Consumer Reports: Compact washers, dryers

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Just because space is tight in your apartment or home doesn't mean you have to lug your laundry to a laundromat to get it washed. Consumer Reports tested compact washers and dryers to find out which ones deliver the best cleaning. (WLS)

Just because space is tight in your apartment or home doesn't mean you have to lug your laundry to a laundromat to get it washed. Consumer Reports tested compact washers and dryers to find out which ones deliver the best cleaning.

Among the many advantages of Jordan Hook's new city apartment were a washer and dryer. While the apartment is short on extra space, it can still accommodate this compact washer and dryer.

"It's a huge time saver. I can do it at my own convenience versus having to work around the time and hours of the laundromat," Hook said.

Consumer Reports tested about a dozen compact washers and dryers. They're just like regular ones, only smaller. They're 24 inches wide, 34 inches high and the sets can be stacked.

Unfortunately, the price tags aren't smaller. But can they perform as well? Consumer Reports ran cleaning and efficiency tests on all the compact machines.

"We also measure noise and vibration levels. A loud washer or dryer may be a deal breaker for some," said Kimberly Janeway, Consumer Reports.

Turns out, vibration was an issue for many of the compacts.

"When we stacked the washer and dryer pairs, we found vibration didn't change much and in fact it's one of their drawbacks. But having a washer and dryer in your home may be better than going to a laundromat," Janeway said.

With dryers there are two choices: vented or ventless.

"Ventless dryers condense the moisture out of the humid exhaust air instead of venting it outside. This comes in handy if you live in an apartment or condo where you may not have access to an outside wall," said Emilio Gonzalez, Consumer Reports.

Consumer Reports said this $2,700 Bosch 800 series set with a ventless dryer is a very good choice (Washer Model #WAT28402UC/Dryer Model # WTG86402UC).

If you have access to a vent you can opt for a Samsung compact washer and dryer set (Washer Model # WW2K6800AW, Dryer Model # DV22K6800EW) for about $2,100.

Both the Bosch and this Samsung offer very good washing and drying performance.

All Consumer Reports Material Copyright 2017. Consumers Union of U.S. Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Consumer Reports is a not for profit organization which accepts no advertising. It has no commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor on this site. For more information visit consumer.org
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