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    Understanding your washing machine: the rapid and express programs

    Understanding your washing machine: the rapid and express programsComment (21)

    **Who has never found themselves in front of their washing machine, faced with a plethora of programs as abstruse as each other, distraught in the face of the daily dilemma of choosing a perfectly adapted washing program? If it is easy to choose between the "delicate" program and the "cotton 90°C" to wash the scarf lovingly knitted by mom, the question of the "fast" and "express" programs is a little more difficult. What to choose ? How to access it? Here are some answers to see it more clearly.


    It is not always easy to find your way through the jungle of washing machine programs. First of all, unfortunately there is still no official international nomenclature for washing machine programs. Then, each manufacturer develops its product and prefers to highlight its flagship program which is not the same as that of its competitor. Finally, the way to select these programs is not identical, as we were able to notice during our first washing machine tests. 

    The “quick” program – a term we will use here even if not all manufacturers call it that – remains a complete programme, comprising a wash, rinse and spin cycle. Suitable for small quantities of laundry, its duration is approximately one hour. In order not to waste time, the rise in temperature of the water must be done quickly. It is therefore more energy-intensive than a "normal" program.

    An "express" program, on the other hand, is not a washing program as such and the water temperature generally does not exceed 30°C (20°C in the default settings for some manufacturers). It is only used to refresh a few clothes long forgotten in a wardrobe, to smooth them out or give them a good smell, or to rinse swimsuits after the swimming pool, for example. Its duration does not exceed 20 minutes and again it concerns small loads of laundry.

    Programs with different names

    The first difficulty lies in the fact that each manufacturer does not call its program in the same way as its competitor. "Quick", "speed up", "express", "flash", "Quick Wash"... The list is long and nothing allows the user to sort by referring to the name alone. The best solution is to rely on the duration of the program if it is indicated, sometimes in the manual or on the washing machine itself when selecting the program. If its duration is around a quarter of an hour or even 20 minutes, it is an express program (thus refreshing). If it's about an hour, it's a fast program (more likely to wash clothes well). 

    Where can I find these programs? 

    It is still necessary to be able to find the "fast" or "express" program on the washing machine. It can happen that everything is perfectly clear thanks to a well named indication and judiciously placed in the tree structure of the programs. On the downside, if an "express" or "quick" program is simply activated, it's a safe bet that this will not be the case for both at the same time. Indeed, the manufacturers tend to put just one of these two programs forward, in direct access. 

    For example, on Haier's HW80-B14266AF, the "express" program is clearly indicated on the front. On the other hand, the "fast" program is activated after having chosen its normal program by pressing a very specific key combination. On the contrary, at Samsung et son WW10H9400EW, it is the "rapid" program which is easily activated whereas the selection of the "express" program is similar to a normal exploration of the tree structure of the programs. It's all about philosophy. On the one hand, we want to show that his washing machine has a program that does not exceed 20 minutes, regardless of its efficiency in terms of washing. On the other hand, we consider that a washing machine is used for washing and that refreshing the laundry a little is only an additional option, easily dispensable. 

    Since each model is different, there are almost as many ways to activate a program as there are models. As with any other device, the best way to get its full potential is to test, to dig, to not be afraid to get your hands dirty. Even if for the moment, no washing machine needs sludge to work.

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