Washer-Dryers: A Buyers Guide

Washer-dryers are a great space saver and in most cases will cost you less than having to buy a separate washing machine and tumble dryer. In this guide we talk you through the options out there and offer advice on how to save on your purchase.

Price Range and Brands

Like all other major household appliances the price range for a new washer-dryer can vary greatly, some of the more expensive models can set you back more than £1,000. One such model – the AEG L99695HWD – costs around £1,100, but is one of the few washer-dryers on the market to offer energy-saving heat pump technology; something that tends only to be found in the more expensive tumble dryers. Heat pumps greatly reduce the amount of energy used by a washer-dryer, cutting it by up to half.

At the other end you’ll find models such as the Baumatic BWDI126N washer-dryer, this will set you back anywhere from £450-£520 depending on where you buy it from. Although at the cheaper end of the scale it still comes with a delay start feature that gives you the option of postponing the start of the cycle by as much as nine hour. Unlike other models the Baumatic also has an automatic drying program, meaning you don’t need to take a guess as to how long you need to program it for before your clothes are dry. Instead a sensor inside the drum monitors your clothes and should stop automatically when they’re done.

While AEG and Baumatic cater for different ends of the market there are plenty of options in between. Bosch has several options to choose from with the cheapest starting at £475 and going up to £920. Although AEG sell the some of the more expensive washer-dryers you can get one of the more basic models for around £600. Hotpoint have one of the most extensive ranges and also offer some of the most competitively priced models. A Hotpoint washer-dryer can be found for anything from just over £300 to just over £700. When assessing all the options available it can be hard to make a choice, but just concentrate on how much you’ve got to spend and look at the machine(s) that offer you the best features for that price.

The simplicity a washer dryer is the best thing when thinking about buying one. Putting your clothes in and getting them out within a few hours clean and dry. Do take into account the loads advised in your manual to ensure better performance of your machine. 

Check the Energy Efficiency

Another important consideration when searching for a washer-dryer is energy efficiency. The cost of running a washer-dryer varies greatly, some of the most energy efficient models will cost around £50 a year, where as others will cost more than double that. Checking the energy-label ratings will help you pick out the most efficient models.

Reliability

Washer-dryers don’t have the best reputation when it comes to reliability, with one in five needing to be repaired in its first six years – compared to around one in ten for washing machines and tumble dryers. This is mainly the result of having two sets of technology combined in one appliance, there’s simply more that can go wrong. The best washer-dryers offer a combination of washing power, even drying ability and good reliability. Checking out customer reviews of the brands in your price range is a great way to see which appliances offer this combination. Balancing the cost of the initial investment and the value for money you’ll be getting in terms of reliability once purchased is a good way of saving as buying the cheapest one isn’t always best.

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