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BUYING GUIDE

BUYING GUIDE

Welcome to the Appliance Shed buying guide.  Buying appliances can be confusing, there are many models available and there is a lot to consider.  Here are some tips for buying kitchen appliances, I hope it can be helpful.  Our staff has over 300 years’ experience in selling home appliances, so if the information you are looking for is not here, feel free to ask us a question and we will get back to you promptly


WASHING MACHINES:

Things to consider when choosing a washing machine:

  • What size do you have now?

    • Do you want the same size?

    • If so, measure the width of the washing machine you have now and check the sizes on the website of the models you are considering to ensure it will fit.

    • If not, measure the width of the gap you have available so you can compare that with the specifications we have on each model.

    • If you are wanting to put a dryer above a front loader will be better for space saving as the dryer can sit on top of it.


  • What brand do you have now?

    • Do you want the same brand?


  • Are you concerned with water consumption?

    • If yes, then consider a front load washing machine.  See below for more information on front loaders.


  • Are you concerned with garment care?

    • If yes, then consider a front load washing machine.  See below for more information on front loaders.


  • Front Loaders:

    • Front loaders need less water, up to a third less as its drum is set horizontally in the machine.  As the drum turns it uses gravity to drop the clothes back into the water.  While a top loading machine will generally empty the soapy water and refill for the rinse cycle, a front loading machine just sprays clean water on the load as the drum continues to turn, saving litres.

    • Front loaders are also very energy efficient, nearly every model available has an “Energy Star” label.

    • Front loaders in general take longer to do a standard wash, with some models taking up to 2 hours.   Many of the newer models now have quick wash options that cut washes down to under an hour.  If you have had a top loader, this will be the biggest difference that you find between top and front loaders.

    • Front loaders use a different type of washing powder, they require a low suds washing powder.   If the wrong powder is used it will seriously jeopardise the wash quality and could also create a flood from too many bubbles.

    • Cost – front loaders usually cost a little more.  Typically they are several hundred dollars more.


  • Top Loaders:

    • The majority of New Zealand homes have been specifically built to accommodate a top load washing machine, this makes them very easy to place within your laundry.

    • Smart drive/Inverter/Direct Drive

      • A Smartdrive, inverter or direct drive motor means that the agitator is been driven directly from the motor.  This enables the wash action to be tailored specifically for the type of clothes that are in the washing machine.  This will ensure a better quality wash and longevity of the clothes.

    • Ergonomics

      • If bending or kneeling is difficult for you a toploader washing machine will be a better option for you.

    • Putting in the last minute piece of clothing

      • If you are one to always forget to put in the entire load and put it in after the wash starts, a top loader will be a better option for you.  Some frontloaders enable you to do this, but typically do not open once the wash has started.

    • Top loaders cost you less in wash powder, there are more varieties and types of powder available in New Zealand for top load washing machines.


REFRIGERATORS/FRIDGE FREEZERS:

Things to consider when choosing a refrigerator:

  • What size do you have now?

    • Do you want the same size?

    • If so, measure the width, depth and height of the refrigerator you have now and check the sizes on the website of the models you are considering to ensure it will fit.

    • If not, measure the width, depth and height of the gap you have available so you can compare that with the specifications we have on each model.

    • You will also need to consider aeration around the fridge if it is going into a cavity.  Check with the models and specifications on the model number you are looking at, most of them have the aeration or cavity spacing.

  • What brand do you have now?

    • Do you want the same brand?


  • Colour?

    • Do you want stainless steel?

      • Stainless steel is very popular now.  Most stainless is easy clean, this means it does not show finger marks easily.

      • This will generally cost more than the white version.  Most brands have a white and stainless steel option for most models.

      • Consider what sort of walloven, rangehood and dishwasher you have now or would like to have in the future.

    • White

      • Traditional kitchens have white appliances.  Many brands have many models available in white.

    • Platinum/Silver

      • This is a silver paint finish designed to look similar to stainless steel.  It is popular if you want this look but cannot afford stainless steel.

    • Integrated

      • Some models are available as an integrated option.  This means you can ask your cabinet maker to make a front for the dishwasher so it looks like the rest of the kitchen.  The cabinet maker will need to organise handles and the cabinetry.

