Canstar Blue’s 2019 clothes dryer review has seen Simpson, Bosch, Electrolux, LG, Haier and Fisher & Paykel compared on their performance and reliability, value for money, quietness, design, additional functionality and overall satisfaction.
See our Ratings Methodology.
Many Aussies are lucky in that drying clothes during the summer months is quite literally a breeze. However, it’s not so easy for others, and when winter arrives, we’re all left wondering what to do with those wet socks and undies. Sure, if you leave them outside for long enough, they’ll dry eventually, but what if you’re in desperate need for some clean, dry clothes? You may need a clothes dryer!
A clothes dryer (or tumble dryer, if you prefer) can be the unsung hero of your laundry room. Our latest survey on the subject found that 41% of respondents use a clothes dryer after every wash. It’s there for you throughout the year, but especially during the colder months when school uniforms and work shirts need drying, pronto!
You might think that all clothes dryers are more or less the same, but our customer ratings suggest otherwise. They should all get the basic job done perfectly fine (i.e. they’ll dry your clothes), but the manner, and time, in which they do so can vary significantly. That’s why you should do your research now – to avoid getting your head in a spin later.
So, where can you find the best clothes dryers in Australia? To offer some guidance, Canstar Blue produces an annual review of clothes dryer brands, asking consumers across the country what they think of the dryer they own and operate. Our customer ratings are based on the responses of those who have purchased a new dryer in the last three years, giving you an idea of what to expect should you choose one of the reviewed brands. For the third year in a row, Aussie-born brand Simpson has been rated the highest, achieving five-star reviews in key areas, including overall satisfaction.
Canstar Blue’s latest clothes dryer review saw six major brands compared, rated in the following order for overall customer satisfaction:
Simpson leads the way with five stars for overall satisfaction, followed by Bosch with four stars, with Electrolux, LG, Haier and Fisher & Paykel bringing up the rear on three stars overall. It’s worth pointing out that Simpson is an Australian brand owned by Swedish appliance manufacturer Electrolux, making their respective outcomes in our 2019 ratings intriguing.
Read on for a guide to the six brands in this year’s review, in addition to some of the best brands that didn’t receive the minimum sample size required to be included. We’ll then provide details on different types of clothes dryers, their features and what you need to consider before buying to help you navigate the market.
To help you decide which clothes dryer will be best for your needs and budget, here’s a guide to some of the leading brands in Australia.
One of the cheapest brands around when it comes to clothes dryers, Simpson offers a very concise range of vented clothes dryers based on size capacity. The Simpson ‘Ezi Loader’ series offers vented dryers with a 4.5kg, 5.5kg or 6.5kg capacity, which naturally has an impact on their cost. Prices can vary between retailers, but the recommended retail price tags range from $449 to $649.
Across the full range, you can expect a stainless-steel drum, child safety lock door, and a simple rotary dial control that allows you to select a drying time and start the cycle. Dryers boast a reverse tumbling action where the drum alternates between spinning clockwise and anti-clockwise to reduce the chances of clothes tangling. They also feature a delicates setting, with lower temperatures, while the ‘Auto Cool Down’ function – part of the final drying cycle – helps to reduce creasing.
If space is an issue, Simpson’s clothes dryers can be wall-mountable, with all models rated 1.5 stars for energy efficiency, with a two-year warranty.
Simpson was rated best overall, as well as for performance, value for money and design, receiving four stars for quietness and three stars for additional functionality.
Simpson’s clothes dryers comprise of the following models:
Bosch has a wide range of vented, condenser and heat pump clothes dryers, which generally command premium price tags. Even Bosch’s vented dryers can cost upwards of $450, while its high-end heat pump dryers often come with prices of more than $2,500. However, for the money you should get quality with large capacities and good energy efficiency scores. Sizes range from 7kg to 9kg.
Some of the features you will find across the Bosch range include moisture sensors, claimed to monitor the temperature and moisture throughout the drying process, in order to dry your clothes to a selected setting. In addition, some Bosch dryers feature AntiVibration side walls, stated to reduce vibration, provide greater stability and in turn, reduce noise – even during the spin cycle.
