The 10 Best Front Load Washers of 2023

Our favorite is the GE Smart Front Load Steam Washer

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The 8 Best Front Load Washers of 2022

The Spruce / Chloe Jeong

Front load washers allow you to easily load and unload your clothes while saving space with a stackable design. Plus, front-loading models have a reputation for gently cleaning your clothes while saving water in the process. We researched the top front load washers available today based on ease of use, efficiency, accessibility, and special features.

Our favorite is the GE 5.0 cu. ft. Capacity Smart Front Load Steam Washer because it is powerful, has a unique ventilation system to eliminate odors, and has the ability to transform into a dryer for small loads.

Whether you install a compact or high-capacity model in your house, you will need to get into a regular cleaning routine. Front-loaders can collect mildew and not-so-pleasant smells that can stick to your clothes. However, many models come with a self-cleaning cycle to help with this, and you can crack the swinging door to air the gaskets and seals out.

Below, the best front load washers for an easy laundry day.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall

GE Smart Front Load EnergyStar Steam Washer

GE Smart Front Load Steam Washer

Courtesy of GE

What We Like
  • Smart functionality

  • Automatic detergent dispenser

  • Antimicrobial interior

  • Vent system eliminates odors

  • One-step wash and dry for small loads

What We Don't Like
  • Somewhat expensive

  • No way to empty detergent from dispenser

This front-loading washer from GE stands out from the crowd for a few reasons: It is extremely sleek, but still has a spacious drum that can handle your bulkiest loads. Plus, its carefully designed features help solve common problems that people experience with front-load washers. For instance, mold and mildew growth is common in this style of washing machine, as moisture doesn’t drain as well, but the GE washer has a unique ventilation system that activates after the cycle, pulling out any leftover moisture to keep your washer fresh. Additionally, its seals are made from an antimicrobial material that prevents odor-causing bacteria. 

Besides these unique features, the GE Front Load Steam Washer is a powerhouse when it comes to cleaning your laundry. It has a 5-cubic-foot stainless steel drum and 12 wash cycles, including options for sanitizing, steaming, and more. Dynamic Balancing Technology helps to rebalance uneven loads to keep its operation as quiet as possible, and the machine even has a one-step wash and dry option that you can use on small loads. 

That’s not all, either. The washer has an automatic detergent dispenser, meaning you simply empty a bottle into it and it will automatically release the perfect amount of detergent for each load. It holds up to 32 loads worth of detergent, but keep in mind that there’s no way to empty the dispenser once you fill it up—not ideal if you’re trying out a new detergent and decide you don’t like it. The GE washing machine also has built-in Wi-Fi that allows you to start, stop, and monitor a cycle from your phone, and it has a reversible door so you can tailor it to your space.

This washer retails for over $1,000, so it's on the pricier side, but we think the smart (and thoughtful) features make it worth the price tag.

Capacity: 5.0 cubic feet | Cycles: 12 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: Yes | Energy Star Certified: Yes

Best Budget

Samsung 4.5 cu. ft. Front Load Washer with Vibration Reduction Technology+

Samsung washer

Courtesy of Samsung

What We Like
  • Closet-depth design

  • Vibration reduction for quiet operation

  • Self-cleaning cycle

What We Don't Like
  • Limited smart functionality

  • Still loud during spin cycle

Front-loading washing machines are more expensive than top-loading washers, but one of your most affordable options is this model from Samsung. Despite being budget-friendly, it’s still packed with a variety of useful features, including vibration reduction technology and a self-clean cycle that promises to eliminate 99% of bacteria in the drum, thus helping to control odors. Plus, its closet-depth design allows you to tuck it into shallower spaces—you can even stack it with a compatible dryer. 

This front load washer offers 10 different cleaning cycles, and the unique pattern on its stainless steel drum helps to extract more water during the spin cycle. While it does technically have Wi-Fi connectivity, the Samsung app is fairly limited in its abilities. You’re only able to troubleshoot problems from your smartphone, not control the appliance’s operation. So if you’re looking for a truly smart washing machine, this isn’t the best option. However, it’s a solid no-frills model for those who want to save some money.

