1950s Twin-tub vs European Drum Washing machines

Which is better ?

  • Twin-tubs like Granny used
  • Front loading European style

0 voters

I remember arriving in Taipei and being highly amused that the Taiwanese were still using twin-tub style washing machines, like wot my granny happily threw out when my Dad was 10. However, having been in the UK / Ireland for four years now, I am not so sure I was right to laugh. My succession of drum-type machines use an enormous amount of soap powder and electricity but almost no water, and the clothes come out no cleaner than my wonderful Taiwanese machine which drowned and strangulated my clothes in 300 gallons of water for 20 minutes.

Which is better ? I think the Taiwanese machine rinsed out the soap better than my current European one. Any thoughts on this burning issue ?

The twin tubs are quaint reminders of the past. My grandmother had one too. The modern front loading washing machines are much more water (and labour) efficient though.

A drum washing machine actually uses less swoap unless you put too much of it in. A decent french drum washer (Brandt) can be had for NT$17k. I have one and it washes our clothes very clean. The only gripe is that it can’t get the water hotter than 60 degrees. 95 would be better for sheets, undies and towels.

I have a Brandt one as well and love it. Mine cost around 15k. There are 95 degree ones, but they cost double of what the ones that only heat the water up to 60 degrees cost. As I don’t have kids and hardly do 95 degree laundry anyway, I decided the cheaper one would do for me.


If it’s a true twin tub, rather than a top loader which I guess some people are referring to, it can use far less water, power and powder than an automatic washing machine. In a twin tub the same water is used for many washes, so no need to heat fresh water each time. The idea is that you put your “good” clothes in first, followed by those you’re not so particular about, followed by towels etc and then anything thats filthy/don’t care about goes in last. In that way you use the same water for 4 or 5 washes. The spin dryers are separate on those machines (hence the twin tub) and are spectacularly efficient, it’s a much smaller drum that gets up to pretty high RPM’s. Anyway my, bordering on geeklike, knowledge of twin tubs comes from 20 years of trying to convince my mother to save labour and get an automatic and being presented with all of the above!

This is a Head Thread? Slow week at Segue… :?

You can still get twin tubs here, I have seen them in Tesco (but not in geant)/ The top loaders waste water like there’s no drought. I don’t believe claims that they are cheaper to run or that they wash better. The first thing my wife and I agreed to buy when we got ourselves set up here was a drum washing machine. The top loaders here are relics. I think I have seem them once in Denmark, and that was when I was a little boy.

Tee hee. You have no idea of the plethora of dull questions I am about to unleash on Segue…!

Give me the big American sized washer that I can use to wash my laundry once a month. I hate these tiny front loaders I see here, Japanese I think. The Euro front loaders are expensive and not that much bigger.

Its times like this I’m thankful I’m married. Washing machine? Would that be the big grey plastic box on my back balcony that makes strange noises now and again? I always thought my clothes got cleaned in the dirty laundry basket and then magically transferred themselves to coat hangers.

Hey Sandman, do you anything around the house? Dishes? Mop the floors? Maybe you do the traditional manly chores like taking out the trash? Most likely you don’t have any leaves to rake or grass to cut. Maybe you fix up the house like change a light bulb, but do you fix the car?

You got to do something lest the ABC’s sterotype is proved true about why foriengers marry Asian women.

No flames please, I am only half serious.

Did your wife get married in white (to match the other appliances)?

Hobart has found out my true henpecked self! Yeah, I do most things around the house and yard apart from the washing. And I even fix the car! Tomorrow I’m being given the pleasure of recaulking the bathtub. Yay!

Yes, and I have to lay out the lawn (And yes, an uncle gave me a banana plant, Chung). No, seriously I still hate those big American things with their cold water and their ability to destroy my wife’s blonde underwear.