Washers sell for around $275 to $2,500, depending on the type, capacity, and features. And while doing laundry may be a mundane task, the washer aisle is anything but boring. You’ll see multitasking machines that allow you to wash two loads at once, all-in-one front loaders that go straight into dryer mode, pod-dispensing front-loaders, built-in pretreat features, and more.
Buying a matching washer-and-dryer set remains popular. The coordinated styling makes a statement, but not all couples make a great pair. “The Best Matching Washers and Dryers” highlights the best from our tests. Want to save money? Read “Laundry Products That Waste Loads of Money.”
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How do a combination washer and dryer work?
You can use a washer-dryer combo just like you would a normal washing machine. Once the wash cycle has finished, you can then use your combo to get your clothes dry. You also have the option of setting your machine to wash and then dry your clothes all in the one cycle, so you can wake up in the morning to find that your clothes are clean, dry, and ready to be put away.
Washer dryer combos incorporate a condenser dryer – which is different from a vented dryer in that it won’t pump humid air into your laundry space. Instead, condenser dryers work by extracting moisture from your clothes and then draining it away as condensed water. Most washer dryer combos include a drainage hose which will automatically drain this water down the sink. There will also usually be a lint filter which will need to be emptied periodically.
What are the benefits of a washer-dryer combo?
A combination washer-dryer is a great idea if you need to save space. By combining a front-load washing machine and condenser dryer in one compact unit, it takes up half the total space and removes the need for buying two separate appliances.
Washer dryer combos also share all the advantages of front load washing machines – they’re water and energy efficient, and they deliver excellent wash results. Unlike a top loading washing machine, you could potentially incorporate one of these machines beneath a kitchen bench – which is especially useful if you don’t have a dedicated laundry space.
Other benefits of a combination washer-dryer include:
- Wash & dry cycle
- Programs for any lifestyle
- Super convenient all year round
Most washer-dryer combos are able to wash and dry a load of washing in a single cycle. Aside from saving you considerable time and effort, you can also take advantage of off-peak energy prices by running the machine overnight and waking up to a fresh load of laundry. As the dryer capacity is always less than that of the wash, however, this does mean that your wash & dry load can only be as much as the dryer capacity.
Washer-dryer combos feature a great range of everyday cycles to suit any lifestyle, including quick wash, delicates, wash & dry, wool, and many more.
A combination washer-dryer is ready to use no matter the weather – rain, hail or shine – thanks to its condenser dryer.
Please note that the washing capacity will always be larger than the drying capacity. This means if you want to run a full wash and dry cycle, you should only half-fill the drum. This gives the clothes space to move, making the dryer safer and more efficient.
Will it fit inside my laundry?
- Carefully measure the space where your new washer will be positioned
- Take into consideration the space required for the door to open
- Measure the width of the doors/corridors leading into your laundry
You may have found the best clothes dryer in the universe, but if you can’t get it into your laundry, it’s of no use to you. All dryers are different – therefore you always need to measure before you buy.
How long will it take to dry a load?
The length of time it takes to dry a load will depend on the weight of the damp clothes. The heavier and wetter the fabric, the longer the drying cycle will take. The size and efficiency of your dryer are two features which will affect cycle times – but generally speaking, the more room inside the drum, the faster your washing will dry. On average, the average wash and dry cycle will be in the vicinity of 2.5 – 3 hours.
When is a washer dryer combo NOT suitable?
If you have a large family and you tend to use your dryer a lot, a washer dryer combo would not be suitable. Many families like to save time by washing a second load while the first load is in the dryer -something you simply can’t do with a washer dryer combo. Additionally, these machines are not able to handle large drying loads, which is no good if you want to dry large volumes of towels and linen at a time.
Combos work best with relatively small loads. For best results, you will need to pull about half of the damp washing out of the drum when the wash cycle finishes before starting the drying program (this is because the drying capacity is generally half the wash capacity). Therefore, washer dryer combos are excellent for small households of around 1-3 people, and for apartment living.