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Laundry Machines

Linda Gerhard shows how the latest technology in laundry machines is both earth-friendly and economical.

This stackable set with a storage shelf is more than double the size of any other washer (3.8 cubic feet inside or 18 pairs of blue jeans) or dryer (7.8 cubic feet) currently available. The washer uses 18 gallons per load (compared to 40 or 50 on a regular machine) and the dryer spins in opposite directions to keep the clothes loose.

Not only do the new washers and dryers cut down on water and heat, but they also have a sleek modern look, making washing machines worthy investments. She also explains how to choose a machine that fits your lifestyle:

  • A new idea in the laundry industry is integration. People are bringing their laundry rooms into their bedrooms and just off their kitchens and looking for sleek machine design.

  • Clothing is the fourth largest investment an individual makes in their lifetime so why not to get something that treats those clothes well? Since people tend to over dry clothing, which takes the colors out, look for a dryer with sensors that turn off the heat when the clothing is dry, but keeps tumbling them to avoid wrinkles.

This washer and dryer have an entire computerized system on the top so it's easy for anyone in the family to use. The washer has the ability to recognize over 65 household stains and the set actually communicates so they end washing and drying at the same time.

  • Gerhard says the general trend is going toward front-loading washers and dryers as they're more environmentally friendly. These tend to be more compact, they do not have an agitator, which is easier on cloths, and most use 50 to 70 percent less water than top loaders.

  • If the price of a new set is too high, remember you can always buy one piece at a time and always start with the washer. A good washer with options will protect and preserve your clothing while it cleans, making it easy work for even the simplest of dryers.

  • Finally, many of today's machines can actually handle dry-clean only items so while you might pay more up front, you'll save money in the long run.

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