Washing Machine Mystery
January 19, 2009 8:09 AM   Subscribe

What function does this button on the washing machine in my new apartment have?

Apparently I'm too stupid to figure this out. Perhaps it's some sort of water saving program? Why would there be a picture of a sad woman next to it? The model of the machine is Ignis AWF 504. The machine is pretty old so I can't find its manual on the internet and the landlord doesn't know either.
posted by A Kingdom for a Donkey to Home & Garden (16 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I think it's to do half a normal load.
posted by shmurley at 8:14 AM on January 19, 2009


Why would there be a picture of a sad woman next to it?

That is an odd image. At first, I thought it was a lighthouse with a giant lobster claw. I wonder what the designers were thinking that this image was supposed to wordlessly convey?
posted by Devils Rancher at 8:20 AM on January 19, 2009 [2 favorites]


That button is for a half load; the machine only fills halfway with water. This saves water (and some small amount of time) if you only need to wash a few clothes.

Although much of the answers to this quesntion seem to be chatfilter at this point, I would like to add that it's possible this mysterious (Robert Smith) image might have been added by a previous tenant.
posted by JMOZ at 8:30 AM on January 19, 2009 [1 favorite]


Automatic half load, or mezzo carico. Now owned by Philips, so if you need replacement parts that's the way to go.
posted by sondrialiac at 8:43 AM on January 19, 2009


Maybe for only not as much time as a regular load. The ASKO washer installed in my place in 2003 took about 2 1/2 hours to complete a cycle and did not have a similar button, but they were included on the machines in the serviced apartments I've stayed in on European trips since then.
posted by brujita at 8:45 AM on January 19, 2009


Maybe there is some reason you have to keep an eye on the washer when you engage the 1/2 load button? The sad woman seems to be watching something (the washer?).
posted by Mid at 8:50 AM on January 19, 2009


Half load, because you're in a hurry to get your clothes done for your date with a mysterious stranger?
posted by rokusan at 8:56 AM on January 19, 2009


Maybe the sad face is the face of the CEO of the washing powder company, when you only have to use half as much powder, and it was put on there to guilt you into using more?

The button itself is for a half load, though.
posted by Solomon at 9:01 AM on January 19, 2009


Could it be something to do with the fact that the image is approx half white and half black?
posted by tomcooke at 9:52 AM on January 19, 2009


[robert smith derails removed.]
posted by jessamyn at 9:55 AM on January 19, 2009 [1 favorite]


The face (which looks like a sleeping person to me) may represent a sleep mode. I don't know what the 1/2 load symbol would mean then — maybe if you press it, it will go into sleep mode after it's half full, then when pressed again it will resume.
posted by gubo at 10:00 AM on January 19, 2009


Could the supposed face actually be what's left over of an image that's partially worn off? Otherwise I'm going with the theory that someone added that to the machine.
posted by MadamM at 10:28 AM on January 19, 2009


Have you tried pressing this button? Does it toggle between In and Out, or does it just seem to snap back to the original after you press it?

Have you tried running a load with the button pressed? What happens?
posted by odinsdream at 10:34 AM on January 19, 2009


The image was not added later: you can see it here.
posted by designbot at 11:05 AM on January 19, 2009


It's a half load button, a slightly different version of which can be seen in the top left of this photo. The use of the button, and maybe why you haven't seen one before, is explained here.
posted by Sova at 1:56 PM on January 19, 2009


The face (which looks like a sleeping person to me) may represent a sleep mode.

I agree that it looks like a sleeping person. My best guess is that it doesn't spin dry when in 1/2 load mode, meaning that you can use it when you're asleep without the machine making a lot of noise. Either that or it just naturally runs more quietly when it's half full.
posted by tomcooke at 2:06 PM on January 19, 2009


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