We finally bought a washing machine. It was costing us about 50 RMB a week to take our clothes to the cleaner and so a new machine was more than worth the money spent. However a dryer isn't really worth it right now, so we have to hang dry our clothes.
I always forget how much time laundry takes. It is so easy to take a bunch to the cleaners and then come back in a few hours with clean and folded clothes. Now I have to do one load at a time, and then line dry them. It takes forever! If I am lucky I can get through two loads in a day.
We've had the machine a week and I still have a huge stack of dirties piled up.
And then there was a major malfunction today. But first a little bit about getting the washer.
Our laundry hook-up is outside. On each end of our apartment we have some semi-enclosed porches. Just outside the kitchen is one of these and this is where the washer goes. The door to the porch is actually quite tiny and like fools we didn't measure this opening before we shopped for the machine. There was a brief period between buying washer and its delivery that I feared it wouldn't fit out the door.
It did fit - just barely, and I set to hooking it up. This proved difficult and it took the help of Brian and Bet to figure it out. It still leaks at the water hook-up which means that I have to watch it like a hawk. I turn the washer on, then turn the water one. When it is done filling up I turn the water off and remind myself to come back in a bit to turn it on. This goes on through all the cycles, unless I forget. Sometimes I forget and leave the water on and receive a big puddle of water on the porch for my troubles.
But fair enough, this system isn't too bad and I don't mind so much.
Today I threw a load in and did my back and forth with the water, except that on the second round there was a problem. I lifted the lid to see that it was done spinning and turned on the water. No water came running through. In fact there was still water in the bucket. A bunch of the lights were flashing and the machine was flashing something that was obviously an error code.
Understand that this is a Chinese washer. All of the buttons have Chinese next to them. The book is in Chinese. I never actually know what setting I'm putting my clothes on and I sure as heck didn't know what the error was.
Randomly I pressed buttons hoping for something. Then I moved around my wet clothes figuring maybe it was off balance. Then I pressed more buttons and got nothing. Finally I turned it off and on again. Then told it to go and it did. It filled with more water and we were on our way.
Or so I thought.
Later I cam back out to find the same water in the tub and the same error message. This time I took out some of the heftier clothes thinking this may be the problem with the balance (if in fact the balance was the problem.)
More water. More spinning. More error.
I don't know what to do now so I take out all the soaking wet clothes, ring them out as best I can and hang them on the line. They should be drive sometime next July.
Meanwhile I have a washing machine full of water and no idea how to empty it.