Laundry Debate: Should I Buy a Top Load or Front Load Washer & Dryer?
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In the market for some shiny new laundry room appliances?
Chances are your head is spinning with all the options out there on the market! And with so many cool features, high-efficiency ratings, good reviews, bad reviews, and everything in between, it can be tough to choose just what to buy.
With this straightforward list of pros and cons for front load & top load washers and dryers, we know this is going to help narrow down what’s going to work best in your home and get your whites cleaner than ever before! In fact, over 100 Hip2Save readers have already shared their thoughts, feedback, and stories, so make sure to share your thoughts too in the comments!
Hip Tip: You’ll notice that throughout this post we link to Best Buy for a lot of our appliance recommendations. This is because we love their price matching AND they also haul away your old appliances for just $24.99 and ensure it gets recycled appropriately (which a lot of places won’t)!
Or here’s another Hip Tip from our savvy Hip2Save reader, Amy:
“Something to consider instead of paying someone $25 to take your old appliances or throwing them away – Our recycling centers here will pay you to take them and recycle the metal parts (not sure if all do but worth a call). Also, post them for free on Facebook, if they’re working, you just made someone’s day! If they’re not working, there are people who repair and flip them. Better than ending up in a landfill somewhere.” 😊
Top load laundry units
Pros of a top load washing machine:
- No bad smells or mold
- Option for an agitator or no agitator
- Generally the most affordable
- More brands and options
- Gas or electric dryer options
- Compatible with many laundry detergents
- Can handle smaller loads
- Less vibration through your floor
- High-Efficiency options
Cons of a top load washing machine:
- No useable countertop space on top of units
- Shorter people (or pregnant mamas 😉) might struggle to reach clothes
- Clothes get tangled frequently
- Requires more energy to complete a cycle
- Tougher on fabrics
- Agitators tend to be the loudest
Some of our favorite top-rated, top-loading washing machines:
I searched different types of popular appliance features with strictly high ratings across the board. For Best Overall, I found a mid-price option with some bells and whistles. Budget-Friendly is the least expensive option. Large Family-Approved is the largest capacity washer.
⭐Best Overall – LG – 5.0 Cu. Ft. 8-Cycle Top-Loading Washer with 6Motion Technology (or buy the washer/dryer set)
⭐Budget-Friendly – Amana 3.5 Cu. Ft. Top Load Washer (or buy the washer/dryer set)
⭐Large Family-Approved – LG – 5.5 Cu. Ft. 14-Cycle Top-Loading Washer(or buy the washer/dryer set)
“I have the LG washer – the large family approved and let me tell you.. I’ve only had it for about 3 months and I love it. I do multiple loads of laundry per day, and the way it spins the clothes almost completely dry is wonderful. Plus I like that it’s synced up with Wi-Fi and will alert me when the washer and dryer are done. Saves me a trip walking downstairs. Call me lazy, but as I get older those steps aren’t doing my knees any justice, so this saves me time and my body! Double win. I definitely recommend this washer.” – Kahila
Front-load laundry units
Pros of front load washing machines:
- Useable countertop space on the top
- Pedestals options for an easier reach
- Ability to pause a cycle
- Most gentle on clothes
- Uses the least amount of water
- Cleans clothes the best due to their design
- High-efficiency cuts back on utilities
- Can handle smaller loads
- Gas or electric dryer options
- Available in many colors
Cons of front load washing machines:
- Likely to drop clothing when transferring from washer to dryer
- Requires a lot of bending
- Normal wash times can take longer
- Tend to be the most expensive
- Mold or bad odors can be common
- Tougher to keep clean
- Small garments can get stuck in the door
- High-Efficiency detergent required
- Some have a strong vibration
Some of our favorite top-rated, front-loading washing machines:
I searched different types of popular appliance features with strictly high ratings across the board. For Best Overall, I found a mid-price option with some bells and whistles. Budget-Friendly is the least expensive option. Large Family-Approved is the largest capacity washer.
