When you’re trying to choose a washing machine there are literally dozens of variables to consider, and conflicting reviews make it a mind-boggling experience. When I needed to buy a top load washer I couldn’t believe how hard it was — and I’m a former home magazine editor-in-chief (which is only to say that I’m used to making sense of complicated consumer research).
[NOTE: This article was last updated on January 11, 2019]
Faced with my family’s growing mound of dirty clothes, I decided to get down to the bottom of it. I looked at the top-rated, top-loading washing machine reviews on Home Depot’s website and Best Buy‘s website. Then I tallied them together and analyzed the results. Ta-da!
You’ll find the answers below — including details on the Maytag Bravos I ended up buying. PLUS, you can now find a video of my washing machine on the spin cycle, as it spins a very large, heavy duty load of laundry. I added this in because it’s so hard to tell about noise level when you read about it.
Also check out my Washing Machine Buyer Guide: 23 Things You Need to Know and my post Appliance Brands and Models: How the Heck to Choose.
Please keep in mind that there’s really no way to create an ABSOLUTE best list because there are so many variables involved in buying a washing machine. Something that’s perfect for you may lack details that I need, and vice-versa. You need to ask yourself a series of very specific questions just to know what your priorities are.
If you want to skip reading about my methodology, just keep scrolling until you get to the best washing machine model details. If you want to know the nitty-gritty, I’ve first outlined exactly what I did. Also, take a look at the dozens of reader comments on this article — there’s a lot of great insight packed into them!
My Methodology for Choosing the Best Top Load Washer Machine Models:
- When I did my research, I first narrowed my focus by excluding portable washers and washer-dryer combo machines.
2. I also looked at all of the top-rated washing machines in the top-loading category on the websites of Home Depot and Best Buy. I picked these websites because they carry a large selection. I buy my big appliances from Home Depot because I find that the appliance savings are usually the best there, plus it offers free shipping on most orders over $45. I limited my research here to models that had at least 500 reviews, because I needed some way to narrow them down. I only include models that have a 4.0-star rating or higher.
However, this is an imperfect science: These two stores often carry different models and different brands. And sometimes a model that gets more than 500 great reviews on one site doesn’t get that many on the other.
3. I looked at the U.S. government’s ENERGY STAR ratings of the most efficient washing machines.
>>Affiliate notice: I research every product I recommend, and I only give high marks to the very best. Some of the links here may be affiliate links, which means I may receive compensation from companies if you purchase from them. This is at no cost to you and it helps me keep this website running. So thanks for helping me! I independently own this site and the opinions expressed here are my own.<<
My Results: The Best Top Load Washers of 2019
Here’s what I came up with as a result of all this. Scroll down to see my breakdown brand by brand, and model by model.
Note that the prices listed are based on prices from Home Depot’s website and Best Buy’s website from January 11, 2019. Within each brand I’ve listed the models in order by machine capacity (as measured in cubic feet).
Amana Brand (owned by The Whirlpool Corporation)
Model NTW4516FW – 3.5 cu. ft. Top Load Washer in White. 4.3 stars out of 3,543 ratings on HomeDepot.com.
Model WT1501CW – 4.5 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Front Control Top Load Washer in White, ENERGY STAR. 4.3 stars out of 4,519 ratings on HomeDepot.com. Also has 4.6 stars out of 1,267 ratings on BestBuy.com. $719
Model WT7600HKA – 5.2 cu. ft. High Efficiency Top Load Washer with Steam and Turbo Wash in Black Stainless, ENERGY STAR. Has 4.5 stars out of 710 ratings on Home Depot. $947. Also comes in white (Model WT7600HWA, $898).
Model WT7200CW – LG – 5.0 Cu. Ft. 8-Cycle Top-Loading Washer in White. 4.6 stars out of 1,759 ratings on Home Depot. 4.7 stars out of 1,008 ratings on BestBuy.com. $728. Comes in graphite steel, too (Model WT7200CV, $798).
Model WTW5000DW – 4.3 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Top Load Washer in White. 4.3 stars out of 14,985 ratings on HomeDepot.com. Also has 4.3 stars out of 2,957 ratings on BestBuy.com. $497.
Model WTW7000DW – 4.8 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Top Load Washer with Adapative Wash Technology in White, Intuitive Touch Controls. 4.4 stars out of 3,221 ratings on HomeDepot.com. Also has 4.4 stars out of 1,178 ratings on BestBuy.com. $719
Model WTW8000DW – 5.3 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Top Load Washer with Adapative Wash Technology in White, Intuitive Touch Controls. 4.4 stars out of 3,770 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $899.
Model WTW8500DC – 5.3 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Top Load Washer with ColorLast in Chrome Shadow, Intuitive Touch Controls. Also comes in white. 4.4 stars out of 3,128 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $1,169.
Maytag Models (also owned by the Whirlpool Corporation):
Model MVWC565FW – 4.2 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Top Load Washer in White with Deep Water Wash and PowerWash. 4.4 stars out of 9,163 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $568
Model MVWX655DW – Bravos 4.3 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Top Load Washer in White. 4.4 stars out of 16,852 ratings on HomeDepot.com. Also has 4.3 stars out of 1,254 ratings on BestBuy.com. $577
This is the washing machine I ended up buying after all my research! I absolutely love it because it’s perfect for my family’s needs. It holds TONS of laundry, so I find that I do fewer loads overall. I can actually wash a few blankets at once (including king-sized). Plus I find that my clothes don’t come out super wrinkled because there’s no center post — it’s just one big, open tub.
