Anyway, the broken machine led to me looking at new ones. I assumed they would have changed a bit in 15 years so I decided to take a good look at the information available. It made sense to look online as I'm not fit enough to get a washing machine home myself so it would have to be delivered anyway, and online you can usually find more information, often even read the full manual.
Things that were important to us as a family, were
- Size. The washing machine needed to fit to gap in our breakfast bar. I would love a laundry room, but sadly (Americans should look away now lest they are filled with disgust) we have the washing machine in the kitchen.
- Economy, I wanted an energy efficient machine that used the least water to get a clean wash.
- Price, we had a budget of £300. Ideally I'd like to get the old machine taken away and a new machine delivered and plumbed in for that budget. As Mr TM is in his 70s and I have some disability issues neither of us is really up for manhandling a washing machine into place or scrabbling about to get all the pipes sorted.
I looked on a few websites, Curry's, AO and Argos. And started narrowing down my choice. I wasn't especially fussed about brand. Our current drum size is 6kg so while bigger would be nice, that is fine for us.
Most sites let you filter and sort by a few options, so I checked boxes for quick wash and price and top efficiency.
AO were very helpful on social media and suggested a machine that looked really nice, large drum size and a good choice or programs. Sadly it turned out to be too large for our gap, but I thought I'd take a look at the same model with a smaller drum size (and thus a smaller depth) , I had a look at the manual online, which turned out to be a really good idea. Washing machine manufacturers give you information on cycle lengths for a basic 60 degree wash so you can compare. This machine had a basic wash time at 60 degrees of 270 minutes...I paused, and looked again...how long?! 270 minutes (for those without a calculator or maths brain is 4 and a half hours) there was an option to make the wash shorter, reducing it to 267 minutes. Crikey. Basic washing cycle length hadn't been in my essentials list but suddenly it was! (by the way if you don't care about washing cycle length and have space then the Haier range looks absolutely excellent!)
I asked on social media to see if I was odd, did anyone else look at cycle length? was this long time normal? did anyone care?
Me too! I bought a Zanussi in a sale. Regular 30 degree wash is nearly 3 hours, ‘quick’ wash is an hour. That’s as fast as it gets. The supposed eco friendly wash takes approx 4 hours! Damn thing. I’ll check in future!— AJ (@eden2636) 24 June 2018
I didn’t look when I bought my last one but will definitely look next time because it takes far too long. 2 hours on a full and 1 hour on a “fast”. So frustrating. All stuff you just don’t think about. I’ll also be buying one with an extra spin mode so stuff comes out less wet.— You can call me Al. Call me Al. (@UnicornNebula) 24 June 2018
I don’t check but so wish I had! My shortest wash is an hour and and half 😬. Only had the machine a couple of years and im thinking of changing it.— Joanne Powell (@Joanne_Powell) 24 June 2018
Various answers came back about economy but on the whole people were shocked! Several said they would always now look in future.
I noticed that few websites mentioned specific cycle lengths except the quick washes, which varied from 30 to 15 minutes depending on machine. As we don't leave the house with the machine on, 4 and half hours would be a real tie, and imagine trying to get a couple of washes done on a good drying day (we don't have a tumble drier) !I wish I bloody had checked. Our new machine takes about 4 days to finish a cycle.— Dr Emma Beckett (@Dr_EmmaB) 24 June 2018
So the search continued until I finally found the (almost) perfect machine...another Indesit! Pretty much the identical one to the one we have now, except with an LED countdown display and a delay timer. The washing cycle for a full load at 60 degrees is 200 minutes, still a long time but the manual says most wash cycles are 45 minutes. (note the full wash at 60 is a standard hot wash for comparison and may not be the actual time a wash takes, but it does give an idea, and as I said, it's good for comparing like with like)
The washing machine is being delivered on Wednesday and being installed by AO. I'll let you know how it goes. And what a basic wash time turns out to be in reality! The total cost of washing machine, delivery, installation and removal of the old one? £264
Do please comment with what you find useful to check when buying a new washing machine! If they all last as well as mine has then it's not something we do often and it's a good idea to refresh yourself on what to look for before you buy!
Not a sponsored post - just a chatty one about washing machines.