Deciding that you need to get yourself a tumble dryer is just the first step. The sooner you start your research, the faster you’ll realize that this is one of the many decisions you’re about to make. You’re going to ask yourself things like How do I choose a tumble dryer? or What size tumble dryer should I get?, inevitably followed by Which type of dryer is best?
Choosing between vented and condenser is no easy job. If you lack the right information, you’ll either make the wrong choice or risk finding it so daunting that you might as well give up buying one. Lucky for you, this guide will get you out of trouble.
Check some of the best heat pump, condenser, or vented tumble dryers you can find on the market, reviewed below. And don’t skip the buying guide from the end, either. All the features that make a difference are detailed throughout the article. So, take your time and read it carefully!
Best Heat Pump Tumble Dryers
Best Overall1Samsung Heat Pump Tumble Dryer
Best OverallSamsung Heat Pump Tumble Dryer
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|2||Candy Heat Pump Tumble Dryer||
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1. Samsung Heat Pump Tumble Dryer
- 9 kg load capacity and 14 programmes.
- Equipped with a digital inverter motor.
- A+++ energy rating.
- 2-year warranty.
This freestanding tumble dryer from Samsung is one of the best heat pump dryers you’ll come around.
It has an extra-large drying capacity and more than enough drying programmes to choose from. Not to mention that its 63 dB maximum noise level is easily comparable to the one of a silent washing machine.
The moisture and temperature sensors that it comes with will make smart adjustments to the drying time.
The way the sensors work, coupled with the energy-efficient functionality, ensures that it will function the minimum amount of time necessary, drying your clothes with delicacy and avoiding fabric damages.
- Excellent load capacity.
- Improved drying performances & energy efficiency.
- Adjusts the drying time to protect your clothes.
- Features anti-crease function.
- Won’t perfectly dry all clothes from a mixed load.
- Some programmes take a really long time.
2. Candy Heat Pump Tumble Dryer
- 9 kg load capacity with 14 drying programmes.
- Supports NFC connection and voice assistant.
- Digital display with dial control, time remaining, reservoir full, and filter full indicator.
- A++ energy rating.
With a fabulous 9 kg load capacity, this freestanding heat pump tumble dryer from Candy is a must-have for large families or households where washing is a frequent chore.
It features 14 programmes and 4 dry levels. But its most special feature is actually the sensor dry technology. That one makes it work effectively and reduces the programme length accordingly!
If you’re into smart appliances, you’re going to love it even more. NFC connected, it pairs with an app where you can check your washes statistics and even download new programmes.
Should you ever feel lazy, suffice to use the voice function, tell it what fabrics and colours you’re washing, how dirty they are, and let it pick the drying cycle for you. Amazing, right?
- Great size and decent noise level.
- Lots of practical indicators on the display.
- Smart functionality and easy control.
- Energy-efficient operation.
- Some users will find the delay timer a tad tricky.
- Warranty limited to only one year.
Best Condenser Tumble Dryers
Best For Higher Budgets1Bosch Condenser Tumble Dryer
Best For Higher BudgetsBosch Condenser Tumble Dryer
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|2||Beko Condenser Tumble Dryer||
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1. Bosch Condenser Tumble Dryer
- 8 kg drying capacity condenser tumble dryer with freestanding installation.
- Sensor and timed programmes with fully electronic control dial.
- AntiVibration design and sensitive drying technology.
- Drum interior light and condensed water container.
Gentle not only with your ears, but also with your clothes and skin, the Bosch Condenser Tumble Dryer makes a top-tier choice, for which you’ll gladly want to pay.
It features an oversized ComfortDisplay that makes orientation super simple and intuitive. Which means you’ll easily navigate through all its drying cycles, from Shirts 15 to Super Quick 40, with Allergy+, Woollens, Sportswear, and many others in between.
Just like the exterior, the interior is nicely designed, featuring drum light, a container for the condensed water, an EasyClean filter, and an AntiVibration design that makes it both stable and quiet.
If you love having options and you’re looking for a large dryer, this may be the one!
- Above average drying capacity.
- Touch control buttons allow fine tuning.
- Perfect for allergy-sensitive skins.
- Straightforward operation and practical design.
- Comes with a hefty price.
- Energy efficiency class B.
2. Beko Condenser Tumble Dryer
- Medium drying capacity, with a 7 kg drum.
- Selection of 15 sensor drying programmes and timed programmes.
- Dries with an anti-creasing function by default.
- Reverse action drum design with auto cool down phase.
Beko is known as a manufacturer of both user- and budget-friendly appliances. With this 7 kg condenser tumble dryer, the value it provides is hard to overlook.
Even though it is medium-sized and falls within the B energy efficiency class, it will wow you in many ways.
For once, you can choose to rely on its water tank with full indicator light, or hook it up to the drain and forget dealing with the tank.