Capacity: 4.5 cubic feet | Cycles: 10 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: Yes | Energy Star Certified: Yes

Best Splurge

Whirlpool WFW9620HC 5.0 cu. ft. High Efficiency Smart Stackable Front Load Washing Machine

Whirlpool WFW9620HC 5.0 cu. ft. High Efficiency Smart Stackable Front Load Washing Machine

Best Buy

What We Like
  • Automatic detergent dispenser

  • Smart functionality with digital assistant compatibility

  • Wash and dry option for small loads

  • Steam clean setting

  • Customizable cycles

What We Don't Like
  • Not Energy Star certified

  • May be too high tech for some

If you’re looking for an appliance that’s just as aesthetically pleasing as it is functional, you can’t go wrong with this sleek high-efficiency model from Whirlpool. It has a modern design that comes in three finishes, and it also boasts a large 5-cubic-foot drum with a variety of high-end features. The washer’s automatic detergent dispenser can hold enough soap for up to 40 loads, and it also has a compartment for fabric softener. Not to mention the machine is Wi-Fi enabled, allowing you to set, start, and stop the appliance right from your phone or via a digital assistant like Amazon Alexa. 

This high-end washing machine has a touchscreen that learns your habits and suggests custom cycles based on your past selections, and you can create and save up to 30 of your own custom cycles. The washer also offers a 15-minute quick wash cycle and a wash and dry option for small loads—ideal for those times you just need to refresh one outfit. Other notable features include a sanitize cycle that uses hot water to eliminate bacteria and a steam option to help lift out tough stains.

Any smart appliance comes with a learning curve, and if you receive any error codes, there are several ways to troubleshoot your Whirlpool washer to get it back on track.

Capacity: 5.0 cubic feet | Cycles: 35 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: Yes | Energy Star Certified: No

Expert Buying Tip

"To help cut costs, you can look for appliances with minor scratches or dents and negotiate a discounted rate. This is an easy way to still get the product you want but with some minor cosmetic imperfections on the outside." — Brittney Castro, Mint CFP

Best High-Capacity

LG 5.2 cu. ft. HE Mega Capacity Front Load Washing Machine with Steam and TurboWash

LG 5.2 cu. ft. HE Mega Capacity Front Load Washing Machine

Courtesy of BestBuy

What We Like
  • Extremely spacious

  • TurboWash shortens cycle time

  • Allergiene cycle removes allergens from fabric

  • Steam clean technology

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Limited smart functionality

  • Display can be hard to read in certain light

King-size comforter? A week’s worth of clothes? No problem! This extra-large washing machine from LG can accommodate your family’s largest loads of laundry in its 5.2-cubic-foot stainless steel drum. Plus, the brand’s TurboWash technology features powerful jets that help to shave time off the cleaning cycle, allowing the machine to wash large loads faster without compromising on performance.

This LG washer has 14 wash cycles, including a special “Allergiene” setting that promises to remove 95% of common household allergens, including dust mites and pet dander, from your fabrics. The machine has sensors that detect the weight of each load and adjust the water level and wash time accordingly, and it has six different washing motions for more cleaning power. An anti-vibration system helps to reduce washer noise, and steam technology helps to remove wrinkles, odors, and stains. 

While this appliance can be synced to your phone, its smart functionality is limited to troubleshooting problems—there’s no option to remotely control your machine.

Capacity: 5.2 cubic feet | Cycles: 14 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: Yes | Energy Star Certified: Yes

Best Stackable

Maytag 4.5 cu. ft. Stackable Front Load Washing Machine with 12-Hour Fresh Spin

Maytag 4.5 cu. ft. White Stackable Front Load Washing Machine with 12-Hour Fresh Spin

Courtesy of Best Buy

What We Like
  • Internal water heater

  • Extra Power button helps remove stains

  • Add-garment feature

  • Steam clean option

  • Fresh Hold keeps laundry fresh for up to 12 hours

What We Don't Like
  • Long wash cycles

You can save space in your home by stacking the Maytag Front Load Washing Machine and a compatible dryer. (A stacking kit is required, naturally!) This model is mid-sized with a 4.5-cubic-foot interior, and it offers 10 wash cycles and a variety of advanced operation features. You’ll get your clothes sparkling clean with the help of the machine’s Extra Power button, which helps remove stains with a dual-temperature wash, and the machine even has a built-in water heater for loads requiring increased temperatures. 

If you tend to put in a load of laundry before leaving for work, this machine has a “Fresh Hold” feature that provides intermittent tumbling for up to 12 hours, ensuring your clean clothes stay fresh until you transfer them to the dryer. Other noteworthy features include a 15-minute quick wash cycle, steam option to help remove stains, and add-a-garment feature for those times you spot a forgotten sock. The washer has a 10-year warranty on both its motor and wash basket, and it’s very reasonably priced for its size and features.

