We've updated this roundup to include one of the best new dryers on the market, the LG DLEX3700W. We're testing lots of dryers right now, so stay tuned for further updates!
While dryers are typically sold with accompanying washers, it's not a rule that needs to be followed. For those of us who have laundry machines hidden away in garages or basements, having a matching pair isn't that important, opening up the opportunity to get the best version of each.
Over the years, hundreds of dryers have passed through our labs. When we test, we're looking at these machines from every angle. The chief concern: Can the dryer get clothes dry in a timely manner without damaging them? Next, we test extra features like steam or smart connectivity. Finally, we analyze the fit and finish. The very best dryers have sturdy doors, drum lights, and easy-to-read buttons.
We looked over the data of every dryer we've tested and picked the top 10. Among those, the crème de la crème is the Electrolux EFME627UTT (available at AppliancesConnection for $1,073.00). The EFME627UTT aced all of our tests while looking good.
Here are all the dryers that we think are the best in ranked order:
- Electrolux EFME627UTT
- LG DLEX9000V
- Whirlpool WED7500GC
- LG DLEX3700W
- Maytag Bravos XL MEDB835DW
- Samsung DVE54M8750V
- Electrolux EFME527UTT
- Maytag MEDC465HW
- Maytag MEDB955FC
- LG DLE7300WE
- LG DLE3500W
NOTE: This list is comprised of electric dryers, but you'll find a link to our review of each dryer's gas counterpart (where available) below. Though gas dryers tend to be more efficient, in general, gas and electric versions of the same product should function and perform identically.
The Electrolux EFME627UTT dryer is great-looking, has simple controls, and is rich with cycles and options, including Perfect Steam, which can help to relax wrinkles away. Its Quick Dry cycle completes in a mere 15 minutes. Though the Normal cycle is slow, the Heavy cycle takes only an hour. As the counterpart to the stellar Electrolux EFLS627UTT washing machine that has a spot in the detergent drawer for laundry pods, this dryer is another great addition to the Electrolux laundry family.
How We Test
Every dryer that comes into Reviewed’s labs gets put through the same testing regime, which addresses both performance and user-friendliness.
Performance tests include:
• Drying performance – How much water does each major dryer cycle actually remove from your clothes, and how quickly can it achieve that level of dryness?
• Maximum temperature – We record the maximum temperature in each dryer cycle. Some like it hot, but if dryer temperatures get too hot, it could damage your clothes.
The best dryers completely dry your clothes at a temperature that is hot (140°F-150°F), but not too hot (lest your clothes be scorched or damaged), and have short cycle times.
Beyond these performance tests, we also assess the usability of each dryer, based on our experience, both during testing and during more casual use (one perk of working at Reviewed is that there is plenty of laundry machines on premises!). Our main goal is to get the answer to one question: How easy is it to actually use this dryer? This involves cumulatively assessing the control panel, the door, the vent, and any smart features that are included.
By combining the performance data with our own observations, we can make the solid recommendations for someone looking for any type of dryer at any price point.
What to consider when purchasing a dryer
Whether it’s an emergency replacement, or you’re just looking to change up your laundry room, there are a few things you should consider when you purchase a new dryer.
Before you head out to the stores, be sure you know the size constraints needed for your dryer. We’re not just talking about the width of the space you have in your laundry room for the dryer itself (although that’s definitely important). Are the doorways in your home wide enough for a dryer to fit through during delivery? Will it be able to fit down narrow or tight stair cases? Take a tape measure and check the doorway width against the dryer’s specs, and make sure you have a few inches of clearance.
Most dryers have capacities ranging from 7.3 to 7.5 cu. ft., which is enough to deal with the laundry that can fit in most washing machines. However, if you have a high-capacity washing machine (5.0 cu. ft. capacity or greater), you’ll need a dryer that can keep up with the bigger laundry loads, typically one with a capacity on the order of 8.0 cu. ft. or greater. Otherwise, your dryer may struggle to dry large laundry loads in a single dryer cycle.
