When it comes to winning the battle of the overflowing basket, there’s a need for speed. The wash cycle time is generally faster for top-loaders than front-loading washing machines, but whichever one you go for, if you’ve always got lots of washing to do, keep in mind that the bigger your washing machine the more you can fit in each load, so you can get everything done in fewer loads.
Even though front-loader cycles tend to take longer, their spin cycle is usually more powerful, extracting more water from fabrics so they dry faster. A washing machine set to its maximum spin speed of 1400rpm (revolutions per minute) extracts more water than a washer at 1100rpm, so everything will dry faster. Just make sure the spin speed suits what you’re washing, as faster spinning subjects fabrics to more force (which won’t suit delicates).
Did you know there are now dual-load washing machines that can do two loads at once? You also don’t have to add detergent every time you do a load anymore, because some washers can now automatically add the right amount of detergent and select the settings for you, thanks to clever auto-dosing and sensor technology.
Washers with auto-dosing technology use the perfect amount of detergent so you’re not accidentally using too little (better for clothes) or too much (better for the planet and can also save you money). You can get up to 26 washes out of filling up the auto-dosing dispenser once!
The auto-dosing functionality ensures that your smart washer uses the perfect amount of detergent so you’re not accidentally using too little or too much.
Some washing machines have a 60-minute, 30-minute, or super-quick 15-minute cycle, while others have a clever steam cycle that just uses vapour (no water or detergent) to reduce wrinkles and odours in a few minutes; when desperate times call for desperate measures!
Waiting for washing to dry can be painfully sloooow. A dryer puts an end to all that. While dryers do use a fair bit of power, there are clever ways to bring the running cost down. Dryers with an eco-cycle use less power, and dryers with a timer delay can be set to start during off-peak power periods (when electricity prices are lower). If you go for a sensor dryer, the sensors detect when washing is dried to perfection and automatically switches off the dryer, so you don’t waste power and clothes are protected from over-drying damage.
Putting runners or THE teddy bear (that’s hanging on by a thread) in the dryer can feel like risky business. Will being thrown around do them damage? If you’ve got a dryer that comes with a drying rack, you can sit shoes and precious plush toys on the rack inside the dryer, and they’ll stay still during the drying process. While wool, silk, other delicates, boots and coats can’t go in the dryer, they can go in a drying cabinet, which dries extra gently and means you don’t have to rely on good weather.
To iron less, use a washer or dryer that has:
The more stars a washer or dryer has, the more of an efficiency superstar it is. The more stars you see on an energy and water rating sticker, the less power and water it’ll use, and the more you’ll save on bills. For a water-saving washing machine look for more stars—more stars means it’s a more environmentally friendly washing machine. The same goes for dryer energy star ratings—more stars means more power savings and better for the planet.
Wake up, put the kettle on, and put a load of washing on. By the time you’re ready to head out, the washing will be done so you can hang it out before you go.
Few big loads will take less time than lots of smaller loads (and saves power).
Hang out or hang up clothes as soon as they finish to minimise creases and ironing. Start smart washers and dryers via the app when you’re out, or use Start Delay so they finish at the same time you get home.
You need to empty the dryer lint filter after every load so it works properly, safely and won’t waste power.