Capacity: 4.5 cubic feet | Cycles: 10 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: No | Energy Star Certified: Yes

Best High-Efficiency

Electrolux 4.5 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Stackable Front Load Washer with SmartBoost

Electrolux 4.5 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Stackable Front Load Washer

Courtesy of Best Buy

What We Like
  • Option to select soil level

  • Detergent pods can be placed in dispenser

  • StainSoak option automatically pretreats laundry

  • Pure Rinse option doesn’t use extra water

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Long wash times

High-efficiency washing machines use less water, detergent, and energy to clean your laundry, and this front-loading model from Electrolux is a top choice if you’re trying to be more eco-conscious. The unit has a 4.5-cubic-foot capacity, and it’s also Energy Star-certified, so it won’t drive up your energy bill as much as traditional units. Plus, it features the brand’s unique adaptive dispenser, which allows you to use any style of detergent, including pods.

The best part of this high-efficiency washing machine has to be its numerous settings, all of which will help get your clothes cleaner. For instance, it has a SmartBoost option that mixes water and detergent before the cycle for more efficient stain removal, and the Optic Whites cycle is designed to keep white clothing looking fresh without any bleach. The washer also features a Pure Rinse mode that removes more detergent and residue without using extra water, and there are also functions like a hand wash cycle, StainSoak option, and steam technology.

Capacity: 4.5 cubic feet | Cycles: 11 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: No | Energy Star Certified: Yes

Best Compact

Electrolux IQ Touch 24 in. 2.4 cu. ft. High Efficiency Front Load Washing Machine

Electrolux IQ Touch 24 in. W 2.4 cu. ft. High Efficiency White Front Load Washing Machine

Courtesy of Best Buy

What We Like
  • Less than 24 inches wide

  • Sanitize cycle kills bacteria

  • Quiet during operation

  • Stackable

What We Don't Like
  • Door isn’t reversible

If you’re looking for a compact washing machine that delivers all the same benefits as a full-size model, this option from Electrolux is the way to go. The washer is just 24 inches wide with a 2.4-cubic-foot capacity, making it ideal for smaller homes, apartments, or households with just one or two people. It can be stacked with a matching dryer, if desired. It doesn’t skimp on features, either—this front load washer has a steam cycle, sanitizing cycle, delay start, and more. 

This compact washing machine has 14 wash cycles, including a fast wash, eco-friendly, and delicate cycle. There’s even an option that will save your favorite settings. The appliance comes with the brand’s “second floor guarantee,” which promises smooth, quiet operation that won’t interrupt your daily routine, even if it’s near your bedroom. The only downside we could find is that the washer door can’t be reversed, which could pose a problem if you’re installing it in a tight space.

Capacity: 2.4 cubic feet | Cycles: 14 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: No | Energy Star Certified: Yes

Best Basic

Amana 4.3-cu ft High Efficiency Stackable Front-Load Washer

Amana NFW5800HW Stackable Front-Load Washer

Courtesy of Lowes

What We Like
  • Good value

  • Simple, user-friendly design

  • Closet-depth design

  • Presoak option for stains

What We Don't Like
  • Control panel is sensitive

If you don’t like (or don’t need) all the bells and whistles of today’s high-end washing machines, you’ll like this high-efficiency unit from Amana, which sticks to the basics. The unit forgoes any smart functionality—instead, it has a simple control panel where you can select the cycle you want, water temperature, and soil level. From there, you just hit start, and it will get to work!

This mid-size washer has a 4.3-cubic-foot stainless steel drum, and its closet-depth design is ideal for installation in smaller spaces. In addition to its regular wash settings, there’s also a quick wash cycle for small loads, a cold wash cycle that saves energy, and a presoak option for treating stains. The appliance is designed to release fabric softener at the perfect time for optimal results, and overall, this model is a great value for anyone who just wants a basic front-loading machine.

Capacity: 4.3 cubic feet | Cycles: 14 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: No | Energy Star Certified: Yes

Best for Energy Savings

LG Ultra Large Capacity Front Load Washer

LG Front Load Washer

The Spruce / Deanna McCormack

What We Like
  • Sleek aesthetic

  • High-efficiency design

  • Good for small spaces but can handle large loads

  • 15-minute speed wash option

What We Don't Like
  • App isn’t truly remote

  • No light in the drum

You can minimize your energy bills with an appliance like this LG washer, which is both high-efficiency and Energy Star certified. The unit has a 4.5-cubic-foot interior and a wide range of wash settings, including a 15-minute speed wash option and a cold wash setting that saves energy without compromising cleanliness. Plus, the machine’s “Allergiene” cycle is certified by the AAFA to remove over 95% of pet dander and dust from fabric—ideal for anyone who has bad allergies. 

