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GE Washer-Can't change cleaning modes w/o draining!!!

September 21, 2011

I can't believe what GE had done to its clothes washers. I just got a 4250 model, top load. With my prior GE washer, I had full control of everything. I have several issues with this new unit but here is my main problem:

After you have started a cycle of washing clothes, and if you want to change the washing mode (say from Cotton/Heavy to Cotton/Medium), the machine will stop and drain all the water and soap out of the drum and start over.

I was told by the salesman after I complained about this, that all I had to do was to push the Pause button, make the change, and it will not drain. Not true. It still drains and starts over. (However, on one attempt, it did not drain but continued to fill the tub...not sure what I might have done differently).

However, the GE Help line told me that the washing machine will drain the water/soap and start over again if I make a change once it has started. "That is the way it was designed". (I can't believe it....).

So, has anyone found the right combination of button-pushing to be able to change the cleaning mode once it has started its operation...without it draining everything???

Thanks... Gary

Comments (13)

  • sshrivastava

    I have a front loader, but my machine behaves in exactly the same manner. You must cancel the current cycle before starting a new one, causing the machine to drain. Why would you want to start with one cycle and then change it? Why not just set it to the proper cycle in the first place?

  • goddi

    Well, maybe you just want to just change the type of cleaning cycle after it has started. The guys at GE must have been in some dark basement when they designed this feature. Just because you might want to change the cleaning mode, they decide that it is best to drain all the hot water and soap out of the drum and start over? What a bunch of nincompoops. They try to make a more efficient machine by dumping perfectly good water and soap just because you turn the dial to a different cleaning mode? I really can't grasp any logic to that.

  • mrb627

    Try this:

    Push Pause,
    Reset the water level,
    Change the cycle,
    Push start,
    Once it starts to fill, change the water level and see if it starts washing.


  • suburbanmd

    I think the manufacturers are just doing whatever is simplest, when it comes to whether a change in cycle forces the machine to drain. With the old mechanical timers, it would've been very complicated to force the machine to drain when you moved the timer between cycles. With the modern electronic machines, it's far simpler to "start over" when the cycle is changed, rather than trying to figure out whether the existing fill is usable for the new cycle. Simpler is better, IMO. Less chance of bugs that way.

  • PRO
    Wisdom Properties LLC

    I agree it's simply dumb engineering. I Would not expect the maker of jet engines to make such a stupid mistake. And yes, there are plenty of times I would change a cycle after the tub is filling. That was the first thing I discovered after using the new machine just a couple times. For example I'm washing jeans on regular cycle, tub is filling as I collect clothes from the hamper, I find one colored item requiring delicate, so I decide to change the whole load to delicate cycle, but NO CAN DO. It's a waste of water and soap, and it's just plain stupid. I'm with Gary above....

  • MiMi

    My Samsung was the same way, could not change cycles but my new LG lets me.. yippie

  • dadoes

    Fisher & Paykel's WashSmart agitator-toploader allows changing the cycle without draining. I'm not sure if their two AquaSmart HE-impeller models allow it but presumably so.

  • MJ McPherson

    Just select the correct setting in the first place man it’s honestly not that big of a deal. I grew up only having one setting and these days we got more than we need. Keep life simple and you won’t have to worry about the small things. Enjoy life!

  • fauguy

    On my 2006 GE Profile top load washer, it does allow changing of wash modes without draining. So say I select Heavy, it fills and starts to wash, then I realize I should have it on Pulsed. I just have to press Stop (not Pause), then Pulse and Start, and it uses that mode without draining.

    I'm not sure why they would of got rid of this.

  • 702119

    This is the last G E I will buy. Good to hear that MiMi's LG design works.

  • twebbz

    Yep, I have the compact GE FL. When you hit the pause button it drains. I used to pause my old Maytag during a wash to do a soak but I can't with the GE.

  • HU-358402505

    I wanted to add more softener to my rinse cycle. The softener dispenser is not large enough to add sufficient softener for a nice smell and no cling to my clothes. But I cant add more softener to the rinse cycle since it starts all over from the beginning and loses the water cycle when "Pause" means pause...not start over!

  • dadoes

    HU-358402505,The Pause/Start button on majority of washers typically functions two ways after a cycle is started .... press it once for Pause. Open the lid or door, do what's needed, then press the button again to continue the cycle from the point of interruption. Leaving it paused for too long in some cases will trigger a drain and cancel for safety reasons.

    Press it twice (or press and hold for a few seconds depending on how it's designed) to Cancel. Pressing it again in that case will start a new cycle.

    You didn't state what brand/model is your machine so I can't check the specific details for it.

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