Thread Number: 91853  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
Who was the largest and most advanced technologically in your opinion?
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Post# 1163781   11/12/2022 at 23:49 (526 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        

Hey guys. I've been thinking about different manufacturers for some time between, GE Maytag, Whirlpool, Frigidaire and others.
Who was the most advanced technologically and had the largest factories in your opinion? All thoughts are welcome. God bless.





Post# 1163786 , Reply# 1   11/13/2022 at 01:11 (526 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

maytag85's profile picture
Every company was innovative in their own way, Frigidaire had their pulsator agitator, Kelvinator had their agitation which reminds me of a mixer, Apex had their bouncing basket, Whirlpool was the first to make a perforated tub from the very beginning in a top loading design and had many innovations throughout the 50ís and 60ís, GE used a clutch that allowed the machine to filter out since the motor ran at full speed while the clutch allowed gentle agitation which helped filter out lint, Maytag introduced moisture sensors around 1959/1960. GE, Frigidaire, and Speed Queen had foot pedals on their dryers which allowed you to easily open the door when your hands were full. I could list more, but this is whatís on my mind at the moment and will post more later if anything else pops into my mind later.

Post# 1163795 , Reply# 2   11/13/2022 at 07:14 (526 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
giant high tech factory

So who had the most high tech factory and who had the largest?

Post# 1163808 , Reply# 3   11/13/2022 at 12:17 (525 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
What time period are you thinking about?

combo52's profile picture
If you want to take a long time period Such as 1950 to the year 2000, whirlpool and GE would be by far the biggest leaders with engineering in the major appliance business.

Both of these companies came out with very advanced major appliance designs during this time.

John L


Post# 1163812 , Reply# 4   11/13/2022 at 13:25 (525 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
I'd say...

I would say the 80s when the direct drives came out if I'm not mistaken. Who's factory was larger from the timeframe?

Post# 1163820 , Reply# 5   11/13/2022 at 15:25 (525 days old) by goatfarmer (South Bend, home of Champions)        

goatfarmer's profile picture

Each had many factories.

 


Post# 1163821 , Reply# 6   11/13/2022 at 15:28 (525 days old) by bradfordwhite (central U.S.)        

bradfordwhite's profile picture

"Who was the largest and most..." ?

 

Appliance manufacturing is not a retired industry.

From oil burning lamps to wood tub wringer washers to wooden ice boxes to automatic ironers to microwave ovens to modern front load washers to.... what ever the current offerings in appliances are.

The creativity of mankind is incredible.

 

 


  View Full Size
Post# 1163822 , Reply# 7   11/13/2022 at 15:40 (525 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
between whirlpool, GE, and Maytag...

Who had the largest laundry plant between the 3? Who had the latest technology?

Post# 1163824 , Reply# 8   11/13/2022 at 15:51 (525 days old) by bradfordwhite (central U.S.)        

bradfordwhite's profile picture

"Who had the largest laundry plant ....." ?

 

It's not past tense.  They are all still in business.


Post# 1163829 , Reply# 9   11/13/2022 at 16:09 (525 days old) by DADoES (TX,†U.S. of A.)        

dadoes's profile picture

And they have multiple factory locations around the planet.


Post# 1163837 , Reply# 10   11/13/2022 at 17:03 (525 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
current size

So who has the largest factory by size, who's the largest?

Post# 1163842 , Reply# 11   11/13/2022 at 17:06 (525 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture
The appliance industry has very much retired. With the exception of Speed Queens TR series, the last dishwashers just ceased production at the start of this year and the last washing machine around 2017 as the DD thin twin.

Post# 1163844 , Reply# 12   11/13/2022 at 17:10 (525 days old) by neptunebob (Pittsburgh, PA)        
Had to be GE and Whirlpool...

neptunebob's profile picture
In the case of GE Appliances they had the deep pockets of the parent GE company. Westinghouse and GM Frigidaire were supposed to be the most innovative but were far from the largest production. I think Frigidaire was considered an expensive brand back then, not a budget brand like now.

Post# 1163851 , Reply# 13   11/13/2022 at 17:42 (525 days old) by bradfordwhite (central U.S.)        

bradfordwhite's profile picture

"The appliance industry has very much retired"

 

So in your opinion, appliances are no longer manufactured?.... with the exception of certain Speed Queen models?


Post# 1163865 , Reply# 14   11/13/2022 at 21:25 (525 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        
Yes

chetlaham's profile picture
With the exception of TR Speed Queens, consumers no longer have the choice of purchasing new appliances.

Post# 1163866 , Reply# 15   11/13/2022 at 21:29 (525 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture
Edit: That would be the TC-5 series, not TR, my mistake.



Post# 1163867 , Reply# 16   11/13/2022 at 21:36 (525 days old) by bradfordwhite (central U.S.)        
OK then

bradfordwhite's profile picture
Thanks for clearing that up.


