One of my criteria for my 'next' laundry room (or if we ever renovate this one): The front loading HE washer door has to open toward the wall & the washer has to be in the far corner of the room so as to never cause me trouble walking past the door left ajar when not in use.
Also as a follow-up, the recipe to clean the washer worked great. Lots of black bits all through the water. I left it sit for 2 hours instead of 1 and agitated a few times. It just kept getting more black bits! I didn't know that was in there!
I am doing this now. I have a "rugged" cycle that allows me to do no spin, so I choose that. My situation is a little different because I have a front loader. I have no idea what water temp it's using, but I'm guessing "scalding hot" because "steam treat" came on by default. So far, no black bits, but the water in the drum looks like I dumped in a whole pot of fresh brewed tea. So g-r-o-s-s. Thank you for posting this!