At a Glance:
- What Is Compact Laundry?
- Best Compact Laundry
- Everything You Need to Know
About Compact Laundry
- Key Takeaways
Have a spare closet or spot in your kitchen? Nowadays, you can place compact laundry almost anywhere without having to vent outside your home.
Compact laundry is 24 inches in width and 24 inches in depth -the same dimensions as a standard cabinet. It can fit in most cabinets and closets.
It's technically the best laundry machines you can buy for its features despite its small size.
In this article, you'll learn about what compact laundry is and the four best brands to consider. You'll also learn the difference between a ventless, heat pump, and vented dryer, plus recent innovations to Smart laundry.
The best compact washers and dryers for 2020 are:
- Best Ventless Compact Laundry Overall: Miele Washer WWH860 and Dryer TWI180WP
- Best Value Compact Ventless Laundry: Miele Washer WWB020WCS and Dryer TWB120WP
- Best Compact Laundry for Features and Reliability: Bosch WAW285H2UC and WTG865H2UC
- Best Vented Compact Laundry: Samsung WW22K6800AW and DV22K6800EW
- Best Vented Compact Laundry For Tight Spaces: Beko BWM7200X and BDV7200X
Lastly, we'll cover what the most reliable compact laundry brands are as well as the different electrical requirements for each.
Let’s get started.
What Is Compact Laundry?
Compact Laundry at Yale Appliance in Boston
There are two main sizes of laundry machines, the full size 27" wide and the compact 24" wide.
If you're reading this, you probably have a small space to put a washer and dryer.
Compact laundry machines originated from Europe, where the washers and dryers are typically placed in the kitchen underneath countertops as part of the cabinet design.
Everyone wants a big kitchen and a walk-in closet. So, where do you take space to make the large dream kitchen and walk-in closet?
You guessed it, the laundry room.
Miele Stackable Compact Laundry at Yale Appliance in Framingham
As we said before, compact laundry has the most variation between brands.
Some have vented dryers, some have ventless condensation, and some have a ventless heat pump.
Your current electrical and venting profile determines the compact laundry set, unlike regular laundry.
What is Compact Laundry? [VIDEO]
Best Compact Laundry Pairs for 2020
Best Compact Laundry Overall: Miele WWH860 and TWI180WP
Miele is a family-owned German company known for their quality control. Miele builds over 98% of their parts and components in their factories. For this reason, Miele is one of the least repaired items in the appliance industry.
The high-end Miele models have a setting for every type of clothing. There washer and dryers are genuinely focused on fabric care. With multiple options for detergent, CapDos, TwinDos, and a regular single-dose tray, you’ve got all the bases covered.
Miele Compact Washer WWH860 - $1,999
These machines are truly different. Miele now has four washers and three dryers in their line. All but one are Wi-Fi enabled.
Let's start with the dryer.
Miele Dryer Features
It's a 110-volt heat pump with a steam cycle. Miele is the first with this technology, as every other major compact dryer is 220-volt.
Typically, 110-volt dryers are offered in washer and dryer combinations or niche brands. Simply put, they usually take a long time to dry if they work at all.
We have written more extensive articles about heat pumps and the differences between heat pumps and condenser dryers. There is a general section about heat pumps at the end of the article as well.Short on time? Get our free Compact Laundry Buying Guide
Heat pumps are compressors, not heating elements. They use existing air and store it, so they are more efficient and do not project heat into the room.
Miele uses a heat pump for more efficient and faster drying even in a 110-volt operation.
Also, the washer has an incredibly fast 1600 RPM spin. Why is this important? The fast spin speed removes more moisture from the clothes resulting in shorter drying times in the dryer. It essentially pre-dry clothes.
Miele Washer Features
Miele HoneyComb Drum In Compact Washer
Your fine washables glide on the water and don't touch the sides during the wash. You'll notice less pilling. It is the best machine for your gentle fabrics.
The washer has steam to power out stains, and the dryer also features steam to eliminate creases and freshen up your clothes.
The TwinDos dispenser is very different, as well. You can load up to 40 washes in the dispenser and even turn it on remotely using the app.
Miele Compact Laundry TwinDos Dispenser
The machine will calculate the number of clothes in the drum and dispense the optimal amount of detergent.
Miele Compact Laundry Controls at Yale Appliance in Boston
If you use caplets, Miele is the only compact washer with a caplet dispenser.
Miele's Compact Laundry CapDosing Dispenser
The intensive wash cycle imports the water from top and bottom for the maximum saturation of clothes and even distribution of detergents and bleach.
Pros: There's a cycle for every type of fabric. Miele also offers various ways to provide the machine with detergent. Use the TwinDos system and let the machine do all the thinking or put in your favorite detergent brand using the single-dose tray.
