Mother and daughter using a washing macine

Laundry is among the most hated chores, but having a quality washing machine can make doing it much easier.

If you’re looking for a washing machine, you already know the choices can be overwhelming. It can be hard to decide between a top loader and a front loader. Then, you have to factor in all the other options like the cost and whether it will fit into your space.

There’s more than meets the eye when choosing the best washing machine and you should make sure you have all the information you need before making such a large purchase.

We created this guide to make shopping for a washing machine easier. To make our picks, we looked at factors including size, load capacity, cost, and unique features like delay timers and special cycles.

Read on to see a breakdown of why and how we picked the best washing machines.

Our Top Picks: Summary

Best Overall Top Loader: LG WT7200CW
Best Overall Front Loader: Samsung WF45K6500AV
Best Stackable: Whirpool WFW5620FW
Best Budget: Whirpool WTW4955HW
Best Splurge: Samsung WV60M9900AV
Best 2-in-1 Washer Dryer: LG WM3997HWA

The Best Washing Machines: Our Top Picks 

Best Overall Top Loader: LG WT2700CW
LG WT2700CW

An excellent combination of large load capacity and sound dampening technology.

Check Price

Why we Picked It

The LG WT7200CW comes in as the best top loader because of its load capacity, space, and amazing technology features. It does not have an agitator and has a load capacity of 5 cubic feet. The WT7200CW can hold a full bedding set and king-sized comforter.

ColdWash technology allows you to wash your garments in cold water while getting the same performance as warm water. We also like the smart home capability of the WT7200CW because it allows you to operate and troubleshoot the machine remotely. Anti-vibration technology and the LG low decibel motor make this one of the quietest washing machines in its class.

Keep in Mind

All the integrated technology can sometimes make this washer difficult to use, as not all controls are intuitive. For example, the washer will not open after it starts unless you use a specific pause button.

In a Nutshell

  • Deep cleaning without an agitator
  • Smart home compatible
  • Custom wash settings
Best Overall Front Loader: Samsung WF45K6500AV
Samsung WF45K6500AV

Easy to use front load design combined with Energy Star efficiency and 14 customizable settings.

Check Price

Why we Picked It

The Samsung WF45K6500AV is easy to use, easy to maintain, and comes with smart features. With the SelfClean+ feature, the washer keeps the drum clean and mold-free. The diamond design drum is gentle on clothes and won’t stretch or rip them like other front loading models.

With a capacity of 4.5 cubic feet, the WF45K6500AV is one of the largest models in its class. It also features anti-vibration technology that makes it quieter than most front loaders.

Technology features make this a top choice for those looking for something extra in their washing machine. Smart Care diagnoses problems with the washer. Delay a cycle for up to 24 hours and make the washer work on your schedule.

Keep in Mind

Even though the Samsung WF45K6500AV self-cleans inside the drum, you must still clean and maintain the rubber seal to prevent mold.

In a Nutshell

  • 4.5 cubic foot capacity
  • Energy-efficient
  • Smart Care diagnoses and fixes problems
Best Stackable: Whirlpool WFW5620FW
Whirlpool WFW5620FW

Stackable design made for squeezing into tight spaces.

Check Price

Why we Picked It

The Whirlpool WFW5620FW is a stackable washer that comes with adaptive load technology and other features like a smooth basket that doesn’t rip or fray clothes. Its large 4.5 cubic foot size reduces the number of loads you’ll need to do.

Whirlpool’s Precision Dispense feature dispenses detergent at the best time based on the load size and settings chosen for the cycle. The WFW5620FW features Adaptive Wash which customizes the cycle to the type of garments you’re washing. The Sanitize cycle removes up to 99.9% of the most commonly found household bacteria.

Keep in Mind

The spin cycle in front load models sometimes pushes the clothes against the drum. It may contribute to more wrinkles if the clothes are left in the drum for a long time.

In a Nutshell

  • Large load capacity
  • Adaptive wash technology
  • No snags or frays with a smooth basket

Best Budget: Whirlpool WTW4955HW
Whirlpool WTW4955HW

Lower price without sacrificing high-quality features.

Check Price

Why we Picked It

The Whirlpool WTW4955HW is low-cost and provides many features for a budget-friendly washer. It has a stainless steel basket that reduces wear and tear on clothes. It also features customizable water level settings and easy to understand cycle settings.

