Without the proper equipment, the high-end laundry room is just a fancy closet. New washing machines do more than just sit and spin — below are some of the features on the latest top-of-the-line models:
FEATURE: "Favorite" cycle
MACHINE/PRICE: Maytag Neptune Washer, $1,000 — $1,500
COMMENTS: There are an eye-popping 24 pre-programmed cycles ("Diaper Cycle"; "Spandex Cycle"), but if that's not enough you can create and name another two dozen.
FEATURE: Adjustable "your laundry's done" tone
MACHINE/PRICE: Bosch Nexxt, $1,200 — $1,500
COMMENTS: The chime means it's time to put the load in the dryer — you can crank the volume up high enough to hear in other rooms, or turn it off completely.
FEATURE: Germ-Killing Heat
MACHINE/PRICE: ASKO W6461, $1,300 — $1,400
COMMENTS: Appealing to hypochondriacs, the company boasts that temperatures up to 205 degrees in the washer "kill germs and dust mites."
FEATURE: 24-hour Delay Start
MACHINE/PRICE: Miele Touchtronic Washer, $1,800 — $2,200
COMMENTS: In many European countries, power rates are cheaper at night — so these German machines can be programmed like coffee makers to start when you want them to.
FEATURE: Add an Item option
MACHINE/PRICE: Whirlpool Duet Washer, $1,000 — $1,300
COMMENTS: You can pause the machine and add in that stray sock without getting a pool of water on the floor.
Source: The Wall Street Journal