I'd like to tell you about the new clothes dryer we purchased in February. We had to replace our 16-year-old Whirlpool Gold dryer (we still have the matching washing machine) and had to do so fairly quickly. Our priorities: size, durability and price. Our old dryer was basic; it didn't have fancy bells and whistles, so I didn't feel like I needed a new dryer with all the snazzy features manufacturers offer these days (though I know people who swear by them). We just needed something that would fit the tight space of our "laundry room" (actually a closet in the kitchen), and we didn't want to spend a lot. Durability and quality was also important.
I asked around for recommendations and one of my coworkers suggested SpeedQueen. He and his wife bought a SpeedQueen washer and have been very happy with it. I hadn't even heard of SpeedQueen until then, so I did some research. Their products are made in the U.S. -- Wisconsin to be exact -- and they are known for their commercial-grade washers and dryers. You can read here what makes SpeedQueen different. One thing I like is that the cabinet is made of commercial-grade steel, not plastic. The company also offers a decent warranty: 5 times longer than the industry standard for models with electronic controls, and 3 times longer for models with mechanical controls. Most new dryers offer electronic controls, but I think they can be more problematic, so I opted for manual.
The verdict? Our new SpeedQueen (or "Steve McQueen," as I refer to it) is great. The first load I dried in it were towels, and they dried a good 15 to 20 minutes faster than in our old dryer. This made me very happy! It's also quieter than our old dryer, though it may not be as quiet as some of the other models on the market. All in all, we're very satisfied.
The stainless steel interior is lit, which I love (our old one wasn't). And the lint trap is inside the machine at the very front, so it's super easy to clean. In fact, my husband is probably sick of hearing me say each time I do laundry that I love cleaning the lint trap. But really, for 16+ years I hated cleaning our old dryer's lint trap. It was at the back of the machine, on top, so I had to move the clothes hamper each time and pull out that long screen, which sent lint dust everywhere. It was a pain!
Our new dryer is narrower than the old one, so we were able to scoot it over a bit, closer to the washer, giving us some precious room to add a three-tier chrome shelving unit, which I purchased online from Walmart (I'm not a Walmart shopper, but after doing a lot of looking, I selected this one for its size).
When the time comes for us to buy a new washing machine, I will definitely get a SpeedQueen. They still make top-loading machines with an agitator, which I think is hard to find now. But I hear people say the new machines without agitators don't clean clothes as well. What brand and style of washer and dryer do you have? Are there certain features you swear by? Please share!
It's funny, but this little chrome cart has actually made me quite happy. Since we won't have room for the wicker hamper in the mudroom once the new storage cabinet arrives, we needed someplace safe to store the dog food (so Ella can't get into it). We now keep the container of dog food, their bowls, salmon oil supplement and treats on the top shelf (so much handier than our old setup). On the middle and bottom shelves are laundry supplies and my iron. This has freed up space on the shelves above the washer and dryer, which serve as our "pantry." Sometimes all it takes is a little rearranging and rethinking how to use space differently to make a big impact. When you live in a home for a long time, you get used to how things are and don't stop to consider other options. Reorganizing and getting rid of things that aren't used are top on my list right now. And it feels great!