GE front-load washers now fight germs and bad smells – CNET

GE UltraFresh washing machines will fight excess dampness, germs and odors.

GE Appliances

Select GE front-loading washing machines will soon guard against bad smells in their washing drums. The appliance-maker plans to give some models what it calls an UltraFresh system that GE says will work to keep the inside of its washers clean and odor-free.

According to GE, the UltraFresh system operates by itself, meaning you don’t have to leave washer doors open, or perform any special wiping or scrubbing.

Dirty clothes cleaners

A moldy, stinky washing machine is a real concern, especially with front-loading models. Front-loaders use drums that are mounted vertically inside the body of the washing machine. To keep water, dirt and detergent from escaping onto the floor, their drums are sealed by rubbery gaskets. 

Sometimes, excess water can collect inside these gaskets between wash cycles. If it sits there for too long, that moisture can encourage mold and germ growth. That in turn leads to foul odors inside the appliance. Many Whirlpool, Kenmore, Maytag and LG washers in the past have suffered from this issue.

Apparently, GE UltraFresh washing machines aren’t prone to the same fate. They’ll have gaskets designed to drain away residual water. To remove additional moisture, a venting system pulls in fresh air from outside. There it circulates within the drum, and wicks away water still lurking in the drum, gasket and door.

Specially treated surfaces are the last line of defense in the GE UltraFresh solution. The gasket, drum and detergent dispenser pump all have technology courtesy of company Microban. That says GE will further dampen the chances of microbes and odors from gaining a foothold.

GE UltraFresh Washer prices

  • GFW550/GFD55: $899, $999
  • GFW650/GFD65: $1,099, $1,199
  • GFW850/GFD85: $1,199, $1,299

GE says it expects all its UltraFresh washers to ship by spring 2020. Some models though will hit stores as early as this month.

CNET Smart Home

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