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Tumble Dryer Buying Guide

What’s the difference between condenser, heat pump and vented dryers? Will it help you save money on your bills?
Whatever your question, our handy guide is here to help you choose the right Tumble Dryer for you.

Drying type

There are three different types of tumble dryers. Below we give you a rundown of each type so you know which one is best for you.


Heat Pump

Heat pump tumble dryers are very gentle and extremely quiet, they’re also the most energy efficient choice. They work by re-circulating the warm air in the dryer rather than letting it escape, which also means they don’t need a hose. So you can place these tumble dryers anywhere in the home, but avoid placing them in garages and outbuildings as they need to operate within a minimum ambient temperature range.

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Condenser tumble dryers are really versatile. You’ll be able to place one anywhere in the home as they simply plug in and they’re ready to go. They collect water from your laundry in a container which is inside the machine. The dryer will let you know when the container is full and it’s then really easy to remove and empty it.

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Vented tumble dryers are very reliable but can be a little more tricky to position in the home as they use a flexible hose to carry damp and warm air from the drying process to the outside of your home. You can either put the hose through an open window or install a vent in an external wall to take away the moisture.

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Top Tips!

Don’t write Heat Pump Tumble Dryers off because of their price, even though they are the more expensive option, they will save you money on your electricity bills in the long term.

Some Condenser Tumble Dryers can actually be plumbed in, so water will drain away just like in a washing machine. Make sure you get a plumber for this as you may not have readily available pipes for this.

Vented Tumble Dryers are great if you’re on a budget. There are some top branded vented tumble dryers offering really good value for money.

Key Features


Drying Load Capacity

Tumble dryer load capacity refers to the amount of laundry that the appliance can dry, at one time, in terms of weight. The weight is measured in kilograms (kg) and this indicates the maximum weight of wet laundry that the dryer can effectively and efficiently dry in a single cycle.
Choosing the right load capacity for a tumble dryer depends on your household's laundry needs. If you have a small family or only need to dry a few items at a time, a smaller capacity dryer may suffice. On the other hand, larger families or households with heavier laundry loads may benefit from a larger capacity dryer that can handle more laundry in a single cycle.
When considering the load capacity of a tumble dryer, it's important to remember that the weight specified is for wet laundry.

Tumble dryer drum sizes vary depending on the model and type. We have put together the most common sizes and the loads they can handle:

  • 7kg and under - Ideal for a smaller sized family. Can hold up to around 35 T-Shirts or a single duvet.

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  • 8kg and 9kg - Ideal for a medium sized family. Can hold up to around 45 T-Shirts or a double duvet.

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  • 10kg and over - Ideal for a larger sized family. Can hold up to around 60 T-Shirts or a king sized duvet.

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energy ratings

Energy efficiency rating

A Tumble Dryer’s energy rating will tell you how energy efficient the model is. The rating range on a scale from A+++, which is the most efficient, down to D, which is the least efficient.
The energy efficiency rating considers various factors such as the dryer's energy consumption per cycle, the drying performance, and additional features that promote energy savings.
Tumble Dryers with higher energy efficiency ratings often have features such as smart sensors and heat pump technology to optimize drying cycles and minimize energy usage.
Choosing a tumble dryer with a higher energy efficiency rating not only benefits the environment but also offers you the benefit of saving money off your energy bills.

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Stand out features


Smart Connectivity

Smart connectivity means the appliance is Wi-Fi and/or Bluetooth Connected. So you can monitor and control your machine remotely using an app on your smartphone or tablet.
Some smart appliance can even be control with voice command with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.

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Quick Wash

Quick Dry

The quick dry feature on a tumble dryer is designed to provide a faster and more time-efficient drying cycle for smaller loads, and on some machines these cycles can get clothes dry in as little as 15 minutes! Great for when you need to wash a few items quickly and don't want to go through the regular, longer drying cycle.

