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High Efficiency Washing Machines: terrible for horse laundry

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  • High Efficiency Washing Machines: terrible for horse laundry

    We replaced our failing 20yr+ old washer & dryer this winter, and I was all proud of myself for choosing a high efficiency super duper green model that uses less water, less soap, beats the clothes up less, etc. At the moment, I can't even remember which kind it is.

    For regular people clothing, which is mainly just sweaty, it is fine! Fantastic!


    It totally sucks at washing saddle pads and other really dirty stuff, horse towels, etc. I had to wash my dressage show pad 3x when I used it last month. Even after using bleach for colors and a stain remover and the heavy duty really dirty setting.

    Please don't reply to this thread by telling me that I should be shot on sight if I wash horse laundry at the laundromat. I promise only to do that at places that explicitly permit it. But does anyone else have this problem?
    I tolerate all kinds of animal idiosyncrasies.
    I've found that I don't tolerate people idiosyncrasies as well. - Casey09

  • #2
    I've not tried the new front loaders at home for horse laundry, becuase mom might kill me, so I still use our old crappy top loader

    I'm one of those people who sneak horse laundry to the laundromat, so you can pass me the target!


    • #3
      I hate my HE machine for horse laundry too -- I end up using the 'stain' cycle -- I switch it to cold water instead of the default hot water for horse gear that can't be washed in hot water -- Also select 'pre-wash' and 'extra rinse' -- That keeps the machine running for about 3.5 hours, and will clean a sheet or light blanket --

      Clean the trap after horse loads --
      "I never mind if an adult uses safety stirrups." GM


      • #4
        I've got one of the front loaders....it's good for sheets, saddle pads (English), coolers, etc. My guys wear 82 and 84 inch blankets and they don't come clean so it's off to the laundromat. Since the really big washers are right in front of the attendant's desk, I'm assuming it is allowed. No one has ever said anything.

        Several of the queen sized comforters don't do well either in the home one so
        they also take the trip.

        Mine has extra wash, extra rinse and presoak settings. The really dirty stuff
        gets the extras. With saddle pads, I throw in an old beach towel to help knock the dirt off the pads--it seems to help.


        • Original Poster

          My HE washer is a top-loader. I couldn't countenance what front loaders cost, and Consumer Reports liked the one I picked well enough.

          It's a Whirlpool Cabrio (fill in ridiculous model # here).

          Glad to know that someone else is having this problem. Or sorry? You have my sympathy. :-(

          I'll have to see if my washer has a 'trap' to clean out.
          I tolerate all kinds of animal idiosyncrasies.
          I've found that I don't tolerate people idiosyncrasies as well. - Casey09


          • #6
            My front loader works great for horse stuff. I love that I can get a winter blanket in it. I do sometimes use the stain cycle or the prewash.


            • #7
              Haven't done horse laundry in it because I can't figure out a way to keep the metal fastenings from clanking to hell and back.

              That said, I detest my HE dryer! The thing has sucked rocks from the beginning, and we had to replace the heating element in it after only two years of (extremely gentle - 2-person household and no horse laundry! ) use.
              In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
              A life lived by example, done too soon.


              • #8
                Not sure if you can add extra water, which seems to be part of the problem in getting things real clean. All those green features, water saver, water reuser, do not allow enough water to slosh thru the fabrics to remove dirt, or rinse well.

                Washers are not really made for people who actually get DIRTY anymore. Sweat is not dirt, ground into the fabric, along with true stains from working in dirty places.

                I would like to see how clean that washer in the commercial that holds the huge amount of towels, actually got washing light color towels used on horses!!

                Quantity of laundry a washer will hold, actually works against cleaning well, if the fabric has no room to slosh well during the wash cycles. One of those "facts" about washing clothing or horse clothing and getting it truly clean. So stuffing your washer probably won't get your loads very clean. I call that "laundromat gray" because most folks using the laudromat "save money" by stuffing their washers. Everything they have is dingy gray after washing.


                • #9
                  There was a similar thread awhile ago on this because I was begging people to tell me what machine cleans horse stuff.

                  I bought the whirpool cabrio in kenmore and it sucked so horribly, I was so bummed out. I washed my fly masks 5 times, and they were still dirty, and thats when I said, its gone.

                  I bought a cheapo GE old fashion washer. I am not as happy as I was with my old kenmore 80 series but it is so much better than the HE kind. ugh.

                  It doesn't get all the dog hair out of my blankets or sheets, but again, its a heck of a lot better than those HE models.

                  I did wash rambo xl size 92 in it and it did ok. again, the old HE didn't even get the blankets entirely wet, so they came out dirty and dry in some places!!!!

                  I wish more manufacturers would go back to the old fashion agitator kind.

                  HE and sensors are for large families who do a huge amount of clothes every day and may or may not care about how clean they come out. Well, it did do human laundry ok, but only if I did a full load.

                  I like to separate my clothes, and my not do a huge amount, and the HE and sensors are not meant for that type either.

