The main thing that the Hotpoint WMAL661 has going for it is its drum size. With a drum capacity of 9kg you can wash large loads of washing in one go, thus reducing the number of washes you have to do and the time spent messing about unloading and reloading the machine, and even wash big items such as King Size duvets.
Having to do fewer washes will also save money on your water and electricity bills, and the Hotpoint WMAL661’s A** energy efficiency rating will also help with this. It only has a B spin efficiency rating, however, so you will need to take a little extra time to dry the clothes in the tumble dryer than you would have to on other models.
The maximum spin speed of this machine is only 1200 revolutions per minute. Yes it’s a bit slow compared to other machines on the market, but to get faster speeds you’d need to go for a smaller drum size. The spin speed is separately programmable to the different wash programmes, though, as is the temperature, so you can choose your spin speed and temperature for each wash.
The programmes themselves include things such as delicates, wool and cashmere to allow you to better attune your wash to the contents. Although there isn’t a dedicated half load setting, if you only put a half load in the machine it automatically detects it and adjusts water usage, energy usage and cycle time accordingly. There’s also no hand wash setting, but there is a dedicated spin setting just to get rid of some of the water in items you have hand washed.
The biggest problem with the Hotpoint WMAL661, however, is the cycle times. The 90°C cotton wash takes an absolutely huge 170 minutes. Even the fast wash cycles take ages, with the hot water option taking an hour and the cold water one lasting 30 minutes. Although there is a time save option to shorten the programmes and ensure the eco-washes don’t take quite as long, this doesn’t make up for the frankly farcical run times.
If you can cope with the longer cycle times, the Hotpoint WMAL661 is a perfectly decent washing machine that cleans clothes well.