Bosch’s heat pump clothes dryers are also boasted for eight-star energy efficiency ratings, thanks to the ‘ActiveAir’ technology that reuses existing heat during the drying cycle, giving you efficient dryers but at a rather premium price. Its vented and condenser dryers have lower energy efficiency ratings, and as such, generally lower prices.
Bosch was joint-top for value for money, quietness and additional functionality, and was rated four stars for performance, design and overall satisfaction.
Bosch’s latest models include:
The parent company of Simpson, Electrolux has a much broader range of clothes dryers, but it still keeps prices relatively low for modest vented models. These can be found for as little as $500 when on sale, but Electrolux is also a big player when it comes to heat pump dryers, with large 9kg capacity models bringing seven stars for energy efficiency. These dryers will cost you close to $2,000, while its 7kg unit retails for as little as $749.
The full range features a delay start function, as well as a number of drying programs from woollens and silks to automatic and extra quick cycles. The larger capacity heat pump clothes dryers are also boasted for their Advanced Sensor Dry technology, featuring moisture sensors that are activated during the cycle to eliminate any over-drying, which can be harmful to your clothes and your power bill. Expect high energy ratings for larger capacity models, while the smaller dryers are rated just two stars.
Electrolux was voted joint top for value for money and design, with four stars on performance, quietness and additional functionality, but just three stars for overall satisfaction.
Electrolux’s latest models include:
LG is one of those brands that likes to play at both ends of the price market, with some of the cheapest appliances around, in addition to some of the most expensive. However, LG doesn’t mess around with vented or small dryers, with all of its models boasting a capacity of at least 8kg, whether you’re looking for a condenser or heat pump dryer.
Its top of the range 9kg heat pump dryer (TD-H901MW) has an energy efficiency rating of nine stars and comes with a recommended retail price tag of $2,599, meaning it’s not for the faint of heart. The 8kg condenser dryer (TD-C80NPW), however, gets just two stars for its energy efficiency. Both feature LG’s Smart ThinQ technology to remotely monitor your drying via the LG app, which other LG dryers are also equipped with.
Additionally, you can expect a number of washing programs for wools, delicates and bulky cycles. Some LG clothes dryers also come with a few accessories, such as a stacking kit, to stack your dryer on top of your washer, and a drying rack for items you don’t want to tumble dry, like backpacks and shoes. All models are backed by a two-year warranty.
LG was rated four stars in the majority of categories, including performance, value for money and design, while scoring three stars for overall satisfaction.
LG’s latest models include:
Haier mostly offers vented clothes dryers, with just the one condenser dryer and one heat pump dryer now available. The dryers range from 4kg to 8kg in size capacity, with prices ranging from $350 to $850 depending on size. The large 8kg heat pump dryer (HDHP80E1) has a slightly higher price tag at around $1,500.
Featuring traditional dial controls, the Haier dryers aim to get the job done without any extra and costly features. Haier vented dryers are designed with reverse tumble action, and two temperature settings of warm and cool for the 4kg capacity unit, while the larger units have additional settings and programs. Expect just two stars for energy efficiency with the vented units though, so you may want to look elsewhere if you’re after something gentler on your next electricity bill.
Its heat pump dryer, on the other hand, is boasted for an eight-star energy efficiency rating, as well as sensor drying, which automatically stops the dryer when your clothes are dry. The main benefit of this is twofold – it helps reduce energy consumption, plus reduce damage to clothing by not over drying. It also comes with a delay start option, so you can use the dryer in off-peak times and an anti-crease function to help decrease ironing time.
Haier was rated three stars across the board, including design, performance and overall satisfaction.
Haier’s latest models include:
Fisher & Paykel offers one of the largest ranges of vented, condenser and heat pump dryers in Australia. You’ll find dryer capacities of between 4.5kg and 9kg, with prices to suit most budgets. You can pick up a Fisher & Paykel vented clothes dryer for around $450, while its top of the line heat pump dryer – with an eight-star energy efficiency rating – can be found closer to $2,250.