⭐Best Overall – Maytag – 4.5 Cu. Ft. 10-Cycle High-Efficiency Front-Loading Washer with Steam (or buy the washer/dryer set)
⭐Budget-Friendly – Samsung – 4.5 Cu. Ft. High-Efficiency Front-Loading Washer with Steam and Super Speed (or buy the washer/dryer set)
⭐Large Family-Approved – Samsung – FlexWash 6.0 Cu. Ft. Washer with Steam(or buy the washer/dryer set)
“I personally love my Samsung front loaders. I haven’t had any problems with them. I love how they don’t use a ton of water and our clothes turn out great (I wash laundry everyday). So far so good in our house.” – Lisa, Hip2Save reader
“Love my front loader! I’ve never had a mold or smell problem because I leave the door open when I finish. I’ve noticed my whites look much better, my work jeans get much cleaner without having to soak them, and my towel seams aren’t being pulled apart as with most every top loader I’ve had. Additionally, my drying time is cut by 1/3 to 1/2 what it used to be.” – Jim, Hip2Save reader
So what’s the Hip2Save team verdict? Here’s what our team had to say:
✅ Top loaders vs. 👎 Front loaders
“I am a huge fan of my top load washer! It’s so easy to clean and so easy to use without all of the bells and whistles of some machines. I’m all about the basics. When I previously owned a front load washer, I felt like all I did was constantly clean it, and my clothes still smelled like mildew. I also always left the washer door open, which didn’t seem to help either!” – Collin
“I hate my front loader! I can’t wait for it to quit working!” – Michelle
“I bought a front loader washing machine when they became popular years ago, and I hated it! The rubber lip would always get moldy and gross and stink! No matter how much I cleaned the thing, it would be gross. I finally went back to a top loader without an agitator in the middle, and I love it!” – Jennifer
“I love my top loader! I want to say I bought it used at least 8 years ago – no joke! It is super old but it never fails on me, so I am in love!” – Erica
“I love the top loading set that I bought and all of the cycles that it has. My mom used to have a front loader when I lived there. While it was nice for my 4’11” self, it did tend to smell, the rubber lip would get gross, and–considering I am the only short person in the family–it’s easier for me to use a stool to get into the top load. LOL!” – Alana
“I absolutely love top loaders all the way! I honestly couldn’t wait to get rid of my stinky front loader! I like that you can also pause it and throw a few more things in if you need to.” – Angela
“I love my Samsung top loader! I hate the front loader machines as I did not like that you had to always have the door open to avoid the mildew smell. And mine always had little bits of mold growing around the rubber ring! Yuck!” – Bryn
“I’ve had my current Maytag top loader since before 2000. No bells and whistles, but the thing is a workhorse. My only wish is that it would handle larger loads like comforters, but I do feel like the agitator really gets clothes clean.” – Stacy
“I was always a fan of front-load washers strictly because they look so nice, but then I moved and started using the one the old owners had left behind. The washer probably wasn’t more than 5 years old but it was extremely moldy and gross. Plus, anything small like socks or underwear frequently get trapped in the door. I cannot wait to buy a new set!” – Sara
“TOP LOADERS. I’ve heard all the negatives about the front loaders so we went with a top-loading Speed Queen and oh my gosh, it’s so fast!!! Like 15 minutes a load fast! I’ll never go back!” – Jill
“Top loading is the way to go! No stink and much quicker at washing! It’s unfortunate because I like the way the front ones look more, but not worth it from a practical standpoint.” – Jessica
“I have always had a top-loading washer. At first, I only chose them because they were more affordable but now I have just stayed with them as I don’t want to have any of the smelly issues many have had with the front-loading.” – Amber
“Top loading for me! I feel better about overstuffing it that way. LOL!” – Lisanne
“I am hands down a fan of top-loading washers and find them to be so much more convenient than the front load style. I grew up with front loaders and always thought they were a hassle and made it a little harder to detect how much I could squeeze into a load. I’m a top loader for life now!” – Taylor
“We have an older top loader that needs to be replaced, but after all the horror stories I’ve heard about front-loading machines, I know we’ll definitely be upgrading with top-loaders all over again!” – Ashley
👎Top loaders vs. ✅ Front loaders
“Love our newer Maytag front loaders! I use vinegar on mine, and it’s fine! You can’t use too much detergent is all, and leave the door open after washing sometimes. I love the look and have never had an issue.” – Lina
“I prefer front loading because I’m short and can’t reach the bottom of a top-loading washer. Also, I’ve gotta say I’ve had my front-loading for 10 years and it doesn’t stink, I hadn’t even heard of that.” – Chelsey
“This will likely sound silly but I just purchased a new front load washer/dryer set for my laundry room renovation based on looks. I’ve heard tons about the superiority of top-load units, but with limited space, having the ability to put a counter overtop my appliances was a huge plus. I know the front loaders typically require more cleaning and maintenance, but it’s worth it to be for the aesthetic!” – Emily
“I have only ever owned top-loading washers in the past, but I got a front-loading washer last summer and I love it! I’m short, so that’s part of why I chose them, but I also love how energy efficient they are! With two boys, there’s always a LOT of laundry and the front-loader does a great job of cleaning and handling all our loads. We love it and have never had issues with it.” – Esther
The verdict? Top Loaders: 15 vs. Front Loaders: 4
So it’s pretty clear to see which our team prefers. The majority of us are sticking to our top load washing machines!
