As seen in:
Speed Queen
26-Inch Top Load
Midea
2.1-CF Portable
LG
TurboWash 4.5 Cu. Ft.
Haier
Pulsator
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Good

Is relatively quiet and features a heavy, long-lasting design that is better balanced than most other models. Its warranty is unsurpassed.

Small enough to fit into a closet, as most owners have done, but also large enough to be able to wash a normal-sized load of laundry.

Offers unparalleled level of performance, oversized capacity, and the countless bells and whistles that are designed to make your life easier.

Provides excellent conservation of water and electricity. Instead of using a traditional agitator which can twist and pull your clothes, it features a pulsator that creates a powerful and effective wash action.

Bad

May seem a bit on the pricey side for such a barebones washing machine, but its quality and durability is beyond reproach.

Does not offer as much capacity as some of the other models on the market.

Gets a bit expensive when you factor in purchasing a matching dryer, but almost every owner we surveyed was happy with the extra value that they were able to get for their money.

A compact washer, so it's not meant for family-sized loads.

Bottom Line

One of the most popular models on the market. You simply can't go wrong with this choice.

A great option for those that demand flexibility, particularly anyone who spends their days on the road in an RV or motorhome.

A high quality washing machine, but the Speed Queen just edges it out in all-around performance and value.

The best value for your money. Its quality and performance match those of more expensive, regular-sized washers.

How we decide
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Products received from manufacturers
91
Models Considered
33
Hours Spent
1
Experts Interviewed
191
Consumers Consulted

Top Washers

With so many different types of washing machines on the market, it can be difficult to decide which one fits your needs. With that in mind, we’ve researched the top brands and models and determined that these four washers are your best bet.

Products we Considered

Speed Queen
26-Inch Top Load
Midea
2.1-CF Portable
LG
TurboWash 4.5 Cu. Ft.
Haier
Pulsator

Considerations

Performance

There are a number of things to keep in mind when purchasing a washing machine that go beyond how well it actually washes clothes. For instance, an important consideration is whether it is energy efficient. Sometimes paying slightly more for a washer that saves you money on electricity and water costs down the line is worth the initial investment. Additionally, factors like noise output, reliability and extra features that enhance the performance are all things to consider before choosing the right model.

Capacity

The larger the washer’s capacity, the more clothes you will have room for in a single cycle and the more likely you are to fit bigger items like quilts and comforters. Most washers boast anywhere from 2.5 to 3.5 cubic feet of space, but there are also smaller ones available. These compact washers are designed for those that don’t have the room to accommodate regular sized front- or top-loading machines, so it’s important to know the dimensions of your laundry space in case you need to go smaller.

Price

The price of a washer usually depends on two things: size and technology. The larger the unit, the higher the cost. Most front-loading machines also tend to be on the higher end of the price spectrum, not only because they’re usually more energy efficient, but because they often come with extra bells and whistles like the ability to steam clean clothes and additional control options.

Considerations

Performance

Speed Queen AWN432SP 26" Top Load Washer

The Speed Queen AWN432SP may not look like much on the outside, but it’s a no-nonsense top-load washer that does one function and does it well. According to the feedback of most users, the Speed Queen not only cleans your clothes but is very gentle on them at the same time. It also runs relatively quiet for such a large, old-school washing machine, and it features a heavy, long-lasting design that is better balanced than most other models. The unsurpassed warranty also echoes the unit’s reliability; one local repairman we surveyed said that the Speed Queen is so well made that he rarely ever has had to service it.

Midea 2.1 CF Portable Washing Machine Washer

An easy-to-use washing machine with the ability to hook up directly to the kitchen sink, the Midea MAE100 is a great option for those that demand flexibility, particularly anyone who spends their days on the road in an RV or motorhome. In fact, many of the machine’s biggest advocates are those who use the MAE100 for exactly that purpose, and each one states how surprised they were that such a tiny machine could clean their clothes with the same quality as a full-sized washer.

LG WM4270HWA TurboWash 4.5 Cu. Ft.

The LG WM4270 is the only front-loader among the contenders, and for those leaning in that direction, there’s a lot to love about this machine. In addition to being incredibly energy efficient – a combination of using very little water on an ultra-high spin cycle – the WM4270 also uses an automated technology that weighs the clothes and adjusts the time it will take to go through a full cycle, thus saving electricity on smaller loads. There’s also a feature that uses Steam Technology which is very effective for getting out difficult stains. One owner notes how he once tried several different strain removers without success, but after using the steam setting on the washer and throwing the shirt in the laundry, the stain was completely removed.

Haier HLP21N Pulsator 1-Cubic-Foot Portable Washer

Another compact washer that can connect to any sink is the Haier HLP21N. This washer lets you choose between three speed cycles and three water levels so that you get the perfect combination every time. Instead of using a traditional agitator which can twist and pull your clothes while in operation, this top-loader uses a pulsator that creates a powerful and effective wash action. Many owners report that it results in a better cleaning performance and is gentler on clothes, making it excellent for items like cloth diapers, baby clothes, and delicates.

