Pick my dryer
July 29, 2007 11:59 PM   Subscribe

Laundry Renovation (filter): My wife and I have sold a kidney and are renovating our laundry. The choice of clothes dryers is overwhelming. Can anyone provide me with personal experiences with condenser dryers versus tumble dryers?

I am in Canberra, Australia (if that matters); it is for a family of four; and we live from washing machine to dryer and very rarely use a line. The main issues I would like information on are comparative drying times, capacity and quality of machines. Any other information or opinion is, of course, very welcome.
posted by dangerousdan to Home & Garden (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Here's a Choice (not free, but probably worth it) report on their various tests and assessments of clothes dryers. We've got a similar thing here in the US called Consumer Reports - basically it's a theoretically unbiased look at products by a non-profit organization.
posted by mdonley at 12:12 AM on July 30, 2007

Check your gmail
posted by cwhitfcd at 1:00 AM on July 30, 2007

Thanks for the recommendations to use the Choice report - I am a big fan of Choice and should have mentioned in the question that we have copy of the report. The report does not, unfortunately, give any information about condenser dryers or indeed rate them. The Choice report will guide our purchase if we do not go for a condenser model.
posted by dangerousdan at 2:21 AM on July 30, 2007

I have a condenser dryer and it's fine. Instant install and efficient. Have to empty the water thing but it's good for filling the iron. No problems. Mine is John Lewis in UK. But I suppose the principle is the same.
posted by jennydiski at 4:18 AM on July 30, 2007

Dan, not sure how warm it is where you are, but in the summer a condenser dryer would be miserable in most of the US -- that's one of the reasons they're not common here. (Also, we can pretty much hack our houses apart at will to install a dryer vent, and 90% of houses have one anyway.) At least where I live, in Texas, the dryer would heat the house up so much for the amount of clothes I put through it that I'd pay a ton extra in A/C. If you're on A/C more than four months a year, I'd stick with a normal dryer if you can.
posted by SpecialK at 4:59 AM on July 30, 2007

Condenser dryers suck rocks - they basically cook your clothes, often smell musty, and wrinkle everything to within an inch of its life.

But I'm not biased or anything ;)

(Re: drying times, my *goo* condenser dryer takes about 80 minutes to truly dry a whole load. I generally take them out before then, shake out most of the wrinkles, and let them finish air drying.)
posted by wayward vagabond at 10:03 AM on July 30, 2007

ooops! *goo* = *good*

(spelling, not so much...)
posted by wayward vagabond at 10:03 AM on July 30, 2007

My experience with a condenser dryer is quite similar to wayward vagabond's. Is there a specific reason you are even considering a condenser? The only real reason to have one, as near as I can tell, is if a proper vent is difficult.
posted by sageleaf at 11:53 AM on July 30, 2007

Hmm. We have a Miele Novotronic dryer (chosen because we can't vent-- we're in an apt and it's in an interior closet) and it works really well. It *does* get hot in here in July, but any dryer would, I think. The only negative thing I can think of is that in the winter, it really dries out whatever moisture is in the air and bakes my sinuses. Which can be easily remedied, so it doesn't rate as a big negative. Don't dismiss the condenser dryer-- much probably depends on the brand.
posted by eve harrington at 4:26 PM on July 30, 2007

Hey, wait. I asked the man of the house and he said that the only good reason to have a condensation dryer, even a good one like ours, is if you don't have a choice. He'd opt for a traditional dryer and keep the hot air out of the house. Fair and balanced.
posted by eve harrington at 7:36 PM on August 3, 2007

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