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Great for allergy or asthma sufferers and those with sensitive skin. The Anti-Allergy program, endorsed by Allergy UK, removes 99.9% of allergens in your laundry including cat, dog, dust mites, and pollen allergens, as well as common bacteria.

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Sensors inside the Tumble Dryer can detect the weight of the laundry load before the start of a cycle and then adjusts the temprature and energy used, as well as the time duration for a more efficient performance.

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Noise level

Noise Level

The Noise level is measured in decibels. Below 75 dB is considered a quiet tumble dryer. Any noise level about 75 dB is considered to be a louder tumble dryer. To compare, 40dB equates to the noise in a public library, whereas 80dB equates to the noise of a ringing phone.

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Delay Timer

Delay Timer

A Delay Timer allows you to set a start, or end, of the cycle usually in 1 hour increments with some allowing up to a 24 hours delay option. It means you can get the programme to run at a time most convenient for you. Ideal for those who have off-peak energy rates or if you want the drying done in time for you to get home.

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Reverse tumble action

Reverse Tumble Action

This feature causes the drum to spin in the opposite direction for part of the drying cycle. This helps to prevent clothes from becoming tangled and helps to distribute the heat more evenly, resulting in more evenly dried clothes. It reduces tangling, improves drying, remove wrinkles and can extend the life of your clothes.

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Reverse tumble action

Makes Ironing Easier

Ironing sure can be a chore! Luckily Tumble Dryers can efficiently and significantly reduce wrinkles and creases meaning items require less time and effort to be ironed. Additionally, some tumble dryers offer special features like steam or wrinkle-reducing cycles, which prevent wrinkles and reduce creases even further.

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Other things to Consider



Tumble dryer warranties vary, but commonly last between 1 to 2 years, but some models will come with an extended warranty, and a some also offer up to 10 years’ cover on the appliances motor. During the warranty period, the manufacturer will replace or repair your machine for free, giving you some extra peace of mind.


Installation & Recyle

To make things easier for you we offer a connection service for our Tumble Dryers. Plus, we also offer a Remove & recycle service, where we remove your old appliance and take it away to be recycled. Saving you the hassle of getting rid of, and moving, your old appliance yourself.
Take a closer look at the details on our tumble dryer connection service »

Frequently asked questions

  • What size tumble dryer do I need?

      It is important to consider the dimensions when choosing a tumble dryer. Standard tumble dryers are 85cm tall and 60cm wide, but the depth can vary depending on the drum size. If you have limited space, you may want to consider a Slimeline tumble dryer, which is typically 46-60cm deep.

  • How often do you need to empty a dryers water tank?

      The tank needs to be emptied regularly to prevent the dryer from overflowing and to ensure that it continues to perform efficiently. How regularly toy need to empty the tank depends on how often you use the dryer and how heavy your loads are. For the best performance, you should empty the tank after every cycle. However, you can wait up to 2-3 cycles before emptying the tank.
      This of course excludes Vented dryers, which do not have a water tank.

  • Can a tumble dryer be installed in a garage or outbuilding?

      Yes, you can place a tumble dryer in the garage or an outbuilding, but if you want to do this the best option would be a vented tumble dryer. Condenser and heat pump tumble dryers shouldn’t be placed outside of the home as they cannot operate properly in temperatures below 5°C, so thier performance will be compromised.

  • Can a Tumble Dryers be built-in?

      Yes, tumble dryers can be built-in and are typically integrated tumble dryers. They are designed to fit into a specific space in your kitchen or laundry room, and they are often finished to match your existing cabinets. Commonly only Heat Pump Tumble Dryers are available as integrated and come in a variety of sizes, so you can find one that fits your needs. They are also more energy-efficient, because they do not require a vent to the outside.

  • Do Tumble Dryers need a water supply?

      No, you do not need a water supply for a tumble dryer, as they collect moisture within the machine. Some heat pump and condenser dryers can be plumbed in, so that the water is drained away automatically. However, this is not necessary, and most can be used without a water supply.

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