The $1,100 GE GFWS2600FWW is a fine washing machine. It's very good at removing stains and it offers all of the basic features you need, plus a steam function for targeting tough stains. And yet I wouldn't recommend it over close competitors like the $1,099 Electrolux EFLS617S.
That's mainly because the GFWS2600FWW has an annoyingly cluttered display panel. Not only does this detract from its overall look, it also makes regular use less convenient. This isn't a total deal-breaker since you'll likely get used to the interface over time, but other models in the same price range manage to offer impressive performance and intuitive controls -- I'd look to them first.
Getting to know the GFWS2600FWW
Given that most washers live out their days in a closed-off laundry room or closet, design isn't hugely important. Features, usability, and performance are all factors we weigh more heavily during washing machine testing. But in the GFWS2600FWW's case, GE's aesthetic choices impact overall usability.
The display panel is the main point of access between you and your washer -- all of the various buttons and knobs let you select among different settings, as well as the soil level, the temperature, and the spin cycle. And this washer has a seriously cluttered display panel that isn't all that easy to use.
While you can figure out how to navigate your way around the display, it is much more convoluted than the tidy, and comparatively minimalist looks of the Electrolux EFLS617S. It may seem minor, but this is just one more thing to cause frustration during chore time.
The two machines do share similar specs, though:
|GE GFWS2600FWW||Electrolux EFLS617S|
|Capacity||4.5 cubic feet||4.4 cubic feet|
|# of cycles||12||9|
|Energy consumption||153 kWh/year||85 kWh/year|
|Dimensions (width, height, depth)||28 x 39.4 x 34.4 inches||27 x 38 x 31.5 inches|
|Warranty||Limited 1 year, parts and labor||Limited 1 year, parts and labor|
|Voltage rating||120V; 60Hz||120V; 60Hz|
As you can see from the chart above, the GFWS2600FWW is competitive with other models in the same price range. It even offers more cleaning cycles than Electrolux's EFLS617S.