Monday, 22 August 2016

Review: Siemens avantgarde iSensoric Freestanding Washing Machine | part two

Last month, you might've read part one of our review of the new Siemens avantgarde iSensoric freestanding washing machine. I know you've been itching to read part two. Today is your lucky day.

As with part one, this review is written by my very own laundroman, Mike. 

Okay, two weeks in with the lovely new Siemens avantgarde iSensoric Freestanding Washing Machine (of which I am the newly-designated master – see previous post on how I ended up with this gig) and we’ve thrown everything and indeed anything into it. To whit:

• A summer of sprogs’ togs, our five Tasmanian Devils using their clothes as napkins whilst they dervish their way through balloon fiestas and post-picnic bundles.
Done: the Cottons and Cottons Eco settings do their jobs here, the Eco setting using a suitably cooler temperature and less washing products (but can take over five hours!). The Easy Care setting for mixed fabrics works well here, too.

• Delicate Boden and Toast shirts and dresses bought for a whirl of summer weddings and given a hot day’s worth of reception dancing and collar loosening?
Done: combined with a deeper stain remover, the Delicates/Silk setting eases down on the temperature and spin speed to save your pricier togs for another day without having to constantly dry clean only.

• That new stripey shirt from Gap, now Jackson Pollocked with hot beetroot broth after the food processor exploded when trying to make what ended up as a rather lovely risotto?
Done: after a cold water soak, the Shirts setting did the job nicely and it’s good as new. Now if only I could fit the now-purple kitchen rug in there as well.

• Beyond manky five-a-side kit that I’m regularly advised should probably be cremated rather than washed?
Done: the Hygiene setting whacks the temperature up to 60 degrees and combined with a sports wash, things are coming out just peachy. Well, not peachy but certainly not toxic.

• A snatched summer holiday in Mallorca equals a crammed and creased suitcase of shorts and shirts tossed from suitcase to swimming pool to beach to suitcase (and back again).
Done: most of the holiday clothes need only freshening up rather than a deep cleanse so I used the Auto Gentle setting, possibly the closest to a standard 30 degree wash the Siemens avantgarde iSensoric machine offers. Quick and easy.

And you know what? Everything’s coming out pretty well, whatever’s thrown at it. The sheer number of settings means it’s not a simple case of ‘throw everything in at 30 degrees and pray’ (see previous machine, now consigned to the garage) but it’s the customisation settings that really impress.

Most families have at least one member who’s sensitive to too much washing product or fabric conditioner, no matter how eco-friendly your supermarket habits. With the Siemens avantgarde iSensoric Freestanding Washing Machine, you can simply decrease or increase the amount of product used whilst still using whatever setting you’ve become used to. Turn it down for sensitive sprogs, turn it up for grimy grown-ups.

Now fiddle with the heat and spin speed depending on the clothes being washed and you’ll end up with a completely unique personalised setting that you can save to the MyTime cycle. 

It’s exactly the kind of personalisation and user experience we’re accustomed to in the world of websites and apps – Siemens have ‘simply’ brought this to the washing machine yet thankfully not managed to blind us with science. Kudos is deserved – and we haven’t even mentioned the cute feature that puts a light on inside the drum, showing you where that stray sock is hiding when you’re unloading. Smart.

And if you can’t be bothered with all that tinkering? Keep the washing liquid and fabric softener drawers topped up (they each hold over a litre), and the i-Dos system automatically determines the exact amount of liquid detergent needed, depending on the weight of the load and what programme is used. 

Gripes? Not many. The Siemens avantgarde iSensoric Freestanding Washing Machine has the ability to change the wash time on the fly, based on variations in water temperature and load. On first appearances, that sounds admirably thorough but a bit of a surprise if you’re relying on that shirt being clean in time for that occasion. It happens rarely but one to watch if you’re washing to a tight deadline. Worth saying here that the machine also has a clever Reload function, which lets you pause the wash cycle at the next available opportunity if you ever need to add something or get something out. Like I said, smart.

Other than that – just perfect. Big enough for a huge family, smart enough to take on all challenges and quiet enough for me to set it going when about to hit the sack in the bedroom directly above. No trouble with me, zero complaints from the others and we’ve already sent one interested party off to John Lewis after they admired it in action.

What next? Inevitably more weddings, a group outing to the circus (hello candy floss handprints), more overheated five-a-side marathons plus a week for all seven of us at CenterParcs which is set to fray nerves let alone seams. If the avantgarde iSensoric can handle the clothes that somehow survive all of that, it’ll be doing well. And so will we…

We were given a Siemens avantgarde iSensoric Freestanding Washing Machine for the purposes of this review. 
All words: Oyster & Pearl. 
Image: Unsplash
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