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Which washer-dryer brand to buy in 2020

By Joel Bates

We survey owners of AEG, Bosch, Hotpoint, Indesit, John Lewis, LG, Miele and Zanussi washer-dryers to find out which develop the fewest faults over time and which brands have the happiest customers. Our exclusive Which? reliability and customer satisfaction data can help you to choose a washer-dryer brand that lasts. 

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In this article:

Choose the wrong washer-dryer and it could be costly. Almost a fifth of washer-dryer faults owners reported to us were classed as catastrophic, which meant their washer-dryer ended up unusable. Failing to drain water properly is the most common fault.

Knowing which brands develop the most faults and how quickly, is vital when you're buying a new washer-dryer. That’s why each year we survey more than 500 Which? members in our unique reliability and customer satisfaction survey to find out whether they're happy, or have experienced problems with their washer-dryers. 

Our survey data takes into account the reported fault rates, severity of the faults and the speed with which they occurred. In our latest analysis we've looked at the performance of some of the biggest washer-dryer manufacturers – AEG, Bosch, Hotpoint, Indesit, John Lewis, LG, Miele and Zanussi – and have calculated a reliability rating and customer score for each so you know which brands to choose – and which to avoid.

Best vs worst washer-dryer brands compared  

We found a lot of variation between washer-dryer brands, as shown in the graph above. The biggest difference was in customer satisfaction where the best brand scored 84% and the worst scored 60%.

The most reliable washer-dryer brands  

The table below summarises this year’s reliability results. Brands are ranked by their customer score, which relates to whether their customers would recommend it.

Only logged-in Which? members can view which brands achieved the ratings and verdicts in the table below. If you're not yet a member, join Which? to get instant access.

Brand Reliability score Customer score
79% 84%
83% 82%
74% 79%
81% 77%
78% 76%
79% 69%
73% 60%
73% 60%
Table notes
Reliability and customer scores are based on a survey of 558 Which? members in September 2019.

Key

Member Content

Common washer-dryer problems  

Failure to empty water properly is the most common fault washer-dryer owners experience. Electrical failures, poor drying of laundry and broken door seals were also common issues.

Owners believe their washer-dryer should remain fault free for at least nine years, according to our survey. But we found that a third of those buying a washer-dryer from the worst-rated manufacturer for reliability reported a fault after just five years.

There's not necessarily a direct link between how much you pay for a washer-dryer and how reliable it is. Although the worst-rated brand for reliability in our survey also had the cheapest products on average, the second-cheapest brand had an impressive reliability score of 79%.

Which washer-dryer brand stays fault free for longest?  

The graph above shows how the washer-dryer brand that stays fault-free for longest compares with the worst brand and the overall average. Which? members can see how brands compare for faults over an eight-year period in the table below.

If you're not yet a member, join Which? to get instant access.

Brand name % fault-free after eight years
83%
76%
75%
74%
74%
72%
67%
61%
Table notes
Results based on feedback from 558 washer-dryer owners, surveyed in September 2019.

Key

Member Content

How long will my washer-dryer last? 

On average a washer-dryer will last ten years. This is based on the experiences of Which? members who told us how long they kept their previous appliance before they replaced it, either due to a fault, or because it wasn’t working as well as when they first bought it. As you can see from the graph below there’s a big difference between how long the best and the worst brands last.

Which? members can login to view which washer-dryer brands last the longest before they need to be replaced. If you're not yet a member, join Which? to get instant access.

How we measure faults and reliability in washer-dryers

Our reliability scores take into account minor, major and catastrophic faults.

  • Minor A fault that doesn't affect the product's performance significantly or a fault that only occurs occasionally with minimal impact. The issue may be irritating or annoying but it isn't frequently problematic and you can easily work around it. For example, a machine that is unusually noisy.
  • Major A fault that noticeably affects the product’s performance. It affects how you use the product and can be problematic. For example, a faulty sensor that affects how well the machine dries laundry.
  • Catastrophic A fault that renders the product unusable, with the fault needing to be repaired or parts replaced before it can be used again. For example, an electrical failure.

Washer-dryer brands rated 

Choose a brand from the list below to find out more detail about its performance in our survey, plus how many of its models are Best Buys and the average score of its washer-dryers in our lab tests.

Only logged-in Which? members can view which brands achieved the ratings and verdicts in the table below. If you're not yet a member, join Which? to get instant access.

AEG washer-dryers overview table
Number tested in the past three years 4
Number of Best Buys
Average test score
Brand reliability score
Customer score (%)
Typical spend
Table notes Average test score based on results of tested models that are still available. The customer score and brand reliability rating are based on a Which? member survey conducted in September 2019 of 120 AEG washer-dryer owners. The customer score is based on satisfaction and likelihood of recommending to a friend. Reliability is based on members’ experience of that brand. Table last updated 11 November 2019.

Key

Member Content
  • Find out how reliable a washer-dryer from AEG is compared to rival brands such as Hotpoint, Bosch and Zanussi
  • Discover how many AEG washer-dryers develop minor, major and catastrophic faults
  • Find out what the most commonly experienced fault is
Bosch washer-dryers overview table
Number tested in the past three years 5
Number of Best Buys
Average test score
Brand reliability score
Customer score (%)
Typical spend
Table notes Average test score based on results of tested models that are still available. The customer score and brand reliability rating are based on a Which? member survey conducted in September 2019 of 88 Bosch washer-dryer owners. The customer score is based on satisfaction and likelihood of recommending to a friend. Reliability is based on members’ experience of that brand. Table last updated 11 November 2019.

