Which Tumble Dryers?
Discover which Tumble Dryers are best and which Tumble Dryers are right for you.
What Tumble Dryers
Learn about what Tumble Dryers can do, the key features of Tumble Dryers and what to look for when buying Tumble Dryers.
Best Tumble Dryers
Find the best Tumble Dryers by popularity, price and functionality -- browse by the most popular brands and featured stores for Tumble Dryers.
Tumble dryers extract moisture from laundry using heated air to evaporate the moisture from the clothes and they are an alternative to drying clothes naturally outside on a washing line. The drum inside the tumble dryer in which the laundry rotates is called a 'tumbler'.
Many manufacturers of household appliances offer tumble dryers and it can be difficult to decide which brand and model of tumble dryer most adequately suits your needs. The information below should help the consumer to make a more informed choice.
Vented Tumble Dryers
The residual damp air from a vented tumble dryer is disposed of outside the home by way of a flexible plastic hose. This can be done through a permanent vent fitted into the wall or through an open window. Vented tumble dryers are usually cheaper than condenser machines and can consume less energy. However they are not suitable for all homes as they need to be placed near the vent or window. If the air is not discharged for any reason then this causes condensation and dampness inside the home.
Condenser Tumble Dryers
A condenser tumble dryer separates the water from the air and places it into a plastic container inside of the machine which can be easily emptied after use. They are usually more expensive than vented tumble dryers but offer greater flexibility than using a hose. The user must remember to empty the container after each use or this will impact on or completely stop the drying process, but some machines do feature a light that comes on when the container is full. There are also some models available which pump out the excess water through the mains water outlet thereby eliminating the need to manually empty the container. Some tumble dryers also offer steam technology. The benefits of steam is that the creasing normally associated with tumble drying is substantially decreased, and dry-clean only garments can be refreshed without any detergent.
If space is very tight then some users opt for a combined washer-dryer. Another advantage is that there is no need to use a vent or to empty water manually as the water is automatically emptied through the outlet hose. Although space-saving, the downside is that they are usually far more expensive and water-intensive to run than standalone tumble dryers due to the drying process which uses a wet condenser system. Also if the machine breaks down then both the washing and the drying functions are out of action. Due to the size of the drum, only half a load can be dried at a time, however this might be suitable for smaller households.
Freestanding Versus Built-in Tumble Dryers
Most tumble dryers available are freestanding and measure 60cm wide by 85 cm high and 60cm deep. However some manufacturers do offer built-in or integrated tumble dryers which are designed to fit into the kitchen or utility room units. These are either completely covered by a kitchen unit door, or partially covered, leaving just the controls showing.
Although not common, there are gas tumble dryers available from some manufacturers which are significantly less expensive to run than electricity.
These tumble dryers, usually compact, are wall mountable and the door and controls are to be found at the bottom rather than at the top of the machine so it is easy to load, unload and programme at a higher than usual height. These are not commonly available but might be suitable for households where space is at a premium.
These dryers are cylindrical top loading stainless steel dryers. They are not widely available any more although some manufacturers do still supply them.
The four main considerations when it comes to buying a new tumble dryer are location, cost, capacity and functionality.
This covers both the space needed to fit the tumble dryer as well as where it will be used.
Most tumble dryers are 60cm wide and 85 cm tall, however there are more compact models and inverted models available for smaller homes and apartments.
As described above, if the tumble dryer is to be situated in a location which is close to a window or where the user may be able to install a vent in the wall then a vented machine might be a suitable option. If there is nowhere for the hose to pass through to the outside though, then a condenser dryer or possibly a washer-dryer would be necessary.
As with most consumer items, you get what you pay for and a more expensive tumble dryer may have a larger capacity or more functionality. As stated above, the condenser type is also more expensive than the vented type of tumble dryer.
You should also consider running costs, both electricity and water. The higher specification and more expensive machines often have higher energy ratings and offer energy saving features. Remember also that washer dryers consume more electricity and water than regular tumble dryers.
This is the amount of laundry that the tumble dryer can hold and is usually expressed in kilogrammes. A larger household will require a higher capacity tumble dryer. A typical tumble dryer will have a 6kg to 7 kg capacity although they are available with up to 10kg for larger households.
A buyer must also bear in mind that the less room the clothes have to tumble, the more creased they will be and the longer they will take to dry, so make sure that you buy a tumble dryer which is more than adequate for your laundry needs.
The more expensive tumble dryers will offer more features. All tumble dryers have at least two heat settings for cottons and synthetics and many will have more specialised programmes. Most tumble dryers will also feature reverse tumble technology, which rotates the drum both ways so that the clothes separate, drying them more quickly and evenly and minimising creasing.
