​Tumble Dryer Buying Guide

Tumble dryers speed up the drying process when it comes to your laundry. They will have your clothes feeling warm, dry and soft. No more air-drying or wondering if the washing on your line is safe from the elements. We’re here to help you choose the right tumble dryer for your home.

Tumble Dryer Types


A freestanding tumble dryer can be placed anywhere so long as there is an electricity supply. This type of tumble dryer is ideal for households that need flexibility. There are three different types of freestanding tumble dryer. These are vented, condenser, and heat pump tumble dryers.

Vented tumble dryers, like the Indesit 8kg Vented Tumble Dryer, use the air around themselves to dry your clothes. The appliance heats this air in order to dry your clothes. Once this is finished, the water that has been extracted from your clothes is vented through a hose at the back of the machine- thus where the name ‘vented tumble dryer’ comes from. This means that the machine needs to be placed near an external wall so that the hose can pass through a fitted vent, and the water can go outside. This may not be suitable for smaller and more compact living conditions. That being said, due to the fact that the water is placed outside, this type of appliance is ideal for environments that are prone to moisture-damage. Vented tumble dryers are also quicker at drying clothes than condenser tumble dryers. This may suit larger households or busy families who wish to save time. The shorter drying time means that vented dryers generally don’t use a lot of electricity as well. This can keep the long-term operating costs down.

Condenser tumble dryers dry clothes by separating the water from the damp air that circulates inside the machine. The water is deposited into an isolated reservoir. This reservoir can be emptied after the cycle is finished. This means that the machine does not need to be installed next to an external wall. It can be kept anywhere, which may be suitable for smaller living arrangements, however, it is recommended that the area you choose should be well-ventilated in order to prevent the growth of mould. Condenser tumble dryers use slightly less electricity than vented tumble dryers, but due to their longer running times, this does not make a significant difference.

Heat pump tumble dryers such as the Bosch Self-Cleaning 8kg Heat Pump Dryer, require far less energy to dry your clothes. These appliances use a heat pump (as per the title) which quickly cools the warm air as it leaves the drum of the machine. Similar to the condenser tumble dryers, this moisture is brought to a reservoir container. However, unlike the condenser dryer, this air is reheated and passed back into the drum to continue drying the clothes. This use of recycled air makes for a more energy-efficient drying process. They are slower than vented or condensed dryers, as they do not reach the same high temperatures, but are much more environmentally friendly than either of the traditional dryers.


An integrated tumble dryer is placed under a counter and is hidden with a custom door panel. Integrated machines are usually smaller and may have less additional features, however they are great for blending in with the rest of your room and aid in interior design. These type of appliances often need professional help when they are being installed.

Tumble Dryer Size

Tumble dryers generally measure at 850mm high, and 600mm in width. There are more compact versions if needed though. The depth of the tumble dryer can vary greatly and usually measures between 580mm and 655mm. It is important to ensure that your new tumble dryer will fit where you want it to.

Tumble Dryer Drum Size

There is a general standard when it comes to the height and width of a tumble dryer, however, there are large differences when it comes to drum sizes. Drum sizes range from 5kg to 13kg. This means, that you can choose whichever suits your lifestyle and family size. 5-7kg are often recommended for one or two people, while anything over 10kg would suit a large family. Any size in between would be ideal for the average family wash load size.

Measuring For A New Tumble Dryer

If you already have a tumble dryer, measure the height of the space from the floor in front of it, to the underside of the countertop over it. If you do not have a tumble dryer already, measure in front of the space that you wish to install your new appliance.

You also need to measure the width of the space, and the depth. Don’t forget to measure anything that is within that space, such as pipes and electrical boxes, as these will need to be taken into consideration when you are installing your tumble dryer. Integrated tumble dryers have a standard height and width, so you only need to measure the depth before purchasing one of these if you already have one fitted.

Energy Ratings

Energy ratings are something to watch out for when purchasing any electrical appliance. Energy ratings are there to help make decisions based off of the eco-friendliness and long-term running cost of the product. Appliances that are A-rated are very energy-efficient, while G-rated appliances use a lot of energy to run. These ratings are becoming increasingly important as the conversation surrounding global warming continues. Tumble dryers are traditionally one of the least eco-friendly appliances, however, the heat pump technology is improving these ratings greatly.


Dark colours are easier to keep clean, while bright colours can make the environment look bigger. Grey or silver can give you the best of both worlds and is easier to clean, is easy on the eye and can still give your home a spacious and modern feel to it.

Other Considerable Features

Sensor Dry

If a tumble dryer as a sensor dry feature, such as the Bosch Serie | 4 7kg Condenser Tumble Dryer, this means that the appliance has sensors that can monitor the moisture levels and load weight. The dryer then adjusts the running time to suit that particular load. This is a very useful feature to ensure that your clothes are dry, but that the machine is not running for longer than needed to do so.

Reverse Action Drum

Not a fan of ironing? Well then you may want a dryer with a reverse action drum. This component means that the direction of the drum’s rotation switches throughout the cycle. The result is that your clothes come out evenly dried and are less creased, making the job of ironing a lot easier and quicker.

Child Lock

Have you got little ones (or not-so-little ones) who might open the door or tamper with the settings while your clothes are drying? If so, you might want to consider keeping an eye out for this feature. Some tumble dryers include door locks and control panel locks. This greatly reduces the chances of your drying cycle from being changed or interrupted prematurely.

Delay Start

This function allows you to set the time for when your tumble dryer starts its cycle. This is useful if you need the cycle to start a certain time, such as first thing in the morning. Some apartments don’t allow noisy appliances after a certain time at night.

Specialised Programmes

Some tumble dryers have special programmes for specific types of clothing. An example is for sportswear. This programme will remove sweat stains and odours. This is done by using a longer cycle with a lower temperature so that the materials won’t be damaged. Other potential programmes could be used for runners, wool clothing and other delicates that might get damaged in a normal load.

Smart Technology

Advancements in technology now mean that some tumble dryers have smart features. This will allow you to start, stop and pause your loads using a Wi-Fi connection on your smartphone or other smart device. This is handy if you’re at work and realised that you put the washing into the machine but forgot to switch it on.


With such a large range of machines to choose from, we’ve made a list of some of our most trusted brands that have been proven to provide high-quality products.

2nd Mar 2022

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