It has a bi-directional drum action that will prevent clothes from staying tangled. Also, it blows cool air at the end of the drying cycle, so you can empty it right after the buzz sound.
Chances are you haven’t seen too many dryers with all these functions so far, have you?
- Easy to load, set up, and maintain.
- Separates clothes and reduces creasing.
- Doesn’t require to manually empty the water tank.
- Provides great value for the money.
- Requires frequent cleaning because of a sensitive filter sensor.
- Only 1-year warranty provided by the manufacturer.
Best Vented Tumble Dryers
Best For Low Budgets1Cookology Mini Vented Dryer
Best For Low BudgetsCookology Mini Vented Dryer
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|2||Hoover Vented Tumble Dryer||
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1. Cookology Mini Vented Dryer
- Mini vented tumble dryer with 2.5 kg drum.
- 5 drying programmes and 2 heat settings.
- Uni-directional drying with 200 min timer.
- C energy efficiency rating.
Cookology caters the needs of anyone living in a small house. With this mini vented dryer, you’re getting the ideal option to dry your clothes in a compact kitchen, a small rented condo, or even a mobile home or a camper van.
At only 17 kg and with a 2.5 kg drying capacity, it is small, compact, and ready to place anywhere, including on a wall.
The 5 drying programmes with low/high heat settings will allow you to air dry with cool, warm, or hot air.
What’s more, you’ll be getting an irresistible price tag and a decent 12-month manufacturer guarantee. Believe it or not, it even features the Anti-Wrinkle drying option!
- Works with both cool and warm air.
- Takes little space and can be placed anywhere.
- Comes at an affordable price.
- Designed with carry handles.
- Ducting pipe and wall brackets sold separately.
- Limited drying capacity.
2. Hoover Vented Tumble Dryer
- 10 kg vented tumble dryer with C energy efficiency rating.
- 15 drying programmes and 2 drying temperatures.
- 3 special cycles for pre-iron, rapid drying, and wool.
- Front load design with large porthole and 1800 opening.
Want an extra-large dryer that you can control from your phone? Hoover is ready to provide you a highly-versatile vented tumble dryer that does just that.
Apart from the convenience of drying large or just lots of items at once and managing the dryer remotely, there are many other aspects you’ll love about this model.
You can choose to tweak its presets and work with one of the 15 drying programmes. Or simply trust its 4 Sensor Dry levels to automatically adjust the drying process depending on what you load.
Whenever you’re in a hurry, the 45-minute rapid programme will come in handy. While if you don’t have the time to iron, you can use the Pre-iron cycle to relax creases. What more could you wish for?
- Extra drying capacity for large households.
- Versatile range of programmes for all types of laundry.
- Smart appliance control over the phone.
- Includes vent kit and hose in the package.
- Could use clearer instructions for the drying programmes.
- Vent pipe requires frequent cleaning.
Tumble Dryer Buying Guide
Types of Tumble Dryer
The type of tumble dryer you choose will give you more or less flexibility in where exactly you can install it in your home. It will also make a more or less affordable option.
Not to mention it will dictate the costs with your electricity bills. Take a look at the three main types of tumble dryers:
Heat Pump Tumble Dryer
This is the newest model, relying on advanced technology. It basically extracts the water from your laundry with hot air. What it gets is then evaporated in a special tank, recirculating the air.
Given the sophisticated working principle, as well as its high energy efficiency, a heat pump tumble dryer will be among the most expensive options.
Condenser Tumble Dryer
Mid-way between heat pump and vented models, the condenser tumble dryer simply condenses steam. Then, it collects the water obtained in the process in a built-in reservoir.
One can empty the reservoir directly at the sink once it gets filled. Such a unit is rather average-priced and more practical and convenient to use than a vented model.
Vented Tumble Dryer
As one of the oldest models, the vented tumble dryer can be just as effective as a condenser model. The main advantage it brings is that it is significantly more affordable than the alternatives.
Its main drawback, however, is that it depends on a window or a sink. It doesn’t have a reservoir of its own, and the water obtained by pumping out the hot air is vented through a hose.
All tumble dryers, regardless of the model, are built with a standard height and width of 85 cm, respectively 60 cm. Depending on the size of the drum you select, which typically varies from 7 to 10 kg, the depth also changes.
A larger unit might measure 60 x 65 x 85 cm, whereas a small tumble dryer can be sized at 60 x 60 x 85 cm.
A slim tumble dryer can be 5 cm narrower, at 60 x 55 x 85 cm.
Whereas a really small one, like a mini tumble dryer with a drum of less than 5 kg, can be sized at 43 x 53 x 85 cm. If you want to save space, you can always opt for one of the tumble dryers.
We’ve already seen that the vented tumble dryers need to stay close to an eviction source to vent water outside. From this perspective but not only, a tumble dryer can be designed for a particular type of positioning.
