A few weeks back we received our new high-efficiency front loading LG washer and dryer set and I have to say, I'm pretty impressed by them.
The set was only around $1000 (on sale) but I felt like I'd gone from a Chevette to a Cadillac when compared to our old set. A cute little luxury feature is that they play a little song when a load is done. I told my wife I've always dreamed of having a somebody who loved housework so much that it sang to her.
The washer is very efficient at conserving water. In fact, at first we weren't sure if we hooked it up properly because we couldn't see any water through the glass door. It turns out that the machine weighs how much clothes are in it and only uses enough water to soak the clothes. I'm very curious to see how this affects our next water bill because I estimate we've gone from using approx. 20 litres a load to maybe only 4 or 5.
Although these style of washer do take longer to clean a load (about an hour), we can do much larger loads so the time spent works out to about the same.
Another thing that's great about the washer is that it spin-dries the clothes so well that they come out of the washer just damp and almost dry. Sometimes I have to think twice if a load has even gone through the washer since so much water is removed.
As for the dryer, I'm a little disappointed that it was rated as only average when it comes to energy use, however we're noticing that most loads get dried in under 25 minutes. Not only does the washer do such a great time spin-drying, but the dryer also has a sensor that can tell when the clothes are dry and it will shut itself off. Very often the timer will show 30 minutes or so left but then a couple minutes later it shuts off because the clothes are dry!
In a few years time, after we build our next house, I'd like to look into getting a similar style propane or natural gas dryer. This would really reduce our energy use. Sure we could use a clothesline to dry our clothes, we used to and probably will again some day, but with two little kids it's much easier to just use the dryer.
On the "luxury" side of things I'm impressed by how huge the interior of the dryer is and it's kinda neat to have a light inside it.
So far the only minor downside to these is that I find we have to remember to leave the washer door open to allow it to dry out. The front loading door is water/air tight and I've noticed that if we forget to leave the door open it is still damp inside days later. I'm afraid that this could lead to a musty smell and maybe mold which probably explains why the washer has a "self-cleaning" feature.
We're pretty happy with our new washer and dryer set but also a little depressed. When you reach the stage that the most exciting thing in your life is your new washer and dryer you know you're getting old!