Key

Member Content
  • Discover how many Bosch washer-dryers develop faults after each year of use
  • Find out what the most common fault is – and whether it’s just a minor annoyance, or a problem that significantly impacts your machine’s performance
  • Reveal how satisfied customers are with a Bosch washer-dryer
Hotpoint washer-dryers overview table
Number tested in the past three years 10
Number of Best Buys
Average test score
Brand reliability score
Customer score (%)
Typical spend
Table notes Average test score based on results of tested models that are still available. The customer score and brand reliability rating are based on a Which? member survey conducted in September 2019 of 36 Hotpoint washer-dryer owners. The customer score is based on satisfaction and likelihood of recommending to a friend. Reliability is based on members’ experience of that brand. Table last updated 11 November 2019.

Key

Member Content
  • Discover how satisfied customers are after buying a Hotpoint washer-dryer
  • See how many Hotpoint washer-dryers become faulty in the first year
  • Find out how well Hotpoint washer-dryers fare on reliability compared with other brands such as Indesit and Zanussi
Indesit washer-dryers overview table
Number tested in the past three years 8
Number of Best Buys
Average test score
Brand reliability score
Customer score (%)
Typical spend
Table notes Average test score based on results of tested models that are still available. The customer score and brand reliability rating are based on a Which? member survey conducted in September 2019 of 33 Indesit washer-dryer owners. The customer score is based on satisfaction and likelihood of recommending to a friend. Reliability is based on members’ experience of that brand. Table last updated 11 November 2019.

Key

Member Content
  • Discover whether the price you pay affects the chance of your machine becoming faulty
  • See how satisfied Indesit customers are after buying a washer-dryer
  • Find out how many Indesit washer-dryer faults are simply irritations and how many render the washer-dryer unusable
John Lewis washer-dryers overview table
Number tested in the past three years 3
Number of Best Buys
Average test score
Brand reliability score
Customer score (%)
Typical spend
Table notes Average test score based on results of tested models that are still available. The customer score and brand reliability rating are based on a Which? member survey conducted in September 2019 of 63 John Lewis washer-dryer owners. The customer score is based on satisfaction and likelihood of recommending to a friend. Reliability is based on members’ experience of that brand. Table last updated 11 November 2019.

Key

Member Content
  • Discover the most common issues found among John Lewis washer-dryers
  • Find out how satisfied customers are after buying a John Lewis washer-dryer
  • See whether you can trust a John Lewis washer-dryer to stay fault free
LG washer-dryers overview table
Number tested in the past three years 3
Number of Best Buys
Average test score
Brand reliability score
Customer score (%)
Typical spend
Table notes Average test score based on results of tested models that are still available. The customer score and brand reliability rating are based on a Which? member survey conducted in September 2019 of 30 LG washer-dryer owners. The customer score is based on satisfaction and likelihood of recommending to a friend. Reliability is based on members’ experience of that brand. Table last updated 11 November 2019.

Key

Member Content
  • Discover how many LG washer-dryers develop faults after each year of use
  • Find out what the most common fault is – and whether it will make your machine unusable
  • Reveal how satisfied customers are with an LG washer-dryer
Miele washer-dryers overview table
Number tested in the past three years 2
Number of Best Buys
Average test score
Brand reliability score
Customer score (%)
Typical spend
Table notes Average test score based on results of tested models that are still available. The customer score and brand reliability rating are based on a Which? member survey conducted in September 2019 of 31 Miele washer-dryer owners. The customer score is based on satisfaction and likelihood of recommending to a friend. Reliability is based on members’ experience of that brand. Table last updated 11 November 2019.

Key

Member Content
  • We reveal whether splashing out on a Miele will get you a more reliable washer-dryer
  • Find out what the most common issues are with Miele washer-dryers
  • See how well Miele washer-dryers have done in our tests
Zanussi washer-dryers overview table
Number tested in the past three years 6
Number of Best Buys
Average test score
Brand reliability score
Customer score (%)
Typical spend
Table notes Average test score based on results of tested models that are still available. The customer score and brand reliability rating are based on a Which? member survey conducted in September 2019 of 46 Zanussi washer-dryer owners. The customer score is based on satisfaction and likelihood of recommending to a friend. Reliability is based on members’ experience of that brand. Table last updated 11 November 2019.

Key

Member Content
  • Find out how many faults a Zanussi washer-dryer develops compared with rivals such as AEG, Bosch and Indesit
  • Discover the most common problems owners of Zanussi washer-dryers face
  • See how many Zanussi washer-dryers develop minor, major and catastrophic faults

Head to our washer-dryer reviews

Know which washer-dryer brand you want? Use the links to go straight to our reviews and find your ideal model:

How we calculate the best and worst brands  

Which? has a wealth of information on Britain's favourite washer-dryer brands. Every year we ask Which? members to tell us about the washer-dryer products they own - from how likely they would be to recommend a brand, to how reliable the products are once they get them home. This year 558 Which? members told us about their washer-dryers. We calculate a brand's reliability and its customer score based on the results of our annual survey.

Our reliability surveys, combined with our extensive lab tests, mean we can recommend the best washer-dryers you should buy.

This data is crucial for our testing, too. If a brand falls far below the category average, we take away the manufacturer’s Best Buy status and won’t recommend any of their products unless a marked improvement in reliability is shown.

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