An integrated tumble dryer is built for installation behind a furniture door. Its front is invisible and the furniture where you place it will keep its streamlined look, without letting any door handle or button stand out visually.
A portable tumble dryer is usually smaller. As mentioned, it will most likely be a vented model or a condenser one. Small or mini tumble dryers are also more likely to be portable. They are similar in size to a portable washing machine.
Drum size typically varies between 7 and 10 kg.
A 9 or 10 kg tumble dryer can take in up to 50 T-shirts at once, or a King duvet, and it is ideal for large families.
An 8 or just a 7 kg tumble dryer will handle up to 40 T-shirts and a double or queen duvet, serving a medium family.
However, there are options left for small families or for those with limited space, too. A small 3 or 5 kg tumble dryer would make a compromise, provided its energy rating is taken into account.
The capacity of a tumble dryer will directly impact its energy efficiency. The larger the drying capacity, the higher its efficiency. Inside a large drying chamber, the laundry will dry faster than in a small or compact dryer.
So, the heat pump tumble dryers typically have the highest energy efficiency rating. If you want a tumble dryer A+++ rated, you’ll have to look at this product category.
The next best energy-efficient tumble dryer would be a condenser, followed by the vented dryer, with a C rating.
The noise level is very important in a tumble dryer, especially since most models need between 2 and 4 hours of operation for a full drying cycle.
A really quiet tumble dryer can be around 60 dB, the equivalent of a conversation sound level. Yet the average is around 70 dB.
Tumble Dryer Vent Kit
A tumble dryer vent kit is a set of accessories required for a vented tumble dryer. It consists of an exhaust hood (with or without removable guard), a dryer transition duct, and a pair of adjustable clamps.
A vented tumble dryer should include its tumble dryer vent kit in the package. Though purchasing a particular model separately is still an option.
An average price for a good quality tumble dryer should be around £500 or £600. For a cheap tumble dryer, one can expect to pay even approximately £300, whereas the top-of-the-range models will get closer to £1000.
The more expensive models should be more energy-efficient, feature fast drying programmes, or include automatic sensor controls and advanced technology for self-cleaning.
Wi-Fi connectivity and remote control through dedicated apps will also significantly increase the price.
Frequently Asked Questions
A heat pump tumble dryer will absorb moisture from wet laundry with hot air. But instead of releasing that hot air, like conventional models do, it will conserve it and reuse it.
This makes it approximately 50% more energy efficient. Cheaper to run and an eco-friendlier option, it protects the fabrics better, as the drying temperature stays lower.
Basically, the heat pump tumble dryer starts the cycle by generating hot air to absorb the moisture from the clothes. Once this hot air passes through the drum, it ends up in the evaporator.
In there, moisture is subjected to condensation. The resulting water is stored into a tank.
The remaining air is re-heated and re-circulated, sent back to the drum, where it goes through the same process, again and again, until the clothes are fully dried.
A vented tumble dryer vents the moisture straight outside. It typically has a lower upfront cost. Plus, it is more tempting for those who don’t want to worry about emptying a reservoir.
Their main drawbacks, however, are that they can’t be placed anywhere in the house, and that the initial low cost is shadowed by the future higher energy bills.
A condenser tumble dryer is better than a vented one, despite having a higher price point. In the long run, it will help you save more with the electricity bills.
Most condenser models have a sensor and notify you when the time comes to empty the reservoir. But still, most likely, you’ll only have to empty the tank at the end of the drying cycle.
The answer varies a lot, depending on the capacity of the dryer and the type of laundry. The thicker the clothes – typically the cold-season clothes or the fluffy cotton towels – and the smaller the drum, the longer the tumble dryer will take.
An average wash load can take about 45 minutes in a good quality tumble dryer. But if you’re stashing in a full 10 kg drum of clothes, it may take you up to 4 hours.
Cleaning a tumble dryer is a straightforward process. You’ll have to:
- Make sure that the dryer is turned off;
- Use a stainless-steel cleaning formula to clean the drum and the crevices;
- Remove the lint filter, manually remove the fluff, and even wash it with warm water in case that the manufacturer advises you to do so;
- Then, vacuum the entire area of the lint filter;
- Finally, unscrew the panel from the back of the dryer and vacuum the surface from around the blower area.
An average dryer will use approximately 3 kilowatt hours of energy. This value can be lower or higher depending on how energy-efficient the dryer is, and whether it’s a heat pump, a condenser, or a vented dryer.
Since the latter carries a C rating, it typically takes the most kilowatt hours of energy.
If searching for the best tumble dryer used to make your head spin, that’s not the case anymore. Now you know you should be focusing on one of the best models out there.
Or that it’s probably a good idea to pay more upfront, for a condenser or a heat pump model, so that your energy bills will stay low while your comfort will rise substantially.