I really like the old-fashioned knobs. It’s very basic and easy to use; no computer panel to deal with. Aesthetically I really like the glass door, though I can’t say it’s ever been useful to be able to see the clothes spinning.
The water-saving feature means that it comes out in a continuous trickle and the tub won’t fill above the clothes unless you tell it to. When I first got it I thought it couldn’t possibly be using enough water. But my clothes always come out clean and our water bill hasn’t gone up at all.
I have no complaints, except a word of warning: It takes longer for a load to complete washing because of the energy-saving feature. A stuffed-full, heavy duty load takes 64 minutes. I think it’s worth it.
Based on a reader’s request: Here’s a video I made so you can hear the wash cycle! Listen through to the end. It makes a sound about 6 times when it first starts to fill, but then the sound goes away.
Here’s a video I made so you can hear the spin cycle, which is so quiet! You can also see how it spins with no central agitator. Very cool.
- For this video I loaded in a ton of heavy duty stuff: 7 bath towels, one throw blanket, 3 hand towels, 9 washcloths, and 1 tablecloth. There’s a photo of this laundry load in the video.
- It took a total of 64 minutes to complete the load.
- I set it to “heavy” wash; warm water; bulky/sheets setting.
Two more things worth noting about this washer (with gorgeous photos from my laundry closet):
- It has a 10-year warranty! (Ignore that wire shelf reflected on the glass door; it’s my shelf with lots of stuff on it.) And yeah, it’s a limited parts warranty, but 10 years sounds like a good long time to me.
2) It’s “designed, engineered, and assembled in the U.S.A.” For any American who’s taken a look around their home recently and noticed how many things aren’t made here anymore, I think this is a very cool fact. I personally love supporting local companies.
The other best Maytags:
Model MVWB765FW– 4.7 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Top Load Washer with PowerWash Cycle in White (with agitator). Also comes in metallic slate (Model MVWB765FC). 4.5 stars out of 4,836 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $628
Model MVWB835DW – 5.3 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Top Load Washer in White. 4.3 stars out of 6,606 ratings on HomeDepot.com. 4.4 stars out of 528 ratings on BestBuy.com. $738. Also comes in Chrome Shadow (Model MVWB835DC), $788.
Model MVWC465HW – 3.8 cu. ft. High-Efficiency White Top Load Washing Machine with Deep Fill Option. 4.5 stars out of 639 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $487
Model MVWB835DW – 5.3 cu. ft. High-Efficiency White Top Load Washing Machine with Deep Clean Option, ENERGY STAR. 4.4 stars out of 8,555 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $767.
Model MVWB865GW – 5.2 cu. ft. Top Load Washer with the Deep Fill Option and Power Wash Cycle in White. 4.6 stars out of 1,227 ratings on Home Depot. $767.
Model GTW330ASKWW – 3.8 cu. ft. DOE Top Load Washer in White. 4.1 stars out of 4,454 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $478
Model GTW460ASJWW – 4.2 cu. ft. Top Load Washer in White. 4.1 stars out of 9,801 ratings on HomeDepot.com. Also has 4.3 stars out of 1,063 ratings on BestBuy.com. $498
Model GTW750CPLDG – 5.0 cu. ft. High-Efficiency Diamond Gray Top Load Washing Machine and Wi-Fi Connected with SmartDispense, ENERGY STAR. 4.4 stars out of 748 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $748
Model GTW685BSLWS – 4.5 cu. ft. High-Efficiency White Top Load Washing Machine, ENERGY STAR. 4.3 stars out of 606 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $627
Model GTW680BSJWS – 4.6 cu. ft. Top Load Washer in White, ENERGY STAR. 4.3 stars out of 4,416 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $627. (Editor’s Note: Please read Kevin’s comment in the comments section below about his machine becoming unbalanced. I’ve since read similar comments about this model from others reviewers on the Web. Enough people give the machine great reviews that it made my list. But it sounds like the performance of this machine can be unreliable…)
Note: When I checked the HomeDepot.com site, no Samsung top-load washers had more than 300 reviews, so I didn’t include those ratings here.
Model WA45M7050AW – 4.5 Cu. Ft. 9-Cycle Top-Loading Washer in White. 4.1 out of 610 on HomeDepot.com. $719.
Model WA50M7450AW – 5.0 Cu. Ft. 11-Cycle High-Efficiency Top-Loading Washer in White. 4.6 stars out of 928 ratings on BestBuy.com. Also has 4.0 stars out of 641 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $627.
Model WA40J3000AW – 4.0 cu. ft. Top Load Washer in White. 4.1 stars out of 770 ratings on HomeDepot.com. $584
Here are other good articles worth reading:
Do you have questions about buying a washing machine?
Please let me know what you think of this list by leaving a comment below, or if you think I need to make any corrections. This is complicated stuff, but hopefully my research will help you find a model you’ll be happy with!