Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: W798SS 2.3 cu ft Capacity Washer
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on March 27, 2009
The Avanti washer is wonderful.

I bought this washer because the apartment I moved my family into after my husband died had no hook-ups for our standard washer and dryer. But I have five children, so going to the community laundry facility was not a good option. We have a lot of dirty clothes on a daily basis, so I needed a way to wash clothes at home every day.

I researched the available portable washers and decided to take a chance on the Avanti mostly because it had the largest capacity. With so many children, I needed to be able to wash a full sized load. The Avanti fits our needs wonderfully. It's full capacity is about 2/3's a regular full sized load on a standard machine, but it's still a lot of clothes. I can wash about 8 pairs of children's jeans, or 15 children's shirts, or any combination thereof. And I don't hook it up to the sink. I went down to our local hardware store and spoke with a plumbing associate who helped me find the right connections to hook it up to the water supply from my toilet. That means I wash everything in cold water, but that's fine with me. Not having to move it around is worth it. I attached an extension onto the drain hose so mine drains directly into the toilet as well.

The drain hose comes pre-installed on the left side (as you are facing the front of it), but the machine is made with ports on either side, and you can switch it to whichever side works best for you. It's a little hard to unsnap it and reattach it to the other side, but it's doable. It has a built in slot for the drain to hook onto on both sides of the machine as well, for when it's not draining into the sink. But if you have it drain into your toilet as I do, you need to purchase a tight fitting extension and leave it on the hook because the drain must sit at the level of the hook, otherwise the tub will never fill. I hope that makes sense. It's a physics thing, not a mistake.

Attaching it to the toilet water supply was easy, but the water supply hoses it came with were not high enough quality to do this without leaks. I had to buy higher pressure and tighter fitting washing machine supply hoses that went on tighter. Since the hoses are the same ones a standard washer uses, they're easy to find at any hardware store. I purchased high quality flexible steel hoses. The ones it comes with are soft plastic ones, with plastic heads that would never screw on tightly enough to not leak.

The washer itself it fabulous. It cleans the clothes really well, and it spins them out enough that line drying is actually possible. It's what I do everyday. I put in a load every evening, and hang them to dry and in the morning put everything away. The washer has a built in lint trap that is a nice feature, and a built in softener dispenser. The detergent goes in a drawer through which the water runs, so the detergent is mixed with the water as the machine fills.

It comes with lots of different wash settings, including a special "Jeans" setting, that does two rinses and an extra fast spin cycle to really get the water out of them. The water has three levels, and there are extra rinse options, and many more, like "Soak", "Normal", "Delicates".

This machine makes washing at home for a large family a reality. It's actually big enough to wash family sized loads, and it does a great job doing it. If you have a smaller family, this machine would more than meet your needs.

One last note, I find it cute that when a load is finished the machine chimes out the tune "Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee". Perfect, because I really am joyful to have such a great appliance when I thought I was doomed to spending every Saturday at the laundry mat!
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on April 6, 2008
This washer made my life better! First, it's a great size. It's bigger than many of the portable washers, so you can actually do a real load of laundry. Also, it's classy and makes these cute musical sounds when you start a load and when it ends. Another great thing is that it has a large variety of washing cycle options-- different lengths of soaking, washing, and number of rinse cycles. But if none of the presets work for you, you can totally customize your wash. It's awesome. It has casters, so it rolls around (but only front to back, they don't roll in every direction), and leveling feet too, just in case. It's really quiet.
The only real con is that the drain hose comes out of the side instead of the back. It would be easier if everything came out of the back. But it's a pretty minor thing.
This was an absolute great buy. I was originally looking at the Haeir version of a similar size that was unavailable. I'm so glad I found this beauty instead. It's a classier machine for us apartment dwellers and it does a great job for a pretty decent price. Not much to complain about.
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on September 15, 2009
I was surprised at how much laundry this little washer would do. It's quiet and get my clothes clean. It will wash the same as a small commercial washer but extracts more water out.

It does have a lint screen. I do, however, notice more lint on my clothes but I hang my clothes on the line during the summer and wondered if I dried my clothes in the dryer that it would take care of that problem. It also comes with automatic soap and softener dispenser which will be great when I can use it in fully auto mode.

