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Best washing machine 2021: Get your clothes cleaner

From our thorough testing of all the big brands, Trusted Reviews helps you find the best washing machine so that you can buy with confidence.

Introduction

If there’s one bit home appliance we can’t live without, it’s the washing machine. Not only do they make a dull job easier, a washing machine can also get your clothes cleaner than by doing the job by hand, as well as making it cheaper and more efficient.

Although we all need a washing machine, most of us won’t upgrade until there’s a reason to do so: the old model breaks, we move house or have a kitchen redone. In all likelihood, it means that most of us will keep the same washing machine for at least five years, if not longer. Buying a new machine may be a bit more complex than you first imagined, then, as new technology will have come along since you last bought a machine.

That’s where we come in. At Trusted Reviews we actually get washing machines in and test them for stain removal, ease of use and energy and water consumption. This means that you can rely on us to help you find the best product for your needs. We’ve reviewed hundreds of washing machines and have a dedicated lab used to test more, constantly updating this list with the current best buys.

How we test

Learn more about how we test washing machines

Every washing machine that we review goes through a series of uniform tests, designed to help us spot the quality products from the not so good. We examine build quality, ease of use, wash quality and running costs.

We use a series of real-world tests, using a set of dedicated washing per machine, so that we can accurately compare results between products. All of our tests take place at our dedicated home appliance test lab.

We install and level each washing machine in much the same way that you would at home, so that we’ll get similar results to you. You can see a more detailed breakdown of our testing methodology in our how we test washing machines guide.

Samsung WW9800T (WW90T986DSH)

A quiet, efficient and super-smart washing machine, the Samsung WW9800T (WW90T986DSH) makes stain removal easy.
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Pros

  • Very efficient
  • Excellent stain removal
  • App gives extra features
  • AddWash lets you add washing after the cycle has started

Cons

  • Quite expensive

Washing machines are often full of confusing icons and programmes, making it hard to work out which cycle you’re supposed to use. The Samsung WW9800T (WW90T986DSH) makes all of that easy, using an LCD screen to show, in English, the programme you’ve selected, and any overrides (temperature, spin speed and so on) that you’ve applied. Not only does this make this washing machine super easy to use, but it gives it a neater, more futuristic look.

As well as using the control panel, the washing machine can be connected to Samsung SmartThings, which gives you full remote control, plus additional wash programmes. SmartThings is, by far, the best remote control app available, extending beyond washing machines into full-blown home control, too.

This washing machine is an AddWash model, which means you can open the drawer on the front of the machine at any point in the cycle (after pausing) and add any items that you may have accidentally left out. Then, there’s auto dosing, which lets the washing machine take the perfect amount of detergent and fabric softner for each load from the reservoir that you top up.

Excellent stain removal, even at low temperatures, compared with incredibly low running costs, make this the best overall washing machine that we’ve tested.

Reviewer: David Ludlow
Full review: Samsung WW9800T Review

LG V9 F4V909BTS

Look past the price and let the LG V9 F4V909BTS’s efficiency, ultra-low running costs and excellent washing performance win you over.
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Pros

  • Low running costs
  • Adjusts settings to match soiling
  • Hygienic steam cleaning

Cons

  • Better for medium-sized households

It might be a touch more expensive than many washing machines but the LG V9 F4V909BTS is a high-quality washing machine that more than deserves its price. A+++ rated, this is one of the most efficient washing machines that we’ve tested, and we worked out that this is one of the cheapest machines to run, provided you use its full 9kg drum load. As well as being efficient, this machine’s direct-drive drum means that it’s also one of the quietest that we’ve tested, too.

Wash performance, thankfully, lives up to the rest of this washing machine, and on our 30C and 40C tests, the LG V9 F4V909BTS scored almost perfectly, cleaning away our tough stains with ease. To top it all off, there’s an app for remote control, along with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant skills.

Fast to wash, ultra-effective in its cleaning and with some of the lowest running costs that we’ve seen, the LG V9 F4V909BTS is an excellent buy and our current favourite washing machine.

Reviewer: Rachel Ogden
Full review: LG V9 F4V909BTS Review

Hoover H-Wash 500 HWB 410AMC/1-80

A smart app-controlled washing machine for less, the Hoover H-Wash 500 HWB 410AMC/1-80 offers plenty of features for the money.
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Pros

  • App adds extra programmes
  • Super-quiet
  • Decent stain removal, particularly at 40ºC

Cons

  • A little slow
  • Wi-Fi mode has to be selected to use the app

With the Hoover H-Wash 500 HWB 410AMC/1-80, the company has produced a great mid-range washing machine with some powerful features, including a smart app that gives you remote control over the washing machine. You have to put the machine into Wi-Fi mode to use all of the app’s features, but once you do, you get additional wash modes and a label scanner that can help you choose the right washing cycle: great for those more delicate items.

Using the app is sometimes easier than using the main control panel, which has icons rather than text labels, making it hard to see exactly which cycle you’ve selected. If you use the dial, you’ll probably need to have the manual close by for a while.

Fortunately, the wash performance more than makes up for any initial fiddliness. Although the Hoover H-Wash 500 HWB 410AMC/1-80 is a little slow, it’s very efficient (it has an A-rating under the new standard, which is the highest possible), and it has great stain removal, particularly at 40C.

All of these combine to make the Hoover H-Wash 500 HWB 410AMC/1-80 one of the best mid-range washing machines you can currently buy.