Here’s what some other Hip2Save readers said who couldn’t agree more:
“I fix appliances as a hobby and I have strong feelings about this subject! I always recommend people steer clear of the fancy front loading washing machines. Here are the reasons:
1) They tend to stink because the pump/drain mechanism never drains completely, it tends to grow bacteria and with a steady supply of gunk from dirty water washing through it, it must be cleaned regularly like once a month. You should also run cleaning cycles with a cleaning agent like Affresh which offsets water savings. Always leave the door open when not in use and wipe out the rubber door baffle often.
2) They have vulnerable circuit boards, and these get water or condensation on them and get fried and are usually prohibitively expensive to replace.
3) They are heavy with some weighing nearly 200lbs because they must have ballast weight for the super high spin cycle speeds.
4) Finally, they are very expensive… nuf’ said.” – Jeff, Hip2Save reader
“TOP LOADER! I bought a $300 washing machine five years ago, and it’s a workhorse. My sister has a front loader and has had nothing but problems with it. All the problems you read about. If it’s hard to reach the clothes in the machine, get some kitchen tongs with silicone on the ends so you can reach.” – Peter, Hip2Save reader
Are you a Costco member? Consider getting a great deal on your new appliances like our Hip2Save reader, Jenny:
“For all you Costco members, check out their appliances. Just bought a top load Whirlpool Cabrio washer for about $40 cheaper than I could find at any box store. This price included installation and removal of our old washer for free, a 2-year warranty, and if I didn’t like, which I do, I could have returned it within the first 90 days of owning it.” – Jenny
Ditch the expensive Tide detergent and try this instead!
I love my top loader Speed Queen! It’s a basic, no frills washer and it’s amazing. Made in the USA too and has a great warranty.
I have a Speed Queen for 25 years only had it fix The next will be a speed Queen.
Yes! 100%. I bought a 2nd hand Speed Queen after my non-agitating washer died. I love it!
I also love my Speed Queen! Because it’s commercial grade, it’s perfect for large families. And it’s quick. A large heavy duty load is done in 45 minutes. My old washer took 1 1/2 hours!
Made in the US??? Sign me in!!!!
Seriously thanks. I’ve never heard of Speed Queen checking it out now
I have heard nothing but positive reviews. I hate our top loader now and I will replace with a speed queen. Repair man said they are the best!
Have an LG top-load washing machine and hate it. Cannot reach laundry even though when I tested this in-store when on the raised machine I could? And, my clothes are dingy and grey. They come out with the same dirt on them as when I put the clothes in to wash them! Sometimes I wash them twice—inside and right-side out!
Matching dryer—clothes fall out the front door and onto the floor when stopped. Who wants clean clothes on the floor? So bad.
What kind of detergent are you using, and how much clothes are you putting in the loads?
Mine are Maytag but the same. I have the same exact issues. The only way my clothes get clean is if I press the deep fill button that actually fills the washer up with water. Otherwise they just rub together and look terrible. I keep a basket in front of the dryer at all times because everything just flies out as soon as I open it. I hate them so much. I wish I would have never replaced my old set
I have a Whirlpool Duet front loader, have had it for 19 years with no major problems. I ‘ve never had a mold problem, I always leave the door and detergent dispenser ajar. I love being able to wash quilts and quilt tops without them being harmed by an agitator. There is really only one thing I don’t like about it – you can’t soak anything in it because it will only put in enough water to swish the item in the minimum amount of water. I like to soak stained vintage linens in Oxiclean and cannot do that in this machine. I figured next time I might go for a top loading without an agitator, not sure now.
I have a front loader and I dislike it because it considers it “energy saving” because it uses less water. But it uses a ton of electricity by running the machine forever. Also, I like to be able to stop my machine so I can do a soak cycle and my machine doesn’t allow this. I have an LG machine, maybe it is just my brand. I immediately broke and it took two visits to fix the problem, I mentioned that the buzzer was too low on the dryer and he “fixed it”, it is still too low – You wind up getting clothes that are wrinkled. I want my old fashioned machine back!
I’m looking at getting a new washing machine. I checked a $600 one on Best Buy’s page and they charge $30 for delivery and installation. Another model had free delivery. I’m leaning towards Lowes. Their prices are the same as Home Depot and they charge $20 haul away/recycle fee (HD is $25). No delivery charges. When my friend bought her washer and dryer, a couple years ago, the store would also haul away for free. Those days seem to be gone 🙁
I bought a Fridgidaire front loader and dryer sent in 2008. I thought I was making a green choice since front loaders were touted to be more efficient with low water usage. Loved it for the first couple years, but then started noticing black mildew and pink gunk in the gasket around the front. I started running a bleach load of whites for the last load of the week. Finally – both washer and dryer were going out this past fall. I figured it was time to go back to a traditional top loader and ended up with a Whirlpool pair. LOVE LOVE LOVE the top loader. I can do an occasional load between my regular wash day and not have to worry about running a bleach load.