Keep your budget constraints in mind. Dryer prices can run the gamut, from $500 to $2,000 or more, but most tend to sit in the $800 to $1,200 range. We have recommendations for some dryers with very low prices, but you can generally find great dryers at any price point; it just takes a little bit of research, and figuring out which features and design aesthetics you can live without.
Also, if you can afford to wait, most appliance manufacturers and retailers tend to offer steep discounts around major holidays; vigilantly searching for deals can save you hundreds of dollars.
How picky are you about your dryer cycles? Do you want to be able to set specific cycle temperatures, drying levels, and cycle duration, or would you prefer to just hit two buttons and start drying? Do you want a cycle just for denim jeans? Really consider how you do laundry on a day-to-day basis. If you prefer a straightforward drying process, you’ll probably want to buy a lower-tech dryer. Even if that extra customization seems appealing, it may not make sense for you to buy that kind of dryer if you’re not going to actually use those extra features regularly.
Are you considering a dryer with steam? Steam is an easy and effective way to reduce wrinkles, remove stale smells, and refresh clothing. However, if the dryer you’re eyeballing has steam, be sure to find out exactly how the dryer gets the water needed to create that steam. Most dryers will require access to an additional water line, but some dryers have a drawer where you can manually add water. If you don’t have that necessary water hookup, you may pay extra for a feature you can’t actually use.
Based on your laundry room configuration, which way should the dryer door open? If the opening direction doesn’t work in your laundry space, don’t worry, almost all dryer doors are reversible; all you’ll need is a screwdriver and some elbow grease. It’s such a minor thing, but if you don’t think about it beforehand, it can be frustrating when you go to use your shiny new dryer for the first time and you can’t open the door all the way.
The LG DLEX9000V isn't just gorgeous—it works better than most dryers we've tested. It doesn't come cheap, but it rocks best-in-class features, including steam cycles and a massive drum. With a veritable cornucopia of wash cycle options and features, this dryer can easily deal with a variety of fabric types and items sizes—it has no trouble with big items like comforters, and gets shirts wrinkle-free. Even though it's a big investment, we say its performance justifies the cost.
The Whirlpool WED7500GC dryer works speedily and gently to dry clothes. The intuitive touch control panel presents choices on the left for what to dry, and choices on the right for how to dry. We ran a Normal and Cotton cycle, and it almost completely dried every bit of laundry in that load in an astonishingly short 38 minutes. You can customize the drying for each load, but you don't need to be a laundry expert to get completely dry clothes from this dryer. Even if you are a laundry expert, you will still appreciate the clear, easy-to-use interface.
Where To Buy$744.80 AppliancesConnection Buy $899.10 Home Depot Buy $899.99 Best Buy Buy $899.00 Abt Buy
If you want a dryer that gets your clothes 100% dry, regardless of which cycle you select, then be sure to check out the LG DLEX3700W. While this dryer runs a bit hot (temperatures max out at about 170°F; most dryers tend to stay around 150°F), it has a Speed Dry cycle that finishes in 25 minutes, has a clean, streamlined aesthetic, and, best of all, it has steam.
With steam options and cycles like TurboSteam and Steam Fresh, it's easy to quickly refresh musty clothes that you need on short notice, or to gently relax wrinkles without needing to spend quality time with a clothes iron. Between its stellar drying performance and steam feature, the LG DLEX3700W will make laundry day a breeze.
Maytag Bravos XL MEDB835DW
Maytag Bravos XL MEDB835DW
The best word to describe the Maytag Bravos XL MEDB835DW is "reasonable." It's reasonably priced and it dries clothes reasonably well. While the Rapid Dry only worked on a small laundry load, and the Bedding cycle wasn't as effective as we hoped, the Normal cycle was able to completely dry a normal laundry load in about 50 minutes. As long as you stick with the normal cycle, this 8.8-cu.-ft. capacity dryer will help you turn laundry day into laundry hour.
