Three best front-load washers

Kailey Fralick

Front-load washers are more energy efficient than top load washers. They also use less water, which allows you to use less detergent.

Front load washers are becoming increasingly popular, thanks to their efficiency and the option to stack a dryer on top to fit in compact spaces. These washers are known for being quieter and using less water than top load washers, too. However, front-load models can also have their drawbacks, like leaking or mold growth, so you want to choose your unit carefully to avoid these problems. Here's a short guide to help you understand the important factors to consider when choosing a front-load washer to fit the needs of your family.

Considerations when choosing front-load washers

Arguably the most important consideration when choosing a front-load washer is size. These washers tend to have larger drums than top load washers, in part because there's no post in the middle to take up space. It's not uncommon for front load washers to have a capacity of five cubic feet or more. This should be enough to accommodate the needs of most families and the occasional bulky load, like comforters. However, the larger the washer, the more floor space it will take up.

Think carefully about how often you intend to do laundry and what size machine you can fit in your laundry area. Remember, it's important not to overload your washing machine or else it could break down more quickly.

Front-load washer features

Wash cycles: Even basic front-load washers have several cycles, so you can adjust the settings to accommodate special loads, such as bulky items or delicates. High-end models may also have deep-cleaning or steam settings to help eliminate stubborn stains from clothing. Think about which cycles matter most to your household and choose a machine that offers these.

Monitoring: Some washers are equipped with WiFi or Bluetooth technology, so you can remotely monitor a load's progress, even when you're not home. This won't be a make-or-break feature, but it can be useful if you often forget and leave the laundry in the washer for hours.

Noise: Some washing machines are louder than others. If you're someone who would find a noisy washer annoying, it's wise to read through customer reviews before you purchase a unit so you know what you're getting.

Front-load washer prices: Front-load washers are more expensive than top-load washers, with basic models starting at around $600. But if you're interested in more advanced features and a greater number of wash cycles, you could end up spending as much as $1,200 for a top-of-the-line model.


Q. What kind of detergent should I use in my front-load washer?

A. Front-load washers are typically very efficient, so you should use a high-efficiency detergent. If you don't, you could experience problems with mold growth or water draining from the unit.

Q. How do I prevent mold from growing in my front-load washer?

A. In addition to using high-efficiency detergent, you should regularly clean the washer drum and the rubber seal around the door. Occasionally run a hot-water cycle to help rinse away any residue that might be building up inside the drum.

Front-load washers we recommend

Best of the best: Samsung Energy Star Front Load Washer

Our take: This innovative washing machine is spacious and powerful enough to tackle anything a busy household can throw in it.

What we like: A five-cubic-foot drum and innovative features like WiFi connectivity and an AddWash option, so you can add forgotten items in the middle of a load. PowerFoam technology takes out deep stains with ease.

What we dislike: A few reports of difficulty with control panel. Some say washer is loud.

Best bang for your buck: Maytag High-Efficiency Front Load Steam Washer

Our take: Consider this model if you want a highly efficient, user-friendly machine and don't care as much about having the latest bells and whistles.

What we like: Runs quietly and uses only as much water as necessary, leaving clothes almost dry before they go in the dryer. Reasonably priced and simple to customize to your needs.

What we dislike: Filter requires periodic replacement, which can only be done by a technician.

Choice 3: Kenmore Elite Front Load Washer with Steam Treat

Our take: If your household does laundry every day, you'll appreciate this washer's advanced features.

What we like: Spacious washer has Steam Treat option for stubborn stains and Accela Wash cycle that speeds up wash times without sacrificing cleaning quality. Simple to modify settings for a custom clean.

What we dislike: A few complaints about washer breaking down after a couple years.

Kailey Fralick is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

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