We’ve been living in our new build flat for 10 months now and our Hotpoint integrated washer / dryer has already broken down. An engineer just came out today and confirmed the barrel is completely broken and will need replacing. I spoke to him for a little while and here are few interesting things I learnt…
Developers nearly always install cheap appliances
Property developers don’t care about the quality or longevity of an appliance they install into your home. For them it is a tick-box exercise to install all the appliances a buyer would expect and so typically opt for the cheapest machines they can get their hands on.
Washer dryers are unreliable
Washer dryers are a convenient space saver in properties like ours where there is actually no viable place to install a tumble dryer. However, washer dryers are renowned for having problems and this is simply because of the complexity of a machine that must perform two very different tasks. Purchasing a standard washing machine and using an airer to dry your clothes is a better option. Bear in mind that you can now buy heated clothes airers that will help dry sheets and towels in the humid winter months.
Our washing machine still brandishes a bit orange sticker that reads “10 year parts warranty”. However, I have discovered today that new parts are relatively cheap when it comes to appliances, the biggest cost is the labour and, of course, the 1 year purchase warranty (covering labour) had already expired for us. Since the washing machine was new, we didn’t think we’d need to bother purchasing any insurance cover but in hindsight this might have been a good move.
AEG is a reliable home appliance brand
Our engineer who works for Hotpoint / Whilrpool (and can presumably therefore get discount on these products) told us he himself bought AEG branded appliances for his home. This German company builds high spec, reliable machines that last. Although, AEG appliance prices are a bit on the steep side, you pay for what you get. Which.co.uk is a good resource for comprehensive reviews.
He also recommended purchasing your washing machine from John Lewis because all of their appliances are covered by their 2 year warranty and their customer service is excellent.
How much is a new washing machine?
I would not advise purchasing a washing machine that costs less than £350 as chances are it will break down before too long. Some premium washing machines can cost upwards of £700, however, and feels like too much in my opinion, unless you have a family and will be highly dependant on a machine.
Remember that you will have to pay to have the new machine fitted, and perhaps also the old machine taken away. John Lewis charge £90 and £20, respectfully, for these services.