James Stanbury

See other accessory reviews written by James Stanbury

If you want to be totally self-sufficient in your motorhome you need a clothes airer – so read our Quest 4-Arm Rotary Airer review to see if it's the one!

Overview

One of the best things about owning a motorhome is that you can enjoy touring holidays, exploring further afield during each break than most people ever manage. Why stay on one campsite for a fortnight, when you can head down to the South of France, Spain, Italy or Greece? 

The downside of all this travelling is that you tend not to stay in one place long enough to get your washing dry. On top of that, if you're moving on frequently it is hardly worth staying at campsites, so that means using aires or just wild camping. Luckily, you're likely to have all the facilities you need right there in the motorhome. All the facilities apart from a tumble dryer, that is!

So how do you get your towels dry after a shower, or your swimming costume dry after a swim and where do you hang your hand-washed undies, when you're trying to postpone the trip to a launderette or full-facility campsite for as long as possible? 

Being self-sufficient in the 'van means investing in a few handy gadgets and the right camping gear. To find out which are the best camping accessories for motorhome touring, we regularly carry out group tests of outdoor gear, gadgets, cycling accessories and more. Now we've decided to focus on clothes airers and portable rotary washing lines that are light enough to use in a motorhome.

For our group clothes airer test we have gathered up a selection of likely-looking products to try out. For instance, we have compared the Kampa Universal Clothes Dryer AC0600 costing £9.99, the Kampa Clothes Dryer AC0290 at £11.99, the Quest 4-Arm Rotary Airer at £29.99 and another portable rotary washing line, the Vango Clothes Drier at £35.

Here is our Quest 4-Arm Rotary Airer review. At just under £30, this portable rotary airer from Quest Leisure is cheaper than the Vango Clothes Drier at £35, and slightly dearer than another similar rival rotary airer, Outwell’s Drying Rack at £24.99. In other ways these portable rotary airers are similar, boasting around 15m of hanging line each.

The Quest 4-Arm Rotary Airer can withstand moderate breezes when it's laden with washing, thanks to the pegs and securing hooks supplied with it.

The bane of this type of rotary washing line design is evident whenever the arms are folded down, however. There’s a huge excess length of line, which tends to go everywhere. Inevitably it gets tangled up, which prevents the unit from being opened easily the next time it is needed. The golden rule is never to force the issue. If the airer won’t co-operate, it’s because there’s a piece of line looped around something that it shouldn’t be.

We like the Quest 4-Arm Rotary Airer's 85cm x 25cm x 18cm storage bag supplied, which is more durable than Outwell’s cardboard box, but packing the Quest airer away would be so much easier if the bag were a smidgen bigger.

Technical specs

Size135cm x 135cm x 140cm
Folded size18cm x 25cm x 85cm
Weight2.4kg
MaterialsAluminium frame
IncludesPegging points, pegs, carry bag

Verdict

Quest Leisure's 4-Arm Rotary Airer is freestanding, so it's very useful for days when you stay in one place long enough to let the washing dry outdoors. If you're staying on a campsite you could certainly put it up in a drive-away awning or behind a windbreak while you're out and about in your 'van or on bikes. This airer is well made, if a little bulky to store in transit, and we've awarded it three stars.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Comes with carry bag and pegs
  • Freestanding
  • 15m laundry capacity

Cons

  • Rotary washing line gets tangled when folded
  • Carry bag is a tight fit
  • Bulky to store in a motorhome
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