The 9 Best Washing Machines of 2021

Go from dirty to clean with ease

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Our Top Picks
Best Overall, Front Loading:
Samsung Front Load Washer at Home Depot
"The many washing options, as well as the self-cleaning mode and vibration technology, make this model a great pick for any home."
"With 36 wash cycles and a detergent dispenser than doesn't need to be refilled often, this washer more than gets the job done."
"At a budget price, this model treats your household to eight, high-performing cycle options and five water temperatures."
"This washer dries small loads of laundry, so you can skip out on a dryer, and doesn't collect stinky mildew or bacteria."
"A household with a ton of laundry can make use of this model's supersized drum, allergen cycle, and compatible pedestal washer."
"You can run a large load in this high-efficiency appliance, and stack its matching dryer on top of it to save space in your home."
"Once you connect this model to your water supply, it's very easy to operate and can tackle many, smaller loads."
"Since this appliance is a combo, it can wash and dry your clothes in one cycle, eliminating the need for two unique machines."
"It's easy to balance your lifestyle and chores with this model that can be remotely controlled and store up to 35 custom cycles."

A washing machine is a major investment in your home and lifestyle. It can have a big impact on your laundry routine, and make this chore simpler and faster. But knowing which machine is right for you can be tricky. To start, you have to decide on what features are most important to you, and would pack the biggest punch in your household.

Some of the best washing machines combine innovative design with a variety of efficient cycles to clean your dirty clothes, conserve energy, and minimize water waste. Others may take a bit longer to complete your laundry, but can fit in a tiny space so your chores aren't taking over your home.

Here, the best washing machines on the market for you to consider.

Best Overall, Front Loading: Samsung WF45T6000AW 4.5 cu. ft. Front Load Washer with Vibration Reduction Technology+

Samsung washer
What We Like
  • Reduced vibration

  • Self-cleaning feature

  • Energy Star-certified

What We Don't Like
  • Hard to understand at first

  • No reversible door

The Samsung WF45T6000AW is the best option for a front loading washer. It's quiet, powerful, and tech savvy, and can be tailored to any lifestyle thanks to 10 preset washing cycles. If you often deal with stains from grass, wine, splattering olive oil, or paint, six additional washing options and five temperature levels will have your back. They'll ensure your clothes feel clean and smell great, while the vibration reduction technology keeps your machine from wiggling around while it completes a spin cycle.

In addition, this specific model is Energy Star-certified and self-cleaning. In front-loading washers, mildew and bacteria can typically build up. Ultimately this self-cleaning feature will keep your drum—and clothes—fresh. You can set this piece up on its own, or stack it with the matching dryer unit to save some space in your home.

Now, since this appliance comes with so many flexible and useful settings, there is a learning curve. You'll want to thoroughly read your manual in order to run the necessary calibration cycle after installing it, and to understand the swirling drum. If you don't mind sitting down with your manual for the first cycles, you'll certainly enjoy what this appliance has to offer, including quiet, peaceful operation.

Best Overall, Top Loading: Whirlpool WTW8120HW 5.3 cu. ft. Smart White Top Load Washing Machine

The Whirlpool WTW8120HW 5.3 cu. ft. Smart White Top Load Washing Machine has a special dispenser for detergent.
What We Like
  • 36 wash cycles

  • Bulk dispenser

  • Gentle impeller plate

What We Don't Like
  • Unclear smartphone app

  • Can unbalance often

The Whirlpool WTW8120HW is a superstar top loading washer. This machine is easy to use and includes desirable features like 36 different wash cycles, as well as a 5.3-cubic-foot drum that can hold a king-sized comforter with total ease. It's lacking in a stackable design and steam function, but more than makes up for it with the brand's Load and Go dispenser. This dispenser can hold 20 loads worth of detergent, saving you time and energy on refilling it before selecting a cycle.

In addition, this Whirlpool model uses an impeller plate to help shift your clothes gently. An automatic pre-soak cycle lets you treat stains for up to 120 minutes—without taking up precious sink space. For dirty clothes that may need more than a soak, there's an included pre-treat brush and dual temperature faucet built into the appliance. Ready to start a cycle? Head to the sleek back panel that's home to digital controls, and select your settings with the washer's guidance or on your own.

Now, it's important to note that this appliance can be controlled remotely using an app on your phone. However, this app isn't as functional as others on the market, and requires a subscription. Instead, check in on your clothes by looking through the see-through, extra-large viewing window on the lid. A signal will also alert you when the cycle is done.

