Electrolux have just developed a new tumble dryer called the Iron Aid, which aims to “significantly reduce the amount of ironing required”.
As ironing is a chore (for most people) and one that’s been relatively unrelieved by modern technology this could be a genuinely useful time saving device. It looks like it’s going to be fairly expensive at around the £699 mark, but it is likely to be a well made tumble dryer as Electrolux make good products.
It has programmes to dry and de-wrinkle laundry, or to just de-wrinkle laundry that’s already dry. Obviously it uses steam to achieve this and it will need a water supply. There are no details as to whether it would use a refillable container, or a plumbed in supply, or even an option to use either but it would be impractical for most people to connect it up to a permanent water supply.
According to Electrolux’s research, 98% of the 282 consumers who tested it said they would wear clothes directly from the dryer for leisure or free time purposes. 77% said they would even wear clothes (including shirts) for work straight from the dryer. This implies that clothes come out – not ironed as such – but relatively free from creasing and should at the absolute least cut down ironing significantly.
It remains to be seen if this is the start of a revolution in tumble drying or not, but ironing is something many people hate and it does take up a lot of time so it might be worth paying more for.
Electrolux’s current campaign in the trade press has humour, which I like, and I hope it’s what they are going to use to advertise to the public. It shows an ironing board with a shirt laid across it. On top of the shirt is the Electrolux dryer. The slogan reads, “We were thinking – why not let the dryer help with the ironing?”
Is it any good?
I have tested this dryer and it can aid ironing but it involves extra effort to remove laundry immediately it’s finished and hang it up on hangers or lay it all out flat. It also leaves laundry wet not dry so that it can finish off drying whilst hung up or laid flat which helps remove creases. My wife preferred ironing laundry to having to do this because the dryer is located outside in our garage. I would think this is only of use to people who see reducing ironing as paramount and they are prepared to divert efforts and inconvenience from ironing to finding space to hang or lay the tumble dried laundry to finalise drying – and are able to remove the laundry as soon as the dryer has finished.