-----

Anyone wanting to buy a toaster, dishwasher, refrig, washer (with the exception of certain Speed Queen models), freezer, air conditioners......
Any kind of appliance.

FORGET A-BOT IT!
They downe make no more. nope.


Post# 1163871 , Reply# 17   11/13/2022 at 22:07 (525 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
Whirlpool vs. GE

Wouldn't Whirlpool be the larger of the 2 or was it GE? Just need more clarification. Also, wouldn't Whirlpool have the most advanced computer technology as far as manufacturing? You would think they would since they came up with the LEAP direct drive platform.

Post# 1163934 , Reply# 18   11/14/2022 at 23:13 (524 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
research and development

And to add to the question, who had/has the longest time of research and and development? Wouldn't it be Whirlpool followed by GE then Frigidaire and perhaps Maytag? If so, it would make more sense why Whirlpool sold millions of direct drives.

Post# 1163948 , Reply# 19   11/15/2022 at 07:12 (524 days old) by wireman (Lansing, MI)        
Whirlpool fan

wireman's profile picture
Not sure when the mid-90's Whirlpool washer and dryers were designed we've had for 25+ were designed; branded Kenmore. The washer esp. is a workhorse. Great turnover even with FULL loads. Clothes really get clean. When the dryer needed repair, the serviceman said, buy a new dryer; their design hasn't changed much. Keep and repair that washer; nothing made today is as dependable or cleans as well. So we likely will!


Post# 1163949 , Reply# 20   11/15/2022 at 07:14 (524 days old) by wireman (Lansing, MI)        
Whirlpool fan

wireman's profile picture
Not sure when the mid-90's Whirlpool washer and dryers were designed that we've had for 25+ were designed; branded Kenmore. The washer esp. is a workhorse. Great turnover even with FULL loads. Clothes really get clean. When the dryer needed repair, the serviceman said, buy a new dryer; their design hasn't changed much. Keep and repair that washer; nothing made today is as dependable or cleans as well. So we likely will!


Post# 1164014 , Reply# 21   11/15/2022 at 22:52 (523 days old) by vacman1961 (North Babylon, New York)        

I have to say Whirlpool would be the largest manufacturing factory in Clyde, Ohio. You have to remember not only did they produce Whirlpool brand washers and dryers but they manufactured Kenmore, Kitchen Aid, Roper, Estate, Crosley and other unpopular name brands. At one time when they were at the top of sales with the direct drive washer, they had a slogan, Whirlpool, World leader in laundry products.


Post# 1164049 , Reply# 22   11/16/2022 at 14:53 (522 days old) by CircleW (NE Cincinnati OH area)        

For clarification, Whirlpool manufactures dryers at their Marion, OH plant. Clyde is washing machines only. The dishwasher factory is in Findlay. My sister and her husband reside between Findlay and Toledo, and know plenty of people who work in either the Findlay or Clyde facilities.

Post# 1164060 , Reply# 23   11/16/2022 at 17:56 (522 days old) by goatfarmer (South Bend, home of Champions)        

goatfarmer's profile picture

WP I believe did some manufacturing in Arkansas. Cooking?


Post# 1164064 , Reply# 24   11/16/2022 at 19:52 (522 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
whirlpool laundry leader in the world

So when did whirlpool become the #1 laundry leader in the world? When did they start using computer systems to make it happen?

Post# 1164067 , Reply# 25   11/16/2022 at 20:01 (522 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Reply # 24

combo52's profile picture

1952, many great things happened in 1952.

 

John L.


Post# 1164075 , Reply# 26   11/16/2022 at 22:06 (522 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
clyde 1952

So you're saying that whirlpool used computer technology in 1952? I thought they started using it in the 1980s when they came out with the direct drives.

Post# 1164088 , Reply# 27   11/17/2022 at 04:30 (522 days old) by akronman (Akron/Cleveland Ohio)        
John

akronman's profile picture
lol, 1959 had many great things happen too!

Post# 1164119 , Reply# 28   11/17/2022 at 15:14 (521 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
1959

I thought whirlpool moved to computer technology in 1983, not 1959.

Post# 1164122 , Reply# 29   11/17/2022 at 16:01 (521 days old) by reactor (Oak Ridge, Tennessee-- )        
largest manufacturing plant

reactor's profile picture
General Electric claims they had the largest appliance manufacting plant in the world, under one roof, with their "Appliance Park" facility in Louisville, KY. They also were one of the earliest manufacturing plants to employ a mainframe computer which GE installed in 1954.

Sadly, the Appliance Park facility is now under Chinese ownership since being sold to Haier


Post# 1164135 , Reply# 30   11/17/2022 at 18:42 (521 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
GE manufacturer

That's interesting to know that GE was the largest manufacturer in the world. When did Whirlpool surpass GE?

