My washing machine broke just over 12 months ago and never have I been so confused about what options there are on the market when looking for a replacement. You would think it would be a simple purchase. After all I just need something to wash clothes and wash them well. However, this is not the case and there are so many different options to take in to account such as half loads, bio wash, medic wash, quick wash that before long I was literally bashing my head on the Hotpoint display unit in our local superstore.
So when I was approached about a guest post on how to buy a washing machined I though that others may find it helpful, because this is one of those purchasing decisions you just want to get right so you’re not doing it all again in 12 months time, and ultimately you can’t be without a washing machine too long.
It may not be the most glamorous purchase you’ll ever make, but a quality washing machine is one of the most essential items you’ll buy for your home. Whether you’re moving into a new property or replacing a worn out older model, your washing machine should be an investment that lasts you for many years. But with so many models on the market, deciding which one to buy can be an intimidating process.
There are three major concerns you should think about when buying a washing machine; drum size, price, and functionality. The drum of the washing machine determines how many clothes you can wash in one cycle. Standard washing machines usually have a capacity of 6-7kg, but this can go as high as 10-11kg for more modern units. Larger drums tend to cost more, but they will save you a lot of time and effort by allowing you to get more done in one go – a particularly high priority for large families and parents of young children.
The typical cost of a new washing machine can be anything up to £500-£600. This is expensive enough, but if you’re furnishing a new flat the cost can be downright crippling. Second hand models can be bought for less, but bear in mind the greater risk of breakdowns. Sometimes it’s best to pay more now to avoid expensive repairs and replacements down the line. However, you can make buying a new washing machine more affordable by spreading the cost. Pay weekly stores can allow you to instantly buy a brand new washing machine and pay it off in low weekly, bi-weekly or monthly instalments. Be sure to stick with established, reputable brand names though.
You can also drive down the cost of a washing machine by paying attention to the functionality. For convenience sake, many of us will instantly gravitate towards combination washer-dryers, but bear in mind that not only are these more expensive to buy, they’ll also more electricity and drive up your energy bills. You should also look into the energy rating of your machine. Some of the leading brands are now offering energy efficient models that use far less electricity, saving you a small fortune in the long run.
You should also look at the various wash cycles available on your machine. Modern models feature a wider variety of cycle options that can help you to wash different types of clothes more effectively (delicate for lace, silk and woollens, permanent press for heavier fabrics like polyester and flannel etc.) and to save time, water and energy if you’re only washing a few items (half-load, economy cycle). Again, if you have quite simple washing requirements, a basic system may well be enough, but larger families will probably benefit from the variety of options.
To find out more about washing machine specs and what kind of model might be best suited to your home, don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions to your local retailer. Once you’ve determined what you’re looking for, there’s no harm in shopping around for where you can get the best price for it. For best results though, make sure you buy from established brand names and from retailers who can provide a warranty agreement or optional service cover in case anything goes wrong.
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