Need advice on best washing machine to buy for washing cloth diapers

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My 7 year-old front loader just died on me. I couldn't stand it for washing my cloth diapers. I always had to add so much extra water (with buckets) to the load in order to get them clean enough. I would like another front loader because of the set-up I have now, but would consider a top loader. Is anyone having good experiences with a front loader? Is there one out there that you can change the water level? I would also like it to have a rinse cycle. Any advice on the best washing machine for cloth diapers would be appreciated! Thanks!

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Jeanne Marie - posted on 03/28/2010

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We bought a Kenmore front loader at Sears and got the top of the line. It has a Kids Clothes setting, which basically results in heavy duty washing, and a triple rinse cycle to make sure no detergent is left behind that might irritate a child's skin. There are so many setting combos on it, you can create a combo, or you can do individual functions. We wash our cloth diapers in it and it works great. We usually do a cold/Kids Clothes cycle with pre-wash to get the stains out. Then we run it a second time on Sanitary/triple rinse cycle. They come out great every time. If I were you, I would also look at Consumer Reports, as well as going to Sears and Home Depot/Lowes to look for the best washing machine for cloth diapers. The only front loader I would avoid is Bosch. While the make a great product (my mom has one), it is impossible to get parts or find a repairman to service them if anything goes wrong. My mom got hers through Home Depot, and even under the warranty, it took Home Depot 2 months to find us a repairman, and then another 6 weeks to get the part needed.

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Peggy - posted on 03/28/2010

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We have an Indesit front loader which our cotton nappies always come out of looking clean and fresh. You can't adjust the water level in it, but obviously it is doing this okay on its own I guess. I always set the wash on its long wash cycle which includes a prewash and a temp of 80 degrees and also set for an extra rinse at the end. The only downside is it takes 2.5 hours to do a cycle so I always set it to go before I go to bed so it doesn't hold up other washing during the day. I do miss how quick top loader cycles are.

SaM - posted on 03/26/2010

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I have an inexpensive Frigidaire Front loader...I think it works wonderfully to clean my cloth diapers. I set the machine to do an 'extra rinse' and leave it on that always. To wash diapers, I first set my machine on cold/cold and set the wash to do a 'short wash' first with a little bit of detergent (to get the poop out)...then after that cycle is complete I do a load on 'whites' on hot/cold with a little bit of detergent....works wonderfully.

Rachael - posted on 03/26/2010

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Personally, I LOVE my Amana (Maytag's cheap line) top loading machine. It's huge and works perfectly.

I heard that you have to "trick" your front loading machine into thinking it's more full than it is when washing diapers. Sadly, I don't know how this is done since I have a top loader.

Majaliwa - posted on 03/23/2010

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I have a top loader - Whirlpool - that I like and it was cheap - so no real reccos on front loaders. However, I have heard that adding one heavy towel to a front loader is an easier way of getting it to increase the water output on them.

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