Post# 1164140 , Reply# 31   11/17/2022 at 20:18 (521 days old) by reactor (Oak Ridge, Tennessee-- )        
largest plant

reactor's profile picture
Jerome, GE said they had the largest appliance manufacturing plant in the world, under one roof. They didn't say they were the largest maker of appliances by volume. They may or may not have been. They were just boasting about their facility itself.

Post# 1164153 , Reply# 32   11/17/2022 at 23:28 (521 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
GE largest manufacturer

If GE was the largest manufacturer, why did they copy whirlpool's agitation in 1995? They could've innovated like Whirlpool did. I bet Whirlpool outgrew GE by far since they were huge innovators.

Post# 1171919 , Reply# 33   2/11/2023 at 13:26 (435 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
whirlpool technology

I've always thought whirlpool had the most technology considering they were the first to use neutral drain since the beginning. I could've sworn they were the first to use perforated tubs exclusively. Surely they had all the technology and computers for research and develop laundry products.

Post# 1172031 , Reply# 34   2/12/2023 at 11:49 (434 days old) by rinso (Meridian Idaho)        

Whirlpool/KM machines were always ahead of their time. I think the fact that Whirlpool made laundry appliances for Sears for many years, probably made them one of the top sellers. The Kenmore top loaders were, IMHO, ahead of their time in development of their higher end WP made machines. They were one of the first to offer a "dual-action" agitator which greatly improved turnover, especially for bedding and stiff jeans. I'll always remember their Lady Kenmore piano key machines that were made in the mid-1960's. They would have been my favorite at the time, save for their anemic spin speed. Towels often took 90 minutes to dry.


Post# 1172042 , Reply# 35   2/12/2023 at 12:32 (434 days old) by norgeway (mocksville n c )        
Frigidaire and Westinghouse

Were premium brands but not the largest, GE had the largest facility to build appliances, GE and Hotpoint sold more because they were generally aimed at a less affluent market, Usually small mom and pop stores as well as big dept stores sold GE or Hotpoint, for instance Hotpoint was Lowes hardwares main brand from the time they were in a small downtown store in North Wilkesboro on up until they had hundreds of stores around the country, As a rule GE was, at least in my hometown, aimed at the working man, generally cheaper, Frigidaire and Westinghouse were sold to the bankers and lawyers.All that being said Whirlpool i believe sold more laundry equipment simply because of Sears.



Post# 1172065 , Reply# 36   2/12/2023 at 16:25 (434 days old) by kenwashesmonday (Carlstadt, NJ)        

In my view, whirlpool basically made the same machine from the late 1940s to circa 1986.  They were good machines, but I wouldn't associate them with "advanced technology". 

 

By all means Whirlpool deserves credit for the dual-action agiatator, but let's not foget that Maytag was first with an agitator circa 1920.


Post# 1172632 , Reply# 37   2/18/2023 at 22:17 (428 days old) by vacman1961 (North Babylon, New York)        

Whirlpool has always been the world leader in laundry. More American built washers and dryers come out of their Clyde, Ohio plant. At one point they actually produced more Kenmore washers than Whirlpool. models.

Post# 1195547 , Reply# 38   12/18/2023 at 02:19 by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
Whirlpool Vs. GE

It's amazing that GE was the largest appliance manufacturer under 1 roof. What about overall? I wonder how big the Clyde factory was when they switched to the design 2000 platform.
When did they expand when Maytag got involved? I suspect the ones on my old dorm came out of that Clyde factory.


Post# 1197407 , Reply# 39   1/19/2024 at 15:21 by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
largest factory

I think I see it that GE was the largest appliance manufacturer under a single roof. I wonder how big Whirlpool was in the 80s compared to now. I would assume GE was smaller than Whirlpool overall, but please correct me as I assume that GE was #2 at the time.
How big was the Clyde facility back then compared to now?


Post# 1197408 , Reply# 40   1/19/2024 at 15:25 by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
timeframe

I would like to know the sizes of Whirlpool, GE, and Maytag starting from the 50s through today. I was always under the impression that Whirlpool was the largest followed by GE, but I could be mistaken.

Post# 1197415 , Reply# 41   1/19/2024 at 16:39 by CircleW (NE Cincinnati OH area)        

Whirlpool made only laundry equipment until they acquired Seeger Refrigerator Co. and Estate Range Co. (from RCA) in 1955.

GE-Hotpoint had a full line of appliances many years earlier. In the 1930's they were making ranges, refrigerators, dishwashers, washers, water heaters, furnaces and air conditioners.

Maytag only had laundry equipment most of the time. For short periods of time they sold ranges and refrigerators manufactured by others. Later they started making dishwashers. Other items were added when they purchased other companies, such as Admiral, Norge, and Magic Chef.


Post# 1197422 , Reply# 42   1/19/2024 at 19:38 by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
clyde factory

When did Whirlpool's Clyde factory grow and become more automated? Did they close their St. Joseph factory and integrate operations? How were they able to fit Maytag later on? When did they surpass GE in terms of the volume of laundry and overall size?


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