Best Budget: Amana NTW4516FW 3.5 cu. ft. White Top Load Washing Machine

Amana 3.5 cu. ft. Top Load Washer in White
What We Like
  • Inexpensive

  • Five water temperatures

  • Deep fill option

What We Don't Like
  • Porcelain enamel tub

  • Weak spin cycle

The Amana NTW4516FW is the best budget washing machine on the market, as this hardworking machine has basic features, but impressive performance. Inside this top-loading unit, you’ll find a porcelain enamel tub which can be considered a compromise since porcelain has the risk of chipping. However, the model can still offer years of smooth operation and worry-free washing, as well as 3.5 cubic feet of space. The control knobs let you easily choose from eight wash cycles, as well as further adjust the cycle with five different water temperatures. 

If you frequently wash fluffy blankets or heavy towels, you’ll appreciate the deep fill option to override the automatic load sensing technology, and make sure your items are thoroughly saturated. Just know that this washer does have a top spin speed of 700 RPM, which can leave thick, heavy items still dripping wet. When running this type of load, you may need to wring out bulky loads out yourself.

Best High-End: GE GFW850SPNDG 5.0 cu. ft. Capacity Smart Front Load Steam Washer

What We Like
  • Venting system

  • Smart home compatible

  • Can sync with dryer

What We Don't Like
  • Can be loud

  • Expensive

This high-end washing machine from GE is a new, fresh option. The front loader includes the brand's newest innovation for washers, the UltraFresh Vent System with OdorBlock. This helps to address one of the most common issues with front load washers: the fact that you have to leave the door wide open after every load to avoid dealing with mold and odors. The design of this washer includes both an in-door vent system to dry out the appliance in between cycles and parts that are made with different materials. Typically the gasket, drain, and pump are prone to harboring bacteria and mildew, but these materials prevent the problem before it starts.

It’s not just how this washer is made that makes it splurge-worthy, it’s also about what it can do. In addition to being equipped with WiFi and compatible with smart home systems, this model syncs with its matching dryer to transmit settings. The wash load finishes, and the dryer is ready to go with the best options possible for what you placed inside. What if you frequently wash small loads? Skip the dryer altogether, as this machine can dry up to two pounds of laundry using an internal fan.

Best High Capacity: LG SIGNATURE WM9500HKA 5.8 cu. ft. HE Mega Capacity Smart Front Load Washer

What We Like
  • Oversized drum

  • Steam function

  • Allergen cycle

What We Don't Like
  • Bulky build

  • Expensive

Any household with supersized laundry needs will love the oversized capacity of the LG SIGNATURE WM9500HKA. As one of the largest capacity models on the market, it has a drum with 5.8 cubic feet of space. But, at the same time, it's also a high-efficiency washer that minimizes water waste, and uses steam technology to tackle stains in your clothes in a gentle fashion. Notably, you can make use of LG's TwinWash system, too, by purchasing a separate LG SideKick model that's able to sync with the washer and complete a smaller load at the same time as a larger load.

Whether you have items that need special care, or family members who want to do their laundry separately, this is useful amenity worth the extra pennies. Make use of it, as well as an allergen cycle, versatile dispenser, and large window for checking in on your load. The brand's laundry app also keeps you updated on a cycle remotely, and serves as a hub on laundry day. Just be aware: Since this is a high-capacity model, it does measure at nearly 30 inches wide. You may have a bit of trouble trying to slide it through your door frame, post-delivery.

Best Stackable: LG Electronics WM3600HWA 27 in. 4.5 cu. ft.Ultra Large Capacity White Front Load Washer

The LG Electronics WM3600HWA 27 in. 4.5 cu. ft.Ultra Large Capacity White Front Load Washer can be stacked with a matching dryer.
What We Like
  • Cold wash setting

  • Closet-depth build

  • Operates quietly

What We Don't Like
  • No interior light

  • No reversible door

A stackable washing machine saves space when paired with a compatible dryer. But, the convenience of a stackable model isn’t only in its space-saving abilities. The LG WM3600HWA can handle loads of up to 20 pounds, so you can finish a larger amount of laundry at one time, and can automatically detect both the size and fabrics of your load. This ensures that every cycle is tailored, and every load comes out sparkly clean.

Now, with a 4.5-cubic-foot drum, this washer is pretty standard in size, but has a total of 10 wash cycles that you can make use of. It's a high-efficiency model that is careful with how much water and energy it uses and has a cold wash setting—which is both helpful for color loads, and for minimizing your bills. You can install the washer and its matching dryer side-by-side in a closet, since they're the right depth to do so, or stack the dryer on top of the washer with the help of a stacking kit. LG’s LoDecibel technology helps eliminate unnecessary noise so no room in your home will be disturbed.

Best Portable: GE GNW128PSMWW 2.8 cu. ft. 8-Cycle Top-Loading Portable Washer

GE 2.8 cu. ft. Capacity Portable Washer with Stainless Steel Basket
What We Like
  • Large capacity

  • Stainless steel basket

  • Automatic dispenser

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Doesn't fill all the way

A portable washer like the GE GNW128PSMWW works well for small spaces, or as an alternative to the laundromat. With four caster wheels, you can wheel this model up to a bathroom or kitchen sink, and connect it to your water supply. The machine does the rest, after being properly installed.