  • Single door, dual temp, French door, double door

    • Single door fridges

      • Are usually either a straight fridge or a vertical freezer.

    • Dual temp

      • Are a fridge and freezer, either a top mounted freezer or a bottom mounted freezer.

    • French door

      • These fridge freezers have two doors on the top, (fridge) and normally a drawer or door on the bottom which is the freezer.  This style has become more and more popular, especially in designer kitchens.

      • These fridge freezers are available with or without ice and water.

      • They are normally in stainless steel, although there is one model available in white.

    • Double door

      • Generally they have the freezer on the left and the fridge on the right hand side.

      • They are available in either stainless steel or white.

      • Ice and water options are available in this style.

  • Lighting

      • Many fridges have fluorescent lighting in them.  A lot of fridges now are choosing the more energy efficient LED lighting option.  This looks good and is a huge energy saver.

  • Vegetables

      • If you buy fresh fruit and vegetables regularly, look for fridges that have vege crisper bins that are designed for keeping food fresher and longer.  Size is also a consideration here, if you usually purchase large lettuces, cauliflowers and cabbages, ensure the crisper bin is big enough to store these.


DISHWASHERS:

Things to consider when choosing a dishwasher:

  • What size do you have now?

    • Do you want the same size?

    • If so, measure the width, depth & height of the dishwasher you have now and check the sizes on the website of the models you are considering to ensure it will fit.

    • If not, measure the width of the gap you have available so you can compare that with the specifications we have on each model.

  • What brand do you have now?

    • Do you want the same brand?

  • Colour?

    • Do you want stainless steel?

      • Stainless steel is very popular now.  Most stainless is easy clean, this means it does not show finger marks easily.

      • This will generally cost more than the white version.  Most brands have a white and stainless steel option for most models.

      • Consider what sort of walloven, rangehood and fridge you have now or would like to have in the future.

    • White

      • Traditional kitchens have white appliances.  Most models are available in white.

    • Platinum/Silver

      • This is a silver paint finish designed to look similar to stainless steel.  It is popular if you want this look but cannot afford stainless steel.

    • Integrated

      • Some models are available as an integrated option.  This means you can ask your cabinet maker to make a front for the dishwasher so it looks like the rest of the kitchen.  The cabinet maker will need to organise handles and the cabinetry.

  • Place settings

    • Dishwashers come in 9 place, (slimline models, 12 place or 14 place settings.  This indicates how many dishes can fit into the dishwasher.

  • Inverter/Direct Drive

      • An inverter or direct drive motor means that the motor is been driven directly from the bottom and has less moving parts than a normal dishwasher.  This enables the wash action to be tailored specifically for the type of dishes and how dirty they are. This will ensure a better quality wash.

  • Noise

    • How quiet a dishwasher is depends on the amount of insulation around the dishwasher and the type of motor that is driving the dishwasher.

    • Generally inverter/direct drive

WALL OVENS:

Things to consider when choosing a wall oven:

  • What size do you have now?

    • Do you want the same size?

    • If so, measure the width, depth & height of the oven you have now and check the sizes on the website of the models you are considering to ensure it will fit.

    • If not, measure the width of the gap you have available so you can compare that with the specifications we have on each model.  You may need to adapt your kitchen cabinetry to fit the wall oven you are after.

  • Types of oven sizes:

    • Single oven

      • A normal size, can fit under a bench or in a wall

    • One & a half oven

      • A normal size oven and a half size oven either on the top or bottom

      • Needs to be mounted into a wall, not under a bench

      • Generally most of the half size ovens do not have all the full specifications, so check that before buying, some don’t have fans

    • Double ovens

      • Two normal size ovens mounted one on top of the other

      • Needs to be mounted into a wall not under a bench

  • What brand do you have now?

    • Do you want the same brand?

  • Colour?

    • Do you want stainless steel?

      • Stainless steel is very popular now.  Most stainless is easy clean, this means it does not show finger marks easily.

      • This will generally cost more than the white version.  Most brands have a white and stainless steel option for most models.