Choose how much agitation you need depending on your garments with the Whirlpool WTW4955HW’s two-way agitator. Its 3.8 cubic foot load capacity allows you to wash small clothes in a shorter period of time. The washer can complete a small-size load in only 30 minutes with the speed cycle. It also includes a bulky setting for sheets, blankets, and jackets.

Keep in Mind

Since the Whirlpool WTW4955HW features a traditional agitator, you must make sure you balance your load around the agitator and do not overfill it. Otherwise, the agitator could damage your clothes and the machine could become unbalanced, causing potential damage and creating noise.

In a Nutshell

  • High-efficiency top loader
  • Budget friendly price and features
  • 3.8 cubic foot load capacity

Best Splurge: Samsung WV60M9900AV
Samsung WV60M9900AV

Double washing areas make this splurge worth it.

Check Price

Why we Picked It

The Samsung WV60M9900AV is two washers in one. It comes with a smaller top-loading washer that holds up to 1 cubic foot of laundry and a larger front-loading washer that holds 5 cubic feet. The top portion is great for extra loads of laundry or for a very small load in between washes.

Samsung’s steam wash feature helps remove stains without pre-treating. The WV60M9900AV combines this with power foam to increase the stain-fighting strength of detergent. It also comes with self clean and Smart Care to keep the washer maintained while also troubleshooting any issues with it.

The Wi-Fi connectivity works with most smart home setups. This allows you to schedule a load, pause a load, and monitor the amount of time until your load is done.

Keep in Mind

The high price of the washer makes it cost-prohibitive to many shoppers, but it is worth the splurge because of the many features that come with it.

In a Nutshell

  • Two washers in one with a total 6 cubic foot capacity
  • Smart home compatible
  • Easy use and maintenance technology features
Best 2-in-1 Washer Dryer: LG WM3997HWA
LG WM3997HWA

The capacity for more laundry done without switching between machines.

Check Price

Why we Picked It

The LG WM3997HWA washer dryer combination is a space saver at just 27 inches wide. It washes clothes and dries them all in one machine without any need for external venting making it ideal for efficiency apartments or camper living. It features a large 4.3 cubic foot load capacity and anti-vibration technology.

The washer and dryer combination is easy to use and runs on standard voltage electric. Choose which wash and dry cycle works best for your load to get it all done at once. LG’s TurboWash reduces the cycle time by up to 20 minutes while Delay Wash allows you to preprogram up to 19 hours in advance.

Keep in Mind

The price of the washer and dryer combination might seem high, but you get two machines for that price. Some users complain that the dryer feature doesn’t work as well as a standalone dryer.

In a Nutshell

  • Space saving washer and dryer design
  • No need for external venting or higher voltage electric
  • 4.3 cubic foot capacity for large loads

How We Chose the Best Washing Machines

Want to learn more about how we rated each of these to find the best washing machines? Here are each of the features we took into consideration.

Load Capacity

A smaller load capacity can limit your ability to wash certain items and can mean more loads overall. Load capacity is important because it allows you to wash more clothes at once or wash larger items like king-size bedding. When we looked at the load capacity of each washing machine, we also compared it to the overall size.

Another related feature we looked at was a manufacturer’s recommendations for bulky items. Some manufacturers put limitations on common objects like bedding and jackets.

Reliability & Customer Satisfaction

A leaking or broken machine can be a huge problem and cost a lot of money due to damage. We looked at each machine’s reliability and how well it held up to regular use. Locking mechanisms, advanced sealing, and other leak-proofing features were high on our list of things to look for. We also considered manufacturers warranties. Another important factor when determining reliability was a machine’s ability to do a high capacity of loads.

Customer satisfaction plays a big role in the best washing machines. We took customer reviews and testimonials into consideration to help us determine which washing machines stood up to different standards.

Features

Most new washing machines feature settings that make the cycles completely customizable. In considering washers, we looked for features like cold water washing, quick cycles, and auto detection for optimal washing.

Each machine had different features, but some of the most common things we saw were machines that had stainless steel drums for smoother washing and machines that optimized the wash settings for different types of loads. Machines with steam, extra washing areas, or other unique features received higher ratings. We also took tech features, like smart home compatibility, into consideration.

Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is more than just a machine’s ability to eat up less energy during a cycle. We also looked at how much water a machine required, whether it had the ability to deep clean with cold water, and if it could spin out a lot of water to reduce the time spent in energy-hungry dryers.

