Monday, February 1, 2010

requiem for a machine


(Sorry for the gross photo. You would think I don’t own a wet cloth for all the crud on the front of my washing machine.)

It deserves a requiem, for sure. This is my washing machine. It has been working almost non-stop since September 1990, when the nice people from Sears delivered it to the first house my husband and I owned. It has washed everything from spit-up encrusted onesies to really foul camping stuff. I have used it to felt wool, wash (too large) bedding and set dye on T-shirts. This thing is an undeniable workhorse.

This machine also sucks energy like a Shop-Vac devours dog hair. The lid takes some maneuvering to operate and it drips water after using the gentle setting. (This is a mystery.) We know the washer is living on borrowed time and we are looking for a newer model. Because I hope to live with the next machine for another 20 years, I want it to work hard and be the model of energy and water efficiency. If it could transfer the laundry to the dryer and then fold it and put it away, that would be great, too.

Do you have a front loading washing machine? I fear the mold that I keep hearing about. We are looking at a Kenmore HE front loader. Will I still be able to use my super low sudsing homemade laundry soap? What is the most earth-friendly option? So many questions!

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