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Clean Machines: Choosing a Washer and Dryer

Laundry. This relentless chore demands constant attention with the glowing satisfaction of an empty laundry basket stifled as soon as the first stinky sock is dropped in.

When there are so many priorities competing for our time and attention, laundry is often that annoying chore no one wants to do. But once you’ve combed through your closet and find yourself left with nothing but cut-offs and a shirt riddled with holes, you soon realize how essential clean clothes are to your daily life.

Front-Load Washers vs. Top-Load Washers

front-load and top-load washers

Image courtesy of The Brick.

What’s the difference? Well, very little. It used to be that front-load washers had a larger capacity and provided a better clean than their top-load counterparts. But with the addition of the newest technology and the removal of the agitator in some of the new top-load machines, these two types of washers perform very similarly.

Top-Load Washers

When it comes to top-load models, you have a choice between machines with an agitator and ones without. An agitator is a spindle, usually with fins or vanes, that sticks up in the centre of the washing machine. The agitator twists and turns during the wash cycle, moving clothes through the water. Washers with an agitator give a fantastic clean because they are physically churning the clothes.

However, these machines have a smaller capacity since the agitator takes up interior space. Fabrics also have the tendency to get wrapped around the agitator due to the spinning motion, which can potentially damage your clothes.

Front-Load Washers

As for the front-load versus top-load debate, one major difference is that many front-load washers are stackable – so you can stack your dryer on top of your washer to save on floor space. Stackable washer dryer combos are perfect for small homes. They’re also a great way to use your home’s square footage more efficiently: with a little extra space, you can create your dream laundry room with built-in cabinets or even just a table for folding.

Despite these small differences, choosing your washer really comes down to personal preference. Which one is more functional for you and your family? Which style do you prefer?

 


 

Insider tip: Have your socks mysteriously gone missing? Your front-load washer may be the culprit! Check inside the rubber seal that prevents water from escaping. You’ll need to pull back the rubber to see if there’s anything in there. Regularly checking this area for lint or trapped garments goes a long way in preventing mechanical malfunctions and the build-up of mould.

 


 

Vented Dryers vs. Condenser Dryers

condenser dryer

Image courtesy of The Brick.

Unlike vented dryers, condenser dryers don’t need to be vented outside your home – they require only a standard electrical outlet and connection to your washer. This makes them a good option for condos that don’t offer a laundry space or for creating a second-floor laundry room. Plus, condenser dryers are energy efficient, fit well in small areas and require less maintenance than vented dryers.

A condenser dryer connects directly to a compatible washer. With a condenser dryer, hot air enters the drum and evaporates some of the moisture from the clothing. The warm, damp air is drawn through a condensing chamber, where water is extracted from the air. The water is then flushed out through the washer’s drain hose.

A vented dryer, however, uses hot air to draw moisture from your fabrics and then expels that damp, warm air outside through an exterior vent.

No matter what type of washer or dryer you prefer, you should look for convenience and time-saving features that will make laundry day feel like a walk in the park.

Here are some common questions people ask when searching for a new washer and dryer.

How can I spend less time doing laundry?

  • Efficient cycles get the job done right the first time. Your fabrics are clean in a single wash cycle and dry in just one dryer cycle.
  • Large capacities mean fewer trips to the laundry room.
  • Quiet operation allows you to run cycles at any time of the day (or night). No need to postpone a load of laundry for fear of waking a sleeping child or disturbing a home office.
  • Quick wash settings are perfect for when you’re pressed for time or if you forgot to wash your gym clothes.
  • Moisture sensors help reduce the number of trips to your laundry room. Dryers equipped with this feature adapt the cycle based on how much moisture is detected in the fabrics. This also prevents over-drying, which can damage your clothes.
  • NFC Tag On in LG machines allows you to choose the right cycle through the use of a smartphone app, rather than choosing a cycle that’s just “good enough” – no more time, energy or water is wasted on unnecessarily long cycles.

 How do I clean stains and hard-to-wash items?

  • Washing cycles with steam help to release stains better than non-steam cycles. Steam dryers also help reduce wrinkles and odours.
  • Some washers and dryers are equipped with a sanitize cycle, which can remove household bacteria from hard-to-wash items like pillows or stuffed animals.
  • Samsung offers something called ActiveWash™, where the machine features a built-in sink with a water jet so you can easily hand-wash delicate items and pre-wash stained fabrics.

    Samsung ActiveWash washer with built-in sink

    Image courtesy of The Brick.

How can I avoid unnecessary service calls?

  • Both Samsung and LG offer their own version of diagnosis technology that allows you to troubleshoot any issues with your washer and dryer, and communicate with your brand’s customer service department using a smartphone app.

What accessories are available?

  • Use a stacking kit with your front-load washer and dryer to save space in your laundry room.
  • Pedestals raise your front-load washer and dryer to make loading and unloading less strenuous on your back. They often have storage drawers so you can keep stain remover, laundry detergent and dryer sheets close.
  • LG has a SideKick™ pedestal washer that provides a place to wash small loads (e.g. delicates, whites or baby clothes) at the same time as a full load.

What do I need to get my machines set up?

Whether you set up your new washer and dryer yourself or you take advantage of The Brick’s installation services, there are some basic requirements to get started.

  • A washer hose kit.
  • A steam hose kit (for steam dryers).
  • A dryer vent kit (for vented dryers).
  • The proper water hookups and air venting.
  • Six inches of space behind your washer and dryer for hoses, venting and hookups.
  • Hard, stable flooring.

Love Laundry Again!

Don’t dread laundry day. Look for a washer and dryer that ultimately make your life easier when it comes to this chore. With a wide assortment of washers and dryers, The Brick can help you find the laundry pair that works for you.

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