I May Never Buy A GE Appliance Again

For years, I’ve followed the trials and tribulations of the front loading washing machine issues surrounding mold and mildew.  Why?  Because the GE  front loading washer that we have has been plagued with these issues since we bought it in 2007.

At the time, I thought it was great.  The community where we moved had some of the highest water rates in the area, so it was a HUGE win to save money on the water bill with the new type of machine that used significantly less water.

The honeymoon quickly wore off.

Moldy Gasket

When we first got our machine, we did what any sensible person would do and closed the door when it wasn’t in use.  Sound, reasonable, right?  Well, we quickly found out that was a bad idea when the rubber gasket around the door started getting covered in mildew.

So, we started keeping the door open.  Unfortunately, the damage had already been done and that gasket continued to get mildew and such on it until around 2011 when it finally started to fall apart and we had it replaced.

Second Gasket

The second gasket lasted about three years before it finally started breaking down as well.  Through keeping the door open, we didn’t get the buildup of bunk, but having a door open all the time is not exactly the look of a nice clean laundry room.

Third Gasket

The newest gasket we have has developed a small leak.  Just a little puddle to clean up off the floor that I’m sure will

Where our machine belongs Image from Morguefile courtesy of johnwollring
Where our machine belongs
Image from Morguefile courtesy of johnwollring

likely grow.  But, for now it’s ‘manageable’.  Or is it?  I mean, here we are looking at something that most reasonable people would probably not put up with, but these hunks of junks have lowered the bar so much, that wiping up a puddle is considered acceptable.  Unreal.

The Soap Drawer

The latest is that the drawer that you pull out to fill up the soap, bleach, and fabric softener now gets mildew all over it.  For quite a while, leaving the drawer pulled out slightly would keep things OK here, but now, not so much.  Now, we actually go through the trouble of taking the drawer completely out most nights when we’re done with wash.  Even with this, mildew still develops and I have to clean not only the drawer, but the surrounding plastic on the inside of the machine,  about every 2-3 months.

Scary Part About Our GE Front Loading Washer

You want to know the real scary part of all this?  It’s not that we have to keep the door open and pull out the drawer and scrub the entire thing every three months.  You’d think that’s bad enough, but the real scary part is that we’re only keeping the areas clean that we have access to.  I’m not stupid enough to believe for a second that the inside of this machine isn’t caked with mildew in places that we can’t get to.

And it’s a wonder that I have skin eczema.

Insult To Injury

On top of everything, GE won’t step up to fix the issue.  Amazingly, a couple of companies were sued and settled lawsuits.  Maytag and Whirlpool were the ones that come to mind.

GE not only refused to acknowledge any problem. Plus, they actually managed to convince someone that there were not widespread problems with their machines.  There’s simply no way that can be true.  You can’t tell me that our machine is just an outlier.  That’s bologna.

So, I’m hard pressed to think that I’ll ever buy a GE appliance again.  They built a crappy product, they refused to stand behind it (I did contact them), they somehow managed to skirt blame.  They are very low on my list.  At some point this pile of junk will either stop working or I’ll decide I’ve had enough with the mildew.  Then, we’ll end up getting something else.  When that happens, I can tell you what brand of washer we WON’T be bringing into the house.

Readers, have any of you participated in the front loading washing machine lawsuit?  Have you had any experience, good, bad or otherwise, with these types of machines?

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8 thoughts on “I May Never Buy A GE Appliance Again

  1. Wow, what a hassle. I feel bad for you. We have had an old fashion top loading washer for almost 15 years and (knock wood) have had no problems with it. Of course it is just me and DH so saving money on water was not a big consideration. I just load it up full every other week and wash almost everything in cold water. Now the dishwasher that’s another story!

  2. I DO have some experience with this….BUT our washing machine was a Maytag. We bought a Maytag washer and dryer for “too much money” a while back but decided to go with the “top load” or TL efficient model. About 5.5 years in we noticed a bit of rust and the machine started making growling noises. Aaaand Maytag had already been named in a class action suit for these machines so what could go wrong?. Repair man came out ….and $129 later (for his 5 minute diagnosis)….the verdict….”motherboard” and bad bearings , etc…And of course the $ from the class action was a joke. And of course the parts would be around $800 installed. The repair man offered to discount a new Maytag down to $880. I told him we’d think about it and wrote down the model number. We went to Lowes and combined a sale, with a coupon, with a CC discount to get the same washer for $460….Same EXACT washer….and they delivered it and installed it. That was over 7 years ago and this washer has been great….a very tall, very “smart washer”. You may want to consider it when you buy a new one. It’s a top load BUT has the largest capacity in class which is why it is considered so efficient despite being a TL.
    If there is any satisfaction to be derived, the “front loading nightmare” for Maytag basically killed the company and was bought out by Whirlpool. I have had good luck with Whirlpool and the design on my new washer was done by Maytag engineers with the “typical Maytag overkill” with heavy duty motor, bearings and sensors. Will share that I have had …”issues” with some GE appliances, specifically microwaves. But have had very good luck with the Geo Spring hybrid water heater….this thing caused my electric bill to “fall off the table”……I’d be happy to give you the model of our washer if you’d like…

    • We’re not going to make any immediate changes so I expect by the time we would that they’d be in new models anyway. I think we’re going to stick with what we have for as long as we can. At the time, the top loading models were the old ones that used tons of water and weren’t energy efficient. The disastrous front loading machines seemed to be the bridge between those and the top loaders that are now a lot more efficient and spacious. Our next one will be a top loader for sure.

  3. When I bought my house and was looking to buy a washing machine, I knew I wanted a high efficiency/low water use model, but I also had heard about the horrors of the front loaders. Mine is a Maytag top loader model, but it’s an HE model without the agitator – the drum is MASSIVE.

    I have NO idea what it does – it sounds like an alien robot when it runs, but it works and I haven’t had any mold problems. I just pour the detergent into the bottom of the drum before I put my clothing in and don’t use any of the fancy spouts, either.

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