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The Machine and How We Live

tips and tricks for combo washer

We have an LG Combo Washer/Dryer that I bought when we were living in an apartment with no facilities or hookups. Jack of all trades, master of none? Not if you have your expectations in order. I love this thing but they’re a little quirky. They can take some getting used to if what you are used to is having a load of laundry washed and dried in little over an hour.

In this first picture you can see that we had this in our apartment’s bathroom and used the sink and a quick connect faucet kit. We removed the stopper for the sink and put the drain hose directly into the drain. I also had to manually control the water. Preheat hot taps, turn hot off and cold on when rinsing, etc. I also put zip ties and made loops on the hoses so we could hang them on command strips when we weren’t using the machine. Very tidy. Very convenient.

It worked beautifully at our apartment. When we bought our house, we discovered the dryer vent wasn’t actually vented to the outdoors so we opted to keep our ventless machine. I paid cash for this machine so we are going to use it until we can’t.

Drying Your Patience?

Yes. They really do take 2+ hours to dry. It isn’t the end of the world if you’re short on space or have other issues such as the lack of a dryer vent. If you have a special situation you will say “it only takes 2 hours to dry” and “what a godsend!”

I don’t know anyone that likes hanging out all day at the Laundromat…

I’ll also say, so far this machine has been a dream to work on. I’ve had to replace the circulation pump twice three times and the drain pump once. The pumps are terrible but they’re not terrible to replace. The first time I replaced the circulation pump I was 9 months pregnant. It’s not hard and Repair Clinic has all the parts you need AND a video. Repair clinic and I are BFFs, especially since I bought a house.

No Stink

What else do I love about this machine? It doesn’t stink like other HE front loaders can. It gets filled with lovely mold, mildew, and germ killing steam after every cycle.

Tips & Tricks!

  1. First things first. Don’t overload it. You might be tempted to. Your brain will say things to you like, “If this thing is going to run for 3 hours, it’s going to be FULL.” Resist. These machines don’t have huge capacities to start with. On top of that, my LG combo can efficiently wash more than it can efficiently dry. If you have a clothes line this is GOOD NEWS! Please believe me. It will wash better and dry faster if you underload it then add one more thing.
  2. Next, don’t go crazy with the detergent.
  3. Give up the softener!
  4. Get a set of laundry bags. I use these. I keep The Boy’s clothes separated by type. These make it easier to run a mixed load without worrying about zippers/buttons beating up t-shirts.
  5. Don’t use homemade laundry soap. Don’t use Charlie’s Soap. This stuff is terrible for washing clothes and diapers in. TERRIBLE. You will get scum in this machine that you can never get rid of.
  6. Run the Tub Clean cycle with vinegar and do it regularly. Stay on top of it to keep the biofilm and residue under control.
  7. Clean the seal every single load. Pull it back and clean the lint out when it is wet because it’s much easier to collect then than after it’s been dried. Clean the filter after every 5 or 6 loads.
  8. Drying on the top of a combo washerUse the top of the machine to dry delicate things just a little faster! My string grocery bags would shrink like crazy if they were dried in the machine. I also put bras and baby clothes up here. If you have one of these machines, you’re probably going to be running it more often than not. Put your shoes, socks, jackets, etc on top of it to gently warm them on cold days.
  9. While you can put clothes in and have it wash then automatically start drying when finished, we NEVER run a continuous cycle. Why? Because the spin always, always, always has stuff plastered to the sides and it doesn’t always fall off. You may end up with wadded up, mega wrinkly half dried laundry. I run the wash cycle. Pull everything down off the sides and back of the tub. Start the dryer. It really does make a significant difference.
  10. These machines are not magic wizards. Use low spin for items that get super wrinkly like dress shirts. Throw an extra rinse on there if you’re still seeing a lot of suds. Don’t use a full dose of detergent for a small load.
  11. There are times when you are going to have a lot of your clothes hanging up across the shower curtain. It’s ok. Pat yourself on the back for saving a little bit of energy.
  12. Buy a folding drying rack. This one looks nice too.
  13. With the length of time between cycles there’s really no excuse not to put everything away. It happens though! Get a laundry folder or two if you’ve got help and knock it out. There are plenty of videos showing you how they work and how to make your own.
  14. The most common laundry advice is Do A Load A Day. Pfft. With one of these machines it’s more like 2 loads a day, minimum.

There we have it. My combo machine tips! Have you got any tips to share?