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Washing Machines

Bing Lee's Washing Machine Buying Guide

Washing your linen and clothing with an 1800's style wooden washboard down at the local river has become a task most people have long forgotten. Washing machine technology today is so advanced that our only real struggle is deciding on what washing machine would suit your lifestyle.

For most people, deciding on what washing machine would best suit their needs can be a daunting task. If you're going to be spending a chunk of your hard earned money, you want a machine that looks after all your washing and economic concerns.

Before purchasing your new washing machine you will need to consider the water and energy efficiency; the washers capacity; how long it will take for a wash to be completed; the differences between a front load washer and a top load washer; and if you prefer digital screens or knobs and dials. It doesn't stop there. You have to ask yourself if you have pets that are shedding fur on your clothes or if you work in an industry where your clothing is heavily soiled. If you have eco concerns or if you live in an apartment with limited space. Perhaps you have lots of members in your family and find yourself constantly washing.

Then there's more for you to think about. For instance: what can you do to prevent that annoying vibrating noise and if washing machines require maintenance? Wouldn’t it be easier if you could do both your washing and drying in one go? Whatever your circumstances and concerns are this buyer’s guide should answer all of your questions and help you decide on what product is right for you by outlining the features on modern washers so that you can make an informed choice before buying.

TOP LOADERS

Top load washing machines are the traditional household washers. The great thing about top loaders is that you don't have to bend down to access your clothes and most models have don't have a lock function allowing you to add extra items in you might have forgotten. Top loaders are lighter and easier to move but are not stackable. Top loaders come with either an agitator or an impeller.

  • Agitator - This is the traditional pole found in the centre of the drum that moves your clothes around during the wash and spin cycle. Agitator models have minimal vibration and much shorter wash cycles which is perfect for people with busy lifestyles. Agitator models are generally lower in price compared to front load washers. You may struggle to fit bulky items in the drum with that pole in the way.
  • Impeller - Are the newer type of top loaders called high efficiency top loading washers. The impeller is a propeller like device is found on the bottom of the washer and moves the water in the drum to wash your clothes. Machines with an impeller have a higher load capacity making it easier to wash your bulky items. These types of machines function like a front loader meaning that wash times are lengthier than models with an agitator. These machines will use less water than top loaders with an agitator which means more energy savings for you.

FRONT LOADERS

Front loading washers are great for people who have heavily soiled laundry who wash quite a few loads in a week. Although the wash cycle takes a much longer time than top loaders, most front loaders offer quick wash options. Front loaders have more functions than the average top loader such as pet hair removal, pre wash cycles and water temperature adjustments. Front loaders are gentler on clothes and are more energy and water efficient than top loading machines. These machines require less laundry detergent meaning that the cost of running these machines are much lower than the top loaders. If you are low on space front loader washers are compact by design and stackable. With a large barrel capacity you have the room to wash bulky items such as your comforter. Front loaders have higher spin speeds which cuts down on drying time but may cause some vibration during this part of the cycle.

WASHER AND DRYER COMBO

Do you live in an apartment or have a small laundry room? Would you struggle to fit a washer and a clothes dryer in your available space? Or maybe you need something for your holiday home? Consider the washer and dryer combo to be a perfect fit for your household. A washer and dryer combo is a front loading washing machine and a clothes dryer all in one. The energy and water consumption are the equivalent to having both a front load washer and a dryer and the overall performance of the machine is relatively similar too. Keep in mind that the dryer can only dry approximately half the amount that the washer component can wash meaning an 8kg wash capacity can mean only 3-4kgs for the dryer component. While a normal wash and dry cycle can take up to 6 hours combined, these machines can function separately to either just wash or dry your clothing.

CAPACITY

Capacity is one of the most important factors to consider before purchasing your new washer. Washing machines can range anywhere between 4.5kgs and 15kgs! As a guide average households of 4 people will only need a 6-8kg machine depending on the size of your wash loads. As you would expect to keep this machine for a few years it is a good idea to plan a head in case the amount of people in your house or family grows.

WATER EFFICIENCY

The blue star rating sicker found on your machine will give you an idea of the water consumption of your product. The more stars, the less water consumed per year. This label will tell you how may litres of water your product will need per cycle.

ENERGY EFFICIENCY

The red star rating sticker found on your machine tells you how energy efficient your product is. The more stars, the more energy efficient. You should only compare energy ratings with other washers that have the same load capacity as higher capacity machines compared to smaller ones may have more stars but will consume more energy through the year. There are a few features to look out for if you are energy conservative such as machines that offer a cold wash cycle, faster spin speeds and quick wash options.

TUB MATERIAL

The internal component of the washer is the tub which can be made of different materials. It's best to find a model with a stainless steel or plastic tub as some of the cheaper models have porcelain-coated steel which over time may deteriorate.

HOT AND COLD WATER CONNECTIONS

Top loaders mainly come with the standard dual connections for both hot and cold water. Most front loading washing machines only have a cold water connection as the machine has an inbuilt heater which heats the water gradually during the wash cycle.

SAFETY

With all home appliances safety is a major concern, especially with families that have small children. Look for machines that offer a child lock function which will prevent little exploring hands from opening the doors mid-wash or changing the wash program you have selected.

OTHER FEATURES

These days, washing machines come with so many little features designed to make life easier.

  • Water level sensor - on most modern machines you don't need to pick the water level yourself. The machine will do it for you by sensing the amount of clothing you have put in.
  • Anti- crease - great for people who want to limit the amount of time spent ironing.
  • Digital screens - provides an update on the progress of your wash and the functions you have selected.
  • Dispensers - release bleach, fabric softener, detergent and pre wash at the right time during the cycle.
  • Balance correction - when the load is unbalanced the machine will adjust the water level and spin on its own.
  • Allergy mode- for garments that need special care. Great for baby clothing, bedding and allergy sufferers.
  • Pet hair removal - tired of removing pet hair from individual garments? Look for a machine that will do it all for you.
  • Self-clean - some machines offer a self-clean function that cleans the barrel, pipes and dispensers.

NOICE

Due to the high spin cycle most front loaders are louder than top loaders. Make sure you consider how close the unit will be to your bedrooms and living space. Noise pollution can be prevented by selecting a model that has cushioning around the drum and reinforcing the floor underneath the washer.

STILL NEED HELP?

Still have questions? If you are still unsure about what you need, call our friendly customer service on 1300 980 399, or to find the closest Bing Lee to you, visit our Store Locator

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74 Products

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74 Products