Reviewer: David Ludlow
Full review: Hoover H-Wash 500 HWB 410AMC/1-80 Review

Hisense WFGA90141VM

Not the cheapest to run, but the well-priced Hisense WFGA90141VM offers excellent stain removal even at low temperatures.
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Pros

  • Simple to use
  • You can add washing part way through cycle
  • Powerful stain removal

Cons

  • Relatively high running costs

Although the Hisense WFGA90141VM has a solid mid-range price, it has some neat features that punch above its weight. First, provided the water hasn’t been filled beyond the bottom of the door, you can open it mid-cycle and add items; it’s enough to catch the odd sock or item that has dropped on the floor. Secondly, you can use the dosing feature to have the washing machine tell you how much detergent to use, although this only suggests the amount based on the weight of the washing and doesn’t auto-dispense detergent.

What’s really important about this machine is that it’s a quality cleaner, removing most of our stains in a 30C wash; only the tough red wine stain remained, but even this had mostly gone. Impressively, this machine washes quickly, too.

B rated, the Hisense WFGA90141VM is relatively expensive to run, and a way behind the most efficient washing machines in this list; however, the low initial price makes up for this. There are no smart features, but if you want a simple-to-use, effective and well-priced washing machine, this is the one for you.

Reviewer: David Ludlow
Full review: Hisense WFGA90141VM Review

Candy Rapidó ROW4964DWMCE

An excellent washing machine in its own right, this is a handy and convenient dryer when you need one.
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Pros

  • Excellent stain removal
  • Handy app
  • Low washing costs

Cons

  • High tumble drying costs

A washer dryer can make life much easier, giving you the convenience of being able to dry your clothes as well as wash, all in one neat package. Few are as good as the Candy Rapidó ROW4964DWMCE.

Built using Candy’s new design styling, the Candy Rapidó ROW4964DWMCE looks quite futuristic, with its controls placed around the porthole. It’s a smart device, too, letting you set the washing programmes from your smartphone and get notifications when a wash is done. Via the app you also get additional wash programmes that aren’t on the main machine.

Wash performance is very good, too, getting rid of most of our test stains at 30C, just leaving a trace of ketchup. Similar performance was seen at 40C, too.

Running costs are competitive, especially considering the cost of the machine. Using our calculations, you should pay around £42.83 per year for washing: that’s a A-rating on the energy label.

Tumble drying costs are far higher, as is typical for a washer-dryer, and you’re limited to just 6kg of washing. Still, performance is good, with clothes coming out mostly dry. 

Overall, the Candy Rapidó ROW4964DWMCE is a great washing machine that can also dry in smaller capacities, making this a great space-saver if you can’t fit separates in.

Reviewer: David Ludlow
Full review: Candy Rapidó ROW4964DWMCE Review

FAQs

FAQs What size drum do you need?

Washing machines have different drum sizes. These are measured in kg, and tell you the maximum weight of dry washing that you can put in. The bigger the number, the larger the drum and the more washing that you can do in one load. Larger drum sizes are also useful if you want to wash more generously sized items, such as duvets. Typically, most households will find that a minimum of a 6kg drum will do for weekly washing; go for 8kg or larger if you have a lot of washing.

What spin speed do you need?

Spin speeds, measured in revolutions per minute (rpm), tell you how fast the drum spins. The faster a drum spins, the more water can be expelled from your clothes, leaving them drier when the cycle is complete. This cuts down the time that your clothes have to be hung up for, and can reduce the time needed in a tumble drier. Budget machines tend to spin slower. If you want the best performance, look for a machine rated at 1400rpm or 1600rpm.

What are efficiency ratings?

All electrical appliances have an energy certificate that tells you how efficient they are, with A+++ at the top and A at the bottom. The more efficient the machine, the lower the running costs. We work out the running costs of each machine, based on typical usage, so you can compare total running costs.

What temperature should I wash at?

All washing machines have a variety of temperature settings from which to choose. Our reviews demonstrate how well each mode performs, but there are some general tips:

Washing at the cold setting (20ºC or below) is great for lightly soiled items and reduces running costs.

Most normal clothing can be cleaned at 30ºC or 40ºC. A higher 60ºC wash is useful for very soiled items or to reduce bacteria, such as on towels or underwear.

Some machines even have a 90ºC wash, which you shouldn’t need very often, but could be handy to run as an empty cycle to keep the inside of your machine in tip-top, bacteria-free condition.

What wash modes do you need?

All washing machines will give you basic wash modes for cottons and synthetics, plus half load or eco options. If you want to clean a wider variety of clothes, look for the wash modes to match.

Woolmark certification is essential if you want to wash woollen items; a silk wash is useful; and a handwash mode can save the drudgery of washing delicate items.

We also considered…

We’ve reviewed

94

Washing Machine

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Comparison Specifications

UK RRP
Manufacturer
Size (Dimensions)
Weight
First Reviewed Date
Model Number
Model Variants
Voice Assistant
Rated Efficiency
Annual water consumption
Annual electricity consumption
Dryer type
Sensor drying
Drying modes
Drum Capacity
Spin speed
Special wash modes
Countdown timer
Delay timer
App Control

Trusted Reviews test data

Energy consumption 30C wash
Water consumption 30C wash
Percentage water remaining 30C wash
Energy consumption 40C wash
Water consumption 40C wash
Percentage water remaining 40C wash
Yearly running cost low use (washer dryers)
Yearly running cost med use (washer dryers)
Yearly running cost high use (washer dryers)
Yearly running cost low use (washing machine)
Yearly running cost med use (washing machine)
Yearly running cost high use (washing machine)
Energy consumption cupboard dry
Water consumption cupboard dry
Sound (spin)
Sound (normal)

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