In a fitted kitchen, an integrated washing machine will be completely invisible, hidden behind one of the many, identical cupboard doors. To achieve this, the design of the integrated washing machine is different to a conventional freestanding washing machine.
Integrated washing machines are slightly narrower with a much smaller base so that a standard plinth can be fitted to the cupboard unit. In many cases the cupboard door is attached directly to the washing machine.
They are designed to be fitted inside cupboard units and are reliant on the cupboard for support. They also typically have slower spin speeds because higher spin speeds cause higher vibrations that can cause problems for cabinet doors and also affect neighbouring units.
As these machines are specifically designed to be incorporated into a kitchen unit, they should never be used unless secured by the cupboard. It would be potentially dangerous to do so as the machine is not stable without the support of the cupboard.
What About The Price?
Due to the manufacturing costs of integrated washing machines and cabinets, they are significantly more expensive than freestanding washing machines with similar functions and specifications.
Installation costs are also greater on integrated machines as they are more complicated to install. Cupboards need to be shaped and cut in certain ways for the machine to fit properly and accessibility is an issue as well. This also applies to servicing costs and repairs, all things that need to be considered when weighing up the pros and cons.
What Is a Semi-Integrated Washing Machine?
A semi integrated washing machine is very similar in design to a fully integrated washing machine. The difference being the cupboard door only covers the bottom of the machine, leaving the controls fully visible.
They share many of the installation problems that are common with fully integrated washing machines, making them quite an expensive choice. For this reason, and also because the preference seems to be for integrated machines, semi integrated washing machines are becoming difficult to find nowadays.
What’s the Difference Between a Built-In Washing Machine and an Integrated Washing Machine?
A built in washing machine is the same as a fully integrated washing machine in many respects.
It is designed to be fitted into the Kitchen unit and not to be used freestanding. Where they differ is that built in washing machines have flat metal doors that can be coloured to match the surrounding units.
They are still more expensive to buy than freestanding machines, but they do not cost as much for installation and service as fully integrated machines.
Both built in and integrated washing machines are designed to be fitted into kitchen units. The difference is that built in washing machines are visible even though they are set flush with the rest of the kitchen units. Whereas integrated washing machines are completely enclosed by a cupboard door and are thus completely hidden from view.
It should be pointed out that both built in and integrated machines will be more expensive than freestanding washing machines. Not only in purchase price but also in installation and servicing.
You are free to make the choice that best suits your lifestyle and personality, but whatever you choose, we know it will serve you well for many years.