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Belt Drive or direct drive washer?

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by JuneyBooney, Apr 27, 2013.

  1. Ok fellas, I have been having washer machine trouble so I have been looking at some new machines. I have noticed that Maytag/Whirlpool has come out with a belt drive machine like the old machines of yesterday. What are the benefits and drawbacks of these older style machines?
  2. G30SF/F-250

    G30SF/F-250 GTDS Platinum Member

    No idea but mechanically I like belt drive compared to direct drive.

  3. Are you looking to do the new front loader style or traditional top loader? If your sticking with top loader I would not even consider buying a new machine. I don't know how populated your area or how busy your Craigslist is but here in south Florida Craigslist free section is jamb packed with free perfectly good washer and dryers. All the suburb people are constantly switching out their top loaders and dryers for the newest newfangled front loader styles. If not for free very cheap for like new machines.

  4. Around here the prices are high on used stuff..they think people have more money than sense. :rofl: I was looking at a new top loader. I like the older models but I may end up buying a new machine.
  5. mnhogrider


    Sep 10, 2007
    I remember when this same question used to be asked about record turntables.
  6. Lowjiber


    Jan 26, 2012
    Las Vegas
    About a year ago, we swapped out our washer/dryer for a pair of the front-loading, high efficiency, direct-drive units. They have to be experienced to be believed. They use very little soap/water/fabric softener; they are very quiet; and operate as smooth as silk.

    We bought LG brand, but there are several good brands now available. We used Consumer Reports to make our choice.
  7. FullClip

    FullClip NRA Benefactor CLM

    Just wondering how long it takes to do a load of laundry? I've been working in Europe on and off for 10 years and I HATE the little front loaders I have had in the various apartments I've lived in. Granted, these are small units, a pair of jeans, a heavy shirt and a few pairs of socks just about fits. The machines take a couple / few hours to step through a cycle.
    I still love to get back to my old top loading unit back home. Think I could wash a couple small sheep in that in a half hour! Besides, I like the idea of a LOT of water rinsing out my stinky socks and underwear!!:supergrin:
  8. farscott


    Apr 6, 2003
    Athens, AL, USA
    Direct drive is mechanically superior to belt drive because there is no belt or transmission between the motor and the basket. This eliminates the components most likely to fail in the drive system.

    The motor in direct drive machines is typically a permanent magnet synchronous motor (brushless DC motor) versus an induction motor. The rotor of the direct drive motor is connected right to the tub and is the source of the term "direct drive". These motors have no wearout mechanism as there are no brushes to erode.

  9. We did this three years ago. Our LG's with direct drive wash a large load in about 50-60 minutes. Drying takes about 30-45 minutes for towels and jeans, less for shirts. The only thing I don't like about them is the washer hammers the plumbing with it's intermittent water control solenoids popping open and closed. So far they've been trouble free.
  10. This is correct. Since I work on PWM drives in building equipment, I've come to appreciate the value of direct drive PWM controlled motors over geared AC or DC. I even bought a Meile vacuum cleaner for this reason. Very quiet and reliable at 12 years old.
  11. I want to go with a top loader but Maytag now has a belt drive top loader..I just wonder about the reliability of them. I don't want high efficiency yet..too conservative for that. :rofl:
  12. Rinspeed

    Rinspeed JAFO

    Feb 28, 2001
    The lower end Maytags are junk because they aren't made by Maytag. :upeyes:
  13. Cinic

    Cinic Spongy Member

    Nov 17, 2001
    Tempe, AZ
    Agree on the timing and the water hammer with the LG washer...although that seems to have dissipated somewhat over the two plus years we've had them.

    Unfortunately, our washer hasn't been trouble free. Last month, the main bearings in ours failed likely from a seal failure. The final spin started to sound like a freight train going thru the house. Cost estimate was about $700 for a repairman. I was able to find the parts and get it apart and back together for a fraction of that. But it was a complete tear down and re-assembly of pretty much the entire unit. And a week without the washer. And all my time.
  14. Flash62


    Sep 11, 2007
    I have an old Maytag Neptune front load washer that hammered our pipes. I ended up buying 2 of these:

    No more hammer. Highly recommended.
  15. Thanks Flash62! I'm going to try a couple of those. Didn't know they existed.
  16. mikecu


    Jan 13, 2008
    Delray Beach, Fl
    Water Hammer article:

    I bought the LG direct drive about 8 years ago. They are superior to any top loader that I've ever used.
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2014
  17. LEO/Dad

    LEO/Dad Navy Veteran

    Aug 16, 2009
    My son just bought a new Roper from Lowes for about $300.00 with discounts. I hauled it for him. I remember carrying it in, and looking at mechanics. I didn't hardly recognize anything from the way they use to be made. I believe it was belt drive though.
  18. boofers20


    Jul 5, 2008
    Youngstown, OH
    Funny you brought these up...i just installed these this past weekend for my maytag neptune washer, works well so far

    No to find a way to fix the bearings so the spin cycle doesnt sound like a freight train

    Sent from my DROIDX using Ohub Campfire mobile app
  19. SC Tiger

    SC Tiger EL GATO!

    Aug 27, 2011
    South Carolina
    I have a Bosch front loader that I bought about 7 years ago. It is a belt drive and, after 7 years the belt looks brand new.

    The only problem is it seems to struggle with large bedding. I can stuff it full of clothes and it has no problems, but a set of king-size sheets will bog it down and it cannot seem to spin them (according to the wife). But that is a recent development.

    Were I to buy another washer I would consider going back to a top loader though because of one issue with front loaders. Since the door is a watertight seal, a front-loader will develop a musty odor and need to be cleaned with bleach every so often. Not a big deal but an annoyance. We leave the door on ours open when it is not in use but the door gets in the way of other things in the laundry room.
  20. I just bought a temporary washer cause our "commercial series amana" finally gave up after nine years of service. The only reason why it gave up, it was because I procastinated on replacing the leveling unit and eventually the shaking paid a toll on the main bearing seal which by now, its welded to its other adjacent parts and could not get out without breaking and cutting frozen nuts and eroded aluminum bases. The used maytag atlantis stainless steel barrel, was the closest we could find to the amana we had as far as capacity and quality. I still had to completely dissasemble and clean and replaced a corroded connector at the auto water temp sensor, but overall, it works fine for a temp washer. Motor and drive quality cannot compare with the amana which after all these years, still looks new and strong. We have research for our next new washer, and so far, we don't like the new "energy savings" hubless washers. According to relatives that have them, they take forever just to do a medium load, so they have to schedule a whole day for washing. So we are getting geared towards a industrial grade heavy duty older model.