Washing Machine


Pounding cloths against rocks, rubbing them with sand and rinsing them in streams were how ancient people cleaned their cloths.

Thank god for washing machines!

It didn’t start that early though; in fact the first washing machine was made around 1858 by Hamilton Smith who patented the rotary washing machine. Before that scrub boards were used. This is considered to have been the first washing machine and was invented by James King in 1797. It did not have a drum so I’m not sure that I would call it a washing machine but the invention was patented so it is considered a first.

Rotary Washing Machine

1874. William Blackstone. He built a birthday present for his wife. Now we know where the idea of buying house hold items for the wife comes from, thanks for that! Anyway, it was designed for convenience and to be used in the home. This was the first real washing machine.

Mighty Thor 1908

The first electric-powered washing machine by Alva J. Fisher of the Hurley Machine Company of Chicago, Illinois, A patent was issued on August 9th 1910. Alva J. Fisher was responsible for this machine that not only had a drum but a galvanized tub and an electric motor too.

The Whirlpool Corporation started in 1911. The origins of the Schulthess Group go back over 150 years. In 1951, production of Europe’s first automatic washing machines started. In 1978, the first microchip-controlled automatic washing machines were produced. So now we can see how we started to clean our cloths but what about getting them dry?

Tumble Dryers


It was the early 1800s; clothes were being dried on something called the ventilator. France was responsible for the first ones known to be built and they were made by a Frenchman named Pochon. Turned by hand over a fire, the ventilator was a barrel-shaped metal drum with holes in it.

June 7, 1892. George T. Sampson. This man was granted the patent for his version of a dryer that used heat from a stove to dry the cloths.

Electrical Clothes Dryers

Electrical clothes dryers appeared around 1915. Modern clothes dryers include features like electronic sensors so that they can detect when the clothes are dry.

Today, companies make washers, dryers and combination washer dryers. They come in a large range from small to big black white and all the other colours you can think of and you can get energy saving eco friendly ones too.

Equipment like this should be looked after, cleaned and care for. You can buy products such as Calgon to prevent lime scale and wiping around the doors and making sure the rubber seals have no holes in should be all you need to do to maintain you appliances.

Useful hint

If you take a clean dry tea-towel and wipe the rubber seal dry between washes, the rubber will stay good for longer because this will prevent it from rotting.

Here are some of the mane names in washing machine and tumble dryers

  • Whirlpool
  • Hotpoint
  • White Knight
  • Bosh
  • Indesit
  • Beko
  • Zanussi
  • Hoover

Happy washing and drying.