This front load washer has five jets that spray clothing from all angles, and our tester found that it did a great job removing stains from clothing with its steam clean option. The machine is able to select the best wash motion and setting based on the load, and it can even automatically select a compatible drying cycle if you have the matching dryer. We thought the washer had a sleek appearance, but we didn’t like that there was no light in the drum and that the display isn’t backlit.

Capacity: 4.5 cubic feet | Cycles: 13 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: Yes | Energy Star Certified: Yes

What Our Testers Say

"Most of the cycles are pretty fast, even for large loads, but I love Speed Wash for lightly soiled loads; it only takes 15 minutes. The Speed Wash cycle is a lifesaver when I need to get through a giant mountain of laundry." Deanna McCormack, Product Tester

Best All-in-One

LG Electronics WM3998HBA Ultra Large Capacity Electric All-in-One Washer Dryer Combo

The LG Electronics Ultra Large Capacity Electric All-in-One Washer Dryer Combo comes in black steel, and can hold very large loads of laundry.
What We Like
  • No need to transfer clothes to dryer

  • Smart functionality

  • Certified to reduce allergens in fabrics

  • Steam cleaning technology

What We Don't Like
  • Ventless drying takes significantly longer

  • Not Energy Star certified

  • Expensive

Whether you don’t have space for both a washer and dryer or just want a machine that does it all, the LG All-In-One Washer Dryer Combo will be a welcome addition to your home. While it’s not cheap, this appliance does the job of both a washing machine and dryer, cleaning and drying your clothes in one extra-long cycle. It has a large 4.5-cubic-foot capacity, and its TurboWash technology uses high-pressure nozzles to shave wash time off the cycles. 

This all-in-one appliance is Wi-Fi enabled, and you can control it from your smartphone or via a digital assistant like Amazon Alexa. The machine is certified by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) to remove allergens from clothes, and it features steam cleaning, an energy-saving cold water cycle, and even a self-cleaning cycle for easy maintenance. The dryer is ventless, meaning it doesn’t need to be hooked up to external venting, but keep in mind this style of dryer takes quite a bit longer to dry clothing.

Capacity: 4.5 cubic feet | Cycles: 14 | Drum Material: Stainless steel | Smart Capabilities: Yes | Energy Star Certified: No

Expert Buying Tip

"Map out your game plan. Buying an appliance, if you have time, should take time." — Tiffany Aliche, The Budgetnista and author of Get Good with Money

Final Verdict

If you want a front-loading washing machine that doesn’t have the traditional issues associated with this washer style, you’ve got to go with the GE 5.0 cu. ft. Smart Front Load Steam Washer. This high-end model has a spacious capacity, and its antimicrobial interior and unique venting system help to prevent odors, mildew, and mold inside the drum. For something more affordable, consider the Samsung 4.5 cu. ft. Front Load Washer. It’s one of the most budget-friendly front-load washers you’ll find today, and it has useful features like vibration reduction technology and a self-clean cycle.

What to Look for in a Front Load Washer

Drum Size

The average drum size for a front load washer is 4.5 cubic feet, which is typically enough space for a week's worth of laundry for one or two people. Although this average is less than that of a top-loading model, it's plenty of room to wash a king-sized comforter, as well as a few pillowcases. Some portable, front-loading washers only have around 2.2 cubic feet of space, which is ideal if you're living in a small apartment or RV. There are also high-capacity models that stretch to nearly 6.0 cubic feet. That size is most suitable for large households who are constantly doing laundry, and would like to maximize each cycle.

Steam Function

A steam function helps tackle stains, grime, and wrinkles in your clothes. In some models, it's automatically selected with your cycle, say, if you choose an activewear or allergen cycle that's more gentle. The function works by adding steam into the drum of your washer throughout the cycle, which then seeps into the fabric of your clothes. The steam carries your detergent further into the fabrics and delicately loosens grime. Now, a steam function is very popular in washers, but it's not a guarantee, which is why it's important to consider when buying.

