The New Dryer: Dryer isn’t always better

It might be time to get a new dryer, because your old one is getting your laundry too dry.

“If you upgrade from an old dryer, your clothing will dry better and in a shorter amount of time,” says Michael Greenwald, owner of M&M Appliance in the District’s Takoma Park.

Newer models with increased airflow and moisture sensors turn off when they gauge clothing is ready, saving energy and money and being gentler on fabrics. Others have improved tumbling so your sheets won’t come out tangled into a giant ball.

Some dryers can be programmed to fit your lifestyle. Custom button options on certain models can help you teach your 9-year-old to do laundry: you can create a special setting for their polyester sports uniforms.


LOW: Whirlpool Cabrio HE Electric Dryer with Eco Monitor WED5600XW measures moisture and temperature levels and stops cycle when load is dry. Sound-absorbing materials around the dryer drum reduce noise, and it has an interior light. 7.4 cubic feet. $549. (Whirlpool/WHIRLPOOL)

WHAT’S NEW:

· Misting steam. Water misted into the dryer releases wrinkles and refreshes the fabric.

· Delay start. Load up and program machine to start at 5 a.m. along with your coffeemaker.

· Multiple moisture sensors. Better monitoring of your loads

LOW, MEDIUM, HIGH:

Michael Greenwald, owner of M&M Appliance at 6201 Blair Rd. NW, recommends these dryers from his store’s selection.

Whirlpool Cabrio HE Electric Dryer with Eco Monitor WED5600XW

Measures moisture and temperature levels and stops cycle when load is dry. Sound-absorbing materials around the dryer drum reduce noise. Interior light. 7.4 cubic feet. $549.

Frigidaire Affinity Front Load Electric Dryer in Classic Silver FASE7073LA

Sanitize cycle refreshes delicate items or stuffed animals. Steam option removes wrinkles and freshens clothes. Delay start option. 7.0 cubic feet. $799. ($699 in white; shown with optional $318 pedestal)

Electrolux Wave-Touch Front-Load Dryer in Turquoise Sky EWMED70JTS

Multiple custom button features. Fast Steam option refreshes a load of wash in 15 minutes. Specialty cycles for pet beds or synthetic workout gear, among other needs. Long venting capability for maximum performance. 8.0 cubic feet. $1,599. (White is $1,499; shown with optional $249
pedestal)

OPERATING TIPS:

· Clean lint filter. Remove lint after every load to speed up drying. Regularly inspect and clean outside duct.

· Ducting. Use rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal ducting as specified by the manufacturer.

· Don’t stuff it full. Leave room in your loads for air to circulate. Air flow helps get the moisture out quicker and loads will be less wrinkled.

SHOP SMART:

1. A dryer with moisture sensors, which automatically shut off the dryer when clothes are dry, saves energy and money. It is also easier on your clothing, cutting down on shrinking and fading.

2. Dryer capacities are from about 6 to 8 cubic feet. Large households can save time by investing in a larger unit.

3. Many dryers are now being installed upstairs near the bedrooms. If that’s your situation, seek out models that are made to operate more quietly. And consider branching out from basic white to a statement color such as silver, red or blue.

BY THE NUMBERS:

81

Percentage of U.S. households that own a dryer. (Source: Euromonitor International)

3 things you shouldn’t put in your dryer:

1. Cashmere socks or sweaters
2. Iron-on decals
3. Clothing that may have gasoline on it.
(Source: Tremitchell Wright of Whirlpool Institute of Fabric Science)

13

Average number of years a dryer lasts. (Source: Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers)

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The home and design coverage of Jura Koncius has taken her inside hundreds of homes, from tiny studios in Penn Quarter to country castles in Warrenton. Jura also hosts the Home Front live chat, Thursdays at 11 a.m. ET.
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