Have a specific load like sportswear that just needs a little to clean? Miele offers specially formulated detergent for the special load through the CapDos system.
If you have delicates or just want to make your clothes last as long as possible, this is the model to consider.
Cons: It's the most expensive at almost $4,000
Miele Compact Laundry Review [VIDEO]
Best Value: Miele WWB020WCS and TWB120WP
Miele Compact Washer WWB020WCS - $1,199
These machines at $1,129 each have the drum and heat pump just without the dispensers, programs, and Wi-Fi for much less.
Both washer and dryer can run on 110-volt each. However, if you have a 220v outlet, there is an adapter enabling both machines to run on a single outlet.
Best for Features and Reliability: Bosch WAW285H2UC and WTG865H2UC
Bosch, like Miele, is another German company. They have always been the most popular suppliers of compact laundry.
The machines are built solidly, offer better sound insulation, and are reliable for parts and service.
Also, compared to other options, they are the quietest at 52 DB.
You can pick the temperature and not just hot, warm and cold, but 60, 90, 105, and 140 degrees.
You can also choose your cycle based on the stain. Have red wine on your new pants? The machine will pick the right cycle to remove it.
Bosch is the only manufacturer with speed cycles in both their washers and dryers at 15 minutes each in the highest-end 800 Series models.
Their compact laundry lineup will have three washer and three dryer models with different features. The dryers are all condensation only (ventless).
Bosch 800 Compact Dryer WTG865H2UC - $1,399
Pros: Proven brand with a long history of manufacturing compact washer and dryers. Bosch offers a lot of great features such as fast wash, stain selector and quietness. It is also the most reliable
Cons: Miele offers more than the 500 series at $1129 with their better drum and heat pump. Condensation drying does emit heat and moisture in the room.
Bosch 800 Series Compact Laundry Review [VIDEO]
Best For Venting: Samsung WW22K6800AW and DV22K6800EW
Samsung is the only non-European product on this list. They are best for venting outside of your house.
Many condos are ventless (so builders don’t have to spend money on venting). However, most regular laundry is 100% vented, so this is a good replacement
Samsung has many of the features of their larger machines like steam in the washer. They also have a 40-minute speed cycle for the washer.
They have Wi-Fi as well, but only for diagnostics of problems. It will help us with service and tell you how much time is left on your cycle
Samsung's compact laundry is 26.6 inches deep as opposed to just over 24 inches for the other brands.
You will have more capacity with Samsung but be careful where you place the units. They are deeper than a traditional cabinet.
Pros: Samsung is already a well-known manufacturer for their regular laundry.
Having experience making the full-size lineup, they brought better features such as steam and super speed to the compact.
Cons: In order to get a larger capacity in the compact model, Samsung manufactured the machine a little deeper.
It’ll stick out more when installing under the counter. If you have a small closet, the extra 2-3 inches these machines require might be the difference considering additional depth is needed for the duct.
Samsung has an excellent reliability rating, BUT you can have a hard time finding service in certain areas. Inquire before you buy.
Samsung Compact Laundry Review [VIDEO]
Best For Tight Spaces: Beko BWM7200X and BDV7200X
Beko Compact Washer BWM7200X - $849
Beko Vented Dryer BDV7200X - $749
Beko is a huge Turkish manufacturer also manufacturing under the name Beko and Blomberg. Samsung and Beko are vented because they passed the UL requirements for fire containment, unlike most every other brand.
Beko has a unique depth of 22 inches vs. most 24 inch depth compact laundry units.
In tight spaces, sometimes the depth can make a huge difference. The Beko laundry will have automatic and adjustable controls as well.
They can adjust to the wash and dry or can be manually selected for more customization based on your preference and load types.
Everything You Need to Know About Compact Laundry
Before you decide on a compact laundry pair, you should know what kind of dryer you may need, what the electrical requirements are, and if Smart laundry (Wi-Fi-enabled by connecting to your home network) is right for you.
Below are our top questions from our readers.
What Are The Most Reliable Compact Laundry Brands?
The average rate for compact washers is 7.47% service within the first year down from 10.31 from the year before.
Bosch is the most reliable brand of 2.05%. It's more than three times more reliable than the average appliance service rate.
Most Reliable Compact Washers for 2020
|Serviced Qty||Shipped Qty||Service Ratio|
How We Calculate Our Service Rates
To be exact, we had 35,256 service calls logged in 2019. We have 30 service techs on 8-10 service calls per day, five days a week, with another ten working on the weekend.
Last year we logged more than 1,900 service calls just on compact washers.
In the chart below, you will see sales in the right column and service calls on the left for 2019. The percentage is calculated by service calls divided by sales over that period.