Also I don't have the proper sink faucet to hook it up to my sink but I can run it manually. I just fill it with the hose on the sink, choose the time for washing and spinning. I skip the rinse and use a short wash as the rinse cycle. So if you're not using yours because you don't have the proper faucet, all is not lost! You can put a "T" hook up under your sink if you want to hook up the hoses that way. Lastly, when my laundry room is complete I can hook it up just like a regular washing machine and it will be totally automatic (can't wait.)

It also comes with casters if you need to move it around but they don't work that great. It is a bit of a pain to move the washer up to the sink as the casters do not pivot, but the washer is light-weight enough that I can move it where I need to.

All in all its a great washer, takes up little space and does a lot of work, quietly.
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on October 24, 2010
Rather than "edit" my old review, I've just left it intact below under the asterisks that separate it from this update, three months into owning and using this model.

Bottom line first: I did a LOT of research before buying this Avanti portable washer and of all the portable washers out there, this is the one that requires you to do the least amount of manual work, ESPECIALLY if you also purchase the companion Avanti portable dryer. These machines are designed to be the next best thing to an "industrial strength" setup, and they are. They're sturdier, more thorough and more versatile than the competition. And the price is quite reasonable especially if you comparison shop (see below for more on that). For the most part, except for hooking it up each time you use it, and taking care to drain residual water from the hoses before tucking them away (especially if you've extended their length), the washer functions in a standard manner; and the dryer does too, though because it draws power from a basic 110 wall socket (low wattage for a dryer) can take twice as long as a built-in to dry your clothes.

The most profound diff between this washer and a built-in machine is just that -- it isn't built in. There are minor differences: no centrifuge in the tank, so long items can more easily get tangled -- sometimes (though rarely if you don't overload); serious imbalance due to tangling can create quite a ruckus -- whereupon it's wise to life the lid, which stops the machine, and do some manual untangling; and of course the fact that your water supply is a faucet and your discharge goes into a sink (some tips about that are below).

That said ... I'm actually on my second unit. My first one started leaking prodigiously about two weeks ago, and as it was still under warranty, the vendor sent a repair guy ASAP. I'd thought the culprit would be the internal connection for the discharge hose, but lo and behold, that was fine. It turned out the water tank had cracked. (No idea how. Or why.) This wouldn't be fixed with a repair job, it would rather require a replacement of the washing machine itself. That replacement was delivered quickly and efficiently and seems to be an even more smoothly operating machine than the first. I've read dozens upon dozens of reviews of this unit and I'm the only customer, as far as I can tell, to have encountered this trouble, so I'm assuming, for now, that my experience is idiosyncratic and the problem solved. But I mention it because it prompts me to get the 5 year protection plan from my vendor (if your vendor doesn't offer one, you can likely get an extended warranty from a third-party online outfit like Sqaure Trade). It's about a hundred bucks or so, and for the equiv of about twenty-plus a year, it seems excellent insurance against mishaps. (I rarely do the protection-plan thing, but if I can see that it'll pay for itself -- sort of like AppleCare for your Mac -- perhaps especially important when applied to an appliance that employs so many moving parts so vigorously -- I will take the extra hit to the wallet. It almost always turns out to be a precaution I'm relieved I took.)

But that leads me to the final item in my update. Because these are not built-in machines ... because most of you will be using them in apartments, where noise and potential leakage are always grounds for trouble ... I would not run either the dryer or the washer (especially) without being in attendance. That goes for ANY such portable appliance you might buy (including dishwashers). The sturdiest portable isn't as rock solid as a good laundry room warhorse (nor can it be; the lighter material is WHY it's portable) and you never know when a part that wears out can trigger an unfortunate consequence. Don't get me wrong: I LOVE my portable appliances ... but they are what they are, and you have to factor that into their use.

*********************

I haven't had this washer long enough to comment comprehensively on longevity (though its build is very sturdy for a "portable" apartment-friendly unit) but for reasons I won't go into here, I had occasion to give it a serious cycle-after-cycle workout, and it's just phenomenal. (Well, perhaps that's hyperbole: on the one hand, it's only a washing machine; on the other hand, the convenience and reliability it provides for an apartment dweller is liberating. What's phenomenal is what it adds to your psychic state of well-being and your sense of being an independent adult.)

