Consumer Power Green Alternatives

5 things I wish I’d done to preserve my tumble dryer

Do people like me who believe everything they own should last forever improve with age? No, we get worse as time goes by.

As I write this our tumble dryer is in the car, on its way to the local recycling depot. Curiously depots like this are still referred to by the populace as “the dump”, as in “I’m taking the dryer to the dump”. Old habits die hard. 

My family and friends are probably surprised to hear me say I am “heartbroken” at having to do this. Even the guy at the recycling depot smirked.

Or maybe not. 

#1: should I have got it fixed?

We ordered it on March 7 2016. (If you are looking to employ someone to help you keep paperwork for ever I’m your man.) We paid £99, about half the retail price.

our last ever tumble dryer

Why so little? It was offered in exchange for fixing our previous dryer under warranty. That one lasted less than a year. 

So the second one bombs out and the supplier offers to fix it for £157 (about $US157), with a one-year warranty thrown in. 

Today is March 30 2019, and it stopped working November 29 2018. So it lasted us two years and eight months. To me it was barely out of its wrapper. 

Did we take up their offer? No we didn’t. What did we do in the end? 

In the end we bought a Lakeland heated air dryer, which looks like this:

our new Lakeland air dryer

It runs on 300w max. but it takes several hours to dry things. Still, I believe it is more efficient as:

      • it makes better use of the heat and surrounding air
      • we don’t always have it switched on when drying clothes

eco-slacktivist note: we did not run the tumble dryer throughout the year, just when it was too cold and damp to get our laundry dry in time. I know, I failed.

#2: should I have bought a warranty? Probably, yes. Then we’d still have the tumble dryer. But I honestly couldn’t imagine such a basic item breaking down so soon. Buying a warranty seemed like admitting defeat.

#3: should I have tried to sell it? At least then it would go to a good home. I did. I put it on ebay, and I got no takers. I’d have taken £10, hardly a great sum. Ebay suggested I relist it at £9 so I did but that didn’t work either. So I listed it a third time at £1 – still no luck.

#4: should I have given it away? I tried to give it away on Freecycle, Freegle and a local Facebook group. No luck there either. 

So finally,

#5: should I take it to the recycling depot? The only option left when Sue was ‘keen’ to get it out of the house. The guy at the depot told me it would be “recycled” but beyond that I have no idea if this perfectly fixable tumble dryer, which used to be mine and was fine apart from overheating, will be repaired (you’re kidding!), salvaged for parts (mayyybe) or sold as scrap metal. I’ve got my suspicions which way this will go.

So now we have no dryer humming loudly for hours at about 2 1/2 Kw per hour, and instead we have a silent clothes rack I suspect uses less electricity. Until I get solar panels up on the roof it’s still not perfect but hey, it’s a start.

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