2017 Clothes Dryers
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Compare clothes dryers in New Zealand at Canstar Blue. Bosch, Fisher & Paykel, Haier, LG and Simpson were compared on value for money, performance and reliability, time taken to dry clothes, quietness, design, warranty, feel of clothes after drying and overall satisfaction.
Canstar Blue research finalised June 2017 and published August 2017.
See our Ratings Methodology.
Clothes Dryer Review In New Zealand
The results are in and Bosch has been awarded Canstar Blue’s Most Satisfied Customer Award for 2017.
New Zealand is very definitely a country of changing weather. Be it winter storms or blazing summers, the results are the beautiful and often unique landscapes, fauna and flora that has become synonymous with our country. While this makes New Zealand a wonderful place to live, it doesn’t always make living here easy.
Take drying our clothes. What should be a simple process is often complicated by rains lashing down or humidity levels so high, clothes get even more wet when you hang them out to dry! (Our recent survey (June 2017) revealed that 20% of Kiwis use their dryer even when it is sunny outside.) As each load of washing contains roughly two litres of water when it comes out of the machine, hanging clothes up inside the house is also a big no-no. All that additional moisture causes dampness in your home providing a perfect environment for some pretty nasty fungal spores that can wreak havoc with your health and exacerbate breathing complaints such as asthma.
What do I need to think about when buying a clothes dryer?
Enter the clothes dryer. Drying outside is always the best (and cheapest) option, but as we said before, this can often be challenging in a climate like ours so a clothes dryer can be a great alternative. When we asked, 44% of people said they like to read reviews and ratings before making a decision on their clothes dryer purchase and research is something we can’t recommend enough. By spending your time researching before spending your money, you’re much more likely to get value for money and the machine that is right for you.
First thing is deciding what type of dryer suits you and your home:
- Condenser dryers work by extracting the moisture from the clothes and sending the remaining hot air back through the load. The resulting water is collected in a tray which needs to be emptied frequently otherwise the dryer will not work. The big advantage with a condenser dryer is that you do not need to have a hose running to an outside vent in order to remove the moist air from your home. The disadvantage is that there’s often a bigger initial outlay as they tend to be pricier than traditional vented dryers.
- Heat-Pump dryers are similar to condenser dryers in that they do not need an outside vent to dispose of the hot air. They work by heating up air using a heat-pump, pushing the air through the clothes, cooling the air to release the collected moisture and then starting the whole cycle again. Water can either be collected in a tank or reservoir or, if convenient, straight down a drain. Again these dryers tend to be more expensive to buy but their running costs are noticeable lower, making them popular with people who are looking for maximum energy efficiency.
- Sensor dryers offer the latest technology and will stop once its senses the clothes are dry. Alternatively, you can programme it to stop drying early, leaving enough moisture in your clothes to make ironing easier. As you’d imagine, this sort of technology doesn’t come cheap but again the energy efficiencies of sensor dryers mean it’s a short-term pain on your wallet for a long-term gain on your finances and carbon footprint.
- Vented dryers are perhaps the most common and budget friendly type of dryer on the market. They work by simply pushing warm air through your wet clothes and blowing the resulting, moist hot air, out of the other side. It’s essential to have a hose leading to an outside vent that will remove this moist air from your home otherwise you’ll very quickly find you’re living in a damp, mouldy house. Vented dryers tend to be the cheapest on the market but running costs are higher. Perfect for if you don’t use a dryer all that often.
- Washer/Dryer. As you’ve probably guessed, this is a washing machine and clothes dryer all in one. Perfect if you are pushed for space. Reviews are often mixed for these machines, and where it’s true that technology has made the latest machines far better than earlier models, energy and water consumption still remains relatively high.
Clothes dryers in New Zealand range from under $300 to over $4,500, so choose wisely as you don’t want to pay a fortune for a whole bunch of features you never use.
We asked people who had recently bought a clothes dryer about the features and qualities they valued most in their machine. In order of importance, they were:
- Performance and reliability
- Time taken to dry clothes
- Value for money
- Feel of clothes after drying
Our winner of the Customer Satisfaction Award, Bosch, scored a maximum five stars in all but feel of clothes after drying and value for money, where it scored a respectable four stars.
How to get the best out of your dryer
Once you’ve decided on the type of dryer you want and you’re back at home happily drying away, there are a few simple things you can do to make sure your dryer works effectively. Unfortunately clothes dryers aren’t that efficient, they’re up there with your fridge freezer and electric hob when it comes to energy consumption, so helping to keep it working well will help keep the costs down.
Possibly the most valuable thing you can do for your dryer is to regularly remove the lint from the lint trap. On most machines this is a very quick and easy job but unfortunately nearly half (48%) of the people we surveyed said they didn’t do it. By not removing the lint (the fluffy fibres that come off your clothes in the drying process), the motor on your dryer has to work harder to push the hot air through your clothes. The motor working harder will in the short term, push up your energy bills and in long term, wear out the motor.
Other energy saving tips are to dry similar weight items together – a pair of jeans will take a lot longer than a cotton tee to dry – and don’t over fill your dryer as the air will not circulate and clothes will not dry. Last but not least, if your machine does not have a sensor to tell you when your washing is dry, under rather than over estimate drying time, you can always stick it in for a few more minutes if it’s not quite ready.
Frequently asked questions
Canstar Blue commissioned I-view to survey 2,500 New Zealand consumers across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction. The outcomes reported are the results from customers who have purchased a brand new clothes dryer in the last three years – in this case, 412 New Zealanders.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then alphabetically. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.