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The Ultimate Washing Machine Buyers Guide

November 22, 2023

Are you in the market for a new washing machine? Because there are several different types that you can get nowadays – from top load washers to front load washing machines.

Not only that but there are also high efficiency models for those who want to save some energy while doing the laundry.

How does their washing performance compare? Are front loading washers better or top loading washers? Which one should you get?

For the answer, be sure to keep reading. We’ll be going over how the various types differ below.

Different Types of Washing Machines

different types of washing machineDifferent washing machines have different qualities and advantages. Here’s what you need to know.

Top Load Washers

Top loaders allow you to drop your laundry from the top without bending down – this makes it perfect for those with back pain.

Not only that but you can also control the water levels. Many come with varying wash load capacities too. For example, some can handle up to 6 cubic feet per cycle.

Front Loaders

Front loaders use less water than top loaders while spinning at higher speeds, resulting in quicker drying times.

This tumble action also gives them an edge when dealing with heavily soiled loads – think kids coming home after soccer practice kind of dirty.

While front loaders are more expensive than top loaders, they will likely save you money in the long run due to lower energy usage over time.

Washer-Dryer Combos

These combos are perfect for those who live in small apartments or houses with limited floor space. With a washer-dryer combo, you can wash and dry your clothes using the same machine.

Many of these machines also come loaded with features like selectable spin speeds to match different fabric types and extra rinse cycles for those who have sensitive skin.

Pros of Top Load Washers

We mentioned this earlier but with top load washers, you don’t need to stoop or bend, which can be beneficial for those with back issues. The vertical design also allows you to add forgotten items mid-cycle without water spilling out.

The traditional design includes an agitator – that tall column in the middle – helping your clothes get squeaky clean by moving them around vigorously during the wash cycle.

Cons of Top Load Washers

pros of top load washersWhile these machines tend to cost less compared to front loaders, they may not be so friendly on your bills over time due to higher energy and water usage.

To give you a better idea, a standard top loader uses about 40 gallons of water per load compared to only 20 gallons used by high-efficiency models (front-load or HE top-load).

So while your wallet might feel lighter after buying one, it could start weighing heavier when those utility bills come rolling in.

Pros of a Front Load Washer

A front load washer is more energy efficient compared to its top-loading counterparts. For one thing, these machines use less water per cycle – an advantage that has environmental benefits as well as cost savings on your utility bills.

The secret is all about spin speed. Front-load washers typically have faster spin speeds, which extract more water from clothes during the wash cycle. This means shorter drying times, leading to significant energy savings over time.

That’s not the only way they’ll save you money either.

While front load washers generally come with a higher upfront price tag compared to other types of washing machines like top load or washer-dryer combos, they will save money over time by using less water and power for each laundry session—savings which could outweigh the initial expense in just a few years’ worth of use.

Considering the Washing Machine Capacity

You also want to consider your average load size when choosing a new washing machine. To do that, you’ll need to understand cubic feet measurements.

A good rule of thumb – each cubic foot can handle seven medium-sized bath towels comfortably.

Why does this matter? So you know how much you can put into the washing machine without overloading it.

For example, you may want to invest in a large capacity washer if you plan on washing large, bulky items on a regular basis.

Choosing an Energy Efficient Washing Machine

Energy efficiency is no longer a luxury, but a necessity. This is especially true when it comes to appliances like washing machines that we use regularly.

When it comes to front loaders and top load washing machines, you can choose between a standard model or a high-efficiency model.

How are they different? High-efficiency washers save energy by using sophisticated technology that ensures optimal performance with minimal resources – meaning less energy and water.

Choosing an Energy Star Certified Washing Machine

Appliances that are Energy Star certified meet the stringent criteria set by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). That is, they have proven their worth in both operational efficiency and environmental impact reduction during rigorous testing phases.

For washers, this means their design focuses on water conservation, effective spinning speeds for better drying efficiency, and better power consumption.

Making Sense of Washing Machine Features

making sense of washing machine featuresWashing machines nowadays are packed with features designed to make your laundry chores easier and more efficient.

Understanding Spin Speeds

The spin speed plays a big role in how dry your clothes get after the wash cycle.

Higher speeds extract more water, helping clothes dry faster. But if you’ve got delicate fabrics, lower speeds are the better choice.

That’s right, different materials have different needs – and that’s something modern washing machines can cater for with variable spin speeds. That way, you can adjust the setting based on what’s in the drum – high for hardy bath towels or low for sensitive silk blouses.

Noise Levels

We all know that feeling when our washer sounds like it’s ready to take off into space during its final spin cycle.

Thankfully, many new models come with noise level control and vibration reduction features because no one needs their quiet Sunday morning disrupted by an overenthusiastic appliance.

Auto Dispense Features

Some washing machines come with an auto dispense function that takes the guesswork out of measuring liquid or powder detergents.

Not only is it convenient but it’ll also prevent waste while ensuring optimal cleaning results every time.

Smart Connectivity in Modern Washers

smart connectivity in modern washersWith smart washers, you can start a load from anywhere using WiFi or Bluetooth. That’s right, you’re just one tap away from washing your dirty clothes – and you can do it when you’re not at home.

Importance of Customer Reviews When Choosing a New Washing Machine

Think of reviews as peeks into other people’s laundry rooms. They give you firsthand accounts on aspects like noise levels during spin cycles, real-world capacity, and extra costs related to water heaters or increased water level usage.

You’ll get valuable feedback on whether special features like steam cleaning really work as advertised or if they’re simply marketing gimmicks. Plus, reviewers often share tips on how to make best use of selectable spin speeds and wash settings—information that may not be detailed in product descriptions.

Ideally, you want to look for both positive and negative comments to get a full picture.

If you see consistent complaints about certain issues like ineffective washing or frequent breakdowns, take them seriously. But remember to check for patterns in praises too—they’re equally telling.

Washing Machine Buyers Guide – FAQs

What should you look out for when buying a washing machine?

There are several things to consider when you’re choosing a new washing machine. This includes load type, size, capacity, energy efficiency, and features.

What brand of washing machine is most reliable?

Different brands of washing machine have their strengths. It’s best to check recent consumer reports or trusted review sites for up-to-date info.

What is the difference between 4.0 and 4.5 cu ft washing machine?

A 4.5 cubic feet washing machine can handle larger loads than a 4.0 one – think more clothes or bigger items like comforters.

Is a washing machine with an agitator or impeller better?

A washing machine with an agitator tends to clean thoroughly but may be rougher on fabrics; an impeller offers gentler treatment with comparable cleaning power.

How to Choose the Best Washing Machine

And there you have it – a washing machine buying guide. As you can see, there are several washing machine types to choose from, each of which has its own pros and cons.

Take front loaders, for example, they’ll save you money in the long run but generally cost more upfront. Top loading washing machines, on the other hand, are easier to use as you don’t need to bend down in the laundry room to load your clothes.

Hopefully, that gives you a better idea as to what to consider when choosing the best washing machine.

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Ethan Clarke

Ethan Clarke is a seasoned expert in appliances and household waste systems. Referencing his extensive experience as an appliance repairman, Ethan shares his invaluable knowledge through detailed maintenance & troubleshooting manuals. Ethan’s insights help homeowners understand and maintain their appliances efficiently, ensuring longevity and optimal performance. He’s here to provide practical, easy-to-follow advice for all your appliance needs.

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