                  It was $404 for my ge at lowes, and get this...I can actually fill it up while the lid is up...no more locking lids!!!

                  I am sorry I let them take my old kenmore 80...I would pay 700 to get that thing repaired...it was priceless.

                  I am told to only plan on the ge lasting 5 years, my kenmore 80 lasted 21 years.
                  save lives...spay/neuter/geld


                  • #10
                    YES !! I really hate the fancy Fischer & Paykal I bought specifically because it looked so roomy, less water, etc. I was washing 3 pads at a time, putting it on the extra long soak cycle with bleach and having it take all day to get through a dozen pads.
                    Guess what ? I broke down today and took pads to the laundromat. I was able to get 14 pads spotless for about $12 in the super huge front loading machines. I brought them home to dry and voila, while the pads were washing I ran errands & had lunch.
                    No more horse laundry at home for me.


                    • #11
                      I bought a used Maytag commercial frontload for my barn and I LOVE IT!. It is not a big machine, but easily washes large MW Rambo high-neck blankets with ease. If they are really, really bad, I'll send them through twice and I do use the extra cycle and extra rinse, but it still uses a lot less than my old Kenmore 80 die hard. BUT! It doesn't tear my blankets apart either!

                      I highly recommend a used commercial machine for any barn and fully expect this thing to out live me. Had to cut the coin box open, as it was corroded shut, but other than that it was/is in great shape and is enjoying its retirement years on our farm. I found it on craigslist.

                      The above post is an opinion, just an opinion. If it were a real live fact it would include supporting links to websites full of people who already agreed with me.



                      • #12
                        I use a front loader (non-commercial) and it gets my stuff clean and nice, but I think it does make a difference how you load it. For example, if I just put one or two pads in, they don't turn out as nice as if I put a bunch of pads and a couple girths. It seems to do better when heavily loaded I guess? I also always use the extra rinse cycle for horse stuff. I'd love to have a commercial model in the barn so I could do blankets, we'll see about that!


                        • #13
                          We have the Whirlpool Cabrio also. It may be eco-friendly, but it takes forever to do a load. Horse items do not come clean.

                          Others are right - not enough water goes through there to get things very clean. Also, the Cabrio does not really agitate the clothing like older models do.

                          Not to hijack the thread, but how do you wash a load of halters? Nylon type, not leather. The halters are way too dirty to wash by hand.


                          • #14
                            LOL, you need to go to a thrift store or auction....buy some old beat up machine for the barn, or for the horse junk...

                            I had one I sadly left behind when I moved, bought at auction for not much, even though it needed a new water pump, that thing was awesome!


                            • #15
                              High efficiency washers are also crap for doing really dirty clothing - think haying, harvesting, and rolling around in the dirt and grease fixing machinery and any other farm job that gets clothing filthy enough to stand on its own after one wearing. There just isnt enough action or water for the job.
                              Founder of the Dyslexic Clique. Dyslexics of the world - UNTIE!!

                              Member: Incredible Invisbles


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by sk_pacer View Post
                                High efficiency washers are also crap for doing really dirty clothing - think haying, harvesting, and rolling around in the dirt and grease fixing machinery and any other farm job that gets clothing filthy enough to stand on its own after one wearing. There just isnt enough action or water for the job.
                                LOL, they are not build for real people....


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by goodhors View Post
                                  Not sure if you can add extra water, which seems to be part of the problem in getting things real clean. All those green features, water saver, water reuser, do not allow enough water to slosh thru the fabrics to remove dirt, or rinse well.
                                  Ding ding ding ding!! I have a front end load HE washer, I add water in the slide out slot that you put the detergent in. Makes cloths SOOOO much cleaner! You instantly see more suds in the window. I use a plastic pitcher and put about 5 in.
                                  I want a signature but I have nothing original to say except: "STHU and RIDE!!!

                                  Wonderful COTHER's I've met: belleellis, stefffic, snkstacres and janedoe726.


                                  • #18
                                    I have not been impressed with HE washers - they don't seem to get things very clean, especially with really dirty clothes as others have pointed out.


                                    • #19
                                      I find mine works great. I was queen sized comforters with ease. No problems with size 80 winter blankets. I use the pre-wash cycle to help get things wet. I add a few drops of K.O.E. to the soap and all the horse stink is obliterated.


                                      • #20
                                        I have not been really impressed with the HE machines. I bought a Kenmore Calypso years ago when the HE models first came out. We had all sorts of problems. The model was eventually recalled and they replaced it with good ol' standard low efficiency Kenmore top loader. My machine uses lots of water and gets everything so clean!!!

                                        I will keep my old fashioned washer until it no longer runs and cannot be repaired. However, I wouldn't wash my horsey blankets in the same machine I use for my human laundry though. My parents have the latest high efficiency washer and dryer set. Really fancy set. However, sometimes it takes multiple cycle to get clothes washed and dried.