Most modern machines are made to use less energy, but they still may use a lot of water. The ideal washers have features that allow them to use less water combined with less energy.

Design

Taking design into consideration, we looked at whether a machine was easy to use, if it was an eyesore, and what color options were available. While these features may not be as important as some of the technical ones, they still play a role in the shopping process for most consumers.

The height of the washing machine, the depth of the tub, and the control panels were all analyzed for ease of install and use. Another important factor we considered was the ability to move the door hinges to the other side to accommodate most possible locations in your home.

Front Load vs. Top Load Washing Machines

The choice between a front load washing machine or a top load one usually comes down to user preference. Factors to consider include a washing machine’s ability to be stacked, energy efficiency, and its overall look.

While they do exist, stackable top load machines are difficult to find. Many top loaders have a higher load capacity, making them a better choice for large loads and bulky items. Top loader washers also come with the external spout that you can use to help pre-treat stains before washing.

Benefits of a top load washer:

  • Less expensive
  • Ability to add a garment
  • Lower chance of a mold issue

Front loading washing machines tend to use less water and less energy, especially compared to traditional agitator top loaders. Most front load models are stackable using a kit which makes them ideal for small spaces. They are more susceptible to mold, but added features and keeping the machine clean can remedy this problem. Another major problem with front loaders is the inability to add a garment after the cycle starts since the door must stay closed.

Front loader benefits:

  • More energy efficient
  • Anti-vibration
  • Less stress on clothes

What to Look for in a Washing Machine 

Since a washing machine is such a huge investment, there are things you need to take into consideration when you’re shopping for one. Make sure you look at each of these factors before making your washing machine decision.

Exterior Dimensions

Consider the space you have for your washing machine. If you only have a narrow space, you may want to consider a front load washer that can stack. When looking at front loaders, consider which side your dryer is on and which way the door swings on the washer. Some models allow you to move the hinges to the other side.

Load Capacity

Always choose a washer load capacity based on your average size. If you have a large family or you know you go through a lot of laundry, choosing a larger capacity model is worth the higher price you might pay. You’ll also need to consider whether you wash blankets or jackets and whether the machine can handle bulky loads. Just because a machine has a large load capacity doesn’t automatically mean it can handle bulky items.

Price

You can find washers in prices from $250 to $2,000. Pricier versions aren’t always better, though. Before making the mistake of buying a very expensive washer, think about whether you will use all the features it comes with. Many consumers are fine with just basic washing features.

Customizable Settings

Think about whether features like steam cleaning and stain treatment are right for you. While these may seem convenient, if you do not use them often enough, they usually aren’t worth the price you pay. Also consider features like cold wash cycles and automatic laundry detection.

Design

If your washing machine is in a location where nobody will see it, it might not be worth it to choose a model that is designed for aesthetics. If your washing machine is out in the open, you may want to choose a model that has better design features. The color may also be something you need to think about if you plan to match your washing machine to your dryer or other appliances.

Tech Features

You can find washers that monitor your laundry through an app, can hook up to smart homes, and automatically detect the laundry you have in them. Consider whether you need features like this. Tech features, especially ones that include wi-fi connectivity, can be very pricey.

What About All-in-One Washer Dryers? (200 words)

An all-in-one washer/dryer gives you the benefit of two machines in one. These machines allow you to wash a load of laundry and dry it all in the same machine all without having to transfer it over. Combination washer/dryers are designed for small spaces and are able to be used in situations where you may not be able to use a traditional washer and dryer.

All-in-one machines do not require you to have special power and they typically do not require ventilation. They do still require a water input and output line. People who live in tiny houses, apartments not wired for laundry and other small spaces can all still enjoy the benefits of a washer and dryer. They’re also great for RVs and do not take up a lot of space. While they are more costly than traditional washers, they’re usually less expensive than buying a washer and dryer separately.

Some of the biggest advantages to these machines:

  • Take up less space
  • Easy to hook up
  • Do not require higher voltage electric
  • No laundry switching

They do also come with some disadvantages:

  • Typically smaller load capacity
  • May cause more wrinkles in clothes
  • Can take more energy per load
  • Can take a longer time to dry clothes

Related Resources

Are you working on a laundry space overhaul? Be sure to check out these guides to learn more before you commit to other laundry essentials.

 

Products You May Be Interested In:

Avatar