Acronym Faq - Frequently Asked Questions

 

We receive lots of questions via email, Twitter etc so we thought it would make sense to add a Q&A section to the site.

If you have a question you’d like to add to this list please email us here.

 

Brands

Are Beko washing machines any good?

This is a question we get asked a lot and our answer would be a pretty emphatic “Yes!” Presumably because Beko tend to produce washers at the cheaper end of the price range many people look at them but then wonder if they are cheaper simply because they are rubbish. We can assure you this not the case. Beko make some great products which do the job perfectly and last for years. You can see the ones we have reviewed here.

 

Cost

What is the cheapest washing machine available?

We would qualify this by adding “that we would recommend” to the end of that question. Although budget price machines have come a long way and now you can get a really decent appliance for not a great deal of money we wouldn’t necessarily recommend buying the cheapest washing machine you can find when maybe you could spend £10 more and get something that we would actually consider a ‘Best Buy’.

That said, we would currently direct you to the Beko WM5102W which is a cracking deal at £179 and is a very respectable machine to boot! the only catch is that it only has a 5kg capacity so would probably only suit a single person or a couple. That’s not to say a family couldn’t use it but you’d just have to wash more frequently which would increase running costs.

 

General

What is the best washing machine to buy?

This is a tough question to answer without knowing your budget, as obviously the more expensive machines often pack in more features, have longer warranties etc. We recommend you take a look at our ‘Best Buys’ here and you’ll see the different machines we recommend at various price points. We also list prices at all the major online retailers so you can see at a glance who’s offering the best deal.

Which washing machine cleans the best?

There is no definitive answer to this question, but the good news is that washing machine technology has come such a long way in recent years that the majority of models (and certainly the ones listed on this site) do a pretty good job of washing clothes. If your budget stretches to it, a Miele will generally deliver fantastic wash results and last for many, many years. You’ll struggle to find one for under £500 however.

We’re big fans of Bosch as their machines are very well-made and perform very well in testing. You may also want to check out the Ecobubble range from Samsung which uses advanced technology to deliver great results at low temperatures – buyers speak very highly of these.

We would recommend you read as many actual buyer reviews as you possibly can before making your purchase as, as long as there is a decent volume of feedback, any problems should become apparent.

Why is ‘rpm’ important? And what level is best?

‘rpm’ stand for ‘revolutions per minute’ and this indicates the speed at which the drum will rotate when the machine is in the spin cycle. At the time of writing the models currently on the market range from 1000 to 1800 rpm. The reason this matters is that the faster the drum rotates the more water will be expelled from your wash load meaning drying will be easier (and potentially cheaper if you’re using a dryer). You will tend to find that the more expensive the machine, the greater the rpm level will be but this isn’t a hard and fast rule. Some quite inexpensive machines offer 1600 rpm but the majority of cheaper machines will be nearer the lower end of the scale. You’re likely to only find 1800 rpm featured on more high-end models as this is still relatively rare.

Our recommendation would be to aim for a machine with at least 12001400 rpm as this should be pretty efficient as removing water. Anything above that level will be a bonus. The only potential downside noted by some repairmen about high spin speeds is that this can result in the bearings wearing out faster but we would tend to think this is less of an issue than setting for a low speed on an ongoing basis. maybe worth bearing in mind though.

 

Maintenance

How do you clean a washing machine?

Here’s a nice video from ao.com which explains exactly what you need to do.

Where can you buy washing machine spare parts?

We’ve prepared a list of contact details for spare parts departments for all the major manufacturers which you can find here. There are also various third party retailers which you’ll locate with a quick Google search. We would generally recommend that you buy original spares if you can but understand sometimes the prices can be prohibitive (and frankly a piece of plastic is often just a piece of plastic whoever it is made by).

 

Noise Level

What is the quietest washing machine available?

At the time of writing the quietest washing machines on the market have a noise level of 71 dB on their spin cycle (this includes several models made by Bosch and Siemens). You can find out more about the sound level of modern washing machines here.

Or take a look at ao.com’s range of quiet models here.

 

Running cost

How much does it cost to run a washer dryer?

A washer dryer will always be more expensive to run than a washing machine for the simple reason that the drying process uses more energy than washing. The cost will then depend on how energy efficient the particular model is based on a scale from A  to G as dictated by the the European Energy Efficiency labelling system. As a rough guide you can expect to pay somewhere between £100 – £200 per year to run a combo assuming you utilise the drying facility. If you simply use your machine for washing and dry your laundry by some alternative means (a good old fashioned clothes line for example) you’ll pay significantly less – more like £30-£50 per year. Check out our washer dryer reviews here and you’ll find, where possible, we list the approximate running cost of each unit.

How much does it cost to run a washing machine?

The annual cost of running a washing machine will vary between about £25 and £50 depending on how energy efficient the particular unit is. If it’s a relatively new appliance then the chances are it will be toward the bottom of that scale. Obviously it depends on how much/often you use it but these figures are based on an average household paying 15p per unit of electricity.

Take a look at our washing machine reviews here and you’ll notice that, where possible, we list the approximate running cost of each model as part of the write-up.