1. Electrolux EFLS627UTT
Type: Front Loader | Size: 27 x 38 x 31.5 | Capacity: 4.4 cu. ft. | No. of Cycles: 9 | Wash Features: Sanitize and Steam, Extended Refresh, StainSoak, 15-Minute Fast Wash | App Control: No | Energy Consumption: 85 kWh/year
The best washing machine overall, the Electrolux EFLS627UTT is all about the wash. Priced at just under $1,000, this front-load washer aced the tests of multiple reviewers, earning top cleaning points at from several publications. It has a 4.4-cubic-foot drum that can hold a large wash, and it features nine wash cycles, including a 15-minute fast wash. That’s fewer than some washers, but each cycle can be tweaked for temperature and soil level, so you can easily customize the wash.
The EFL627UTT also has a dedicated pod detergent dispenser. Some washers struggle with prepacked pod detergents as they can sometimes clog or not release the detergent properly, but the Adaptive Dispenser of this washer pre-mixes the detergent with water in the dispenser, then releases it to make sure it is dispensed properly.
One thing it doesn’t have is an app. While many washing machines are embracing the smart home by adding apps for remote monitoring and control, the EFSL627UTT has no accompanying app. That doesn’t make it a dumb appliance, though: this Electrolux has sophisticated, easy-to-use controls that can be easily customized.
2. GE GTW685BSLWS
Best top-loading washing machine
Type: Top Loader | Size: 27 x 46 x 27 | Capacity: 4.5 cu. ft. | No. of Cycles: 14 | Wash Features: Sanitize, Deep Fill | App Control: Yes (optional, $49) | Energy Consumption: 150 kWh/year
Front-loading washing machines are generally the most efficient, but some people prefer the old-school top-loader type. They are easier to load and can be more reliable, so if you prefer this type, the GE GTW685BSLWS is the best washing machine for you.
It can hold a huge number of clothes in its 4.5-cubic-foot drum, and the central agitator ensures that all of the clothes in large loads get moved around. It’s also somewhat noisy, which may not be an issue if it is located in a basement or laundry room, but could be a problem in smaller homes.
The GTW685BLSWS also uses a fair amount of electricity: nearly 50 per cent more than our front-loader top picks. Although it is cheaper, this could make it more expensive over time. It also lacks a water heater, meaning that the sanitize cycle will be only as hot as the hot water supply of your house. If your hot- water heater isn’t that good, that cycle may not be effective.
The GTW685BSLWS doesn’t come with smart-home features, but these can be added for just $49 with the GE ConnectPlus WiFi Module, which fits inside the machine. This adds Alexa, Google Assistant and IFTTT support, so you can find out how long the cycle has to run with Amazon or Google voice commands.
3. Maytag MVWX655DW
Best top-load budget washing machine
Type: Top Loader | Size: 28 x 43 x 27.5 | Capacity: 4.3 cu. ft. | No. of Cycles: 11 | Wash Features: Sanitize with Oxi, Rapid Wash | App Control: No | Energy Consumption: 300 kWh/year
If you live somewhere where utilities aren’t too expensive, the Maytag MVWX655DW is the best washing machine for those who want a top-loader for less than $800.
The Maytag MVWX655DW has a 4.3-cubic-foot capacity, a decent selection of wash cycles, and offers good cleaning performance, according to reviewers. It takes a while, though: The PowerWash cycle was the most effective at cleaning, but can take more than an hour to finish.
The downside is that, like most top-loaders, it is an energy and water hog. The PowerWash cycle took a hefty 20 gallons of water, and requires a lot of power to run. It is also a very basic machine in other ways, with no smart-home features, no time delay and no other fancy features. But the Maytag MVWX655DW has it where it counts: It washes clothes well.
4. LG WM3500CW
Best budget front-loading washing machine
Type: Front Loader | Size: 38.7 x 27 x 31.5 | Capacity: 4.5 cu ft. | No. of Cycles: 10 | Wash Features: Speed Wash | App Control: Yes | Energy Consumption: 105 kWh/year
If you take the LG WM3770HWA and strip out some of the fancy features, you get the LG WM3500CW. And you save yourself about $200, which makes it our best washing machine front-loader pick for budget buyers. You get the same top-of-the-line reliability, fast wash cycle and overall excellent performance as the more expensive model.
