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~~*~~*~~ Beko Condenser Dryer DCU7230B ~~*~~*~~
After just 2 year in my house, I've managed to re-do each and every room turning it from the squatter's pit I bought, into a home for me and my girls. I say 'girls' I mean 2 Labradors and an Irish Water Spaniel - Pig, Puddle and baby Oink. The reason for me mentioning these half-wits is that the upstairs is my space with luxurious carpets, cream linen and candles; the downstairs, however, is designed for the girls - wipe-clean paint, vinyl floors and appliances to clean the world daily.
My life is dogs - I regularly have dogs stay over and I walk dogs for a living so I go through an elephant's weight in towels alone daily. Drying them on a line or clothes horse is all well and good if I had 5 days to wait so previously, I had a normal tumble dryer but had noticed a considerable amount of condensation building up in the living room even though the vent went out the window of the kitchen most of the time. So, with the completion of my new kitchen (with wipe down surfaces, hidden handles and most importantly, a hidden bin (yep that water spaniel could get in any bin and empty it within seconds so this was the most important criteria in the planning)) I rushed out to purchase a condenser dryer.
There was a wide range of choice of condenser dryers in Appliances Direct, Morecambe but I'd paid a small fortune for a shiny kitchen in cream and dark wood and I didn't want a butt ugly white dryer standing out like a sore thumb (my washing machine was now a built in creation but the built in dryers I could chose from were pants) so I wanted black as these look cool. There, I said it: I paid £30 extra for a black one just so my kitchen looked good. Whatever, I'm a very happy chicken. However, there were only 3 to pick from in black and they were all pretty much a muchness in price - £250+, thus I went for the one with the biggest discount and the best features resulting in me forking out £279 and taking it home with a very large smile on my face.
On arrival home, I was pleased to see my lovely kitchen fitter hadn't finished and was still playing with Pig in the garden whilst the grout was drying - good job as the bloody dryer weighed a ton, well 38kg to be precise, and there's two random steps to get into my house - that's what men are for though and after much sweating and swearing (I don't think he was putting the limp on) he'd unpacked it from it's cellophane and polystyrene wrapping, plugged it in and was on his merry way. There was a massive sticker on the front of the door which told me to remove the polystyrene blockers that prevented the drum from moving in transit - a very handy sticker for people like me that don't read manuals. I immediately threw in two towels that had been used to dry the girls after their bath and chose the 'cupboard dry' level, pressed the start button and waited with baited breath (not really, I made a brew and rang my mummy to tell her about the new purchase).
This is a B rated machine which is good in the dryer world - amazingly whereas the old machine took ruddy ages to dry two towels, this one usually does a whole load in around half an hour (that's sometimes 3 towels and a big dog blanket). Now, I say half an hour but that's me being lazy and putting it on the 'cupboard dry' setting which means the machine dries the contents until it's dry enough to put it away (I don't own an iron so I fold it nicely and hey presto, my mother's none the wiser). There are 10 sensor settings and 5 timed settings to chose from - the sensor ones include one specifically for drying jeans, a freshen up, and a delicates one - the clever sensors know when the clothes are dry and ends the drying for you, telling you with an unintrusive beep that it's done its job. Should you be in the middle of watching an important episode of Simpsons or can't be arsed to get up, the machine's anti-crease mechanism kicks in and every 3 to 4 minutes the drum will turn until you drag your aforementioned butt off the sofa. If, like my mother, you don't like 'beeps' - you can turn off the audio function. What a clever little machine. Actually, it's not particularly small but apparently all condensers are the same size - 850 x 600 x 540mm.
This is a front loader so fitted neatly under my beautiful counter tops and has a normal door like most washing machines - not one of those massive ugly square doors. It takes 7 kg though for some reason the white machines take 8 but I don't care: I have a black one and it looks good. At the top of the machine on the left, there is a drawer which when pulled out is the water container - there is a light to indicate that this is full and the machine will pause whilst it waits for you to empty it so before you put a load in and wander off to do other things, make sure it is empty though it generally lasts about two loads before it is completely full but this will depend on how wet the objects were that you put in (it takes 4.8 litres before it's full)! If you so desired, you can connect the dryer up to your waste water pipe and it will drain it away for you with no need to empty the tank but I haven't. Next to this are the indicators which tell you how dry the clothes are at that particular point in time, whether the filters need cleaning and at what stage the machine is at. There's a start/pause button and then a main on/off button - none of these buttons or lights are particularly unobtrusive or ugly. The dial however, could do with a bit of a revamp but it's not that bad - just turn it to the setting of your choice, press start and the machine does the rest for you.
There is a filter just inside the door as with most drying machines - within this is captured all kinds of lint and fluff and dog hair - the difference between this and all others I've encountered is that after you've removed the filter, the fluff is somehow contained within a section that you just unclip so it opens like a book and you take the fluff out without dropping bits back in the machine. Ingenious. The condenser at the bottom of the dryer is the intelligent bit that uses the cold air from the room to cool the hot and humid air in the dryer - to clean your condenser, just run it under the hot tap or shower head and then let it dry - you're supposed to do this every 30 cycles or once a month - mine was filthy after a month but then my world is full of dog hair, sand and general crap! You're also supposed to wipe clean the sensor which are situated within the door every so often as these can get grimy with all the aforementioned crap that touches them.
Although it may seem a lot of money to throw away on something that good old fashioned sunshine could do instead, I find a dryer invaluable. I find this dryer amazing. It dries things very quickly, keeps the room dry and looks good. It does kick out a bit of heat making the kitchen a little warm but no different to doing a bit of cooking. You can pick this machine up in most places - some are reportedly offering it for £209 but no doubt the delivery will be extortionate. It should fit in the boot of most cars but will require two of you to remove the big thing. One thing to note is that it isn't the quietest object in the world but I don't think it's any noisier than a normal dryer and is definitely more quiet than the washer on spin. I can completely recommend it to anyone and everyone - admittedly I've not had it for long so I can't comment on it's durability but it comes with a guarantee so we'll have to wait and see!
For those of you who actually read manuals - you may find the answers to any of the questions I've missed in this:
or just give Beko a ring 08456004904 and ask them why you're not supposed to dry duvets in their machine even though you've done it loads before writing this review!
Or if you're really bored you can visit beko.co.uk and watch movies on each of their machines - fridge freezer films are all the rage.
Thanks for reading.
Review will most definitely appear elsewhere.
Caroline, Pig, Puddle & Oink
With its innovative technology the Beko DCU7230B Freestanding Condenser Tumble Dryer in Black has been created with your needs at the forefront of its design / Using state of the art features such as sensor dry technology you can be assured that your clothes are in safe hands / Sensor dry technology means that your drying cycle will automatically stop once your washing has reached a suitable level of dryness / This appliance has also been given a B energy rating for its energy efficiency and has a fantastic 7kg load capacity / Add to this the annual energy consumption is 274.9kwh and you can rest easy in the knowledge that all of these features can help to save you money when it comes to your next electricity bill.Features of the Beko DCU7230B Freestanding Condenser Tumble Dryer include 15 main programmes 10 sensor programmes and 5 timed programmes / It has an LED progress indicator light that helps you to monitor the cycles progression and for those with little ones an electrically operated child lock feature. / Short name: Beko DCU7230B