I won't spend time reiterating good/bad points from other reviews here (those reviews were what motivated to buy the Avanti over any comparable unit from any other brand) ... I'll just give you some alerts to things that AREN'T covered, that you may need to know.

If the configuration of your apartment allows for the unit to live close to the water source and drainage basin (i.e. within the ** unstrained ** length of the intake and outflow hoses), that's your best bet. "Portable" and on (non-pivoting) casters it may be, but it truly is too ungainly to be schlepping back and forth. You can do it, but you won't enjoy it.

Faucet adapter: If no other device also uses your faucet water supply, you're probably good to go with what Avanti provides for hookup. If, on the other hand, you also have a countertop dishwasher (as I do), you likely have a nipple/clamp adapter system in place -- i.e. permanently in your faucet is a nipple-shaped adapter for an intake hose fitted with a springloaded collar, which fits around the nipple and clamps over it. The Avanti accessories do NOT help you here; you'll need to go to the hardware store for two things: (1) The springloaded collar described above, to fit over your nipple adapter. It's a generic piece, and not hard to locate. (2) Another intake hose -- I recommend a longer one, which allows you more versatility of machine placement. But you'll need this not only for the length, but to prevent leakage. Though the collar clamp will screw into the Avanti-supplied hose, the well of the receptacle isn't deep enough to prevent leakage; you need some extended thread for the collar-clamp to fit snugly -- and you'll get that with a new hose.

Drainage hose: The one built into the unit is corrugated and flexible. I'm trying to see about replacing it with one that's a bit longer (though you may find it long enough) and a bit sturdier. The hose is made of flexible plastic that seems as if it may be susceptible to easy damage. (The hose seems the only flimsy part of the unit. Everything else appears sturdy and even rugged for a compact, portable unit.)

Residual drainage: Keep a can or small receptacle (a large empty yogurt container will do) permanently on hand for residual drainage: If you unhook either hose and return it to standby position without draining the leftover water still in it, you'll get puddles (at least) on your floor when the hoses relax and point downwards. Basic gravity, folks: When there's no more intake and the drainage pump has shut off, the water still in those hoses is going to wind up somewhere. Better you should control where that is.

EXTERNAL lint trapping: Though the washer comes with a smallish internal lint trap (a cloth mesh bag attached to a plastic housing that you pop out of a small bay, empty easily and then replace), that catches only half the lint of a new load. Lots more comes out "invisibly" in the drainage. You need, need, need either an external filter or a simple, cheap wire fine-mesh strainer to go into your basin's drainage port. Without one you'll almost certainly clog your drainage pipes on a regular basis, and with matter that's not necessarily bio-degradable.

Heaviness of Load: though the drum takes a surprisingly large amount of laundry, it's probably best not to load it too heavily (which I distinguish from loading it fully) because too many heavy wet items make the otherwise fairly quiet machine rock and rattle during the spin cycles, and my Spidey sense tells me that risks damaging the unit. So spread heavy loads out over two or more sessions (generally two is plenty) and -- so it would seem -- this washing machine should serve you well for a good number of years.

Finally ... Do as much internet comparison pricing as you can, and if you're near a brick and mortar store that's competitive, print out your best results and take them there. Amazon filters sometimes block out store names and prices, so I'll put it this way ... I purchased the Avanti portable washer, the companion ventless portable dryer (also brilliant!) and the stacking bracket to create a "laundry center" out of them, for just about seven C-notes, including NY state tax and NO shipping, from a chain store that starts with PC, simply because I was able to document that Amazon delivered without shipping and that AJ Madison -- online -- was selling way below PC's listed price.
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on May 10, 2010
I got this washing machine in March 2010, and have been doing about 4 loads a week since it arrived. For the most part, the machine is the perfect solution for those who have a small space and are taking their clothes to the laundry mat. In brief:

Pros-
*Fits in small space, mine is tucked into the bathroom and while not tiny, can fit where a normal washer wouldn't
*No plumbing required, have simply hooked the drain spout into the top of the toilet, and screwed water hose onto sink's faucet.
*It has never overflowed, and have only once had trouble with an unbalanced load (washed small rug and bathmat) but even then, simply opened lid, readjusted, and it was fine
*Washes delicate items and even dry clean only beautifully. I'm the kind of person who just throws it in the washer and hopes for the best, and so far it's been great. Gentle cycle and line dry; haven't had a problem yet.
*Place to add softener
*Attractive silver machine, with nice display and many settings
*Clothes are clean without having to leave the house!

