So you're in the market for a new washing machine? This seems like it should be a simple purchase, but just like everything else, there are A LOT of options.
Great news! We put together a list of some great energy AND water-efficient machines!
The lists below are separated into the common categories that you'll find washing machines sorted into (compact, top-load, and front-load). From there, we provided a Best Overall, Best Budget, and Most Efficient option.
Here are some of the key attributes we considered:
- Load Capacity
- Load Configuration
- Energy Efficiency (IMEF)
- Water Efficiency (IWF)
- Energy Star Rating
- Customer Rating
Before diving into your options, click here if you need some help in determining what type of washing machine you need.
Compact washing machines are for small households or minimalist lifestyles. Without getting into the portable category, this size range is typically between 2.3ft cu. ft to 2.45 cu. ft. If you are really limited with the area you have for your washing machine, you may be limited to this size; however, don't be fooled by thinking it is more efficient. If you do more than 6 full loads of laundry a week and you have the space, a larger machine will be more efficient.
Why 6 you ask? That is considered the washing machine national average. When looking at the estimated annual energy usage it uses 6 loads a week as a baseline for energy usage. Which means if you do less or more than this, you can expect to use less or more energy than the estimate.
You'll see GE again in this list. GE has been around since 1892 and making laundry machines since the 1950s, so it's no wonder they know what they are doing. GE is a solid choice when choosing a washer. In the compact section, it made our Best Overall.
For the price, customer ratings, and efficiency in energy and water, you get a simple but reliable machine to get the job done. You really can't go wrong with this option.
This isn't the cheapest machine on the market. But it’s comparatively budget-friendly compared to other well-made machines. Today's machines you will have to stay between $800 to $900 to maintain an Energy Star rating, unless you find something on sale. Keep in mind, Samsung is another reputable company that has been making washing machines for about 30 years and you will be saving money through your energy bill, water bill, and even detergent budget.
This unit is not only Energy Star rated, it received the "Most Efficient" award in 2022 from Energy Star, meaning that it has gone above and beyond its competition. Not only that but it has all the bells and whistles you can ask for in a washing machine all while being compact. It is wifi connected and has a handful of different settings for all your different types of washes. It has been highly reviewed on multiple sites and is in high demand!
A standard top-loading washing machine will run between the sizes of 3.1 to 4ft cu. ft. If that load configuration doesn't matter to you but you are looking for a high-efficiency washing machine, than go with a front-load machine. Just by design, they are often 25% more efficient than top-load machines. But if you must get a top-loading machine, we have selected several of the best.
Here is GE popping up again with the best overall selection. We have found a stacked washer and dryer. For this price and both the energy efficiency rating and water savings, you can't get better than this 2 for 1 deal.
$598! This is the best budget option in this article, which means it is not only wallet friendly, it is efficient as well. GE targets a wide audience and that is evident as it continues to pop up in our selections. While there are more efficient options out there, this one still meets our requirements. Lastly, don't look past the raving reviews. Being Energy Star certified in only 2021, it already has thousands of reviews!
It should be noted that there isn't a top-loading washing machine that has received a "Most Efficient" award from Energy Star. Those have all gone to the front-loading machines because that design is the most efficient; however, we won't ask any questions if you must get a top-loading machine. LG makes some great machines and that is evident by this list. It has achieved a great efficiency as a top-loading machine and down below in our front-loading machines as well.
This LG standard "Mega Capacity" washer is the most efficient on our list and still won't break the bank.
We have said it before and we'll say it again, front-loading washing machine are the most efficient design. That is evident by having not one but two machines on this list that have received the "Most Efficient" award from Energy Star for 2022! Front-load machines also allow for larger capacities. Standard sizes range from 4.2 to 4.5 cu. ft but they can go up to 5 cu. ft and larger! Also note the prices compared to the other sizes, you don't have to pay more to be more efficient.
Electrolux has made it to this Best Overall list. For an average price, it can wash anything from a king-sized comforter to your whites and delicates all while winning a "Most Efficient" award. It has done this by putting in more sensors for adjusting the temperature and smart load sensing to automatically adjust water levels to your laundry level.
For our Best Budget option, we revisit LG where you have the option of with or without wifi connection. As all of our houses are getting smarter, we all want to control things from our phones. However, if you don't want to get notified that the laundry is done while you're not even home to check it, you can save an additional $50.
Last but definitely not least, is this top of line, the most efficient of the Energy Star "Most Efficient" equipment.
While it isn't connected to your wifi, it can fit your king-size comforter and more with its 5.8 cu. ft capacity and still has many smart features. It has a beautiful stainless steel design along with a smart diagnosis feature, quiet performance, and the power of steam to remove 95% of pet allergens from even delicates, dirt, order, and wrinkles.
Don't be overwhelmed by the size because LG has contoured, elevated, and angled the door to allow for easier loading and unloading.
I know this seems simple but be honest, did you measure your space? You can't get the biggest and baddest machine if it doesn't fit.
Two people do a lot less laundry than a family of 5. Washing machine sizes are measured in cubic feet. One way to figure this out what size you need is to figure out the cubic feet of your current machine. Does that work well for you? Or maybe it would be better to upsize or downsize?