Wednesday, 12 July 2017

REVIEW | LG Eco Hybrid™ With TrueSteam™ F4J8JH2W 10.5Kg / 7Kg Washer Dryer with 1400 rpm - White

This is our First Impressions Review - we received this appliance in return for our honest review based on our experiences. I will, no doubt, update this review should I see necessary, further down the line.

A washing machine is a feature of nearly every kitchen. And when space is at a premium, or when you can't sacrifice a cupboard stuffed with cookware, a washer-dryer is a great investment.

Our previous appliance was a Bosch Avantixx model which we owned and put through its paces for over 5 years. Why that particular choice? We had a similar version at our flat during final year at university and it was the only washer-dryer we had experience of. It certainly put up with a lot, particularly for the first few years what with washing and drying cloth nappies. Heavy use? Yes! Could it have seen the distance? Bosh seems to have a name for being a trusty brand; buy Bosch and you won't need to buy another appliance again kind of thing. Well, ours started ingesting socks and swallowed the odd five-pence. When the door seal developed a tear, it would seem to literally urinate water over the kitchen floor quite spectacularly. It also became increasingly louder as it aged, aggressively loud at times. So, to give it its due, it worked very well for us in the time that we had it.

Onto the new machine!

Points worth a mention:


The LG Eco Hybrid™ With TrueSteam™ F4J8JH2W 10.5Kg / 7Kg Washer Dryer with 1400 rpm - White looks like a high-tech appliance but thankfully it combines a trusty dial to select washing and drying functions, as well as a touch panel. The touch panel can be a little temperamental; it really depends on touch-sensitivity. 
The machine can wash up to 10.5KG and dry up to 7KG which is perfect for a family of 5 such as ours. 

The focal point of the front of the machine is obviously the gigantic smoke-effect double-glazed door with a chrome-effect rim. The door gives the impression that the drum is equally enormous but in fact it isn't. The door just makes it look impressive. The upper right hand quarter of the door is the handle, which feels really robust although the chrome-effect does gather fingerprints. Nothing a wipe with an e-cloth can't solve. The drum itself is so much more textured than our previous appliance; it has swirls and bobbles which helps remove stains from clothes in a gentle yet thorough way. It can fit a duvet in, and kingsize bedding; sheet, duvet cover, mattress protector and pillowcases, with sufficient room for water and agitation. It sits snugly beneath our kitchen countertop and juts out only a little,which is totally fine with us.


It is a very tuneful machine! It seems that nearly all of our appliances like to make a noise when it finishes its task. It plays a melody when it is switched on and off and chimes when the dial is turned or the touch panel is touched. The beep can be turned off though, so don't worry if you get annoyed. Thankfully it only plays its exultant "I've finished the washing and drying, praise me!" song once, rather then intermittently until you turn the machine off. That would drive me barmy! 


The majority of settings won't provide a duration of the cycle unless it is a fixed wash, for example Quick 30. The machine weighs the load once it is turned on and once it has calculated the weight, the duration of the cycle will be displayed on the touch panel screen. This could be a bit off-putting if you are used to sticking with trusty 20 minute quick washes and don't dare change your setting regardless of the laundry load.

I personally like the allergy function which I use for our bedding and the Steam Refresh function which can freshen up lightly worn or creased clean clothes. I wondered whether it was just a fad, but I will definitely be using this setting rather than having to do a wash, dry and iron in a hurry. The clothes emerge damp and require at least 30 minutes of drying on a hanger. They will smell air-dried; clean and fresh. I wonder if a fragrance booster could be added to the machine to scent the steam, just like ironing water. Just a thought...

 This appliance also has an Add Item function. No more beginning the cycle then discovering that something else needed to go in the wash. I often find myself doing a quick tidy up after pressing start, only to find rogue socks knocking about. No need to wait for the next load as at periods throughout the wash, the Add Item indicator will show so you can open up the door and fling in the rogue items which didn't make it in initially. 

The dry function is fab and works so much better than our last appliance. Once the drying cycle finishes, it has a cooling down period, during which the drum rotates every now and then to avoid creases before you press any button to unload it. A LOT of steam comes out, so watch out! In fact rather than rushing to empty the dried laundry to fold ASAP, I actually leave it to cool down a little while longer as the clothes come out boiling hot. Any metal poppers on baby vests could produce a nasty burn as you reach in to pull everything out, unless you use a glove. I don't find that my delay compromises the quality of the dried clothes though, they are generally uncreased, or creases are easily smoothed out. A far cry from the results of the previously beloved Bosch.
The instructions are generally fine and informative enough for me to make decisions on which cycle function is best to use and whether I can add any optional features. The main point for improvement would have to be the LG Smart ThinQ app which allows you to register the product to operate it remotely and download a variety of different functions, such as school uniform wash and blanket. The instructions and the app itself were vague and glitchy so in the time I had to complete this review I have been unsuccessful in utilising this feature. Despite this, I don't feel that I am missing out as the machine offers such a variety of washing and drying cycles that the additional downloadable ones aren't necessary. The instructions do have disclaimers regarding the wifi connection, but I would not choose this machine just based on the downloadable functions. If at one point I can get it to work, it would be a fun, additional perk. 

Two features which could be improved would have to be the child-lock function. Easily set, by pressing the child lock button for 3 seconds and again to release it but it does not prevent the power being turned off. The setting cannot be disturbed, but this is all well and good unless the off button is pressed without your knowledge. It is a quiet machine remember, and in a busy household you may not even realise it has been off for a while.
I tried to soak my daughter's cuddly toy inside it with plenty of water and stain removing powder. When the drum was full with sufficient water to cover the toy within the cavernous drum, I switched the machine off with the idea of the soak lasting a few hours. I did wonder whether the door would remain locked, given that the drum had water in. But it released and the door could be opened. This soaking malarky would be used more often if our youngest was using cloth nappies and I have, in the past, opened up the door of the appliance to have a flood of water rush out. You'd think that child lock settings or intelligent settings could be applied so that the appliance knows it is full of water and therefore keeps the door lock until it is drained. I don't know really, I'm no engineer as you know!




Overall, I love this machine. It performs very well and I am reassured that I could solve problems thanks to the Smart Diagnosis and comprehensive troubleshooting in the instructions. Touch wood I don't have any issues. There is even a little diagnostics card which can be attached to the machine to be at hand whenever an error message needs translating. I would recommend this large drum washer-dryer to a friend, but going on my experience so far I wouldn't recommend it purely for the downloadable features.


Do you have a fantastic washer-dryer which you can use with Wifi?

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