Washing machines have emerged as one of the most essential home appliances today. Gone are the days of the semi-automatic washing machines, where you have to manually shift your clothes from washer tub to the dryer tub. The modern-day washing machine is nothing short of a technological marvel. These fully automated machines do everything from you; from soaking to washing, and then dry your clothes. Additionally, they come with pre-set modes to optimize the wash quality according to different cloth materials.
IFB has established its image as a leading manufacturer of washing machines in India. This Indian company was established in 1974 and is giving tough competition to other international brands like LG, Samsung, Bosch, etc. in the entire Home Appliance sector. In 2017-18, IFB sold more than half a million washing machines in India which accounts for ~ 8% market share. IFB sells a number of fully automated front load washing machines than any other brand in India. Let’s look at some of the technologies that set IFB apart from its competitors.
IFB Washing Machine Technologies
All IFB machines are equipped with Aqua Energie filter that helps in breaking down the bicarbonates which are found in the hard water. As you might be aware, these bicarbonates stick to the surfaces and affect the foaming capacity of detergents. The Aqua Energie Filter in IFB breaks these bicarbonates into the small microscopic crystals. These crystals flow along with water thereby preventing bicarbonates from sticking to the surfaces. This results in soaking clothes uniformly and improved detergent action.
Apart from improving the detergent action, the Aqua Energie filter is effective in the reduction of scaling from different components like a drum, heater, etc. Increased detergent action results in less consumption of detergent and you don’t see any detergent traces in your clothes after washing.
4D Wash Technology with Water Jets
The 4D wash technology in premium IFB machines uses 4 nozzles or water jets to fill water in the tub by spraying. These nozzles provide a dynamic movement to the water to provide cleaner and fresher laundry. As the water fills, the drum rotates 360o to allow complete dissolving and penetration of detergents into clothes during washing. During the rinse cycle, the 4D Wash Technology helps better penetration of freshwater in the clothes to take away the traces of detergents from your clothes.
You might be under the impression that more foam means better cleaning. However, this is not true. Excessive foam can prevent the pumping of water from the washing machine as the bubbles are hard to pump out by the impeller. Additionally, too much foam reduces friction among the clothes. As a result, clothes rub less against each other during washing and not cleaned properly. Extra foam is caused by adding too much detergent or not using the appropriate detergent for your washing machine.
IFB washing machines come with a Foam Control System. It consists of a sensor for detecting extra foam. If the washing machine detects extra foam, it pumps in more water from the inlet to dilute the foam. The machine then pumps out the diluted foam before resuming the normal wash cycle. However, it adds to the total wash time and might be the reason why it sometimes takes more time than as predicted by the machine at the start of a wash program.
Air Bubble Wash
Another intelligent technology that gives IFB washing machines an edge over its competitors is its Air Bubble Wash. In this technique, the machine produces millions of air bubbles. These bubbles help the detergent to penetrate deep into the cloth fabric. As a result, the IFB washing machine is able to take out even the most stubborn dirt from your cloth. The Air Bubble Wash Technology adds freshness into clothes to ensure a perfect wash.
IFB front load machines are equipped with the patented Cradle Wash Technology. This feature gives the tub a rocking type motion to gently wash delicate fabrics like silk, satin, laces, etc. As the clothes handled gently without any vigorous motion, the machine helps in preserving the fabric of your clothes.
Ball Valve Technology
One of the most common complaints by the washing machine users is that a major portion of the detergent is drained at the beginning of the wash cycle. The Ball Valve Technology in IFB machines uses a floating ball valve on the drainage line that blocks the drainage of washing powder. Thus, there is no wastage of detergent and 100% of the powder is used for washing.
Crescent Moon Drum
All IFB washing machines have a crescent moon drum to improve the wash quality of your laundry. The washtub contains smooth crescent-shaped grooves on its surface. This creates a gentle cushion while washing your clothes. Water follows a curved pattern which prevents the clothes from rubbing with the wall of the steel tub. This water movement ensures that the cloth’s fiber does not get caught in the drum or drain holes. This results in washing your clothes gently without causing any damage to its fabric.
Touch Control Panel
A Touch Panel Control is an advanced feature in premium washing machines from IFB. The Top Touch Panel makes it convenient to use and ensures that every setting of your washing machine is accessible within a few taps. You can easily select different wash programs and settings from the LCD display in easy steps.
Every washing machine owner has experienced leftover small clothes like socks, handkerchiefs, etc. in its tub after the wash cycle. To solve this issue, IFB front loading washing machines are equipped with a drum lamp. It lights up before and after the wash cycle so that you don’t have to look for your small garments. As there are no dark corners in the tub, you won’t be left with an incomplete pair of socks anymore.
If have sensitive skin, you will appreciate the Hygiene Plus Technology in the IFB washing machines. In this mode, in-built rinse function ensures the removal of all detergent molecules and residue from the clothes and they are safe to wear after the wash.
Smart Weight Sensor
Smart Weight Sensor Technology in top-end IFB washing machines ensures that the use of water and detergents is optimized. It consists of a smart sensor to weigh a load of your laundry accurately. Based on the amount of load, the machine supplies the amount of detergent you need for the wash. Additionally, the machine intakes water automatically as per the quantity and material of clothes. Apart from saving detergent and water, the machine optimizes wash parameters like spinning time, number of the rinse cycles, etc. If the machine is overloaded, it gives you an alert to save early damage to different parts of the machine.
