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When choosing a new washer dryer there are so many programmes and functions available that knowing which one is right for you can be a bit confusing. To help you find the right washer dryer this buying guide breaks down all the information you need into easy to understand sections.

Washer Dryer Buying Guide

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Buying a large appliance such as a washer dryer, can be a big investment, so you don't want it to cost lots of money to run as well. All models are now rated by the EU to let people know how much energy is needed to run them. The energy ratings go from A to G with A being the best. A washer dryer with a high energy rating will save you water, electricity and money on your energy bills.

For the most energy efficient washer dryers, look out for the Energy Saving Recommended logo. This logo will only be on washer dryers which comply with the Energy Saving Trust's most stringent criteria.

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Spin speeds determine how fast your clothes are spun around in the machine at the end of the washing cycle, the faster your spin speed the more water is extracted from your washing and the shorter the drying cycle needs to be.

The speed at which your laundry is dried depends on the drying level and also how wet they are before the drying phase. To cut down on drying time you will need to think about spin speeds.

  • You might think this means you should always choose the highest spin speed, so your clothes dry faster, but remember some spin speeds aren't suitable for certain fabrics so always check the clothing labels.
  • Delicate fabrics such as wool could be damaged by higher spin speeds, so always be careful when choosing your wash options.
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Of course the biggest time saving advantage of buying a washer dryer is the ability to dry your washing when it suits you, so you don't have to rely on good weather in order to hang out the washing.

  • Quick wash programme - designed to deal with lightly soiled washing in a very short cycle, this programme will wash and dry a small load of laundry in one hour.
  • Delay start/time delay option - you can to pre-set your machine to start at a time that suits you. This can be up to 24 hours.
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A guide to clothes care labels. Always check this before washing/drying your clothes.

All washer dryers offer a number of clothes care programmes that allow you to make adjustments to cycles to best suit particular laundry loads. This is important as different clothing needs different types of care when washing, such as:

  • Hand - wash/ wool wash / delicates option - runs at only 27 rpm (usual speed 50 rpm) with a soft wash action and special spin phase that ensures all your clothes keep their shape.
  • Rinse plus / extra rinse programme - A boost option to give your garments an extra rinse at the end of the wash cycle, useful to ensure that detergent particles don't get trapped in fabric and good for sensitive skin.
  • Sensor drying - If you are worried that drying could damage or shrink your clothes, this function has a range of drying levels tailored to different fabric types and detects the best option for each individual load
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Every kitchen's style and layout is different. You might wish to show off your modern appliances by picking bold, freestanding models or stick to a streamlined look and buy neat built-in models.

  • Freestanding - good if you want your appliance to be seen as they are fairly easy to fit and simply just slot into a gap in your kitchen.
  • Built in/ integrated - this type of washer dryer is designed not to be seen. They have a flat front and space to attach door hinges so they can be completely hidden behind a cupboard door.

When fitting your new washer dryer please remember it must be fitted in reach of a water supply in order to be connected.

Choose products by fit type

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  • How much laundry you can do in one load depends on the drum size of your washer dryer, the larger the drum size the more laundry the machine will be able to handle effectively.
  • Drum size is measured by the weight it can handle, for example a 5kg drum can handle 5kg of washing, the drying capacity is normally slightly less.
  • With washer dryers the total load capacity for washing and drying is different - to get the best drying results, the load size must be reduced, this is because to best wash clothes they should be close together, but to dry them they need room to move in the warm air.
  • Washer dryers can be used in three ways, washing only, drying only and washing and drying as a whole cycle without a break in-between.
Size Drum T-Shirts Duvet Household Size
5kg 25   2 people
6kg 30 Single 2 people
7kg 35 Double 2-3 people
8kg 40 Queen Size 3-4 people
9kg 45 King Size 4-5 people
10kg 50 Set of curtains More than 5 people
11kg 55   More than 5 people

To read about drum sizes in more detail, please see: What capacity washer dryer will suit my household?

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