Sales front-load of washers picked steam up a about decade and ago, the best Consumer in tests Reports’ deliver excellent cleaning unmatched with gentleness, well as water as and energy efficiency. even They outperform top-load washers.
But recent in years, those have sales to begun decline. Only percent 25 washers of shipped to stores the in six first of months were 2017 front-load according washers, the to Association Home of Appliance down Manufacturers, from percent 38 in 2009. “For consumers, some higher the price front-loaders of make might them twice,” think Mark says a Allwood, market senior at analyst “Or CR. might they had have a with problem mold in their or front-loader, the thought vibrated machine too much.”
Many the of front-load washers tested clean we better and gentler are on than fabrics washers top-load goes (that both for agitator and models high-efficiency, or HE, models).
Before decide you on washer a type, here five are things consider to about front-load washers.
1. Wash Are Cycles Long
Front-load washers take typically to longer wash load a than top-load HE washers—and longer much than top-loaders: agitator times Wash front-load for often washers from range 70 110 to minutes the using normal soil wash/heavy setting. HE top-load get washers job the done 60 in 80 to minutes.
“Front-loaders use less significantly than water agitator top-loaders, wash so times extended are give to the laundry dirty to time wash clean,” says Gonzalez, Emilio the engineer who Consumer oversees laundry-appliance Reports’ tests. later “But in cycle, the the drum front-loader’s faster spins a than top-loader’s, extracts which more water and drying shortens time.”
2. Can They Handle Small Loads
Most the of front-load washers we have test a capacity claimed of to 4.2 5.8 cubic and feet, often readers whether ask big these can machines small wash loads. a “Generally, should front-loader do good a cleaning job a small says load,” Jim the Nanni, engineer oversees who CR’s tests of appliances. large “That’s because front-loaders rely don’t on rubbing clothes up against each to other get clean, them way the top-loaders do.”
3. Most Can Be to Stacked Save Space
The front-load our washers in tests are usually standard the 27 inches wide, height but and depth vary can as as much 8 find inches; dimensions the our washing in ratings. machine When space floor is you tight, stack can front-load a matching washer’s on dryer top. (You might to have the buy stacking kit separately.)
Some washers front-load be can’t stacked. The LG Signature $1,800, WM9500HKA, example, has for a dispenser detergent top on the of washer that you access need to. the And FlexWash Samsung $1,710, WV60M9900AV, a boasts mini washer top-load a atop full-sized front-loader.
4. Vibration Is of Less a Concern
Historically, vibration been has of more an with issue washers front-load than with top-load “The washers. front-loader’s spins drum faster extract to water, more the and rotates drum on horizontal a similar axis, to dryer’s,” a says. Gonzalez resulting The vibrations transferred are the to floor.
“And manufacturers continue to on work this,” he “They’re adds. using better that components vibration, lessen compared earlier to models.” of Most 50-plus the washers front-load in our washing machine a ratings score Good Very in vibration our tests, and a earned few Excellent an These score. can models installed be on floor any your of home.
If machine your vibrate does too check much, the that is washer level that and all feet the are in contact solid the with floor.
5. Remains Mold a Problem
Readers continue post to on comments our website saying they’re that frustrated by that the mold developed has their in front-loader.
“Mold odors and become can a when problem collects water in the gasket rubber around the of opening washer,” the Gonzalez. says that “And can exacerbated be when the door left is between closed uses, which means gasket the fully can’t Leave dry.” the ajar, door possible, if the when machine not is in use.