In addition to being incredibly energy efficient, the WM4270 also uses an automated technology that weighs the clothes and adjusts the time it will take to go through a full cycle, thus saving electricity on smaller loads.
Considerations

Capacity

Speed Queen AWN432SP 26" Top Load Washer

The Speed Queen AWN432SP measures 28 x 26 x 43 inches and boasts 3.3 cubic feet capacity, which as one owner notes is more than enough for a family of four. It also features the ability to control water levels, so you can actually fit much larger, bulkier objects like bedding comforters or throw rugs by using the minimal amount of water.

Midea 2.1 CF Portable Washing Machine Washer

The Midea MAE100 is the biggest model that the company offers, measuring 24 x 25 x 40 inches and featuring 2.1 cubic feet of space inside. That makes it small enough to fit into a closet, as most owners have done, but also large enough to be able to wash a normal-sized load of laundry.

The largest of the four contenders, the LG WM2650 measures 31 x 29 x 43 inches with a washer drum that has a whopping 4.5 cubic foot capacity. Its size not only allows users to fit more clothes per cycle, but because it is so energy efficient, it allows you to save even more money by doing fewer loads of laundry per week.

Offering a fraction of the capacity of its competition, the Haier HLP21N features a scant 1.0 cubic feet. While its size is somewhat limiting, it is actually one of the selling points for many owners who live in small apartments or mobile homes that can’t accommodate a normal-sized washer. It is also extremely portable since it can easily be rolled away for storage, which many users believe only adds to its versatility and charm.

The Haier HLP21N is extremely portable and can easily be rolled away for storage.
Bill
Expert Consultant
Bill
Engineer, Do-It-Yourself Guru

Bill has been a hardware store owner, locksmith, and general home repair guru for over 40 years. His ability to solve problems and repair every item in every situation is a true gift. In his spare time, you may find Bill working in his garden, tending to his perfectly manicured lawn, or riding his bike.

Considerations

Price

Speed Queen AWN432SP 26" Top Load Washer

The Speed Queen AWN432SP may seem a bit on the pricey side for such a barebones washing machine, but its quality and durability is reverberated throughout countless reviewers. We surveyed a local repairman who has been servicing washers for the last 11 years. When we asked him which model he most rarely finds himself fixing, he unequivocally told us it was the Speed Queen.

Midea 2.1 CF Portable Washing Machine Washer

The Midea MAE100 comes in well under the average price at $299, which is pretty good for a washing machine that receives mostly great reviews and has plenty of room. The company sells the same basic model in various sizes (as well as a 2.0 cu. ft. version that’s a two-in-one washer and dryer combo), but we recommend the 2.1 cubic foot model unless you’re really tight on space.

LG WM4270HWA TurboWash 4.5 Cu. Ft.

At $1160, the LG WM4270HWA is only about $100 more than the Speed Queen, but it is well worth it. The washer offers the largest capacity out of all of the top machines, the added benefit of being energy efficient, and several cool extra features (like Steam and ColdWash Technology) that the other washers don’t include. It gets a bit expensive when you factor in purchasing a matching dryer, but almost every owner we surveyed was happy with the extra value that they were able to get for their money and claimed that they could never see themselves going back to a more basic machine.

Haier HLP21N Pulsator 1-Cubic-Foot Portable Washer

The cheapest of the bunch at $306, the Haier HLP21N delivers incredible bang for your buck. It provides excellent conservation of water and electricity, and its quality and performance match those of more expensive, regular-sized washers. Sometimes you have to pay more for a specialty appliance like this, and it’s clear from the hundreds of reviewers for this product that its added convenience is a huge bonus, especially given the washer’s relatively low price tag.

Almost every owner of the LG WM4270HWA we surveyed was happy with the extra value that they were able to get for their money and claimed that they could never see themselves going back to a more basic machine.

Best of the Best

There’s a reason that plumbers and repairmen almost unanimously prefer the Speed Queen over any other washing machine appliance. Its unparalleled durability and longevity will save you money in the long run - all while providing enhanced performance where it matters most, particularly in its ability to remove tough stains.

Given its unparalleled level of performance, oversized capacity, and the countless bells and whistles that are designed to make your life easier, this is unquestionably the single best washing machine on the market. It earns our highest recommendation.

Best of the Best
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The LG WM4270HWA saves money and leaves a smaller footprint with its energy efficient technology.

Best Bang for your Buck

The Haier HLP21N is an incredible washing machine at any price, but at $306 it is an absolutely unbelievable deal. It offers enough room for the laundering needs of an average-sized family, but it is still small enough that it can fit in a mobile home. The ability to hook up the machine to the kitchen sink also adds to its versatility, and the fact that many users claim that it cleans clothes at the same quality of normal top-loaders makes this washing machine a no-brainer for anyone on a tight budget. 

The Haier HLP21N is without a doubt the best value for your money.

Best Bang for your Buck
Check Price
The Haier HLP21N is an incredible washing machine at any price, but at $306 it is an absolutely unbelievable deal.
The team that worked on this review
  • Michael
    Michael
    Creative Lead
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Editor
  • Jasmin
    Jasmin
    Operations
  • Jimi
    Jimi
    Product Analyst
  • Adrian
    Adrian
    Senior Engineer

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