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We often hear that washing machines are either Japanese or European type. So how can you tell which is which? And what are their advantages? And, more importantly, which washer is right for you? If you have any of these questions in your mind, we’ve got the answers for you in our shopping guide.

The difference between Japanese and European type washers

Smart shopping tips for washing machines

Capacity

Laundry volume is the maximum washing capacity of the washer in kilograms. You might think that a washer with a larger capacity is more efficient, but if the washer capacity is larger than the required capacity, more water and electricity are used. If the laundry is close to or exceeds its capacity, the washer will not run smoothly. Either situation could result in unsatisfactory cleaning performance and may even cause motor damage due to overloading. You can estimate the washing capacity you need based on a requirement of 1kg/person.

  
Spin speed

The faster the spin speed, the quicker it will extract water from the laundry. General daily laundry cycles are around 800-1000 revolutions per minute. If you want to shorten the spin time, use 1200 rpm or more. However, be aware of the clothing material before washing. For example, denim shirts are more absorbent and require at least 900 rpm to prevent dripping.

Noise level

The washer makes more noise than other home appliances. The noise depends on its motor technology. A fixed frequency washer is equipped with a fixed frequency motor in which the speed is fixed and the operation is relatively stable. The price of this type of washer is generally more affordable but it consumes more power and makes more noise. Vibration is strong, and the cleaning result is, well, OK. Frequency conversion washers are equipped with a frequency conversion motor that adjusts speed gradually. At the beginning of the wash cycle, it runs at a low speed to break up clothes and after detergent is added, it increases speed to shake the clothes. Then, it slows down and lets clothes soak. It then further accelerates to clean the clothes with a final high-speed spin to complete the process. A flexible rotation speed offers better cleaning results.

Quick wash function

You can complete the entire washing cycle with this function in just over 10 minutes. Ideal if you are in a hurry or only need to wash a small amount of clothes.

Drain Pump

There are 2 types of drain pump in a washer: high or low. You could identify the type by the presence of a drain pump. Washers with high drain pump discard wastage on the upper part of the machine while those with low drain pump discard via lower part. If your home’s drainage outlet is lower than that of the washer, you could adopt both high and low drain pump washers. If your home’s drainage outlet is higher than the washer, washer with high drain pump is advised.

Q&A

How do I care for my washer? How often should it be cleaned?

A washer should be cleaned at least once a month with deep cleaning to be carried out by the washing machine company every 2 to 4 years. Here are some steps on how to clean your washer:
1. Use a small amount of baking soda or bleach to clean the inside of the washer
Pour ½ lb. of baking soda into the detergent compartment, and select the warmest water setting and let the washer run empty. Or you can pour half a cap of bleach into the detergent compartment and let the washer run empty in cold water.
2. Clean the waterproof gasket around the door
The door of the washing machine has a waterproof rubber gasket. Use a cloth or toothbrush to clean.
3. Clean the pump filter
There is a pump filter at the bottom of a European type washer. Open it and let dirty water and residue flow out. Use a garbage bag to wrap around the bottom of the washer to collect dirty water and residue.

How full should I load a washer?

The washer should only be at most 70% full to allow enough space for the laundry to rotate for a thorough wash. This also avoids wear on the shock absorbers and prolongs the life of the washing machine.

How can I avoid damaging the washer?

1. Check clothes for coins or small objects before washing. If you accidentally leave an item in a pocket for example, it could wear out the inner tube of the washer or jam the runner and cause damage to the washer.
2. When washing clothes, do not exceed the capacity specified by the manufacturer to avoid overload. This could burn out the motor or other parts of the washer.
3. After each wash, make sure that the washer is completely drained. Open the top cover for at least one hour to allow airflow. Conduct regular cleaning to ensure that the washer is kept clean and dry.
4. Do not place the washer in a humid environment for long durations to avoid moisture in the machine. Also ensure that the socket wires are not worn out.

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