Washer Buying Guide
Nebraska Furniture Mart | On August 10, 2014
A quality washing machine is one of the most important appliances in your home. Choosing the right machine can save you money on your utility bills and help your clothes last longer as well.
Top Load Washers
Since the door is at a taller height, you shouldn’t have to bend or kneel while loading and unloading laundry. You can find a wider range of high-capacity washers at a reasonable price.
Front Load Washers
Front load washers typically outperform top load washers in energy efficiency. Higher spin speeds mean that your clothes will spend less time in the dryer as well. Most importantly, front-load washers use much less water than most top-load washers. You can also check the energy guide on each washer to see how they compare. If you’d like to stack your washer and dryer, a front load washer is your best option since several models offer stacking kits. They also give your laundry room a much more modern look.
When measuring, always give yourself at least 2 inches of leeway and also consider any extra space you may need for stacking or side-by-side configurations. On both front and top load washers consider how the doors typically need 20 inches of room to swing freely (horizontally for front loaders and vertically for top loaders). Also remember to leave at least 3 inches of space for the hookups in the back of the washers (pipes/wiring).
How do you find the dimensions of a washer that you’re researching? NFM does our absolute best to acquire all dimension guides, user manuals, and installations instructions for you to download from our website. You can find these guides on each product page.
In the product description of every washer on NFM’s website we list their capacity in cubic feet. This is done for a reason; we want our customers to have a good idea how much room is available for larger loads when needed.
The average washing machine is around 4.0 Cu. Ft. This is large enough for a 14 pound load of laundry. If you have a large family or need to frequently wash several large items, it is a good idea to look at large capacity (4.5 Cu. Ft.) washers.
A laundry pedestal is a device that raises your appliance above floor level. These pedestals will typically include extra storage for detergent and other laundry accessories. They’re especially useful since they elevate a front-loading washer to a more comfortable level which makes loading and unloading much easier.
It is required by federal law that retailers provide consumers with energy guide labels on all residential or consumer washing machines. These guides are there to provide you with an estimate for the yearly cost of operation. NFM has created a visual guide here to help you understand what it all means.
- Detergent dispensers: Many new washers come equipped with the ability to add laundry detergent and softener and have it dispense the detergent as needed. Some high end models even allow you to pre-fill your detergent for multiple loads without having to refill each time.
- “SMART” washing machines: Smart washers let you monitor your laundry with a mobile app and may even have a large LCD/LED Touch screen for controls.
- Steam: Washers that have a Steam Cycle are extremely effective at removing stains, sanitizing clothes, and keeping clothes wrinkle-free while being very gentle on your laundry.
- Anti-Vibration Systems: Washers with an anti-vibration system operate more quietly than standard washers. This is especially useful if your laundry room is on the main floor or close to a bedroom.