  • Cleaning

    • There are 3 different types of cleaning you can get

      • Elbow grease

        • You clean it yourself

      • Catalytic liners

        • Eats the grease off the sides and back of the oven

        • You still need to clean the racks, bottom and top of most ovens

      • Pyrolytic ovens

        • Ovens have a specific cleaning mode

        • They lock the door, increase the temp to 500 degrees and burn everything off the sides of the oven, all you need to do is wipe with a damp cloth and you are done

        • Shelves and racks are still cleaned separately


COOKTOPS:

Things to consider when choosing a cooktop:

  • What size do you have now?

    • Do you want the same size?

    • If so, measure the width, depth & height of the cooktop you have now and check the sizes on the website of the models you are considering to ensure it will fit.

    • If not, measure the width of the gap you have available so you can compare that with the specifications we have on each model.  You may need to adapt your kitchen cabinetry to fit the cooktop you are after.

  • Types of cooktops:

    • Ceramic Hob

      • Generally comes in 600mm, 750mm, 900mm.  The most common size is 600mm.

      • Has either knobs on the side or front of the hob or has touch and slide controls

      • It has either a frame around the outside or is frameless for easy fit into the bench top

    • Induction Hob

      • Generally comes in 600mm, 750mm, 900mm.  The most common size is 600mm.

      • It uses induction heating to directly heat a cooking vessel as opposed to a heat transfer system.

      • It provides instant control, so is fantastic if you are looking to do gourmet cooking and cook a lot of sauces, rue’s etc..

      • Very safe for children as it does not hold a lot of residual heat.

      • Uses more current that a normal hob, so must have it’s own circuit back to the switch board, it cannot run on the same circuit as the wall oven.

    • Gas Hob

      • Generally comes in 600mm, 750mm, 900mm.  The most common size is 600mm.

      • Can either be LPG or Natural gas, most of them come with both jets so can be installed either way.

      • Offer instant heat, but hard to control the temperature of the heat.

      • Gas is cheaper than electricity, so in the long run, it will cost you less.

      • These must be installed by a registered installer or it could affect your household insurance.

      • Can either be stainless steel or gas on glass.

      • It is also important how hot the main burner can get with any gas hob, so it is important to know that these range from around 2.4 MJ/h to 18 MJ/h


RANGEHOODS:

Things to consider when choosing a rangehood:

  • What size do you have now?

    • Do you want the same size?

    • If so, measure the width, depth & height of the rangehood you have now and check the sizes on the website of the models you are considering to ensure it will fit.

    • If not, measure the width of the gap you have available so you can compare that with the specifications we have on each model.  You may need to adapt your kitchen cabinetry to fit the rangehood you are after.

  • Types of rangehoods/canopies:

    • Wall canopies

      • Generally comes in 600mm or 900mm.  

      • Is positioned over the cooktop

      • Air is normally ducted outside, this gives the best air flow.  Some models offer a recirculation option

      • They come in stainless steel, white or have stainless and glass combinations.

    • Island canopies

      • If your kitchen has an island cooking area, this type of rangehood is for you.

      • As well as looking good, an island canopy has excellent extraction abilities.

      • Air is usually ducted to the outside of your house through the roof, although some models offer a recirculation option.

    • Compact rangehoods

      • A compact canopy would be positioned against the wall above your cooktop.

      • It can be exposed, to be a design feature, or built into a cupboard.

      • Some compact canopies offer a recirculation option, for kitchens where ducting to the exterior of the house isn’t possible.

    • Tiltahood rangehoods

      • A tilterhood looks exactly like a cupboard, but it’s an extractor.

      • It is built into the area above your cooktop; lights and motor operate automatically when the door is pulled open.

      • Some tilterhoods offer a recirculation option, for kitchens where ducting to the exterior of the house isn’t possible.

    • Slideout rangehoods

      • A slideout rangehood is also built into a cupboard above your cooktop, with just the front edge of the slider showing.

      • Lights and motor operate automatically when the slider is pulled out.

      • Some slideout rangehoods offer a recirculation option, for kitchens where ducting to the exterior of the house isn’t possible.

    • Powerpack rangehoods

      • Your kitchen designer says “hide it away”, so an integrated rangehood is the way to go.

      • A powerpack rangehood is built into a cupboard above your cooktop. Some models offer a recirculation option, for kitchens where ducting to the exterior of the house isn’t possible.



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