Door Design

Front load washers can have a right-swinging, left-swinging, reversible, or dual-opening door. The best design for you entirely depends on your lifestyle and the layout of your home. If you're installing a front-loading washer in a closet or tight mudroom, you may need the door to swing in a particular direction so that it doesn't collide with a door or cabinet. A reversible door gives you the flexibility to open the door in either direction, which is convenient if you have an unusual laundry layout or plan on redecorating your space. A dual-opening door swings and opens hamper-style. This design keeps your clean clothes from falling on the floor but is a rare find.

Standout Features

Self-Clean Setting

It’s common for front-loading washers to have mildew and mold buildup in their drum, since their design is less suitable for draining. This can cause your clean clothes to have an odor or lingering allergens after a cycle. A self-clean setting in front-load washers can be run every so often to keep bacteria from collecting in the machine and is especially effective when paired with a stainless steel drum.


A laundry pedestal, which can be installed under a compatible front-loading washer and/or dryer, is a great solution for households that have limited storage space. This piece is usually sold separately (or you can DIY one), and it acts like a pull-out drawer once installed. Use it to store containers of fabric softener, detergent, or dryer sheets (if you have a home without little kids who can easily access it).

  • Are front load washers better than top load?

    Front load washers are better than top load washers when it comes to resources, accessibility, and providing a thorough, gentle clean. They often use less water and energy—making them cheaper to operate—and can be stacked with a dryer for a streamlined and compact laundry routine. Since the washer relies on drum motions to tumble your clothes, a front load washer can also be more gentle, and create less wear and tear. On the downside, they are more expensive up front and aren't always easy to repair and maintain.

    The verdict: one type is not undeniably better than the other, and the best type for you comes down to personal preference and your budget. To make a decision, check out our full top load versus front load washer comparison guide.

  • How long do front load washers last?

    A front load washer will typically last around 10 years. You can increase your appliance's lifespan by maintaining it properly and quickly addressing any repairs that may need to be done. To maintain it, make sure your washer is balanced before starting a load. Run a self-clean cycle or clean the drum yourself once a month, or whenever you start to smell odors or mildew. Lastly, be sure to only use a compatible detergent, especially if your front-loader is a high-efficiency model.

  • Do front load washers leak?

    Both front load and top load washers can potentially leak due to wear and tear. In front load washers, leaks are commonly caused by soil and soap interrupting the door seal, or the door not closing all the way. If your machine has a reversible door, in particular, you'll want to make sure the door is lining up properly and the hinges are tight enough. Consult our full guide for more information on how to diagnose washing machine leaks.

  • Do front load washers clean well?

    Since front load washers are more prone to the build-up of mildew and odors, they have to be cleaned more often. However, they clean well, as long as you remember to do a little hands-on maintenance or run a self-clean cycle. For hands-on maintenance, you'll want to pour 1/2 cup of liquid chlorine bleach into the detergent compartment and then run a cycle. You'll also want to wipe down the door. Now, if you want to get ahead on your cleaning, make sure you're always using the right amount of detergent and not leaving damp clothes in the drum for too long. Everything you need to know is detailed in our guide on how to clean a front load washer.

  • Do front load washers use less water?

    Front load washers use significantly less water than their top load counterparts. The best front load washers that are ENERGY STAR certified use 50% less water than top load agitator washers and 25% less water than top load impeller washers.

Why Trust The Spruce?

Having tested and researched dozens of laundry machines, we looked at functionality, efficiency, and overall value when recommending the best front load washers. We considered capacity, cycle options, and door design, in addition to each unit's maintenance level, vent system, and helpful smart features. For insight, we spoke with: Brittney Castro, certified financial planner for Mint; Marilee Nelson, certified building biologist and environmental consultant, and co-founder of Branch Basics; and Tiffany Aliche, The Budgetnista and author of Get Good with Money.

Marisa Casciano is the large appliance expert for The Spruce, and has researched the ins and outs of air purifiers, dishwashers, and more in the home space. While she loves her top-loading washer, she's very open to the perks of a front load washer and sees the value in owning this type of appliance. For this piece, she read through dozens of user manuals, product listings, and cleaning guides. Plus, she scoured verified customer reviews on multiple major retailers' websites and checked out the models in-person to get a feel for their size, finish, and practicality.

This article was updated by Camryn Rabideau, a freelance writer and product tester for The Spruce. She spent several hours researching the most popular and top-rated front load washing machines available today, and she's personally used the GE 5.0 cu. ft. Smart Front Load Steam Washer, which is our Best Overall pick.

Article Sources
The Spruce uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Mold in Your Washing Machine: The Mystery and The Menace. Consumer Reports.

  2. "Front Load Or Top Load Washer?". Energystar.Gov.

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