The Fisher & Paykel dryers feature 10 or more programs, with a delay start system that allows you to set a start time most convenient for you. Additionally, you’ll find an automatic cool down function as part of the cycle for added safety. The smaller capacity models tend to sit lower on the energy efficiency ratings scale, with some rated only two stars, so while you may be paying a bit less upfront, you could pay for it with larger energy bills over time.
Its heat pump dryers come with additional design features such as a drying rack, for items that can’t be tumble dried, as well as an interior light, so that you don’t miss that sock hiding at the back of the drum. This range also features automatic sensing, plus a key lock and restart switch for safety.
Scoring five stars for both quietness and design, Fisher & Paykel was rated four stars for additional functionality and performance, with threes stars for value for money and overall satisfaction.
Fisher & Paykel’s latest models include:
Swedish brand Asko falls into the premium selection of clothes dryers, producing both heat pump models and condenser dryers with prices starting at $1,500. Its 10kg Heat Pump Dryer (T410HD.W) has a retail price tag of $2,599 and is boasted for a nine-star energy rating. It features six wash programs and humidity sensors to monitor the drying cycle.
According to the Standard Test (based on 29c/kWh), you can expect to pay just $38 annually in energy costs with this model. So, while you might be spending more upfront, you can save long term with the high energy efficiency.
Samsung sits in the high-end of the price spectrum with its range of heat pump dryers and washer dryer combos. Samsung’s dryers cater for large households with load capacities starting from 7kg and maxing out at 9kg. You can find the range priced between $1,799 and $2,499 RRP, and expect six stars and up for energy efficiency ratings with the heat pump dryers, while the combos sit at four stars.
The Samsung DV10R8540GV 10kg Heat Pump Dryer features moisture sensors to continuously adjust drying time, supported by Samsung’s ‘SmartThings’ App that allows you to become a laundry expert, according to the brand.
Smeg is another brand at the premium end of clothes dryers. It has a concise range of models, featuring both condenser and heat pump dryers. Prices start from $1,300 and max out at closer to $2,200. There isn’t much variation in capacity with both models being 8kg, which is a suitable option for households of four or more people.
The Smeg 8kg Condenser Dryer (SACD82) features 16 different programs and has an energy efficiency rating of two stars. The Smeg 8kg Heat Pump dryer (SAHP86), while at a slightly higher price point, has an energy efficiency rating of eight stars but also features 16 different drying cycles.
If you’ve budgeted for a clothes dryer that’s priced $4,000 and up, then Swedish manufacturer V-Zug might be one to consider. Its clothes dryer range provides heat pump dryers, condenser dryers and top of the range ‘Refresh Butlers’. Expect high energy efficiency ratings for these premium prices as well as more than 25 programs and a sleek design with electronic controls.
The Refresh Butler is not a clothes dryer in itself but it does feature drying capabilities for soaked jackets and fabrics that require special care, as boasted by V-Zug. One of these will cost you more than $28,000, but you can rest assured that it has other advanced functions for that price.
Our 2019 survey of consumers who have recently bought a dryer revealed the following insights:
There are a number of factors to consider when buying a new clothes dryer, including:
Let’s get some details about each factor to help you pick the best clothes dryer for your needs.
You might think all clothes dryers are basically the same (they certainly do the same job), but there are some subtle and not so subtle differences that impact their prices, performance and energy efficiency. There are five main types of clothes dryers:
In our latest survey, it was found that 34% of consumers purchased a vented clothes dryer, with heat pump dryers and condenser dryers the next most popular types (17%). Gas clothes dryers had a low purchase rate, with only 5% of shoppers opting for a gas model.
Capacity is an important factor to consider – not just because of the inconvenience of having to use your dryer multiple times if it isn’t big enough to dry all of your clothes at once, but also due to the impact on your energy bills of having to do so! There is also a potential safety issue at hand here, because regularly overloading your dryer will force its motor to work extra hard, which could lead to overheating.