For you Costco memebers, check out their appliances. Just bought a top load Whirlpool Cabrio washer for about $40 cheaper than I could find at any box store. This price included installation and removal of our old washer for free, a 2 year warranty, and if i didn’t like, which I do, I could have returned it within the first 90 days of owning it 😊
That 90 days return policy is great, because you can never be too sure how well it is going to perform. Steer clear of Home Depot for major appliance purchases,however, they only give you 48 hours. It is obscurely listed under special exclusions in their return policy.
Top Loader here. I grew up in the 70’s and 80’s with the front loaders and I hated them. I love my top loaders. They last 20 years or more. My brothers has lasted 25 years. They are made to last. I don’t need any of those fancy bells and whistles. I am still able to change the water level to save water on my own. We do have a dryer but we use the clothes line whenever possible weather permitting. If they break down it is easy to google how to fix them. My brother tried to fix my daughters front loader with no luck. Had to send it to the landfill. I hate sending things to the landfill if they can be fixed and reused. Just love my top loader. I love that I can add that stray sock or two while it is filling up with water at the last minute. LOL Have to chase down the dog or cat to get them sometimes.
Top loader for sure!
I do like the top load better, but i still get the mildew smell even with the top open 24/7 while not washing. When it dies I will invest in a Speed Queen. No frills or fancy buttons. I wish I had gotten it to start.
I have never had a mildew smell but I guess that is because my washers are always older. I love the older ones as they are easy to fix (see youtube videos) and they last 20-30 years. LOL
100% team top loader. I bought a well rated front loading washer that died within a year of the extended warranty expiration; the dryer didn’t last much longer. Neither received heavy use – absolute garbage. Never again!
TOP LOADER! I bought a $300 Admiral from Home Depot five years ago, and it’s a workhorse. New top loaders ARE more energy efficient, so they do use less water, less detergent, and run longer than the old machines, but not as long as the front loaders. And they ARE louder. I used to use a Downy dispenser ball, but it slams around in the washer so I got rid of it. But I can stop the machine any time to add clothes, or add detergent or fabric softener. There are no frills….just knobs for hot/warm/cold, small/med/large, and several cycles, but I usually leave mine on “casual medium’ whatever that means, lol
My sister has a front loader and has had nothing but problems with it. All the problems you read about.
If it’s hard to reach the clothes in the machine, get some kitchen tongs with silicone on the ends so you can reach.
Thank goodness the top leader wins!! Hopefully people will listen. I don’t know if I can handle more people buying those dang front loaders…they make your clothes stink people, which means you smell stinky to other people. I have learned to sniff out what type washer people own just by standing near them. It is a very distinct odor (that is less than appealing). I honestly don’t know if they can no longer smell it because it is on everything in there home? How do you tell someone their clean clothes smell dirty? You usually don’t you just sit next to them and suffer! Praying that their washer breaks and they opt not to buy that again. Yuck! I didn’t need to read this to decide what I’d buy…I already had rule front loaders out, but was intrigued to see what the results would be and am pleased that you are providing info my nose can also appreciate!!
Had a front loader set once. Never again.
I would never buy front load washer. My washer works for me not the other way around. Someone gave me one and I was so excited when it died and I could get a top load. 🤦♀️
My Frigidaire top loading washer, dryer, and refrigerator (no ice maker) are 16 years old and still doing great, haven’t had any problem with any of them so far. We do 3-4 loads laundry per week.
Wow! That’s awesome to hear they have held up so well, Mindy! Thanks for taking the time to comment!
Same here. No frills Frigidaire top loader and matching dryer. 17 years, still going strong. I have a friend that has a fancy washer with electronic panels. Nothing but problems and expensive repairs. I’ve had no problems except had to replace a knob. Was about $3!
You forgot to include Costco! They have great prices, most machines are standard priced in all stores. Only difference is hauling fee, delivery fee, price of additional valve.. Costco includes all of them for free. Happy with my new lg 5cuft top loader. It is deep, so i can see ppl having difficulty reaching in there, but there’s a lot more space than my previous maytag (which only lasted 5 years!!, the Maytag before that lasted over 10 years!!)
Love my front loader…
I’ve never had a mold or smell problem because I leave the door open when I finish. Have noticed my whites look much better and my work jeans get much cleaner without having to soak them.
I’ve noticed with my towels the seams aren’t being pulled apart as with most every top loader I’ve had.
I’ve also seen my drying time cut by 1/3 to 1/2 what it use to be…
Definitely front loader cleans much more better and clothes are not ripped. I also wash pillows, shoes, comforters and love my front loader ( I have Whirlpool).
