The washing machine is one of the longest-lasting appliances in your home, and it can have the biggest effect on your utility bill. Before you buy, think about your space constraints and how often you wash clothes. If you can find a machine that fits your lifestyle, brighter laundry days are ahead.
Washing MachinesWhy Choose a Top-Loader?
Washers have advanced significantly over the past 10 years. These days, selecting the right washer is all about personal preference. Front-loading and top-loading washers offer similar water and energy savings.
Why Choose a Front-Loader?
- No bending or kneeling necessary
- Largest capacity
- Traditional look
- Extra Storage Space: Pedestals not only raise your washer and dryer to a more ergonomic height, they also offer more storage for detergents, towels and other laundry supplies.
- Sanitization: Steam washers are used to pump extra hot steam into your laundry for a deeper clean. Steam also helps remove stains and prevent wrinkles.
- Special Cycles: Some front-loaders have cycles that can wash and dry a load in the washer.
- Modern Look: The front-loaders of today offer a sleek and stylish complement to your contemporary home.
The Basics of Washing MachinesCapacity
- A large-capacity washer can lessen the burden of doing multiple loads of laundry. This is a great option for large or growing families.
- Washers come in various sizes with tubs measured in cubic feet. A cubit foot is 12 inches by 12 inches by 12 inches. You can fit about 25 to 50 bath towels in a 4.5-cubic-foot washer.
- Delicates: Washing takes its toll on your clothing, especially lightweight garments and loosely woven fabrics. Make them last longer with a cycle that uses cold water and mild agitation to gently clean fabrics that need special care.
- Wash Now, Dry Later: With this feature, you won’t have to rewash a load that you forgot to move to the dryer. A fan will vent fresh air into the washer, while clothes tumble intermittently. Say goodbye to musty-smelling clothes, even if they sit in the washer for hours.
- Add-a-Garment: Most front-load washers now offer an add-a-garment feature so you can stop the machine to add that dirty sock, dirty towel and anything else — whenever you want.
- Quick Wash: Many washer brands offer cycles that let you wash and dry a small load in about a half-hour. It’s perfect when you need to get a uniform ready for a game or want to quickly wash your favorite outfit.
Everyone wants a washer that cleans clothes thoroughly, but some families have specific cleaning needs. Whether you’re challenged with allergens or grass stains, today’s washers have never done a better job of doing the dirty work.
- Sanitization: If you have a baby or a pet in the home, you may be interested in washers equipped with next-generation technology that can sanitize and eliminate bacteria and allergens.
- Steam: If you battle tough-to-remove stains and dream of stain-free clothes, a steam feature will free you from needing to pretreat your laundry.
- Advanced Cleaning Technology: Many washers have advanced-cleaning technology that eliminates the need to pretreat stains. You can also find models that release oxygen-based cleaners into the wash water to brighten clothes without bleach.
Some washers have sound-dampening material that reduces noise. If your laundry area is near a living room or bedroom, consider a quiet washer that offers vibration reduction.
You may pay a little more up front for washers with these ratings, but you’ll offset that cost over the life of your washer by conserving energy and water — up to 7,000 gallons a year (enough water to take 3,000 showers).ENERGY STAR® or High Efficiency (HE)?
- ENERGY STAR qualified washers meet government standards to conserve resources. They can save about 30% on energy use without sacrificing features or style.
- HE washers are ENERGY STAR qualified and have higher spin speeds to remove more water from laundry — saving drying time, too.