The capacity of clothes dryers is measured in weight, with most models providing a capacity of between 5 and 9 kilograms. You’re unlikely to know how much your wet clothes weigh, so what capacity will you need?
|Dryer Capacity||Household Size|
|5kg – 7kg||3-4 people|
General Guide Only
It’s probably wise to err on the side of bigger if you’re not sure what size capacity you will need, as it’s likely going to be cheaper to run a large dryer once than a smaller dryer twice. But be sure to keep in mind the allocated space in your laundry room though!
Keep in mind that the biggest difference between cheap and expensive clothes dryers is often their energy efficiency. If a dryer costs less to run in energy bills, it will likely command a higher purchase price. Vented clothes dryers are notoriously inefficient, with the majority having energy ratings of just two stars or less. Heat pump dryers, on the other hand, can be extremely efficient, with many boasting energy ratings of 7, 8 or even 9 stars. Ultimately, it’s a trade-off between upfront and ongoing costs. If you’re likely to use your clothes dryer a lot, it may be worth investing in a relatively efficient model.
Clothes dryers are arguably the most basic of household appliances – you turn them on and they heat your clothes until they’re dry! But you might be surprised to learn that modern dryers can come with some handy features that make this already simple process just a little bit easier. They include:
Be aware that the more flashy features you want, the more you’ll likely end up paying, which brings us to our next point.
As one of the most basic appliances in your home, clothes dryers can be incredibly cheap. A look at Appliances Online shows that several vented dryers are available for less than $400, with a couple even costing less than $300. On average, consumers spend $599 on new clothes dryers, our latest survey found.
Brands like Simpson tend to be the most basic and cheapest of the bunch. At the other end of the PRICING spectrum, heat pump dryers can cost as much as $5,000, with the majority priced around the $1,500 mark. If it’s a top of the line dryer you want, brands like Smeg, Asko and V-Zug are worth a look.
The average life expectancy for clothes dryers is around eight years, our survey shows, which suggests that buying a new dryer should be given some serious thought as you might have it for some time. As a result, it’s best to look into all of your options to find the best fit for your household, and your washing schedule.
Picture credits: New Africa/shutterstock.com
*Prices taken from respective retailers, correct as of January 2020
Here is a full list of clothes dryer brands available to buy in Australia:
Our latest customer satisfaction research on clothes dryers saw a number of brands rated best in different categories:
A vented dryer is the stock-standard model of clothes dryers. It heats up air and passes it into the drum holding the clothes. Once the hot air has become too moist to dry any further, it’s vented out of the drum and replaced with new, dry air. A condenser dryer works in a similar fashion to that of a vented dryer. This type of dryer takes moisture-laden air and condenses it into water. This is then either stored in a water tank or drained away. It doesn’t require any ducts or vents for hot air, making it easier to install, but it will increase the moisture level in your laundry room.
Vented dryers are generally the cheapest type of clothes dryers, but expect lower energy efficiency ratings, which makes it more expensive in the long run. Condenser models, however, are typically more energy efficient than vented dryers but can be more expensive to purchase upfront.
Whether or not your dryer needs to be vented outside depends on the type of unit you have:
There are plenty of retailers that sell dryers either in-store or online. These include:
Each brand offers a number of models within its range. We’ve taken a comparative model from each brand in regards to capacity to help you compare price, plus each model’s energy efficiency, based on 29c/kWh and one use per week.
|Model||RRP||Energy Rating||Annual running cost|
6.5kg Vented Clothes Dryer SDV656HQWA
|Bosch 7kg Serie 4 Vented Dryer WTA74201AU||$999||2 stars||$91.35|
|LG 8kg Condenser Dryer TD-C80NPW||$1,279||2 stars||$104.11|
|Electrolux 7kg Ultimate Care 500 Vented Dryer EDV705HQWA||$749||2 stars||$91.35|
|Fisher & Paykel 7kg Vented Dryer DE7060G1||$649||2 stars||$91.35|
Source: Respective retailers and Appliances Online, June 2019
Canstar Blue surveyed 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased a brand new clothes dryer in the last 3 years – in this case, 378 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
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See our Ratings Methodology for more information on how we rate products and why some products may not yet be rated.
*Product availability and price range are current as of the stated date, may be subject to change.
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