Out of space for a tumble dryer? How about the best washer dryer? One of these large appliances combines a wash with a dry, which is godsend when it's blowing a gale outside and you need fresh laundry in a hurry. They are also the ideal solution for where space is limited, or you just don't want the faff of loading and unloading two separate machines.
Whatever the reason behind investing in one of these top machines, we totally get it. They offer a BIG convenience factor which, essentially, weather-proof you laundry days but are a high ticket-price item so is a purchase which needs to be carefully considered. In order to make the buying process easier, we've pulled together a round up of the best washer dryer reviews, taking note of the capacity, energy rating, spin speed, finish and the dimensions of each machine, too, as these can all influence the performance of your appliance.
For more washing machine options, browse our best washing machine buyer's guide which includes integrated and freestanding washers to suit all budgets. Or, you could take a look at our guide to the best tumble dryers, for the best of both worlds.
The best washer dryer buys
This washer dryer is impressive. We couldn't fault the performance during testing and we feel that it is an appliance which busy, family households couldn't be without.
One (of the many) things our reviewer was impressed with is the Auto Weight function which automatically reduced the washing time for some programs – Cotton, Synthetics, Mix, Cotton 20ºC, Eco 40-60ºC – minimising energy, water and cycle duration.
On some of the 14 programmes there is also a stain removal function which worked wonders on soy sauce, ketchup and red wine. It even made a good effort at removing Biro from our reviewers cotton napkin which was used during testing, and we all know how stubborn Biro ink can be!
Throughout the washing, spinning and drying programmes of this dryer you could hear that it was working BUT it wasn't so loud that it was uncomfortable. Haier have gone to some lengths to ensure that decibels are kept to a minimum by providing some noise reduction pads which can be secured at the point of insulation yet, compared to other similar machines, it is on-par with their noise levels, too.
Ease of use
This washer dryer uses a combination of a touch-screen and dial to navigate through the programmes. Our reviewer quickly got the hang of jumping around the different settings but, if you're more comfortable using a more hands on dial then it may be worth seeing this appliance before buying.
Real Homes rating 4.5 out of 5 stars - read our Haier HWD120-B14979 Freestanding Washer Dryer review (opens in new tab) to find out more
Marginally missing out on the top spot, the AEG L8WEC166R is one of the more expensive models in our round up of the best washer dryers but it’s packed with features that really make it stand out from the crowd.
ÖKOMix Technology delivers a consistent washing and drying process in one go. Unlike other machines, the L8WEC166R pre-mixes detergents and softener into the optimum blend before they enter the drum.
The ÖKOPower NonStop programme offers the most efficient cycles in the shortest time possible by washing and drying 5kg in just four hours, saving both time and energy.
AEG's DualSense technology is able to alter the temperature, drum motion and programme to suit the fabric type perfectly. This reduced heat and controlled movement mean that everything from delicates to outdoor wear can be efficiently washed and carefully dried in one cycle.
Reviewers rave about the ProSense intelligent sensor drying programme, which detects moisture inside the drum and automatically finishes the cycle once your preferred level of dryness is achieved. This preserves your clothing by preventing over-drying and providing better protection, as well as saving even more time and energy.
The John Lewis JLWD1614, has been perfectly designed to be easy to use and straightforward. If you are after a good value washer-dryer that can be replied upon to get the job done with plenty of wash and dry options – minus the gimmicks – this is the one.
Reliability you can count on
John Lewis & Partners is known for delivering affordable quality and this machine does not disappoint. It tackles the wash with ease, including all the usual stains.
It doesn't carry the quiet mark, but users said it was surprisingly quiet, too. If you are after a quiet washing machine (without the dryer option) see the best quiet washing machines.
This washer dryer can hold up to 8kg of washing, which is a decent capacity for an average sized household. Talking of family washes... it also has a handy one-hour wash and dry programme (for when that sports kit needs a quick turnaround). As you'd expect, it has lots of traditional wash cycles, such as wool and eco, but anti-allergy settings, too. This machine also comes with a delay option so you can time your washes to suit.
But the cleverest function – and one that we are happy to say is slowly becoming the norm with newer appliances – is that this washer dryer uses sensors for measuring water flow and drying times. This means the machine does the thinking on how long the cycle should be, saving both energy and time in the process.
What else? The wider-than-average porthole and door that opens to the full 180 degrees means you can load and unload large loads easily. Winter duvet? No problem!