What you won’t get, though, is the hot water heater. So if your hot water isn’t very hot (or isn’t reliable) and you want to sterilize clothes, go for the more expensive model. You also lose a few of the fancy cycles, such as the delayed start and a cycle that removes allergens. You do still get the Wi-Fi smart- home features, though, so you can monitor this washer from your couch and comfortably enjoy the feeling of saving money.
Some users have complained that some wash cycles take more than an hour to complete, and that the control panel is hard to read.
5. LG WM9000HVA
Best washing machine for large families
Type: Top Loader | Size: 29 x 41.3 x 33.8 | Capacity: 5.2 cu ft. | No. of Cycles: 14 | Wash Features: Sanitize, Deep Fill | App Control: Yes | Energy Consumption: 120 kWh/year
Got a big family to wash uniforms for? Need to regularly wash bedding? The LG WM9000HVA has you covered. This front-loader has a huge 5.2-cubic-foot drum that can hold a comforter or a big load of laundry, and cycles for everything from a quick wash to a deep allergen-removing wash.
A water heater makes sure that the sterilize wash cycle reaches the high temperature it needs, while the TurboWash feature sprays water into the wash for even detergent dispersal.
If you need even more space, or want to wash delicates separately, the WM9000HVA is also compatible with the $570 LG WD100CV Sidekick, a small separate washer that fits below the main unit. This can run independently of the main washer, so you can wash a delicate load at the same time you are washing a comforter.
6. LG WM3900HWA
Fast and quiet washing machine
Type: Front Loader | Size: 39 x 30.2 x 27 inches | Capacity: 4.5 cu ft. | No of Cycles: 12 | Wash Features: Allergene, Turbo Wash 360 | App Control: Yes | Energy Consumption: 105 kWh/year
The LG Turbowash WM3900HWA is one of the best washing machines because this thing has it all, starting with a 4.5-cubic-foot large-capacity front-loader drum that can hold a lot of clothes. It has an outstanding selection of wash programs, ranging from a quick Turbowash for lightly soiled items to the high-temperature Allergiene cycle. This cycle is approved by the Asthma and Allergy foundation, and LG claims it removes more than 95 percent of allergens. There is also a steam cycle that sprays the clothes with steam for more efficient washing.
The LG WM3900HWA is the successor to the WM3770HWA, which reviewers praised, especially the large drum and the clear, easy-to-use control layout. They also found that the washing performance was excellent, with top performance on a range of stains without damaging clothes.
Large families may be better off looking at the more expensive LG WM9000HVA, which has an even bigger drum, but If you have a lot of items that need a separate gentle wash, the optional LG WD100CW Sidekick pedestal ($570) could work for you. This adds a second washing drum that can be used independently of the main one. Although at just 1 cu.ft. it’s not very large, it is big enough to do a small hand- wash load, and at it’s cheaper and much tidier than buying a second washing machine.
7. Kenmore 41262
A good washer that can save you money.
Type: Front Loader | Size: 27 x 39 x 30.0 | Capacity: 4.5 cu. ft. | No. of Cycles: 8 | Wash Features: Bulky/Bedding, Express Wash | App Control: No | Energy Consumption: 90 kWh/year
The Kenmore 41262 is a basic, but well-performing, front-load washer. That means that it does an excellent job of washing your clothes, but without fancy features. And, its efficiency for both water and electricity is excellent.
What you don’t get with the 41262 are the high-end features that make other washers easier to use and more flexible. You don’t get any remote monitoring or smart-home features, so you can’t monitor the progress of the wash from your cellphone or through Alexa. Nor do you get some of the less commonly used wash cycles such as Sterilize, as there is no built-in water heater.
You do get a Stay-Fresh feature, though, which will tumble and ventilate your wash for up to 19 hours after washing is finished — that’s very useful if you often forget to move the clothes to the dryer when they are done. Speaking of funky smells: the Kenmore 41262 also has a magnetic stopper that holds the door very slightly ajar when the washer is not in use, which helps to dry out the drum to keep it from getting musty and smelly.