If you clean your clothes in a big washer, the Samsung DVE54M8750V has the room to dry it all. Our king size comforter came out 99 percent dry in only 46 minutes, which is among the fastest and best performing Bedding cycles we've seen. This dryer is really customizable—you can build your own My Cycle, in which you can set cycle times, temperatures, and drying levels. For those of you who want fine control over each cycle, his dryer has a bevy of steam, temperature, and timing options.
The Electrolux EFME527UTT dryer is great-looking, easy to control, and full of cycles and options. Like the Electrolux EFME627UTT, it has Perfect Steam, which is powered by its built-in water heater to maximize hot water temperatures for sanitizing, wrinkle removal, and odor removal. Its Quick Dry cycle finishes in a mere 18 minutes, though not every cycle is as speedy. This dryer is a worthy counterpart to the Electrolux EFLS527UTT washing machine, which has a spot in the detergent drawer for laundry pods.
Where To Buy$624.10 AppliancesConnection Buy $477.90 Home Depot Buy $479.99 Best Buy Buy $479.00 Abt Buy
The Maytag MEDC465HW dryer is a basic dryer with old-school aesthetics that gets the job done right the first time. While you may not get the frills and extra features found on some of the more expensive dryers, this Maytag's Normal cycle can get your laundry 100 percent dry in a mere 53 minutes. The dryer's interface, comprised of four knobs, is streamlined and easy to operate, even if you're still a laundry novice. If you want top-notch dryer performance on a budget, the Maytag MEDC465HW is for you.
Where To Buy$1,254.10 AppliancesConnection Buy $1,259.10 Home Depot Buy $1,259.99 Best Buy Buy $1,259.00 Abt Buy
For families that generate a lot of laundry, the Maytag MEDB955FC dryer has the room for it. With its 9.2-cu.-ft. capacity, there's plenty of room for you to put in your king size comforters; the best part is that they come out totally dry and fluffy. Admittedly, the cycle times are on the longer side: The Normal cycle took about an hour and 40 minutes, while the Bedding cycle that dried that comforter was only a few minutes shorter. Rapid Dry, though, is a real treat, and almost completely dried a small load of laundry in 14 minutes, which is nothing to sneeze at. With its recessed door handle, magnetic door, and big, easy-to-read control dials, the Maytag MEDB955FC is designed to be easily operated with one hand, presumably while you shepherd kids or pets around with the other hand.
As far as dryers go, the LG DLE7300WE is a workhorse. it gets the job done, but with little finesse. During testing, our sensors picked temperatures north of 160°F, which can prematurely damage clothes over time. However, the upside is that the DLE7300WE got our wet test load of laundry into a ready-to-wear state, removing 99 percent of all moisture consistently. We also liked the fact that this dryer has LG's EasyLoad feature. Basically, the door has two sets of hinges so it can swing open left to right or open and down depending if you're loading or unloading the dryer. In the end, the relatively steep price and way-too-hot temperatures prevented the LG DLE7300WE from claiming a top spot.
Where To Buy$695.30 AppliancesConnection Buy $698.40 Home Depot Buy $809.99 Best Buy Buy $809.00 Abt Buy
The LG DLE3500W is a hot dryer that gets wet laundry fully dry. Between its 7.4-cu.-ft. size and its cycle versatility, it'll get you through laundry day faster. With all the basic cycles (no steam here), you can easily customize the care of each load of wet clothes. The Speed cycle finishes up in a mere 25 minutes. Our main concern about this dryer is its tendency to run very hot, especially on the Normal cycle, which maxed out at 166°F (most dryers tend to stay at or below 150°F). While that may cause more wear and tear on your clothes in the long run, it’s not a day-to-day problem and in the meantime, it helps to ensure that the clothes dry well. Happily, you can use the control panel to turn down the cycle temperature, so you can still get rapid drying that won't wear out your clothes.