I used to have top loader, had clothes not wash out any stains and everything would come out ripped. It’s disappointing how much water and detergent is wasted and then having to go buy new clothes.
Have an LG front loader and hate it! Don’t care if it saves water, can’t soak anything with a stain and smells even though I wipe it out each time and drain the smelly water out of the drain/filter at the bottom. I use the washing machine cleaners regularly. Give me a top loader with no bells and whistles for SURE!
I bought a Whirlpool top loader for my daughters house a year ago and a Samsung top loader for my new house. I weighed all the pros and cons for top load vs front load and went for the top load. They are reliable and consistent. They may use a little more water, but I can cut the cycle short with settings.
I only went with the Samsung washer and dryer, as that is what all the other appliances are in the house, otherwise, I would have gone for another Whirlpool. Plus, I saved $950 on the Samsung appliances at Home Depot!!!! I have never had a problem with the top load machines, as my last one was 25 years old when it died.
Does anyone recommend a TOP LOADER that can fit a king comforter? I find myself having to go to the laundry mat to wash our bedding and it’s made me consider a front loader which I do not want.
There are no top loaders that will hold a king comforter. Even if you can cram one in, it won’t get clean because there is no room to move it around.
My pieces of advice are 1) DO NOT buy LG or Samsung (for any appliance) most repair companies won’t even work on them and it’s common for them to go out. 2) Get a washer with dials and not a totally digital screen – this was recommended to us by a repairman as it is very common for the control board to go out within a couple of years- and they are a couple hundred dollars to replace I honestly wish we still had our old school Kenmore bc they were AMAZING (old, but worked great- we all know things aren’t made like they were used to) We’ve had better luck with Whirlpool
I’m not sure how LG and Samsung made the list, they are the worst. They look nice, but performance is terrible.
I agree 100% I bought an LG dishwasher and it failed within a year! Won’t touch either of those brands. When my washer goes out I plan to get the Speed Queen as I’ve read nothing but stellar reviews.
According to Consumer Reports 9 of the top 10 washers are front-loading LG. We’ve had ours for 11 years and it started making a strange noise about a week ago. It’s nearly impossible to get a service technician out to look at it due to COVID, so I ordered a new one from Costco. Delivery was about a month out, so I decided to take a look at the old LG myself. Following YouTube videos, it wasn’t terribly difficult to have the whole system apart and new parts replaced. One of the learnings was the very nicely designed direct drive motor. We’ve never had the smells others report, but leave the door open and use it almost daily due to our laundry volume. I’d order another one in a heartbeat.
Speed Queen is the ONLY way to go. They are built to last & built to get your clothes clean. They are pretty pricey new, but you won’t be replacing them every few years. My washer is a used one I bought from Craigslist. I LOVE it. It fills completely with water, and washes a load in 30 minutes. New washers can take up to an hour, or longer. Several family members have Speed Queens and they ALL love them. I don’t need super fancy, I just want my clothes to get clean!! 😉
My husband is a certified appliance technician and he always says go a SpeedQueen. They are built to last. Mine just keep working.
How much is a set? I can’t find any info on the net.
I have an LG set for about 7 years now and Ive already had to replace some parts.
A good tip to point out is because of Covid interruptions it will most likely take awhile for your washer&dryer to come in right now so plan accordingly. Some places have a few things in stock but most you are waiting til the company sends more. My in laws waited 2 months for theirs and ours is 3 months.
The front loaders are so pretty and beautiful in pictures but I’m team top loader all the way. I had a Maytag washer and GE dryer that just passed the 30 year mark and neither one had a single repair done to them. The washer had just the basics (small/medium/large load, cold/warm/hot water). I had to trade them in for something bigger and more efficient. It was taking 2-3 cycles to dry clothes. Went Maytag top load again. Like everyone says “they don’t make them like that anymore” and I know I won’t get 30 years out of this set.
Brought my 5 year old top loader with me from CA to KY… sold it five years later with no problems when I temporarily had to live in an apt before buying a house in NY. The apt had BRAND NEW front loaders (like i unwrapped them myself) and I was so excited. Followed the rules, left the doors open… and they still stank within three months and were growing mold underneath the rubber that was impossible to clean. Disgusting. I’ll never ever buy front loaders. I have a top loading XL whirlpool/apana combo here and they are absolutely excellent.
