Consumer Reports tests best compact washers and dryers

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- 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 just tested compact washers and dryers to find out which ones deliver the best cleaning.

Among the many advantages of renter Jordan Hook's new city apartment - 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," said Hook.

Consumer Reports just tested about a dozen compact washers and dryers. They're just like regular ones - only smaller - 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 from 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," added Janeway.

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 from Consumer Reports.

Consumer Reports says the $2700 dollar Bosch 800 series set with a ventless dryer is a very good choice.

If you have access to a vent, you can opt for a Samsung compact washer and dryer set for about $2100 dollars. Both the Bosch and this Samsung offer very good washing and drying performance.
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