Cons-
*If you are used to a full sized washer, or those huge industrial machines, you will find the load size to be small. Our household is myself, husband, and dog (she does dirty things!) and I find myself doing laundry about every two days. This is fine for us, just have to readjust how I think about doing the laundry.
*Did require a trip to that hardware store after it arrived. Needed to get a longer hose, but after that has been fine.
*Place to put soap is a bit flimsy and leaks detergent onto my clothing. Has yet to actually cause a problem, but I don't really like it either.
*Having to plug in the machine and attach the hose to the sink every time is a bit tedious. I wanted to plumb it to the toilet, but was advised against it by a plumber as the line to ours isn't big enough.
*Line drying the clothes is a problem. Granted, this isn't the fault of the washer, but I would give a heads up that things aren't as soft and it does take a while. However, it is easier on the clothing, and the spot for the softener has allowed me to use that, which helps.

In summary, this is a wonderful machine and I would recommend it to anyone who needs a laundry solution for their apartment or condo. If you have a big family or just lots of laundry, it might not be for you. Otherwise, a great machine with few problems.
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on June 8, 2011
Review Modification: Just about six months in, my washer will no longer drain. I have been waiting for Avanti to call me back to "try and find a service person in your area" for three days now. Had I known no one around here services this brand unless you purchased it from them, I would never have bought this on line. I used the machine once a week, as directed, and it's totally worthless at this point. I'm VERY disappointed.

===========================================================================================

My current condo has laundry facilities down three flights of stairs and across one building (accessed through the storage locker room). What a pain! Literally! I have bad knees and a bad hip, and hauling my two laundry baskets (darks and lights) down the stairs and then having to go up/down/up/down again for a total of six trips was killing me!

We're allowed to install "real" washers and dryers, but the cost to add the plumbing and electric is more than I can afford right now. My co-worker has a portable machine, so I started looking into getting one of my own. I selected this machine because it has approximately twice the capacity of other models.

First of all, it's MUCH larger than I thought! It's as tall as the counters in my kitchen. I was a bit blown away. Sure, the dimensions are given in the ad, but...I couldn't actually visualize how tall 37 inches is! It's very good looking, and holds plenty! My first load was a Gore-Tex rain jacket, a bath towel, six shirts, and a few pairs of underwear. No problem! I could have fit a lot more in.

The casters only go forward/backward--but I have it in my kitchen with hardwood floors, so once I have it facing in the right direction, moving it is easy. It's not so heavy that I can't lift it a few inches if I have to.

Because it's much bigger than I thought, I am not able to leave it where I was going to--instead I roll it into the corner of the dining area of my kitchen. It's so stylish, I don't mind leaving it out.

I felt like my clothes got really clean. And they were spun so well that they dried quickly. It was very quiet too.

Setting it up was easy, although on my first attempt, water sprayed EVERYWHERE. My fault; I didn't tighten the hoses enough. I have since ordered new hoses, as the ones that come with it have cheap plastic connectors and don't spin well. At this price point, it's rather shocking that they don't include quality fill hoses. The new hoses (with metal connectors on both end) made a HUGE difference, and now it is 100% leak free on both ends!

Today I did load after load, and they all came out great. In fact, I even washed a king sized cotton quilt! I think I was pushing it, but it came out clean and I'm delighted.

I took the advice of another reviewer and purchased a drain cover to catch any lint and dog hair that the discharge hose squirts out, and I'm glad I did. Thanks for the tip.