Do Compact Laundry Dryers Need to Be Vented?
If you live in the suburbs (like me in Needham originally), you most likely have a vented dryer. You can immediately identify them by the steel tube exiting out of your house from the dryer.
However, compact laundry dryers do not need to be vented. Ventless dryers work with a condenser which heats the air and helps evaporate water.
Instead of pushing the air outside, it circles back into the condenser where it's cooled.
Still, the evaporated water needs to be removed from the dryer.
Small Tip: You can run a line from the dryer to the drain of the washer to remove excess water.
Ventless dryers have become more popular, especially with builders and homeowners who cannot vent to the outside.
It is also way cheaper for the builder to not cut holes into a building and better for LEED certification for supplying ventless laundry.
Ventless dryers can work in any space with just 220 watts of power and a water line.
As for a vented dryer, it's are like a vacuum because it pulls the air in. To put it simply, it pulls air in from your laundry room, heats it, and then tumbles your clothes in it. Then it pushes the air outside through an exhaust.
Vented dryers usually cost less money to buy and dry faster than ventless versions, but are more expensive to operate.
Do Heat Pump Dryers Work?
Yes, heat pump dryers work by using a compressor instead of elements. The air is then recirculated with no outside air being used.
Heat pumps are more efficient than any type of dryer, but it is not widely sold in the US. Heat pumps are generally ventless as well.
Miele, Whirlpool, and LG are changing that. Many more European companies along with Samsung will be next.
Only Miele has engineered a 110-volt heat pump.
What are the electrical requirements for compact laundry?
Beko Vented Laundry Requirements
- Washer WM77120: 208 – 240V, 15amps
- Dryer DV17542: 208 – 240V, 15amps
Washer plugs into the dryer. Dryer plugs into 208 – 240V, four-prong 30amp outlet.
Miele Heat Pump Laundry Requirements
- Washers: 120V, 15amps
- Dryers: 120V, 15amps
They can be powered individually but must be on different circuits.
The most common installation, NEMA 4 prong adapter, is needed. The adapter plugs into a four-prong 30-amp outlet. Then the washer and dryer will need each plug into this adapter.
Samsung Vented Laundry Electrical Requirements
- Washers: 115V, 15amps. Plugs into a 15amp outlet.
- Dryers: 220 - 240V, 30amps. Plugs into a 3 of 4 prong 30amp outlet.
Bosch Condensation Laundry Requirements
- Washers: 208 – 220/240V, 20amps NEMA 3 or 4 prong plug
- Dryer: 208 – 220/240V, 30amp 3, or 4 prong outlet
Units can be plugged in separately, but this is uncommon due to the NEMA plug. By far, the most common installation is dryer plugs into the washer.
What is the average cost of compact laundry?
The average cost of a compact washer and dryer set is about $2,000. This is about 10% more when compared to the average price of a full set.
You can find more expensive models with better features, but it’ll be tough to find any reliable options priced less.
Should You Buy Smart Laundry Units?
Laundry would be truly smart if the machines could transfer the clothes from washer to dryer. Of course, that may never happen.
There are the all in one machine that washes and dries, but they are generally unreliable.
In terms of function, Bosch and Miele have some very good Smart Programs to control your laundry from your phone.
Bosch Home Connect
Smart works for laundry. You can see how much time remaining in all machines, so you don’t have to trudge to the basement or upstairs in your closet to find you have 4 minutes left in a cycle.
The Miele app enables you to control the machine and also track the amount of detergent left in the TwinDos system.
However, unlike Bosch, Miele doesn’t seem to work with virtual assistants like Alexa or systems such as Nest.
Before you buy any Smart appliances, you should know there can be connectivity and security issues.
Smart appliances and devices are the future. You just want to make sure they work today.
You should be aware of where your laundry will be situated. Can you vent, or will it be in a ventless location like a closet or kitchen space?
When comparing these brands, Beko will be less expensive. From an installation
perspective, Beko is great for tight areas, and the dryer can be vented outside.
Samsung is an upgrade with better controls, steam, and a speed cycle.
Miele is the best with an almost revolutionary design of heat pump technology at 110-volts, so you don’t have to update your electrical work.
Less amperage can be beneficial in apartments and condos with limited electrical service.
The real comparison for you will be the more feature-oriented, reliable Bosch at $1,129 each versus the more technologically advanced, energy-efficient Miele at the same price.
Download the Yale Compact Laundry Buying Guide with specs, features, and buying tips for every major brand. Well over 680,000 people have read a Yale Guide.
Tam is an Appliance Sales Consultant at Yale Appliance. In his spare time he enjoys watching and playing sports and spending time with his two children.
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