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Our new Speed Queen FF7 front load washer - observations

last year
last modified: last year

I recently ditched my 10 1/2 year-old Miele W4842 (our first FL washer) and bought a SQ front-load washer after doing a fair amount of research. A big thank you to

Jeffrey Caban for your topic at this link reporting on your new SQ FL three years go.

We ordered the machine in early December 2021 and it was delivered three weeks later.

Why SQ? It has 3.5 cu ft capacity. Other brands with pedestals available are 4.5 cu ft and larger. Our Miele 4842 had 4.0 cu ft, which was really larger than two empty-nesters need.

The European brands are smaller and have heaters, but no pedestals, and right now I’m needing a vacation from a Euro-built machine. I’ve sunk a lot of money into that Miele washer with repairs over the years, and it was a love/hate relationship. Miele cost $2000 USD; out-of-warranty repairs $1700 USD including sales tax; let's just say I'm snake-bit and over it and was not about to put any more money into the Miele with whatever came next at its age.

PRO – smaller machine capacity with pedestal option available, made in USA. Pedestal/riser is a must for me.

CON – no internal water heater*. I knew this before I bought it. It is the biggest down-side of the SQ and they lose a LOT of customers over this. It is a trade-off for the famous “reliability & performance” the SQ is known for and I am hoping for. Only time will tell on that.

* Internal water heater is important to many on this forum. I get it and I respect that. Please, no bashing/debating machines without water heaters here.

NOISE - Consumer Reports says the SpeedQueen FF7 is noisy and they weren’t kidding. If you don't have a laundry room near living space, with a door that can be closed, this might not be the machine for you. We can close the door, so it's not a problem for us.

GASKET is black, which is interesting. This is only my second FL, so I have only one point of comparison. There is no way to ever see if mold is growing on it. Not a problem for me, since after 10.5 years with the previous FL, I never had mold and the machine always smelled clean. GardenWeb/Houzz laundry forum people here share good washing machine hygiene tips and I used them.

The FF7 received top ratings by CR magazine, per their own testing methods, for washing performance. Everyone has an opinion on CR. For the most part, I find their ratings helpful, not real-life perfect. It is what it is. If it turns out this is not the machine for us, we will go back to something with an internal heater and deal with it. . We survived all our lives without an internal heater in TL washers. From now on, the dog bed will just get a little more borax, oxy bleach, and extended wash cycle.

PAUSE option does not really work as described on page 15 of the owner’s manual (a free .pdf download from SQ’s website). In reality, when a wash cycle is paused, the tub drains out all the water and then the door can be opened. Upon resuming the cycle, the washer fills up with fresh water. SQ customer service told me ‘the detergents today are designed to cling to fabrics, so it should not be a problem. You can add more detergent if desired when you restart.’ Hmmm…

I suggested to the SQ customer service rep that they mention in the Owners Manual that the tub will empty out when “Paused”. She said she will pass than along to whoever.

On the plus side, if I see a load has been overdosed, I can pause it to empty the tub, then restart, the machine will refill with fresh water, and a lot of that initial over-sudsing will have been drained away. So that’s a win.

RINSING – So far, the SQ is rinsing much better than my previous FL. Much. Whenever I saw a bit of froth at the front of the door window/gasket of the previous FL, I knew there would be rinsing issues. When I see a bit of froth in the SQ window/gasket area during the wash cycle, it is gone after a rinse or two. The tub drain holes are much larger than my previous FL and I suspect frothy suds pass through those holes much more easily. My sensitive skin appreciates this.

All SQ rinses are tap-water cold.

More notes will be added as a comment below.

---edited to correct amount spent on OOW repairs .

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