I also go the Avanti portable dryer, and that's terrific. I put in on the bureau in my spare bedroom, and it works like a charm.
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on February 9, 2010
I got this washer after researching many reviews. I chose this one because I read that it had a bigger tub to fit more clothes in, which it does. My first load was 2 adult jeans, five shirts a towel and various other things. This washer will easily keep me up to par with laundry now. I honestly think my clothes come out cleaner than from a regular washing machine. Not sure why this is, but it definitely gets your clothes clean. I love this washer, it really is very convenient for me. I hook it up to my sink in the kitchen, it fits perfectly and it was easy to put together. It is super quiet and easy to roll around even over my carpet. What a great invention, it's sad that I now really enjoy doing my laundry. This place has no washer hook ups so it is a blessing. It looks great, doesn't take up alot of room and has cute music it plays when done. Very happy with this purchase.
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on April 6, 2011
I've had this washer for about 6 weeks now and it has been reliable and efficient.
Keep your loads evenly balanced, don't stuff things full and be prepared to untangle the clothes when you're done. But they are clean and not mangled.
It's a fairly quiet washer. If you're going to do blankets and jeans then you might want to keep the loads to 3/4 capacity or less otherwise you may need to stop once or twice to re-balance the load. Properly adjust the leveling foot to keep this unit level and you should have few problems. For a less-tangled result, put fewer items in (1/2 size load). The water level selector works well for doing small loads.
The Avanti is compact and well-made. It was easy to get up the stairs in my little townhouse apartment. I only wish the drain hose came out the back instead of the left side rear corner. The hose is just long enough to reach my washer drain pipe. If you're using this in a bathroom or kitchen, the hose will reach the sink without a problem.
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on December 15, 2011
I've had this washer for 2 years and I run maybe 4-5 loads a week. The good news is that all is pretty much the same after this much use. The bad news is that there have been several issues from the very beginning.

First of all, it is not exactly portable. Yes, it has wheels, but they are useless on carpet (nothing cushy, just cheap, matted, old-apartment carpet), and the machine itself is quite heavy to walk through a room (for me, anyway). This however is not a huge issue for us, since we set it up permanently in the second bathroom - the sink is still usable because we purchased a Y divider. The hoses do leak occasionally, but you can tighten them by hand and they will be fine for a while. The machine leeks somewhere on the bottom occasionally too, as there are sometimes small puddles in the bathroom when the sides of the washer and everything visible is completely dry - this happens rarely and it will be fine the next day without me adjusting anything. But if you are planning to set it up on a wooden or carpeted floor, even the occasional spill might be a problem.
There seem to be a large number of combinations to program the washing cycle, which I liked when I made the decision to purchase this machine, but in reality your choices are: 12, 9, 6 or 0 minutes of wash, 1 or 2 rinses (and an additional option for the spray rinse, which does not work on my machine) and 1,3, or 5 minutes of spin. The preset programs are just a combination of these - so the gentle wash is just shorter, but the agitation is the same, and so is the speed of the centrifuge. It does have the option for several water levels, but the cold/warm water selection only works if you hook up your washer using two hoses, i.e. the machine does not warm the water (which I thought it would).

My biggest problem with the washer is that it destroys the clothes. I think it is due to the small diameter of the drum (the capacity is decent but the machine is tall), so everything gets tangled up during the wash - even small items (think baby onesies). If the item is stretchy (e.g. woven cotton), it will be stretched or deformed: I had long sleeve t-shirts that came out ~4 inches longer (both overall length and the sleeves). I am not overloading the machine: I have put in as few as 4 man's shirts (about 10 oz each, I weighed them), and the sleeves still were all knotted together (at least linen doesn't stretch though). The clothes also come out incredibly wrinkled, which is a bit of an issue for me, as I don't use a dryer. My other issue is that it does not rinse the clothes well: the water that is released after the rinse is perfectly clear, but what comes out form the clothes (i.e. during the spin) is sudsy, even after the second rinse.

I still don't exactly regret the purchase, as I needed a machine inside our apartment. I get mad sometimes when I pull out yet another malformed shirt... but the clothes do come out clean - I wash diapers in there too. I just wish there was a larger market for small appliances; I had way better compact machines when I lived abroad.
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on March 3, 2011
I'm so glad I got the washer! I debated a long time about it.

Almost a year after my purchase, I had an issue with the pump and called the number on the back of the machine. They sent a guy over to fix it for free!

It holds almost the same as a regular load. I do wish the power cord was longer.
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