bone dry the wrinkles will be set.

Post# 1158842 , Reply# 8   9/6/2022 at 05:22 (584 days old) by Adam-aussie-vac (Canberra ACT)        
What about on machines that do not have a permanent press

Option? Does that mean we have to constantly change the The dial in between normal and delicates every so often just to try and recreate a permanent press cycle or do we just throw it straight on in regular short wash etc

Post# 1158873 , Reply# 9   9/6/2022 at 10:22 (584 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
How I feel about permanent press

I don't use permanent press, so I find that cycle unnecessary. It was stupid of speed queen to combine heavy duty and permanent press together. They should've combined permanent press with delicate and heavy duty with normal and drop the eco altogether, or just have an eco cycle separate.

Post# 1158874 , Reply# 10   9/6/2022 at 10:39 (584 days old) by Adam-aussie-vac (Canberra ACT)        

What on earth was speed queen the idea to combine that heavy duty and permanent press cycles together? heavy duty should be hot, hard, and fast * Temperature, agitation, spin speed*
(Get your mind out of the gutter) or they should probably just keep the cycle separate and call heavy duty “Commercial Clean” Because isn’t that what the hot normal cycle does?

Post# 1158884 , Reply# 11   9/6/2022 at 11:39 (584 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        
Dampness for Drying

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@foraloysius: You're correct I believe. You know more about fabrics than I do. However, me being my captious self, I would say post spin dampness is not needed to prevent wrinkles from setting in the dryer.

In the 90s Whirlpool badge machines would start the final PP spin at low speed, than shift to high speed for the last several minutes of the cycle. Advertising brochures claimed that this method prevented wrinkles like a low speed spin while giving the extraction advantages of a high speed spin.

Being Whirlpool, I would guess they were confident in taking this gamble. Being that there was not fault out, I would say this offers at least some evidence that wet clothes are not needed for drying. In fact I'd go on a limb and say that this adds more evidence that PP cycles would be ok at least with a final high speed spin.

Post# 1158886 , Reply# 12   9/6/2022 at 11:48 (584 days old) by WindRivers (Wind River Range, WY)        

Speed Queen can't combine heavy duty with normal, and they have to combine eco and normal.

The reason is that energy efficiency is tested on the "normal" cycle, so the "normal" cycle has to be the "eco" cycle in order to pass overbearing restrictions.

They could drop the term "eco" and just use "normal", but that would mislead the consumer into thinking it is a more effective wash, so they call it "eco normal" to indicate it is there to satisfy regulations, not to indicate that "eco" and "normal" are combined.

I don't know or care much about the other cycles as I can't recall the last time I've used anything other than "heavy duty".

Post# 1158887 , Reply# 13   9/6/2022 at 11:52 (584 days old) by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

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SQ Heavy Duty - Perm Press is equivalent to non-eco Normal, simple as that.

Post# 1158888 , Reply# 14   9/6/2022 at 11:52 (584 days old) by WindRivers (Wind River Range, WY)        

Slight correction to my last post, it's called "normal eco" (not "eco normal") at least on the TC5.

Post# 1158889 , Reply# 15   9/6/2022 at 11:56 (584 days old) by WindRivers (Wind River Range, WY)        
SQ Heavy Duty - Perm Press is equivalent to non-eco Normal

Yes, but they have to play word games thanks to idiot regulations.

Post# 1158896 , Reply# 16   9/6/2022 at 14:04 (584 days old) by foraloysius (Leeuwarden, Friesland, the Netherlands)        

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It all depends very much on the type of fabric. Back in the 50’s there were a lot of fabrics used that are totally out of fashion now. And some of them would look terribly wrinkled when spun on a high speed.

Post# 1158908 , Reply# 17   9/6/2022 at 16:40 (584 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
combining eco and normal

They should've had an eco option. I am sick and tired of them combining permanent press and heavy duty. It was a stupid move. Suds do not come out of heavy items unless they're spun at full speed spin on the heaviest cycle like on their older models. Speed Queen, how stupid of you!

Post# 1158914 , Reply# 18   9/6/2022 at 17:27 (584 days old) by BlockEight88 (Hobart, IN)        

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I have the TC5 and I can attest there is no difference between Heavy Duty & PP. To my knowledge, PP on the TC5 does fast agitation and a low spin. I'm not sure but I think it also might do an extra spray rinse. It's pretty useless.

The Kenmore 80 Series washer I have does a 'Permanent Press I' which I can control the speed and spin followed by a spray rinse after the wash cycle.

Even with the partial drain, are wrinkles really gone?

