Tumble Dryer Energy Efficiency
We’d all like to reduce our energy bills, and buying energy efficient appliances is a great place to start. Tumble dryers have a reputation for being expensive to run, but modern models have lots of energy saving features to help you cut costs.
Energy Efficiency Rating
If you’d like to buy an energy efficient tumble dryer, look at the energy efficiency rating.
This comes from the European Union and is a good way of quickly comparing different machines.
Until 2013, the highest rating an appliance could earn was A, but since then this has been increased to A+++, in line with the ratings for dishwashers and washing machines. Most tumble dryers in use today are far below this standard, with over 60% having only a C rating.
Other Information on the Label
EU energy labels also give you the average energy usage in kWh per year.
This is a more accurate way of comparing machines than the A+++ to G rating, as each letter grade covers a range of efficiencies.
If you know how much your electricity or gas is, you can even work out roughly how much the dryer will cost to run. Sometimes this is stated in the specification too.
Types of Tumble Dryer
There are several types of tumble dryer and some run more efficiently than others. See the types section of our guide for more information.
Heat pump condenser dryers are the most efficient and account for most of the models rated A and above. Gas-powered vented tumble dryers benefit from cheaper fuel costs, but the initial price of these is often high.
Some of the most efficient models cost as little as £30 to run over the year, compared with around £100 a year for a traditional tumble dryer. This can save you hundreds of pounds over the lifetime of the appliance.
Some of the most efficient models cost as little as £30 to run over the year.
Making sure you buy the right size appliance for your household can go a long way to helping you improve its efficiency.
If your home tends to generate lots of washing, a smaller appliance may have to run more cycles to get through it all. A model that has a larger drum capacity could reduce the number of cycles you run, potentially saving you money.
Similarly, making sure the tumble dryer is properly loaded before starting a cycle aids efficiency as you can cut down the number of times the appliance has to run.
For added convenience, it’s worth getting a tumble dryer that has the same drum capacity as your washing machine. That way, wet laundry can be quickly transferred from one to the other. See here for more information.
Sensor Drying for Better Efficiency
Invest in a model with sensor drying technology for a more effective cycle.
The tumble dryer automatically detects how wet your laundry is and stops when it judges the load is dry. This prevents the appliance from using energy unnecessarily, helping to cut down costs.
Handy Tips for Drying
There are other things you can do to help your tumble dryer out and make it more efficient.
If you have a washing machine with a high spin speed, this can help improve the efficiency of your tumble dryer. Running a high-speed spin cycle removes excess moisture in the laundry, reducing the time and energy the tumble dryer needs to dry the load.
Fluff and lint get caught in the filters of your tumble dryer during a cycle. It’s a good idea to clean these before every session, as a blocked filter can reduce the circulation of hot air inside the appliance. This makes it harder for the appliance to get everything dry, and is especially important for condenser dryers with a heat pump.
Dryer balls can also be very handy. Put one of these in with your clothes and it helps keep them separate, reducing the likelihood of tangled up laundry. Untangled laundry is tumbled more effectively and hot air is circulated better.
Running a high-speed spin cycle removes excess moisture in the laundry, reducing the time and energy the tumble dryer needs to dry the load.