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Hoover H160E washing machine review

Independent washing machine reviews by a repairman with 30 years experience.

Hoover H160E


Hoover still give a free 5-year parts guarantee with their washing machines. A free 5 year parts guarantee does sometimes come in useful, and as long as you understand its limitations ( I have a 5 year parts guarantee - should I use it? ) it's still a plus point when buying a washing machine though clearly not as good as a parts and labour warranty.

Virtually all repairmen in the trade repair Hoover washing machines, which means there is healthy competition and repair charges are more reasonable as a result. Unfortunately though, if drum bearings failed after 5 years this washing machine is likely to be scrapped because it would need an entire new outer tub, as mentioned earlier, drum bearings can't be replaced. This is becoming common on lots of washing machines in this price range.

Zanussi and Bosch offer washing machines at similar prices but with a better reliability record - particularly in the case of Bosch. Also, Bosch give a full 2 year parts & labour guarantee.

Latest info:

This model isn't commonly available although the latest Hoover washers don't look much different to this one build quality wise. This review can still give a good idea of what Hoover washing machines are like.

Main review

The only make of washing machine I've always repaired on a daily basis for the last 30 years is Hoover. I trained on Hoover washing machines (from 1976) and for the first 15-years I repaired nothing else but Hoover washing machines. I always believed that, all things considered, (particularly the cheapness and availability of parts and repairmen) Hoover was on of the best value for money washing machines available (in the UK)

Unfortunately, Hoover were taken over by Candy in the mid 1990s, and for several years, new Hoover washing machines were actually Candy washing machines badged up as Hoover. During this time, Hoover were not as recommended by myself and countless others because Candy had a poor reputation in the UK. Candy have now owned Hoover for long enough for us to see a range of washing machines that are much more of a collaboration, and so here's my review of a Hoover washing machine.

First impressions

I like the look of the H160E This washing machine looks chunky and solid. It's the heaviest and most solid looking range of washing machine Hoover has produced for a long time. Mind you, most of this weight is due to the extra large concrete weights inside. The door looks large, and gives the impression you can fit even more washing in than the 5 Kg load it's capable of. It has a very fast (too fast?) 1600 spin with a manual spin override speed option, and its control panel is nicely laid out.

Build quality

This washing machine is designed for the value-for-money market rather than the quality end. The thin soap dispenser drawer front bends under the strain of pulling it out. The customer I was installing this washing machine for couldn't pull out the soap dispenser drawer out for her first wash. There was no fault, it just needed pulling harder than you'd expect, and the bowing of the drawer front had concerned her enough to not want to pull any harder.

Kick strip:

The kick strip at the bottom is held on tentatively with brittle clips, which can easily be broken by someone trying to tilt the washing machine back by grabbing it at the bottom (which I have done in the past) or accidentally kicking it.

Holes in back panel:

The quality of the screw holes in the back panel is poor. After just one undoing (to take transit packing off) the holes became enlarged and prevented the back panel screws tightening up properly again. I've seen this many times on recent Hoover washing machines, so it wasn't just this one. Again, it's not a major problem, but it's likely to result in unnecessary rattles from the back panel in the future.

Continued on next column ...

Best Retailer

John Lewis John Lewis are a great place to buy a washing machine from. They give at least 2 years guarantee on all washing machines and other appliances - and even 3 years on their own brand (plus 5 year guarantees on TV's).

Free standard delivery on all orders over £30

They've also been voted top of the customer satisfaction polls by Which? consumer association. John Lewis - the best? (external link to my Blog).

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