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I have never had a tumble dryer before, but last year (January 2003), after spending Christmas with kids clothes draped over the radiators, we decided enough was enough.
Where did we get one from?
We trawled around all the Appliance dealers, and finally found the Bosch WTA 2000 in Comet. My husband had heard good reports about Bosch, and the energy efficiency was rated as good, so we opted for this one.
What about insurance?
We have never bought insurance with any of our goods as I believe thay are a waste of money, and can cost up to 50% of the cost of the machine, so again we decided on just the manufacturer 1 year warranty.
How long did it take to arrive?
Comet had one in stock, so hubby put down the back seats in the car, and we took it home.
How easy was it to plumb in?
Well, first we had to go out and buy a venting kit, but hubby is quite handy, so no problem, within 24 hours, I had a whole in the outside wall, and the venting kit was fitted. Wouldn't have liked to try this myself though!
How easy is it to clean?
Well, the filter needs empying after every use, which is easy enough to do, but a lot of lint manages to get through the filter, and although I can see it all under where the filter fixes in, I can't get it all out. Tried to use a cloth, but to no avail - you can't get far enough inside to make any difference.
So what is the machine like?
The first week was great. Not a piece of clothing in sight. I tumbled everything, and even clothes which said "Do Not Tumble Dry" went in on a cool setting, other than jumpers. Most items didn't even need ironing. Why didn't I get one sooner????
The load takes about an hour to dry, and if you remove the clothes straight away, the majority do not need ironing. There is no timer, so you have to remember to go back to unload it.
After about a week, I noticed that the machine had got louder. My husband tells me I am imagining it, but I started shutting the door to the room as it was annoying me. I have to be honest, I haven't done anything about this as it hasn't got any worse since then, but I still think it's noisy.
Recently, I have noticed the machine getting hotter. (Again, hubby thinks I am imagining it!). I am now more careful about what I put in the dryer, and only use the hot setting for towels and bed linen.
Back in January 2004, the renewal notice came through for the insurance. Do we renew? On this occasion (due my my paranoia about the machine), we paid our money for another year.
Come February, I noticed a piece of felt hanging down inside the door. I tucked it back in thinking it was probably just a seal. A couple of days later, a piece of this "seal" fell out. I rang the insurance company.
So what was the response like?
The response was quick, friendly and helpful. An engineer would be with us next week.
So what are Bosch like for keeping appointments?
Brilliant. The engineer arrived at 9.10am on the dot. He was courteous and helpful. Unfortunately, he didn't keep the part on his van.
He ordered the part (called a felt bearing), told me it is coming from Germany, and that it will take 2-8 days (including the weekend!), and left with the instruction not to use the machine.
So after only 13 months of service, I was left with a broken machine. Although I am fairly pleased with the service, I am not impressed with it's reliability.
A Bosch engineer came the following Friday to fit the new part. I was told he would arrive sometime after 12.30pm. He arrived eventually at 5.20pm.
He took apart the Tumble Dryer, and groaned!
The last engineer had ordered the felt bearing, but had not ordered the adhesive strip! The engineer also said that there were some other bearings worn, and he would order these at the same time.
I mentioned the overheating to him, and he said that he would also fit a new transformer. The noise apparantly was due to the bearing, so it must have been going from day 1.
Eventually, the Bosch man came back and fixed my machine. He has completed all the work as promised, and it now works like a dream again.
I love my Bosch, but it loses 2 stars for all the hassle I had.
Short name: Bosch WTA 2000