I also currently have high capacity LG front loaders that we bought when we moved approx 6 years ago. I was so excited to get them, and that excitement wore off pretty quickly. The dryer is nice, but the washer is terrible. For those that say, “all you have to do is leave the door open”, that’s wrong. We have our door all the way open at all times, including taking the soap dispenser drawer all the way out and leave it sitting on the counter when not in use, and nothing stops the mildew smell. When I bought it, it said there was a door stopper feature to allow air flow. No where near enough air flow with that. There is no way to peal back that rubber ring far enough to clean all the gross junk and mold that is behind it. That junk builds up in those tiny holes you can see behind it, and I try to use a toothpick to get it out, and it’s disgusting, and can never get clean. There is visible mold at the back of the machine where the soap tray slides in that you can’t reach or clean. The funky water tray at the bottom always needs to be drained out and smells bad. And no matter how much we’ve run the cleaning cycles and cleaned it the best we could, the moment you start a load of laundry and water starts running through it, our laundry room has that gross skanky water smell. Also I should say that we have a really large, like size of a small bedroom large laundry room. On the main floor with two windows in it, so it isn’t because it’s in a small space with lack of ventilation. It’s the main entry into our house from our garage, and I hate having to look at the washer having to have the door hanging open and pieces of it sitting on the counter. For something that I was excited for because it will also look nice in my laundry room, it has turned into an eye sore. We are on the verge of remodeling our laundry room and I keep going back and forth on what to replace them with. Agitator vs no agitator, speed queen (which I had never heard of before this site!) or something not so basic. So many choices and I don’t want to pick wrong again! Thanks everyone for your reviews because I can use all the help I can get!
Get whirlpool instead. I have had Whirlpool front loader for 8+ Years family of 7 and no smell. Just leave the door slightly open. Of course I run a cleaning cycle once in a while using bleach or baking soda.
I hate our front loader. We have to prop it up and clean out some sort of pipe that fills with crud occasionally. It smells like a sewer. Should have listened to the repairman – he said get the machine with the fewest buttons and features. I can’t wait for this thing to die!
Whatever brand you buy, verify what’s considered hot and warm. Some front loaders hot cycle IS NOT hot enough to kill germs. Their hot is actually luke warm but you would never know. That’s how a lot of these washers get their Energy efficient rating – they simply lower the temp for each range!
I have to laugh here at the benefits of a front loader. The ability to pause a cycle for what, you can’t open the door? On a top loader you can pause to unlock or open the machine and toss in the socks your forgot or open it to pull out items before the spin cycle such as sneakers at any point during the wash. Front loaders can also handle small loads and no matter the type of washer you can buy gas OR electric dryers so that’s also not a benefit. I have a HE Maytag top load machine with an agitator, the agitators are designed differently than they used to be and you can actually customize lots of the settings as far as the load spin speed, agitator off, etc even with the presets you can customize your wash, including how deep the machine fills (if you want to use the sensors or if you just want the machine to fill up old school). My machine tells how long the cycle will be and I can change options to the wash length I desire. Also the gripes about agitators getting in the way. You can’t and shouldn’t overload any machine, that said, don’t try to wash all 4 bedroom bedding sets with comforters in one load especially if you opt for the smaller size machine. Think with your head sis. I have a 5.3 cu machine and that works well for my family of 3. I am 4’9 and can reach the bottom of my machine just fine. Front loaders do not get clothes cleaner than top load machines and NO machine gets clothes clear than one with an agitator.
If I may add a couple tips:
1) When purchasing a washer with electronic board (basically all of them), buy a single outlet surge suppressor. The smallest power surge can take out the board. A suppressor is cheap insurance. 🙂
2) Consider buying from small business instead of big box stores. Small businesses carry the manufacturers actually designed machine. Big box store products are typically re-designed for a (cheaper) price point.
3) Small business generally provides discounted service after the sale shall you need repairs.
4) Please make sure your appliances are going to an approved demanufacturing center. Appliances contain carcinogens (eg. Mercury switches) and if you are just sending them to the “junk yard” or to the guy down the street, the appliance is not being properly disassembled and the carcinigens are not being destroyed.
5) Small Businesses need your support anyways 😉
Stay far far away from Samsung household appliances. Samsung is good at making phone and TVs and other consumer electronic devices, but Samsung household appliances are TERRIBLE. My Samsung dishwasher got an error code after 3 years. My husband Googled the issue and it turns out there is a well-known design flaw. The fix is super easy if you know how to fix it (he fixed it himself), but if you don’t know the fix, it will cost you, as the repair person will unnecessarily replace an expensive part (about $300) and then perform the fix as a result of replacing the part. I don’t know the specifics, but it has something to do with a drainage tube. Google it, or go on YouTube if you have this problem.
My front load HE Samsung washing machine was a complete lemon from the get-go. Clothes came out pilled after ONE wash. Easy stains (like toothpaste) did not come out. The water level never gets high enough to wash my clothes properly. I’ve tried every troubleshooting tips like adjusting the amount of detergent used, or not overfilling the drum, etc etc. COMPLETE piece of garbage.
