A great budget washing machine!
Member Name: ms_123
Advantages: compact size, quick wash setting, count down timer, powerful spin
Disadvantages: None for me
When I moved into my new flat last year one of the first things that I had to do was go and buy some appliances, with the fridge, washing machine and vacuum cleaner being top priorities. My kitchen is quite small and the hole where the old washing machine had been taken out was quite small. This proved quite difficult when trying to source a machine as most of the ones in the local electrical shops were much too big! I did come across a couple in my local Comet store that would fit the bill - a Hotpoint model and a Zanussi. As the Hotpoint was out of stock my choice was made for me and I bought the Zanussi ZWG 1140M and had it delivered and installed a few days later. It cost £229.99 which seems a reasonable price and in line with similar products on the market.
Given my experience above, you may have guessed that the Zanussi ZWG 1140M is a compact machine and ideal for small flats like mine. It has a height of 85cm, width of 59.5cm and depth of 53.5cm. This is just a washing machine and does not have a combined dryer. The machine itself is white and looks pretty much like a standard washing machine. At the top there is a control panel with a digital display as well as various buttons used to select machine settings. To the right side of the control panel is a dial that allows you to select the type of wash that you want to run. There is also a detergent compartment located to the left of the control panel. I shall talk a bit more about the various settings later in the review. The machine has a 6kg capacity, which is plenty for me as I live by myself, but may be a little small if you have a bigger family. The machine comes with an A rate grading for energy efficiency. It's not the most energy efficient but it's not too bad either.
To use, simply put your clothes into the drum, without overloading and close the door shut. I tend to sort my clothes into whites and colours and wash these separately. The door is easy to open but does have an additional child lock facility which can be activated by pressing the lock button on the control panel for 5 seconds. This child lock will remain until the wash program is finished and will not be reset until reprogrammed by the user, even when the machine is switched off. I can imagine this being handy as you don't have to remember to set this each time you use the machine.
The next step is to put in detergent and fabric softener. The detergent drawer slides open easily and is split into 3 compartments - one each for prewash, detergent and conditioner. I only use the detergent and conditioner compartments. The drawer can also be removed from the machine completely, which allows me to wash off any soap scum that may have been accumulated there over a few washes.
Once the detergent has been poured in the next step is to select the settings for the wash. There is a button to select the soil level i.e. how dirty your clothes are. Mine are mostly just in need of freshening up so I tend to use the lowest setting most of the time, except when I've been out gardening and have muddy clothes, when I'll then use a higher soil level to wash my clothes. You can also select the temperature you want the wash to run at. This ranges from 30°C to 95°C. I mostly use the 40°C setting but when I remember I should be trying to do my bit for the environment I use the 30°C. You can also select the spin speed with the maximum setting of 1400 rpm.
The large dial on the right of the control panel allows you to select the programme for the wash. These include options for different types of materials e.g. wool, cotton, synthetics or delicates. There is also an option for the intensity of the wash. For example you can select Quickwash or intensive, again depending on how dirty your clothes are. Quite often I use the Quickwash cycle as my clothes have just been worn once and just need a quick freshen up. This cycle only takes 24 minutes at 30°C or 27 minutes at 40°C - quite quick which is great as it uses less electricity too. The clothes washed at this setting always come out smelling fresh and looking clean so even though it is quick the cleaning quality is not compromised. If my clothes are a little more dirty, for example if they have a stain on them, then I will go for a longer wash, using the "Cottons Quick" or "synthetics" settings which take 1 hour 24 minutes and 54 minutes respectively. The washing machine also has a powerful spin and my clothes come out just a little damp with all the water sucked out of them. This is great - no dripping water on the floor and my clothes take less time to dry!
I should point out another useful feature here and that is the "delay start" button which as you may have guessed allows you to delay the start of the wash from between 1 hour and 19 hours. This is useful for example if you want to start the wash just before you get in from work so that you can hang the clothes without them sitting damp in the machine and getting musty or if you want the machine to run just before you wake up so you washing can be hanged out.
To set the machine going simply press the "start/pause" button and the machine whirrs into action. One of the best features of this machine is that there is a countdown timer on the display which is great as you know exactly how much time you have left to wait before the wash is complete. In use the machine is not too loud and I only usually hear it when it starts to spin! Once the programme has completed the machine plays a little tune to let you know that the wash is done. It only beeps a couple of times so doesn't end up annoying you!
I've been using the Zanussi ZWG 1140M for just over a year now and it is still going strong with no complaints on my part. For this reason I have no hesitations in recommending.
Summary: A great budget washing machine
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