With slogans like “Don’t get mad, get matched,” “Asockalypse now” and “Sock and awe” the punsters at GE are working overtime to locate your lost socks. The so-called Laundered and orphaned sock society (LOSS) aims to put a stop to the “tens of millions of socks” that go missing every year. The answer, suggests GE, is to use its kinder, gentler laundry equipment.
GE blames sock loss and abuse on such things as load abandonment, overdrying, detergent overdosing and overstuffed machines and, no surprise, offers a solution for each. Its overnight ready feature “dries” a small load in the washer while you sleep and some dryers have a steam feature that is supposed to keep wrinkles at bay. Some GE front-loaders have a feature it claims reduces vibration and noise caused by out-of-balance loads.
In our recent tests of washers and dryers, Consumer Reports recommended five GE front-loaders and one GE dryer but there are lots of other good, if not great, choices. Vibration is one of our rating criteria for washers and no front-loader got an excellent grade. In our dryer tests, we found that conventional dryers performed about the same as those with steam, leaving visible wrinkles on cotton shirts, but steam removed more odors.
It’s up to you whether you want to pay more for such fancy features. As to whether they can stop you from losing your socks, let’s just say that rolling your argyles together before throwing them in the hamper may be a safer bet.
—Mary H.J. Farrell