Other programmes and features offered by some manufacturers include:
- Heat sensors that detect when the load is dry;
- A timer feature so that the user can programme the load for a specific time;
- A time delay function which can be useful if the electricity is cheaper at certain times of the day;
- Some high-end machines are equipped with sensors which automatically adjust the drying time as well as the temperature according to the weight and the dampness of the laundry;
- Child locks to prevent children or even pets from being able to access the machine;
- Crease reduction programmes;
- Specialist drying programmes such as those for delicates, wool, pillows and synthetic sports clothing;
- Some tumble dryers feature a drying basket for those delicate items which are unable to withstand the tumbling action, such as sports shoes and jumpers;
- Refresh programmes for dry clean garments;
- A filter indicator which alerts the user when the fluff filter should be cleaned. If the filter is not cleaned on a regular basis the load can require more time and electricity to dry.
- If you are short of space, it is possible to stack some models of tumble dryer on top of your washing machine using special brackets.
- All tumble dryers and washer dryers are rated for Energy Efficiency, with A++ being the best performing and most economical.
- If you are buying a vented hose, check if the venting kit or hose kit is included or if it should be purchased separately.
- High end tumble dryers may have LED or LCD display to keep the user informed on the status of the cycle and other information.
- The build quality of the tumble dryers can vary considerably from manufacturer to manufacturer, although this is of course reflected in the price. Some manufacturers also offer an advanced drum technology to protect clothes.
- Some manufacturers also incorporate technology to reduce noise and vibration.
- Some models feature round glass doors while others have solid doors, this is a matter of personal preference.
Popular Tumble Dryers Brands
||AEG Electrolux Tumble Dryers AEG - this leading manufacturer offers a full range of tumble dryers including some using steam technology as well as those with sensor technology which detect the level of dampness and adjust heat and drying time accordingly.
||Beko Tumble Dryers Beko - they offer a range of condenser and vented tumble dryers with auto sensor technology.
||Bosch Tumble Dryers Bosch - they have three series of tumble dryer including the value for money Classixx range, the Exxcel Range and the high end Logixx range, including the Ecologixx 7 tumble dryer which uses 40% less energy than a standard A rated tumble dryer.
||Candy Tumble Dryers Candy - they currently offer 3 models all with 8kg capacity.
||Hoover Tumble Dryers Hoover - this well-known manufacturer offers condenser and vented models as well as their own Hydro dryer technology which means that the water container does not have to be emptied as it is pumped out through the mains water supply.
||Hotpoint Tumble Dryers Hotpoint - they have a full range of condenser and vented models with 6kg to 8 kg capacity.
||Indesit Tumble Dryers Indesit - as well as regular sized condenser and vented models, this Italian manufacturer also offers compact models 49 cm wide and 67 cm tall with a capacity of 3kg.
||LG Tumble Dryers LG - they offer a range of 8kg and 9kg model including ones in black and stainless steel.
||Maytag Tumble Dryers Maytag - this high end manufacturer has various models on offer including a US style 10kg model for larger households.
||Miele Tumble Dryers Miele - they offer a full range of high specification tumble dryers with a range of features such as Fuzzy logic sensor drying and specialist programmes such as denim, sportswear, delicates, pillow and others.
||Siemens Tumble Dryers Siemens - this top German manufacturer has a range of tumble dryers with features such as crease reduction and steam refresh.
||Whirlpool Tumble Dryers Whirlpool - their wide range of tumble dryers includes those with capacities from 6kg to 10 kg, with some featuring their 6th Sense technology for automated drying.
||White Knight Tumble Dryers White Knight - as the largest independent tumble dryer manufacturer in Europe, they offer vented and condenser dryers, as well as compact dryers for the smaller home and integrated dryers for built in kitchens or utility rooms. They have also launched energy saving gas dryers. They also offer 'inverted' models where the controls and opening are at the bottom of the machine rather than at the top, which enables the user to place the machine high up or mounted on a wall.
||Zanussi Tumble Dryers Zanussi - they have a range of 7kg models as well as a compact model.
Capacity Capacity - this is how much laundry the tumble dryer can hold and is usually advertised in kilograms.
Crease reduction Crease reduction - this is when the tumble dryer continues to rotate after the load is dry to reduce creasing.
Drum reduction Drum - this is the cylindrical metal container or 'tumbler' in which the clothes are placed and which rotates during the drying cycle.
Time Delay Time Delay - this allows the user to load and pre-set the tumble dryer which comes on later at a specified time. This is useful if electricity rates are lower at certain times or if the user prefers to avoid the noise during the day.