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Not sure about washing machine drum sizes? A guide to help

Are you confused about your washing machine drum capacity and not sure how much you can fit in there? Or are you looking for a new washing machine but not sure on which drum size you should by? It can get a little confusing as there are so many options out there but we can go through these options and help to alleviate this confusion!

What is drum capacity?

Drum capacity is the measure of dry clothes that you can wash at a time in one cycle. It is important to note that this is for dry clothes as the weight will increase when the clothes get wet. Most washing machines available today in the market range from 6kg to 12kg. What you can fit in a washing machine will mostly depend on what you are attempting to wash – it will depend on the types of clothes and fabric. For example, a 7kg drum capacity will on average fit a double duvet or 30 t-shirts. Duvets are usually best washed on their own considering the size that they take up. A 10kg machine will fit around 50 t-shirts and a 12kg machine will hold roughly 60 t-shirts. Understandable, most people don’t weigh their clothes before putting them into their washing machines. Therefore it is recommended that the drum is filled to around 80% capacity.

Which drum capacity is best for me?

The best way to decide which drum capacity will suit you is to assess your washing routines and needs. You will want to take into account how large your household is, how regularly you wash your clothes and what type of clothes and fabrics you wash are washed regularly. On average, a 7-8kg drum will suit the needs of a medium sized UK household. This usually provides all the space and wash programmes for a standard wash. A 7kg drum usually meets the requirements of a household that do 4-6 washes a week.

It’s best to be aware not to overfill your washing machine as this can cause some issues:

  • Your clothes won’t clean properly – if there’s not enough space in the machine the clothes won’t be able to move freely preventing your detergent from reaching all of the clothes.
  • Your clothes are more likely to crease and become tangled, possibly even damaged. This is because there is no room to move in the drum.
  • The machine can be damaged – when clothes get wet they increase in weight therefore if the maximum weight is exceeded in can cause damage to the inside components of the machine.

If you find that you tend to overfill your machine, then the best thing to do is increase your drum capacity to avoid any loading issues.

Tips on being economic

The best way to save water and also lower the cost of your water and electricity bill is to do fewer but larger washes per week. This can suggest the best route to take is getting a larger drum. You can wash more clothes at one time lessening the amount of washes you do in one week – this is better value for money. However if you buy a larger drum capacity and you find that you struggle to fill the drum and only run a wash half-full it can be wasteful and less economic. This is due to the cycle using more water and electricity. This is then important to understand the needs of your washing habits to make sure you are filling the drum properly to make sure you are optimising the use of water and electricity for each cycle.