Price on writing: £60 | Buy now from Amazon
Overall rating: 4/5
What we like
Affordably priced and cheap to run (around 8p per hour)
Can hold a full load of washing
Lightweight but not flimsy
What we don’t like
Takes up a lot of space when wings are extended (more than upright versions)
Feels a little stiff to set up and disassemble
Simple to set up, lightweight without being flimsy and effective at drying clothes quickly, the Minky 12m Electric Heated Airer has been a welcome addition to our family home (and never-ending laundry pile).
And given that it’s around half the price of many of its competitors, and sturdier than other basic models I've tested, it’s taken the top slot as our favourite budget buy in our roundup of the best heated airers.
If you’re short on space, you may find an upright model better suited to your setup (it measures 148cm in length when the wings are fully extended) and I found the folding mechanism a little stiff. It doesn't have a timer and there are no dedicated sections for drying specific items but if you’re looking for a product that speeds up the drying process and dries clothes and towels cheaply and effectively, this affordable airer does the job very well without leaving you out of pocket.
What Mumsnet users say
"I have the Minky, and it is good for lighter stuff, and I can fit a few loads on it. I also hang stuff off it on hangers, e.g. the kid's polo shirts. I hang towels from the ends of it, too, using clothes pegs. I have another concertina one for jeans, heavy jumpers, etc." (Tested by Mumsnet user ilovepowerhoop )
Size: 94H x 148W x 54D cm | Capacity: 16kg | Energy use: 230 watts | Cost per hour: 8p | Drying time settings: No timer | Foldable: Yes | Cable length: 1.35m | Tiers: Winged (three sections)
What’s the Minky 12m Electric Heated Airer like to set up?
The Minky Heated Airer is simple to set up - it’s pretty much ready to go straight from the box. You plug it into the mains so there’s no charging to contend with and there are no fiddly accessories to have to assemble or store.
The unit arrives in one piece - you just need to turn it upside down and slide the legs to the end of the rails to set it up. The sliding mechanism feels quite stiff with the legs often sticking before they reach the end of the rails but it’s not a major issue.
What’s the Minky 12m Electric Heated Airer like to use day-to-day?
This heated airer heats up very quickly with the rails radiating warmth within a matter of minutes (something we found took a lot longer when testing the Black + Decker 3-Tier Airer.
It’s relatively easy to unfold although I did find the legs a little stiff to slide out, as mentioned above. When the wings are extended there’s a sizable surface area on which to hang items or place them on top. However, you’ll need to bear in mind that it takes up a lot of space (lengthwise) and I found it tricky to place it somewhere in our house that didn’t block a route or take up a large area of a room. However it’s really lightweight so it’s easy to manoeuvre.
It definitely feels sturdier than other basic models I’ve tried but as is the case with the winged design in general, you need to be careful not to overload the outer sections, particularly with heavier items like towels and jeans - I soon learnt to be strategic about loading it up to prevent toppling.
I found the drying time varied significantly depending on how items were placed on the unit (as is the case with all heated airers). It took around 12 hours to dry a full load of washing hung over the rails like a traditional airer - often slightly longer for thicker waistbands, jeans and cuffs. But small cotton items placed directly on top of the rails dried within one to two hours. I found it particularly useful for quickly drying small items of school uniform and PE t-shirts.
The airer folds flat for easy storage and the wings fold into the main unit to reduce its size. I found it as easy to slip into a cupboard to store as my regular non-heated airer.
The instruction manual states that you shouldn’t put any delicate textiles like silk on it - I shied away from putting my footy-obsessed son’s team shirts and training tops on it too for fear of damaging prized numbers and names. These kinds of items dry in an instant anyhow.
Does the Minky 12m Electric Heated Airer have any special features?
There are no fancy features but its simplicity is part of the appeal. It’s ready to plug in and go straight from the box and there are no complicated instructions to get to grips with.
It would be handy to have a timer feature though for peace of mind. It’s easy to forget if you’ve switched the unit off when you leave the house in the way that straighteners constantly play on the mind. It’s not recommended to leave it on unattended.
Is the cover effective?
The large blue cover is a handy addition - it definitely speeds up the drying process. Made from polyester, it's designed to trap and circulate warm air inside to dry clothes quicker than without it.
Although it works effectively, I found that I missed being able to easily move items around the rails or lie them flat when needed. You have to either remove the whole cover and place it back again each time or crouch down and fiddle around inside.
It also somehow makes the airer feel even larger than it is too. It's useful for large loads of washing that you just want to shut away but if you want to dry bits and bobs to wear quickly, it's easier to leave it off.
Does the Minky 12m Electric Heated Airer offer value for money?
Yes! This large heated airer retails at £60 which is considerably cheaper than many of the models that feature in our guide to the best heated airers.
Considering that traditional non-heated airers can typically cost between £20-£40 anyhow, this Minky model is keenly priced given that it offers you the flexibility of heated elements that speed up the drying process significantly.
It’s a great buy if you want to dabble in the world of heated airers but don’t want to sink the best part of £100 on a product that dries clothes.
Read next: Check out our guide to the best dehumidifiers for more cost-effective indoor drying solutions
How we tested
Reviewer Rachel Erdos lives in south London with her husband and two kids, aged six and three.
The Minky 12m Electric Heated Airer was put through its paces thanks to the family's never-ending laundry pile. The rails were hung with a variety of items made from fabrics including cotton, polyester and denim and with a footy-mad schoolboy and active toddler at home, the airer has been in constant use, particularly on rainy days.
It was tested on its ability to dry clothes and towels with items draped over rails and placed flatly on top. It was also assessed in terms of its energy efficiency, how easy it was to use, fold away and store.
About the author
Rachel Erdos is an Editor at Mumsnet where she commissions, edits and writes content with a focus on product reviews, homeware roundups and family travel.
She’s written buyer’s guides for publications including Expert Reviews and Coach as well as reviews and features for the Guardian, TripSavvy and Visit London.
As a mum of two, she’s always on the lookout for products that make life easier at home and loves putting appliances and gadgets to the test to highlight best buys for families.
About Mumsnet Reviews
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