What brand of washer/dryer would you recommend? We want low-maintenance, energy efficient and Energy Star compliant.
We have been researching front-load washers and receiving mixed reviews. We've been looking at LG, Kenmore Elite, Samsung, Maytag, and GE, and every time we find horrific stories about leakage, broken seals, filter problems, 1.5-hour loads, etc. Now we're looking at top-load washers, and it's very difficult to make a determination. One person loves the make/model and the other person hates it. We just want a reliable washer around $500-$800, and a matching dryer. We'd prefer that they both be energy efficient and Energy Star compliant. Our focus is primarily on the washer. What brands/models are out there that have been consistently recommended and have positive reviews?
Front-loading washing machines use less water and less detergent, reduce drying time and save energy. Not only as an architect, but also as a user, I can only highly recommend Miele washing machines and clothes dryers. These machines justify their higher price range in their outstanding quality, life-cycle cost and durability. They will last you virtually forever.
If you still decide on a lower-cost and -quality product, read this Consumersearch report on why front-loading washing machines get the best reviews.
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To learn more about choosing energy efficient appliances, you should also read "Are old appliances green because we are reusing, or not green because they are not Energy Star?" by David Bergman.