It's not the speediest of dryers, but the results are as good as you might hope. If you live in a flat with nowhere to dry clothes, this is particularly useful.
The Miele WT1 WTF130WPM has a number of innovative features designed to ensure that its washing and drying capabilities will leave your clothes looking and feeling great. Just keep reading to find out why it's made it into out round up of the best washer dryers...
With Miele's powerful and efficient washing technology, the machine uses a spin and spray technique to give an intensive wash to deliver an A-rated cleaning performance in less than an hour. And if you're really pushed for time, you can run a quick wash in just 49 minutes.
Automatic detergent dispensing
This Miele washing machine offers you the option of using its automatic liquid detergent dispensing system, which releases just the right amount of liquid during the washing cycle to achieve the best possible results for your clothes. All you have to do is input the textile type and level of soiling and the machine does the rest, taking into account load size.
To stop you from overloading your machine, the intelligent load indicator measures the amount of laundry you have loaded and the control panel displays how much more laundry you can add. Plus it then shows you how much detergent you should add.
Gentle on clothes
A specially designed, honeycomb drum has properties that help to cushion your clothes as they tumble around the revolving drum. There's also a special programme to stop fluff spread all over your clothes.
The Bosch WDU28560GB does everything and more that you would expect from a mid-range machine, and it does it well.
Great range of programmes
This machine offers plenty of versatility in the washing cycle department with over 20 different cycles. Most of these are simple and familiar but it also offers customised cycles. However some users found these less than intuitive to set and the manual was hard to follow.
That said, it has a programme for pretty much every washing need and uses sensors to adjust the drying cycle. Like many models on this list it also has delay timers and is noted to be super quiet so a great choice if you don't have a separate utility room.
The WDU28560GB can be trusted to thoroughly dry everything, evenly and in good time. It can dry 6kg of laundry at once, so a good proportion of the overall load (at 10kg) can be dried straight away.
Bosch has optimised its washing machine motors to get maximum power without wasting energy. As we've already said, that's made it quieter to run; and it's faster, too.
The Siemens WD15G422GB Washer Dryer is efficient, durable and quiet. It even has a fluff removal cycle which helps to keep the drum, and your clothes, looking its best.
Using cold air instead of water, this washer dryer promises optimum efficiency and care for your clothes.
It also has a water management system and reload function so you can make the most out of the machine when it is running, without it costing the earth.
As well as standard programmes for cottons, delicates/silk and so on, reviewers love the special cycles for hygiene, a 15-minute quick wash, towels, shirts/blouses and mixed fabrics.
How to choose the best washer dryer
Where to buy the best washer dryers
With such variety available on the market, it can be difficult to know where to get started when it comes to buying a washer dryer. We'd recommend bearing the following factors in mind.
Most washer dryer models will have different maximum capacities for washing and drying laundry, so you may find that you can happily wash 7kg of clothing but then you have to do two separate loads of drying, as it will only dry 4kg at once.
Look at the energy rating, as the higher it is, the lower your running costs in the long run.
Special wash cycles
Before you buy, consider the features and functions that are important to you, as these can all influence the performance of your appliance. If you are going for a washer-dryer to save time, you might also want to look for steam options and anti-crease settings to reduce and speed up ironing.
Vented or condensing
This is how the washer-dryer gets rid of moisture when it is in drying mode. Vented washer dryers have a hose that needs to reach an external wall, either through a whole or window. If you can't vent your washer dryer to the outside then choose a condensing washer dryer. These condense the water vapour from the drying cycle and emit down the waste tube, as they would dirty washing water.
What's your budget?
As you've seen in our guide, washer dryers start from around £400 and (can) exceed £1000 so you need to have some sort of idea of how much you are willing to spend to help narrow down the choices. If you're looking for a bargain then our washing machine deals round up would be worth a look which includes washer dryer and washing machine best buys.
What is the best washer dryer?
Let's recap...when it comes to choosing the best washer dryer, we can highly recommend you buy the Haier HWD120-B14979 Freestanding Washer Dryer (opens in new tab). Although not the cheapest in the guide, this Haier washer dryer is a machine that we highly rate (especially where space is at a premium) and is one which we feel busy households couldn’t be without, so it's well worth the investment.
You'll find functions such as Stain Removal, iFresh and Fast mega useful and, just like all of the machines we've featured, it's weatherproof so you can do your laundry come rain or shine.
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