Steam Wash Technology from IFB is like a steam-bath for your clothes. The clothes are steam treated without adding any water or detergent for 15 minutes. The steam removes the tough and stubborn dirt away from your clothes. This steam treatment makes your clothes soft and refreshes them. Additionally, it can be used to sanitize baby clothes or refresh clothes stored for many months in the closet.
Pet Hair Removal
As a dog owner, I understand that it is frustrating to remove their hair from the clothes. Well not anymore! The Pet Hair Removal technology from IFB uses a special 3-cycle program to remove pet hair from your washed clothes. It features a hot blast that separates and rinses out pet hair from the clothes. Additionally, this hot blast technology destroys allergens in your clothes to keep them hygienic.
Repeat Wash program
Modern washing machines have several in-built program cycles depending upon the fabric of your cloth or amount of dirt. However, we often tweak some of the parameters like water temperature, spin frequency, etc. as per our convenience. It can be tedious to set these parameters manually every day. The intelligent Repeat Wash Program takes care of the problem by saving these parameters in its memory. This gives you a one-touch solution to repeat the settings of your previous wash cycle for your daily wash load.
Triadic Pulsator Technology is one of the most unique features developed by IFB for its Top Load Washing Machines. It is a combination of three powerful features – Soft Scrub Pads, Swirl Jets and Centre Punch. Here is how these features work:
- Soft Scrub Pads are used to gently scrub off stubborn dirt molecules.
- Swirl Jets produce powerful water jets to dislodge dirt from every part of the cloth including corners.
- Centre Punch provides a subtle mechanical action to squeeze out the dirt.
All these three features combine to give a perfect and uniform wash to your clothes. The Triadic pulsator technology ensures that the washing machine is tough on dirt and gentle on your clothes.
The premium IFB machines feature Bi-axial rotation to ensure perfect 3600 wash to your clothes. During wash cycles, the clothes rotate horizontally. But are tumbled vertically to give your clothes the perfect wash. As your clothes follow a 4-way tumble and rotation routine in the drum, the dirt molecules are loosened efficiently.
Aqua Spa Therapy
The IFB washing machines are equipped with Aqua Spa Therapy to pamper your clothes. These machines come with different programs to wash your clothes with care. These technological features hydrate, exfoliate, cleanse, and rejuvenate your clothes for the maximum freshness. This Spa therapy is able to shake even the most adamant dirt and stains to loosen and rinse them away while being gentle on your clothes.
Some of the washing machines from IFB use Auto Dispenser Technology for dispensing bleach and softener in separate compartments. If you are washing delicate clothes and want to use a fabric softener, just add softener in a specially designed compartment. Similarly, bleach dispenser allows you to use bleach on your clothes. Special inlets in both these compartments allow you to distribute liquid softener and bleach into the drum for uniformly.
Easy Loading Pedestal
The latest washing machines from IFB are equipped with Easy Loading Pedestal. A specially designed storage cabinet takes care of storing all your washing machine essentials neatly. The storage drawer has different compartments and ample space to organize things like detergents, softeners, bleach, etc. in an organized way.
Machine & User protection
Apart from these awesome features, IFB washing machines have in-built safety features to ensure the safety of your loved ones. Its High-Low Voltage Protection technology continuously monitors fluctuations in voltage. If the voltage level goes beyond safe operating levels, the wash cycle pauses and resumes automatically when the voltage levels stabilize. Similarly, the Child Lock feature can freeze the touch panel so that the settings can not be manipulated by the child accidentally.
Review of IFB Washing Machine in Indian Context
IFB has captured the imagination of a typical customer and developed its washing machines. With the use of advanced technology features described above, IFB has emerged as a pioneer in washing machines. It is, therefore, no surprise that their front loading washing machines have established themselves as the frontier as compared with other brands. In order to review the IFB washing machines, the following aspects are considered:
While buying a washing machine, the first thing an average customer takes into account is its pricing. If you compare IFB machines, they are mid-priced as compared with other brands. For any given load category, they are neither the least expensive nor the most expensive. However, considering all the technologies present in IFB washing machines, they are certainly worth spending more.
The durability of their washing machines is something that the IFB takes pride in. IFB washing machines are built to last long and they last really long!. These highly durable washing machines are worth spending a premium.
After Sales Support
The only thing that does not go in their favor is their service support. The online forums and e-commerce portals are filled with complaints like delayed installation, unprofessional service quality and rude technical support. After-sales support is the area where IFB lags behind other competitive brands like LG, Samsung, Bosch, etc.
Features and Performance
IFB is probably the most technically advanced brand providing several features in its washing machines. Unique features like aqua spa therapy, triadic pulsator, 4D washing, among many other features make IFB as the most advanced washing machine brand in India. Their quick wash time is the best when compared to the other premium brands. Some of the premium variants from IFB can clock up-to 1400 RPM giving it an edge over its competitors.
IFB has established itself as one of the best brands for front loading washing machines in India. The wash quality and performance of the washing machine is unparalleled. Efficient technologies like Biaxial Clothes Rotation and Crescent Moon Drum can take out the most unyielding dirt away from the clothes without causing any damage to the fabric. These unique features of IFB machines set them apart from their competitors.
IFB has recently partnered with Bosch & Siemens and all upcoming washing machines from IFB will use motor drives from them. This approach will allow IFB to concentrate on improving their technology and providing the best customer experience. If we compare IFB with other companies like Godrej, Videocon, etc., the product quality and durability of IFB machines is miles ahead.
A major chunk of its sales are due to word-of-mouth publicity and that tells you about the build quality and top-notch performance. Despite being a local brand, IFB is giving foreign brands a run for their money.