100% agree! My Samsung washer and dryer were the worst! My washer had major repair before it was even a year old. I didn’t do the extended warranty so after a year, I was on my own. On the spin cycle, my entire second floor shook! Eventually, the spin cycle stopped working altogether. I threw it out after 15 months and went with Maytag. Absolutely do not recommend Samsung.
When our front loader broke, we got a top loader and I LOVED it so much!!! It cleaned so much better! We left it with our old house when we moved and are back to a front loader now 🙁 I miss being able to soak our clothes/towels!
It seems like this is the response everyone agrees on the most! I do, too!
What would happen if you hit pause when the washer is full of water? Maybe that would work?
I have the LG front loader and I can soak things. I start the load and let it run for several minutes to circulate the clothes well and dispense the soap/oxiclean. I just hit the power button mid-cycle to shut it off and let it soak as long as I want to. I can also hit the pause button to add or remove items mid-cycle if I want. I love my LG front loader and it gets a LOT of use(at least 2 loads a day). I don’t have any mold or odors either. This is my second front loader. My first one lasted 6 years and that was when I was doing 3 loads a day/6 loads on Fridays when I washed everyone’s bedding.
Simple reason for top loader: I can add clothes to the wash one it’s started!
I have an LG front loader and dryer. A tip for front loader owners – powder detergent. No more smells. Just like Dawn makes sponges have a stench worse than death 😉 liquid detergents do the same in front loaders. They’re slimy. That’s just a property of liquid detergents. I haven’t had any issues with smelly clothes. I dry the gasket with an old rag, leave the door slightly ajar, and that’s it. I very occasionally will clean out the dispenser tray. I don’t bother leaving it open. Just did it now – no mold or any smell whatsoever. A couple of times a year I empty the water hose thing at the bottom. I just did it now as well, no smell. It used to smell of old sewer water. My gasket is permanently stained on the inner bottom unfortunately, from when I used to use liquid detergent. My husband also rigged the machine to use more water – youtube. The only drawback, besides a little more water use is that I can no longer open the machine to add something I forgot. I used to be able to with this machine because the water level wouldn’t go higher than the bottom of the door. I only have a closet for my machines and they have to be stacked so I have to stay with a front loader, but these fixes solved any issues. Now to figure out how to clean the lint tube thing that runs between the floors of the house!
I love my Speed Queen, made in USA with awesome warranty! Stainless steel drum.
Sounds like that’s one that’s built to last!
Purchased the GE Fresh vent front loader with WiFi linked compatible dryer. Love it!! It vents fresh air in and uses microban technology so no mold, no need to keep the door open. I fill it once a month with a bottle of detergent. Weighs your clothes and automatically dispenses the correct amount of detergent each load. It communicates to the dryer exactly how long the clothes need to be into dry. Sends a notification to my phone when it’s done. Expensive? Yes- but I’m saving on electric and detergent and my clothes have never been cleaner. 10 year warranty. I’m thrilled.
We recently got a king size bed and just washing the new mattress pad unbalanced my older LG front loader. Is there a top loader that can handle king bedding? If not how you do easily clean it all or did I just make a laundromat commitment?
We bought a top load speed queen commercial heavy duty…I hate it. TMI but my panties don’t get clean. This was never an issue before!
I have never purchased a new washer and dryer. Always purchase second hand and have had great luck. I have found that what makes the most difference when it comes to laundry is the quality of water you have being piped into your home and the type of detergent/softener you use.
Love my top loader with an agitator. Brand new this year, inexpensive, and efficient! I hear nothing but heartache about non-commercial frontloaders from people I know who have them.
I agree Nell!!
I love my front loader. When we got our own house a few years ago, being able to switch to a front loader was a huge plus. Clothes always took so long to dry and didn’t seem to get clean in the top-loaders at our old place, and I am super happy with our front loader. We have to clean out a filter about once a month, but that’s it.
Get a cheap “old fashioned” washer with a blessed agitator! Had a front loader at the horse barn I worked at and it was just awful. My parents had the same one for their clothes and in both cases, it just wet and spun. A good $400 will do a good job, not to mention the long time the front loaders take.
I really appreciate all these comments. My 25+ year old Kenmore front loader just got a hole in the gasket and the repair man said $600 to fix and that I should replace because some parts for my washer are not made anymore. (He said to steer clear of GE and Samsung). I never had any mold/smell problems, but I don’t think I will buy another front loader because many seem to have that problem now. I also could add things during the cycle (had to pause), I guess they aren’t made that way anymore? I have also been reading my local FB page and they seem to have the same opinion. Just wanted to thank all the people who took the time to comment.
