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Dryers Buying Guide

Your dryer affects the longevity and appearance of your clothes, so you'll want to choose a model carefully. Take a look at this buying guide to find a dryer that suits your family's needs and space requirements.

Types of Dryers

Types of Dryers

Most dryers operate fairly similarly, but they differ in terms of size and the number of features. To determine the type that is best for you, consider the amount of space you have in your laundry room. Also think about the amount of clothes you usually wash and dry at one time to determine the capacity you need. Here is a look at the various types of clothes dryers and the advantages of each.

Full-Size Dryer

This type of clothes dryer is the most common. Models are generally 27-29 inches wide and can handle a standard-size wash load easily. Some can accommodate comforters and other bulky items.

Space-Saving Dryers

These models are smaller than full-size units; usually they are 24 inches wide or less. They are good for an apartment or a small house, but their capacity is smaller than full-size models.

Laundry Center

In this setup, the washer and dryer are sold together as one unit. Some models can be stacked so they take up less floor space. You can find both full-size dryers and compact models, but keep in mind that full-size dryers in laundry centers usually hold less than stand-alone full-size dryers.

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The Eastman Center Drain Washing Machine Outlet Box is designed for recessed residential applications. The outlet box comes comple...te with hot and cold valves installed, support bracket, and faceplate cover. This outlet box is built with 1-piece... read more


The Eastman Center Drain Washing Machine Outlet Box is designed for recessed residential applications. The outlet box comes comple...te with hot and cold valves installed, support bracket, and faceplate cover. This outlet box is built with 1-piece... read more


The Eastman Center Drain Washing Machine Outlet Box is designed for recessed residential applications. This outlet box is built 1-piece construction and a raised drip guard that prevents potential leaks. Washing machine valves not included. read more


The Eastman Center Drain Washing Machine Outlet Box is designed for recessed residential applications. The outlet box comes comple...te with hot and cold valves with hammer arresters installed, support bracket, and faceplate cover. This outlet box is... read more

Condensation Dryers

Most traditional dryers pull in air from the surrounding room, heat it, and then exhaust the moisture-laden air through a vent that leads outside. Condensation or condenser dryers don't have a vent. Instead, the moist air goes into a heat exchanger, which cools the air and sends the water into the washer's drainpipe or another storage chamber. Because they don't need vents, condensation dryers can be placed nearly anywhere—making them a smart choice for apartment dwellers or owners of small homes.

Product Features

Product Features

As you are shopping for your new clothes dryer, look for features that enhance convenience, performance, and efficiency. Decide what special cycles are most important to you so you can avoid unnecessary extras that drive up the price. Here is a look at some features to consider.

Moisture Sensor

Many new dryers include a moisture sensor (instead of the traditional thermostat) to determine when clothes are dry. When the dryer senses clothes are dry, it will automatically shut off. Units with sensors are easier on fabrics because they don't subject clothes to unnecessary drying. They also use less energy than other models.

Extended Tumble

Dryers with this feature will keep tumbling clothes without heat after they are dry to prevent wrinkles. This feature is helpful if you aren't always able to get clothes out of the dryer immediately.

Reverse-Tumble Drum

This type of dryer drum changes direction every few minutes to help prevent clothes from wrinkling. The rotation decreases drying times and lowers energy consumption.

Top-Mount Lint Filter

You may find a filter mounted on the top of the dryer is easier to clean than one inside the drum. Many models also include a warning light to remind you when the filter needs to be cleaned.

Drum Rack

Some models come with a rack that can be attached to the inside of the drum. This rack keeps contents from tumbling and is useful for drying items such as shoes and sweaters.

Steam Setting

This setting promises to reduce wrinkles, decrease static, and remove odors. Some models require you to add water before you run the cycle; others can be connected to the cold-water line used for the washing machine.

Sanitizing Cycle

This cycle uses high heat or steam to sanitize items. It can eliminate up to 99.9 percent of common household bacteria and is especially useful for family members who suffer from allergies.

Purchase Considerations

Purchase Considerations

When you head to the store to start shopping, you'll need to know whether you are looking for a gas or electric clothes dryer. You'll also want to consider capacity and decide what types of controls you prefer. Take a look at the various cycles available on different models, and determine which settings you are likely to use the most. Also take into account where you'll be placing your clothes dryer, and choose a finish that complements your laundry room's style.

Gas vs. Electric

Most dryers sold today are electric models, but gas and electric dryers perform equally well. Gas dryers tend to cost a little more initially but may be more economical to operate in the long run. Electric dryers require a 240-volt outlet, while gas dryers need a gas hookup and a 120-volt outlet. If you don't have a gas hookup in the location where you plan to install the dryer, you'll want to opt for an electric model.


Before you go to the store, be sure to measure your space carefully and take the measurements with you. If you'll be placing the dryer in a main living area or near a bedroom, opt for a model with extra insulation and sound-dampening pads to ensure quieter operation. Also choose a model that allows you to turn off end-of-cycle signals. If you would like to raise your dryer to make loading and unloading easier, consider purchasing a storage pedestal that can be installed below the dryer. When deciding on a location for your dryer, keep in mind that placing it in a warm room will help it perform better—it will heat up faster and dry clothes more efficiently.


Think about how much laundry you do on a regular basis to determine the capacity you'll need. Overstuffing the dryer can decrease the machine's life span, and the more clothes you can dry in a single load, the more time and energy you'll save. Clothes will wrinkle less in a dryer with a large drum because there's more tumbling room. That said, most full-size dryers can easily handle a full-size wash load, so don't worry too much about the exact capacity, unless you want to be able to dry bulky items such as comforters.


Higher-price models offer a large array of special cycles that can increase convenience, but they are likely unnecessary. A machine that offers a choice of heat level, timed and auto-dry, and a few fabric types may be all you need—and cost considerably less. So think about what features are worth paying extra to have.


Clothes dryers are available in white, black, and stainless steel, as well as bold colors such as orange, red, and blue. Choose a finish that matches your washer and complements your laundry room's style.

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Kenmore 69133 8.8 cu. ft. Electric Dryer���Chic and Sleek Laundry Time-Saver The Kenmore 69133 Metallic Electric Dryer with Steam ...Refresh was designed with the busy family in mind. Spend less of your day switching laundry around and toss larger, bulkier loads into this spacious Kenmore dryer. SmartDry Ultra technology and quad baffles ensure better, more even drying throughout the cycle so you won���t be stuck with over-dried fabrics or damp towels that need another go-round. Sleek capacitive touch controls and versatile drying options make this Kenmore 8.8 cu. ft. metallic silver dryer your new best friend for laundry day. read more

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