Complete set of wash cycles & options; SilverCare effective in removing odors; High & Extra High speed spin cycles DO reduce dryer time; Quality feel/solid construction; Energy Star rating; Lower than average energy cost; Stainless steel drum
Requires more day-to-day maintenance than our old top-loader (wipe door seal and drum, leave door open, clean detergent dispenser and debris trap, etc.); Cycle time are longer; Extra $$ for pedestals
As an engineer, I researched washers like crazy before purchasing this Samsung front-loader model. We were looking for a family-sized set with a full feature set and better energy efficiency. Samsung?s SilverCare technology was the principal feature that settled our choice on this model. It was the right value ... Read full review
As an engineer, I researched washers like crazy before purchasing this Samsung front-loader model. We were looking for a family-sized set with a full feature set and better energy efficiency. Samsung?s SilverCare technology was the principal feature that settled our choice on this model. It was the right value for the $, as a quality, energy-efficient appliance that we intend to use for 10+ years. We paid about ~$800 for washer and $825 for the matching dryer -- Labor Day sale prices with free delivery. We chose the standard white color. Other colors are available for a slightly higher price.
The Samsung line is stylish and up-to-date without being overly flashy. The number and type of wash cycles is complete and practical. Knobs, buttons, doors, latches all have a sturdy, quality feel. You won?t have to read the owner?s manual to understand the control panel. Most cycles can be customized with different spin speeds, extra rinse, extra wash, pre-wash, extra spin, wash/rinse temperature, etc. You can create and store one, customized cycle in the ?My Cycle? setting. SilverCare can be disabled for all cycles and enabled for most cycles. End of cycle is indicated by a pleasing chime, that can be turned down or off. I?m expecting to see a lower energy bill ($5-10/month) from using less hot water and shorter dryer times. Vibration is minimal, with proper leveling of washer during set-up. The Vibration Reduction Technology calibrates itself during the first couple of cycles. ?He? detergent is recommended, and it works very well. Before starting the cycle, you can add pre-wash and wash detergent, fabric softener, and bleach into separate dispenser compartments. SilverCare eliminated odors in our towels (and socks!), but if you like sanitizing with hot water, this model has an internal heater that heats water to 150 F for the "Sanitize" cycle. Therefore, you can save some energy by keeping you hot water heater turned down. We bought the pedestals. If you can afford the extra $200 apiece, they will save your back! The door on the dryer can be mounted on either side, but the washer door can only be mounted on the left side. Therefore, you will probably want to set-up the washer on the left and the dryer on the right, so that the doors swing out of your way when transferring laundry. The units can be stacked for a more compact footprint. The washer includes new hot & cold water hoses.
OUR TWO MAIN CONCERNS: Mildew/mold issues and longer cycle time.
We were concerned about the mildew/mold/odor problems that have plagued front-loading washers in general. However, we could not find one complaint about mold/mildew problems on Samsung washers with SilverCare. That gave us confidence in the Samsung technology. Day-to-day maintenance, including drying all parts of the door seal, is the best way to prevent problems. It only takes 30 seconds or so to dry the seal and door. (At the store, check out the door seals on front-loaders and you will understand how, where water gets caught. All front-loaders have the same kind of folded, rubber seal.) We also invested in a dehumidifier for the basement, where the washer/dryer is located. Keep the washer door open when not in use.
The cycle length was another concern; Consumer Reports indicates a cycle time of 90 minutes. Turns out that this is for a fully-loaded, heavy duty cycle. A fully-loaded, normal cycle is 55 min. Perm Press is 50 min. Quick Wash is 40 min. Options add/reduce cycle time. Extra wash adds 10 min. Extra rinse adds 12 min. Extra spin adds 2 min. SilverCare adds 24 min. The washer automatically detects load size during the first few minutes of the cycle, so smaller loads will take slightly less time. An estimate of cycle time is given on the display when selecting the cycle & options. Bottom line - Don?t let the longer cycle time (vs. top loaders) deter you. It is the nature of the technology, and this model is still gentler on your clothes than a 30-min. cycle top loader. In the end, the washer cycle time ends up being the same as your dryer time. Again, this washer is very gentle on clothes, and the higher spin cycles really do get more water out before the dryer. Less dryer time = energy savings!
I recommend exploring the reviews on CNET, Consumer Reports, ConsumerSearch, and appliance dealers (Sears, Lowes, BestBuy, etc.) when you prepare to buy. Repair issues for this model were isolated. We have had no problems thus far. A quality delivery/installation team is recommended. Check out J.D. Power?s rankings for the best. These units MUST be properly leveled before use. Leveling is not difficult. It only requires a standard carpenter's level, and you can do it yourself. The SilverCare technology is under ongoing investigation by the U.S. EPA and is regulate-able as a ?pesticide,? according to the EPA. Right now, makers and distributers of devices that generate silver ions are the intended targets of federal action.