When deciding how to spend their hard-earned money, most people would rather indulge in a much-needed vacation than buy a washer and dryer—but while the memories of your time at the beach will fade, the right laundry duo can provide you with years of dependable service. Whether your current appliances are inefficient, malfunctioning, or past their prime, you can maximize your investment and satisfaction with your new purchase by researching your options. The experienced professionals at Mr. Appliance® can help you get started, with our comprehensive guide to everything you need to know about buying a washer or dryer.
Washing Machine Buyers Guide
Traditional Top Loader
This is the type of washer that most of us grew up with, which is loaded from the top and has a central agitator. It is the least expensive and least efficient option, due to slower spin cycles, and clothing is subjected to additional wear and tear due to contact with the agitator.
High-Efficiency Top Loader
For some this type of machine offers the best of both worlds, with the accessibility of a top loader, and the capacity and efficiency associated with a front loader. The absence of an agitator can provide you with an additional full cubic foot of space for larger loads.
A high-efficiency front load machine uses less energy and less water to wash your items, and with the large drum size, they can handle larger items such as comforters. All high-efficiency machines require the use of HE detergent which is low-sudsing, for ease of rinsing using less water. These machines are gentle on laundry and are ideal for smaller spaces where some models may be stacked.
The features you choose should be based on your budget, needs, and preferences, and may include:
A laundry load sensor automatically detects the volume of the load and makes adjustments to the water level accordingly.
Automatic controls determine the most efficient use of water to achieve the best results.
Helps to prevent the growth of mold and mildew and may prolong the life of your machine.
This feature allows you to delay the start of the wash cycle for added convenience.
Internal Water Heater
Exceptionally high temperatures may be achieved with an internal heater, for whiter whites and superior sanitization.
Built-in sinks, steam cycles to refresh fabrics, touchpad controls, delayed start, wi-fi capabilities, and other options are available, but because each one comes with a price, it's important to consider which ones your family will actually use.
Dryer Buyers Guide
This type of dryer is the most efficient, cost-effective option, although the initial purchase price will be higher than an electric model. Because the machine is connected to your homes natural gas supply, consideration must be made for the availability and difficulty of installation prior to purchase.
A traditional electric dryer may have a more affordable sticker price, but it can cost more to operate due to higher utility rates and longer dry times—particularly for larger families who perform this chore on a daily basis.
- Capacity - If you routinely wash large loads or large items, consider appliances that have an extra-large capacity.
- Layout - Measure the space where your machines will go, and ensure you have a GFCI outlet before making your purchase.
- Budget - Initial purchase price, cost of operation, the frequency of use, and your choice of features will all determine the lifetime cost of your new washer and dryer.