This weekend, in between 4th of July parties, Cary and I worked to remove our old washer, dryer and fridge before the delivery of new ones on Monday. We ordered a new LG Refrigerator and an LG washer and dryer. All of the old applicances are still in working condition, so we’re going to donate the wash and dryer to the Durham Habitat ReStore. The fridge will go to a friend.
We have been debating the prospect of new appliances for a while now, and a recent sale prompted us to finally pull the trigger. The old washer and dryer were ones I had owned since about 2000, and we’re pretty sure the fridge was installed when our house was built (back in 1995/96). And we suspect that in that time, no one had ever changed the water filter. Ice cubes and water from the fridge tasted and smelled pretty bad, even after changing the filter, so we never used them. I think the plastic hoses inside the fridge were the source of the bad taste and smell, but just to be sure, I bought a new water hose to connect the water supply to the back of the fridge. It’s nice to have ice cubes again.
Installation of the washer and dryer was pretty easy and required purchasing a few things for the dryer, namely the power cord. Installation was pretty easy and went without a hitch (although I did accidentally spray mysel with water while swapping the hot and cold lines on the washing machine — I accidentally hooked the hose with the blue-stripe to the hot line and the red-striped hose to the cold line — it doesn’t really matter in the long run, but it bugged me that they were wrong).
Cary and I were concerned about the dryer exhaust. Like the fridge filter, we suspected that it had been quite a long time (if ever) since someone had cleaned out the dryer exhaust ducts. Lint buildup in the exhaust can reduce the efficiency of a dryer and even cause a fire in some extreme cases. But we really had nothing to clean the exhaust with, so a little research turned up a product called the LintEater, which was made just for this purpose. The LintEater system consists of a series of flexible rods with a rotary auger brush. By attaching the brush to one end of the rods and inserting the othe rend in a cordless drill, we were able to extract about a grocery bag’s worth of lint from the exhaust duct. If you’re worried about lint build-up, I can’t recommend the LintEater highly enough. It worked perfectly. The system even has other attachments for removing blockages as well as filters which allow you to blow loose lent from the ducts using a vacuum cleaner or your dryer. The kit we purchased contained enough connecting rods to clean a 12-foot duct (we found that we only needed 3 of the rods for ours), and an extension kit is available for longer ducts.
Our new appliances are much more efficient, especially the dryer. While our old dryer would take 45 minutes to an hour to dry most loads, the new one could handle most loads in 25-35 minutes. This is partially because the dryer is more efficient, but also thanks to the fact that the washing machine leaves clothes much drier at the end of a wash cycle.
And while I’m endorsing products, I have to mention another one that made the whole process of removing our old appliances much easier: the Forearm Forklift. This is one of the few “As Seen on TV” products I’ve ever purchased (though I bought mine at Target), and one of the few that I think actually works as advertised. These straps have been used by movers for years (the Best Buy delivery guys who delivered our new appliances used them as well). Cary and I were able to pick up the washer and cary it out the front door, down the front steps and into the garage with little effort, which is especially impressive considering our height difference. At any rate, these straps allowed us to do in a couple of minute what would have taken much longer with a hand truck or carrying it by hand.
So far, we’re pretty happy with the new appliances, and it will be nice to donate the old ones to a good home or two.