Mechanical.

Our condo for this trip is in The Paddock at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Spa and Resort. The Paddock was built in the mid 2000s and is up for refurbishment over the next year or so. Because of the impending improvements, this will probably be our last opportunity to use one of these:

We enjoy having a washer and dryer available in the condo because we pack half the clothes we need and do laundry every night. We go home with clean clothes. This reduces the stress of going home after vacation.

The original-to-the-condo washer and dryers are marked as a “Quality GE Product”. The washer is a traditional washer that fills up with water, with an agitator up the middle. It fills, washes, spins, fills, rinses, spins and calls it a day. This design washed clothes for decades but has given way to more efficient designs. Newer washers spritz some water on the clothes, thump them around while making cricket noises, spin, spritz, and spin again. The new design is suppose to be eco-friendly but I never feel like our clothes are clean with these energy efficient washers.

One of the things I love about this old school washer and dryer is that it has mechanical controls. Push the knob in, click click click to your cycle choice and pull the knob to start. We did it thousands upon thousands of times when I was growing up. Pulling that knob and having the water start was always so cool. Pressing “Start” on the new fangled washing machines to start the spritzing just isn’t the same.

Mechanical controls are also much more reliable. There’s no need to “reboot” the washer or dryer. The motor turns the knob, the relays click at their appropriate times and the washing machine does what it’s suppose to do.

With the refurbishment of the condos here at Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa, they’re replacing all the appliances. The new washer/dryer combination units are made by Whirlpool and they are all electronic with the cricket noises during operation.

This means the mechanical controls found on the condo dishwasher are also going away.

Interestingly, GE owns up to the manufacturing of the dishwasher, but the washer/dryer combo unit apparently isn’t worthy of the GE logo.

Nowadays the GE logo has been leased out to a company called Haier, as GE no longer makes appliances. I’m pretty sure the appliances we had in the house before we moved to Chicago were actually made by Frigidaire but branded with the GE logo. Parts could be exchanged between Frigidaire, GE, Westinghouse, and Kenmore appliances. Geeks online called them FriGEmore appliances.

I’m all for technology doing great things for us, but not for the sake of making things cheaper and the lessening of the user experience. The appliances in this condo are well over a decade old and have been used by countless different guests and families and they’re still going just fine.

We need GE to bring good things to life again.

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