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Top 5 Advantages and Disadvantages of High Efficiency Top Load Washers

Posted by Bob Allaire on Jan 13, 2019 11:00 AM
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Advantages and Disadvantages of High Efficiency Top Load Washers_Whirlpool WTW8500DC HE Top Load Washer
With the new government standards related to water and energy consumption and the popularity of front load washers, the industry has introduced many new top load machines that are designed to compete with front load washers. These machines can offer similar energy savings to front load machines and large capacity wash baskets with no agitators, making them comparable to the front load design.

If you are in the process of researching a new washing machine, you'll want to consider these models - and check out our washing machine buying guide for even more information!


The first generation of these new top load machines by GE, Maytag, and Whirlpool was riddled with service and washing problems, but they have since evolved into reliable products with excellent washing performance. Companies like Fisher Paykel, Frigidaire, LG, and Samsung have entered into the market with great products in this design. Today, these products are increasing in their market share and have regained the confidence of the American consumer. 

These models use a low-profile impeller that washes clothes by rubbing the fabrics against each other rather than by pushing and pulling them across an agitator pole. Although new washing machine technology is gentler on clothes even when it comes to agitator washers, impeller washers create less wear and tear through the washing action to keep your clothes looking like new for longer. 


What are the advantages of high efficiency top load washers? 

  1. They are made in the familiar top load design, decreasing the need to bend over when loading and unloading.

  2. They eliminate the need to purchase expensive bases to raise the machines up to a comfortable height.

  3. Top load washers are not prone to odors, mold and mildew as much as front loaders are.

  4. They are generally a little less expensive than comparable front load washers.

  5. They save water and energy compared to standard top load models.

 Compare impeller vs agitator washers in our top load washer quick guide!




What are the disadvantages of a high efficiency top load washer?

  1. High efficiency top load washers have longer wash cycles than traditional top load washers.

  2. Clothes must be loaded properly to avoid tangling during the wash cycle - they can't just be thrown into the tub.

  3. They are not stackable appliances and therefore can take up more space than front loaders.

  4. They generally use a little more water than front loading machines.

  5. High efficiency top load washers don't spin quite as fast compared to front loading machines, requiring more time in the dryer. They do, however, spin much faster than traditional top load machines.

There are many great products in this category ranging in price from $599 to $1,199. They may very well be the best value for most families. Take a good look at these products when you are shopping for your new washer as an alternative to the popular front load format. Check out our review of the best top load washers of the year for some great options to consider!

We hope you've enjoyed this review of the advantages and disadvantages of high efficiency top load washers. Please leave us a comment below. We'd love to hear from you!


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Editor's Note: This blog was originally published in March 2015 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy as of the publication date noted above.

Topics: Washing Machines

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