Now, you can’t expect a portable washing machine to do the work of a full-sized machine. However, you’ll likely be impressed with what this washer is able to do with 2.8 cubic feet of capacity. It can wash blankets, sheets, towels, and more—just maybe not all at once. In addition, there are some great included features on this washer, like a stainless steel wash basket that'll prevent rust from collecting, and an automatic dispenser for detergent, fabric softener, and bleach. 

This portable washer costs as much as many traditional washing machines, but it’s worth the investment if you need a more flexible, compact option to get your laundry done.

Best All-in-One: LG Electronics WM3488HW 2.3 cu. ft. Compact All-in-One Washer and Dryer Combo

LG Electronics 2.3 cu. ft. All-in-one Front Load Washer and Electric Ventless Dryer in White
What We Like
  • Ventless design

  • Variety of settings

  • Saves space

What We Don't Like
  • Time-consuming cycles

  • Can be loud

The LG WM3488HW is an all-in-one washing machine and dryer that'll take your laundry from dirty to clean—and then to dry. It offers 2.3 cubic feet of space, lots of cycle options, and reliable performance making it a great pick for any space or household. No external vent is required for the dryer function, so you can install this model anywhere a conventional washing machine would go. 

You will need to plan on extended cycle times, since it can take anywhere from 2 to 6 hours (depending on options selected) to wash and thoroughly dry each load of laundry. However, you won’t need to worry about retrieving wet clothes from a washing machine and transferring them to the dryer, so the extra time is worth it and understandable.

Best for Saving Time: Whirlpool WFW9620HC 5.0 cu. ft. High Efficiency Smart Stackable Front Load Washing Machine

Whirlpool High Efficiency
What We Like
  • Stores custom cycles

  • Bulk dispenser

  • Tumbles wet clothes

What We Don't Like
  • Hard to customize dispenser

  • Unreliable smartphone app

Balancing your daily chores with your lifestyle can be difficult, but this washing machine that's jam-packed with smart features makes things simple. It can be controlled remotely from the Whirlpool app so you can start, stop, and check in on cycles from wherever you are. The digital interface can also hold up to 35 of your own custom-made cycles, so you don't have to re-select your settings for specialty loads like activewear, baby wear, or other delicates.

In addition to these high-functioning features, this appliance also has the brand's Load and Go dispenser, which allows you to put detergent in the machine for up to 40 loads. (If you do two or three loads of laundry per week, one fill will last you for a whopping 13 weeks.) Once again, this saves you time prepping your load—as a quick wash cycle that can wash a small load of dirty clothes in as little as 15 minutes. Whether you want to wash a shirt before work, or tackle your to-do list in a timely manner, this cycle will be your speedy sidekick.

Now, let's say you forgot about your wet clothes, since you were making dinner or taking calls. This washer will keep things fresh until you're ready, for up to 12 hours after a wash. It will even begin drying items for you, by tumbling the clean clothes in hot air. Just be aware that all of these features may take some time to learn, especially the dispenser, if you want to use different detergents for colors and whites.

Final Verdict

For a quiet, powerful, and front-loading washing machine that will suit most people’s needs, the Samsung WF45T6000AW (view at Lowe's) is our top pick. It aims to treat your clothing items with precise care, and has vibration reduction technology so that laundry day doesn't overwhelm your space. Looking for a top-loading model? You should shop for the Whirlpool WTW8120HW (view at Home Depot). It has a deep drum for tending to bulky loads, as well as a detergent dispenser that doesn't need to be refilled with every cycle.

Why Trust The Spruce?

This article was written by Marisa Casciano, a freelance writer and editor who has been covering large appliances for The Spruce since 2020. Throughout her career, she's researched the ins and outs of air purifiers, portable dishwashers, cooktops, and more in the home and lifestyle space. As a sustainability advocate, she loves her high-efficiency washer that's both powerful and conserves water.

What to Look for in a Washing Machine

Type Stackable or side-by-side? Front-loading or top-loading? Gas or electric? These are some basic components of a washing machine that you'll want to consider to start narrowing your search. While some decisions, such as top-loading instead of front-loading, may be determined by your preferences, the others might depend on the size of your laundry room and the type of energy supply in your home.

Size Consider how much laundry you do on a regular basis as well as how much space you have for a washing machine. If you live alone and dry-clean most of your wardrobe, there’s no sense in buying a huge washer. But if you’re a family of eight with a washing machine that never seems to be off, then a small machine isn’t going to cut it. Of course, you also must have enough space for your machine, so if your laundry room is tiny, that may limit your choices.

Features Washing machines come with a variety of features, from basic washing to countless wash cycle options. Some machines will even dry your clothing, too. Most of your choices will be determined by your preferences as well as your budget.

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