Saturday, January 21, 2012

Spin Dryer / Essoreuse / Laundry Centrifuge

 Dear readers, I recently ordered a spin dryer, alternatively known in France as an Essoreuse, or in English as a Laundry Centrifuge. What is a spin dryer? Simply put it is a centrifuge that spins at around 3,000 rpm (3.000 trs/mn) and which due to the forces created, naturally causes water to be expelled from the clothing, without the use of heat. What does it not do? It does not completely dry the clothing, it only gets most clothing partially dry. 

 If the spin  dryer doesn't actually fully dry the laundry, why bother? There are a couple reasons. First it is incredibly energy-efficient. By using the spin dryer for a couple minutes with a load of cottons, I cut my tumble drying time in half (after spin drying, it took under 35 minutes in the tumble dryer, as opposed to 50-65). Clearly, you can see there are green environmental reasons for the use of this dryer in addition to electric bill savings. By using less resources, we conserve energy and money. Additionally, less heat means that the clothing may last longer; also, when the water is expressed it takes some remaining detergent with it. This means the clothes are healthier, as the residue isn't baked into the clothing, but rather removed.

 Once the spin dryer has run for 2-4 minutes, it is then possible to load the laundry into a tumble dyer or hang it up to air dry. Either way, it makes the process faster. The catch is that loading the spin dryer does take a few minutes, because it is essential to balance it properly. Make sure heavy/large items are at the bottom, and you will want to wrap the items around the sides. I did it wrong the first time and it really didn't go terribly fast. I'm looking to use the spin dryer to allow me to do more line drying and cut on my tumble dryer costs by doing more than one load within a timed dry at my apartment.

 One last note: for those of you who think this is a new invention, it's not. My French grandmother has had one for at least 20 years, if I'm not mistaken. It's just harder to find them in North America than anywhere else. In Europe there are numerous competing brands. You can even get them from La Redoute, lol! I got mine from The Laundry Alternative, you can find the product page, here! There are a couple of competitors here in North America, but they charge 2-4x as much.

Here are my unboxing and initial testing pictures, enjoy! 
For size reference, the unit reaches slightly above my knee when unboxed and standing on the floor.

Opening the box at home
It tomes with a sheet describing the unboxing procedure
Took the machine out of the box, it's shrinkwrapped
Once I got it unwrapped, I had to remove the Styrofoam and instructions/cardboard in the drum
Inside of drum without debris, you can see Styrofoam I broke off the base on the floor. I also had to clean the inside, because there was some manufacturing ickyness left, including some sort of grease potentially.
To protect the motor, they attached it to a piece of wood, here I am unscrewing it
And it's ready!
Here is what the machine looks like, filled with laundry and the clothes protector sheet placed on top
To start the machine, close the lid, and pull the sliding lock switch over it
And we're off! :)
You will want to place a bowl under the spout, as the water literally just runs out
This is a bit of an exaggeration, as I placed laundry I wet in the sink and barely wrung out for a first test. It does do this for laundry coming out of a top loader, but only briefly... it's mostly a long trickle
Spin in progress!

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