We’ve discovered a few excellent washing machines to suit various budgets and methods of washing clothes after washing hundreds of dollars worth of fabric stained with pig blood and body oils of unknown origin, visiting some washer brands’ quality-testing labs (and one factory), looking into the state of appliance reliability, and trying to debunk some laundry-related urban legends (and the best dryers to match).
On our list’s top spot is the LG WM4000H front-loader.
How did we test?
To evaluate how successfully each washer cleared stains during the Normal cycle, we utilized industry-recognized stain test strips.
We used industry-standard fabric samples for our test loads in order to demonstrate how kind (or not) washers are to the fabric.
Use of water
In order to analyze water usage and measure water temperature throughout several cycles, we set up washers to drain into garbage cans.
Wi-Fi-enabled models were linked to test how user-friendly their apps were, as well as how useful the notifications and remote control were.
First place: LG WM4000H
The LG WM4000H is a top-notch machine. It was among the finest washers we tried at getting rid of all kinds of stains, and it also treated materials with more care than most of the others. The WM4000H boasts one of the broadest selections of wash settings, including a stain-loosening prewash option, extremely high temperatures, and additional rinses. It can wash a load far faster than a conventional high-efficiency washer.
The WM4000H is a front-load washer with a large capacity, quiet operation, and exceptional water and energy efficiency. Even the door prop has a special design to help avoid the unpleasant mildew odor. In addition to being more user-friendly and feature-rich than those of our other recommendations, we found the Wi-Fi-connected features to be helpful, including the end-of-cycle notifications, maintenance alerts, remote start, and extra downloaded wash programs.
Although reliability is difficult to forecast, according to a number of sources, LG front-loaders have recently had some of the lowest repair rates among major washers. (They won’t, however, survive as long as the old Maytag your parents had.) In comparison to most of the other dryers we tested, the matching LG DLEX4000 dryer dried loads more quickly.
In the odd event that you need a warranty repair, it may be a problem because the LG washer and dryer’s control panels are difficult to operate in low light, and LG’s customer service is terrible.
The WM4000H and the complementary dryer (which is available in electric or gas) may be stacked; in fact, any 27-inch LG dryer, regardless of age, can be stacked on top of the WM4000H. The WM3600H from LG is a comparable washer that is less expensive but skips a few helpful functions.
Second place: GE GFW650
In our tests, the GE GFW650 cleaned identically to the LG WM4000H and was as kind to textiles. Additionally, compared to the other washers we evaluated, it takes extra steps to lessen possible mildew and mold issues: The washer offers a venting option that you may use after a cycle has been done to dry the drum with the door closed.
The gasket, detergent tray, and drain hose are manufactured with antibacterial Microban. The GFW650 is not our top selection since, according to our tests, it took the WM4000H roughly 20 minutes longer to wash a load on Normal. In addition, we discovered that LG full-size washers are more reliable than GE’s.
The GFW650 offers a variety of wash programs, as well as choices for presoaking and extra-hot water, like the WM4000H. Although LG’s ThinQ app is superior at providing performance reports and diagnostics, GE’s SmartHQ app offers many of the same features as LG’s ThinQ if you connect your washer and dryer to Wi-Fi and are successful in doing so.
These features include cycle-end notifications, downloadable wash programs, and remote start. The GE GFW650 includes a reversible door, an inside light, and a detergent auto-dispensing option. While drying a load on Normal, the GE GFD65 dryer took around 10 more minutes than the LG DLEX4000. Both gas and electric versions are available.
Nowadays, just a few manufacturers provide reliable washers, and some of those powerful models are practically laundromat washers—often noisy, harsh on fabrics, inefficient, and not the best at cleaning. The Miele WXD160 is the exact antithesis of everything said above, yet it was nevertheless designed to survive for 20 years.
In our tests, it removed stains exactly as well as the LG WM4000H; however, it should last twice as long and only costs a few hundred extras. The disadvantage is that it’s a little washer. Its capacity is almost half that of a regular 27-inch model. In some US regions, it might also be challenging to locate Miele models and experts.
Another oddity is that the Miele TXD160, the dryer that matches it, is a ventless heat-pump type. The TXD160 is far more energy efficient as a consequence, but it takes roughly twice as long to dry clothing as a typical vented dryer. You can connect it—and the washer—anywhere you have a typical 120-volt outlet.
We advise thinking about whatever top-loader with an agitator you can get on sale from Whirlpool or Maytag (they’re the identical basic machines, with slightly different features) that is somewhere in the area of $600 if you can’t or won’t spend much on a washer. The Maytag MVWC465HW passed our tests and proved to be a reliable cleaner.
It’s reasonably effective and gentle with its usual Normal cycle. Additionally, it includes a few options that allow it to behave more traditionally, as some people prefer top-loaders to front-loaders. These settings include a Deep Water Wash option for more water and a Powerwash setting for more vigorous agitation.
The LG DLEX4000 dried our test load on Normal in around 15 minutes less time than the same Maytag MEDC465HW dryer, which has a speed-dry setting. However, it does the job, and some individuals might like the simple controls and lack of frills.
Because this isn’t the Maytag of yesteryear and Whirlpool’s reputation has changed, we can’t say with certainty if the Maytag set is particularly dependable or long-lasting. (Although we weren’t using the washer as it was meant to be used, we actually broke one portion of the washer during testing.)
Additionally, you could find yourself paying more on utilities and new clothing than you would if you were using a front-loader, which is a kinder and more effective machine. However, if saving money on the purchase is your top goal, we believe a product like this Maytag offering is your best option.