Mine washer and dryer are 30 years old this year! They have been fixed 2 or 3 times but nothing major. So now that it’s getting time to buy new I’m scared of all these new fangled things to go wrong! What is the best brand for reliability?
After doing a TON of research recently, I purchased a GE Ultra Fresh Vent System front loading washer and LOVE it. I’d have to disagree with some of the front loader CONS, as they relate to my washing machine. #1 It has an option to run a wash in a shorter period of time (and clothes still come out clean). #2 I put the clothes directly into a tub and transfer them to the dryer (no dropping with transfer). #3 There’s some bending involved, but I’m short, so I prefer the front loader. #4 I paid $799, but when compared to a high quality top loading washer, the prices weren’t that much different (maybe $100-$200). #5 This washer comes with Microban infused in the dispenser tray and door. It also has a Fresh Vent system that dries the washer after a wash is complete, so I haven’t had any issues with mold, bad odors, or keeping it clean. #6 Because of the door’s design, I’ve had no issues with small items (socks, my daughter’s bras, etc.) getting stuck in the door. I also use garment bags for washing our masks. #7 It uses HE detergent, but most liquid detergents are HE these days. #8 This machine does not have a strong vibration at all. In fact, it uses a technology that helps to reset the load if it gets unbalanced and I’ve seen it do this in person. #8 Although I didn’t pay for the option, this particular machine does have an option to automatically dispense detergent, which I thought was cool – I know my husband uses more than he should. You can load up to 50 “loads” into the machine and it dispenses the amount that’s needed. That version cost about $500 more, though. #9 Some other things I love about this washer – it has WiFi connectivity, so it’ll let you know when your wash is done. It has an option that will let you wash an outfit overnight and it will dry it too. Ever need to wash a uniform overnight for the next day? I foresee myself using it for that in the future. The capacity on this machine is awesome. I can wash a week’s worth of my clothes, my daughter’s clothes, and still have room for more. What used to be two loads of towels is now one. I’ve never had clothes come out of a washer so “dry” before – the spin on this is awesome. I just wanted to share my positive experience in the event that someone’s looking for a good front loading washer. Hope it helps!
I grew up with the front loaders in the 70s and 80s. My mom still has one as Germany has never had top loaders that I know of. You can’t even buy them in stores. There is no hot water hookup the machine has to heat the water for you. They took forever to wash and dry clothes. I loved my American washer as it was much faster and easier to load and unload. We usually just hung the clothes on the line (it is a German thing about not wasting energy unless you have to) so the dryer only got used in the winter most of the time. We had lines in the basement, outside, on the balcony (they retract) and over the bathtub (they retract) depending on where we lived. I have never had a front loader since I moved stateside. I will never own one again unless the top loader disappears and then I will buy used until I can’t find them (my brothers can fix almost anything). We don’t worry about water or energy usage because we only wash full loads and we only use the dryer when we have to just like in Germany. We have a clothes line outside and inside. This is just my opinion………
FYI – LG and Samsung are the same company and every plumber/appliance person I’ve encountered say they suck as do many people I know. We had a Samsung dishwasher that died after 2 years! The part to fix it cost almost $400. My plumber asked the company (with me standing there) why so much and they said they want people to replace instead of fix. Terrible customer service; terrible for the environment. I’ll never buy their products again. As for washing machines, I’m on my 2nd Whirlpool front loader washer/dryer. First set went 15 years strong before the washer gasket blew. We could have replaced it but I chose to get new. We had it hauled away and recycled. Our dryer wasn’t going to last much longer but did still work so we gave it to someone via our local FB marketplace. They were happy to have something and I was happy for the free haul away. I’ve never had problems with smells/mold/etc. You have to leave the door to the washer open. Depending upon your laundry configuration, that could be a problem so that is something to consider. Also, as for laundry falling out when you open the door, you put a basket in front first! LOL I don’t ever worry about HE detergent or not. Just use less! Most people use far too much detergent – you only need about 1/3 of a cap full. I also add vinegar to the wash from time to time (with a stinky teen, it’s needed anyhow) and that cleans the soap residue off of the inside of the machine and deals with any odors. Add where you would normally add softener (which you should never use BTW – bad for you, the environment and your machines as are dryer sheets). I do admit that bending over can get old but I can’t give up the space on top and I love my front loaders in general.
My set are both Hot Point, bought when my house was built, 30 yrs ago. My dryer just quit, probably just a drive belt, but they’re due to be replaced. My dilemma:: they’re only 25” DEEP!!! Not many on the market are that shallow so I’m having problems finding replacements. Plus, my room is only 4’ deep. Any suggestions???
Rhonda, what did you end up buying? Mine need replacing now. I have mine in a closet that is 32 inches by 64 inches so have to worry about how deep my appliances are too.