Post# 1158931 , Reply# 19   9/6/2022 at 20:23 (583 days old) by WindRivers (Wind River Range, WY)        

For what it's worth, if you look at the manual, you'll see that the Heavy Duty cycle on the TC5 has a 3 minute longer wash cycle than Permanent Press. I assume it's probably during agitation, but I'm not sure as it lists the fill/agitate/spin together (17min 30sec vs 14:30).

I do miss the dials where you set your own time, instead of everything being programmed and the manufacturer and government deciding for you, but to me it's not worth getting all that much bent out of shape about.

Maybe if I had delicates and permanent press I'd care more. Actually I don't really even know if I do have permanent press, if I do it gets washed on heavy duty, anyway.

Post# 1158960 , Reply# 20   9/7/2022 at 02:36 (583 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        
People having permanent press

chetlaham's profile picture
I think most humans are much like you, they have garments and sheets labeled "permanent press" but wash and dry them like any other garment without second thought and without resulting problems.

Personally I look at something and ask myself, does this need delicate or normal and sort it from there. Regular cottons and sheets hot water, warm for casual items and cold for delicate. A lot of 3button coin op washers seem to be set up that way.

Post# 1158961 , Reply# 21   9/7/2022 at 02:43 (583 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

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@foraloysius- Right. But have such wrinkle prone garments been sold in the last 45 years? I am tempted to say no.

Post# 1158965 , Reply# 22   9/7/2022 at 06:38 (583 days old) by foraloysius (Leeuwarden, Friesland, the Netherlands)        

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Not so much in Europe I think, but it may be different on your side of the pond. I do know that man made fabrics were more popular on your side than here. However I do remember some brand of no iron shirts that looked much better being washed on a PP cycle than on a regular one. IIRC the brand was Bel-o-fast.

Post# 1158966 , Reply# 23   9/7/2022 at 06:41 (583 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

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Most likely.

How fast do your washers spin on PP? Do they do a cool down?

Post# 1158971 , Reply# 24   9/7/2022 at 08:37 (583 days old) by foraloysius (Leeuwarden, Friesland, the Netherlands)        

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Spinspeeds depend on the washer and most washers can be set to different spin speed settings. My Siemens can be set between 400rpm - 1200rpm. 400 is just right for lace curtains.

Post# 1158975 , Reply# 25   9/7/2022 at 09:15 (583 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

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Same holds true for permanent press? Or is it fixed to say 600 r.p.m?

Post# 1158978 , Reply# 26   9/7/2022 at 09:26 (583 days old) by foraloysius (Leeuwarden, Friesland, the Netherlands)        

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That is for permanent press. Max speed on cottons is 1400 rpm

Post# 1159003 , Reply# 27   9/7/2022 at 17:19 (583 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
normal/casual cycle

Does anybody remember when whirlpool combined the normal and casual cycles together on their duet lineup?

Post# 1159202 , Reply# 28   9/10/2022 at 07:29 (580 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

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@Foraloysius: Thank you for the info! :)

Post# 1159360 , Reply# 29   9/12/2022 at 00:49 (578 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

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I use the Wash N Wear cycle on my 1963 RCA Whirlpool Imperial Mark XII from time to time to wash some synthetic gym shorts and always have good results. Even washed a table cloth that appeared to be a permanent press type of material and was wrinkle free after and washed and dried it as well.

Maytag in the 50’s up until 1965 didn’t offer a Wash N Wear cycle on their washers but did however offer it on their dryers and in a way were sort of ahead of the curve since they figured of you were going to wash permanent press items you’d probably would put them into the dryer to remove any wrinkles and figured it wasn’t worth the R&D at the time to develop a Wash N Wear cycle when one would just put Wash N Wear/Permanent Press items into the dryer to be dried.

Post# 1159371 , Reply# 30   9/12/2022 at 04:13 (578 days old) by appnut (TX)        

appnut's profile picture
The all push button May tag models in the early sixties and even maybe late fifties did have a wash and where cycle. It was the only model that feature.

Post# 1159375 , Reply# 31   9/12/2022 at 09:04 (578 days old) by Adam-aussie-vac (Canberra ACT)        
Could someone tell me

How does the wash and wear cycle work?

Post# 1159376 , Reply# 32   9/12/2022 at 09:31 (578 days old) by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

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Post# 1159450 , Reply# 33   9/13/2022 at 09:43 (577 days old) by Stephen (Palm Springs CA USA)        
Miele WXI860

Must be! Even Miele removed their PP Cycle (Wrinle-Free) from their dial on their updated WXI860.


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Post# 1159452 , Reply# 34   9/13/2022 at 10:18 (577 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Wash and wear and permanent press cycle’s on washers

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Could make a very big difference and often gave excellent results.

