Long-time (okay, long-suffering) readers will recall that me and my washing machine haven't always had the most harmonious relationship.
Waay back in July 2005, I was doing my washing while working on the computer when the power went out. The power went out because the old battle-axe that was my top-loader in my previous life had decided that not only would it cease to work, it would do so in an explosive manner and the safety switch had determined it - and everything else in the house (including my computer) should receive no more juice for it to work up into combustive manner.
Luckily, I had done my tax early that year, and the relationship with the Electrolux Ecovalve began.
Pretty soon after I moved to Paradise, it started to play up, and during an ongoing liaison with the LERF it has sort of behaved - right up until the day after the warranty expired.
Since then, it has been a steadily more unreliable partner in the washing stakes, complaining when the water wasn't draining quickly enough (that happens when the laundry tubs have tiny outlets), when the load was too heavy (a call that happened with lighter and lighter loads as time went by) or when the Moon wasn't in the right house.
Add to that the fact that the computer board within no longer took any notice of what programme you have dialled, it would only do one wash program (even if you asked for drain or turned it off).
By last week, it had gotten to the point where I was having to restart it 3 times per load - which when extrapolated against the time it takes anyhow to do a load meant that my 3 loads every two days meant I was washing all day, every day (it seemed) and getting my 10,000 Steps in on the back steps alone.
And then - and then on Friday, with a more than usually full laundry (great decision, that strip beds one, hey?) it got one and a half loads into the quota for the day - and decided it would thumb its nose at me, curl up its toes, emit a few piteous alarmed beeps and die.
As it hasn't worked properly for so long, it is more the financial and laundromatical aspects of our relationship being over that is causing any trauma.
We have decided we are going to save and invest in some quality engineering (possibly German) this time around, and in the interim the 28 year old Simpson has been hauled back into action.
I mean, it might be a brute, but it is fast (aka on laundry on SPEED), it tries hard and it is far better than handwashing - oh, and its lid-sensor has been deactivated, so only have to go down and encourage it once per load.
So please - sell me the vices and virtues of your laundry equipment - we have an idea of what we might want, but willing to be swayed with your reviews.