The first nice washer our family had was a 1959 lady Kenmore that my brothers and I rebuilt in 1966.

I use the wash and wear cycle all the time on that for washing shirts and my mothers dresses.

I remember my aunt was over one time came down to the basement and she was absolutely amazed that I have ironed all these shirts from my brothers and father and dresses and I said they had not been ironed they’ve been washed in the Lady Kenmore and they have been dried in the dryer and they looked absolutely perfect hanging on the hangers.

The lady Kenmore used about 20 gallons of cold water to cool the fabrics off before a nice quick low speed spin.

The later whirlpool built top load washers where they agitated to mix the water off were an improvement and used less cold water.

These cycles were necessary because it’s necessary to wash any outer clothing in fairly hot water to get it clean, detergents have improved somewhat and you can get away with lower wash temperatures today and this reduces the need for the wash and wear cycles although it’s still smart not to spin things so fast until they cooled by a nice cold rinse.

Clothing should always be rinsed in as cold water as it’s available in any automatic washer, the cold water removes detergent better leaves of clothing less wrinkled reduces bacteria count in the clothing and in the machine to reduce the possibility of mold growth etc.

Every detergent maker in every washing machine maker recommends cold water rinsing for all loads.

John L


Post# 1159587 , Reply# 35   9/15/2022 at 08:24 (575 days old) by Logixx (Germany)        

logixx's profile picture
Yeah, and it's been replaced by Proofing, which, of course, is the most-used cycle after Normal. 🤦🏻‍♂️

Post# 1159591 , Reply# 36   9/15/2022 at 09:39 (575 days old) by Stephen (Palm Springs CA USA)        

Exactly! Lol
I would love to know what their reasoning was. Why hide Wrinkle-Free/Minimum Iron?
And why replace it with Proofing, of all cycles.

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Post# 1159594 , Reply# 37   9/15/2022 at 09:52 (575 days old) by mickeyd (Hamburg NY)        
LOL, Indeed!

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What next--a baking cycle after proofing the bread dough?

Post# 1159600 , Reply# 38   9/15/2022 at 11:18 (575 days old) by Adam-aussie-vac (Canberra ACT)        
Could someone explain to me

What the HELL does proofing mean, does it mean the clothes rise?

Post# 1159603 , Reply# 39   9/15/2022 at 12:32 (575 days old) by Stephen (Palm Springs CA USA)        
From manual

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Post# 1159604 , Reply# 40   9/15/2022 at 12:38 (575 days old) by ea56 (Cotati, Calif.)        

ea56's profile picture
sounds like a waste of water to me. Why couldn’t the “proofing” solution be added like a fabric softener during the final rinse?


Post# 1159605 , Reply# 41   9/15/2022 at 12:42 (575 days old) by appnut (TX)        

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So why can't dress sirts be used for wrinkle free/perm press?

Post# 1159606 , Reply# 42   9/15/2022 at 13:37 (575 days old) by Stephen (Palm Springs CA USA)        

It can. It’s just different. And it has a third rinse. WF has twice rinses.

Post# 1159607 , Reply# 43   9/15/2022 at 13:46 (575 days old) by Stephen (Palm Springs CA USA)        
Dress Shirt Cycle

Actually Dress Shorts has a Sensitive Wash Rhythm, a slower spin speed, and an extra rinse over the WF cycle.

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Post# 1159642 , Reply# 44   9/16/2022 at 10:31 (574 days old) by johnb300m (Chicago)        
#21 Who has clothes today that are prone to wrinkling?

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Me! I do!
And it’s annoying for someone like me who hates to iron.
It’s taken me a long time to figure out settings to reduce wrinkles.
And you’ll never guess where the issues are.
On my cottons!
My cotton work shirts and polos has serious wrinkling issues where the bottom hems, sleeve edges, and collars take on weird, HARD creases.
Past washers with cool downs would help. They also aided in rinsing dark colors better.
But the real secret I’ve found, even better than the PP or steam cycles on my dryers, is to Damp Dry these items.
I then reform the collars and sleeves, and let them hang dry.
With damp dry and the residual heat, they’re usually all dry several hours later.

Post# 1159789 , Reply# 45   9/18/2022 at 08:20 (572 days old) by DaveAMKrayoGuy (Oak Park, MI)        
A Vice Cycle, Kept by Habit!

daveamkrayoguy's profile picture
They've been on washers for decades, a vital setting along with Regular Fabrics to this day--even Delicates, associated with Slow Speeds are only seen on TWO-SPEED machines, with that PP, on your basic one-speed, and Perm. Press, II never ever even use...

-- Dave

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