Washing Machine Buying Guide - Features, Specifications, Types and More

Here is a comprehensive guide to determine which washing machine is best suited for your needs.

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  • UPDATED ON: 18 Mar 2020

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Washing Machines have become an inevitable part of the human household.

All modern-day homes have a washing machine and it is unimaginable to think about life without it.

Since the washing machine has become so important to our lives, it is even more important to understand which kind of washing machine will be the most suitable for a home. With homes and their occupants being very diverse with varying needs, purchasing a machine becomes a bit complicated.

Introduction

When it comes to purchasing a washing machine for your home, you might only look for something that cleans well. But it’s a lot more than that.

Depending upon your usage, your room size, your energy concerns and especially your budget and much more, it can be determined which machine might be the most suitable for you. With new technology, extra features are being added to the machines regularly.

So, to help you with all this, here is our guide on how to determine the most suitable washing machine for your needs.

Types of Washing Machines

Type
Features

Semi Automatic Washing Machine

Consists of two tubs, one for washing and iter for drying.

Human intervention is required to move clothes from washing tubs to drying tubs.

Very economic buy.

Automatic Washing Machine

Usually consists of only one tub for washing and drying.

Human intervention is not required much.

It can be divided into two further categories - top loading washing machine and front loading washing machine.

Determining which washing machine is the most suitable for a home is a very difficult task. With new machines hitting the market regularly, it becomes crucial to understand the basics of a washing machine in order to make an informed choice while selecting a machine for home.

Washing machines can be broadly divided into two categories - Semi Automatic Washing Machines and Automatic Washing Machine.

Semi Automatic Washing Machine

They are considered the cheapest washing machines of all. They usually come with two drums, one for washing and the other for drying. Most of the work in this model has to be done manually. One can add the clothes or remove them during a wash cycle.

They have certain advantages over other washing machines like consuming less power, controlling the amount of water to be used and whether to add or remove clothes in a wash cycle.

The Semi Automatic Washing Machine is perhaps the most economical of all washing machines because of its many features, including human intervention, which means that most of the work has to be done by the users.

Because it has two separate tubs for washing and drying, the users have to shift the clothes from the washing tub to the drying tub on their own. This gives the user more control over the process, which means that the water level and certain other parts of the process can be controlled to a certain level.

Pros
  • Economical and lower prices.
  • Energy consumption is lower.
  • User has more control.
Cons
  • Bulky and takes up space.
  • A lot of work has to be done by the user.

Here we will have a look at the best Semi Automatic Machines in India and understand their features and specifications.

1. Whirlpool 9 kg Semi Automatic Top Load Silver, Grey (ACE XL 9.0 # SILVER GREY)

  • This amazing Semi-Automatic Machine from Whirlpool, comes with two tubs, for washing and drying.

  • The RPM of this machine is 1200rpm, which makes it great for drying clothes.

  • The Tub is made of stainless steel, making it durable and long lasting.

  • Being 9kg in capacity, it can be used by mid sized families very conveniently.

  • It is priced at Rs. 13999.

2. Samsung 6.5kg Semi Automatic Top Load (WT657QPNDPGXTL 02)

  • This Samsung product has two tubs, one for drying and the other for washing.

  • It has an RPM of 1400, which makes it exceptionally powerful.

  • It has a capacity of 6.5kg, making it suitable for a small family.

  • The ergonomic design of the machine makes very easy to move.

  • It is priced at Rs. 9800.

3. LG 8 kg 5 Star Rating Semi Automatic Top Load Grey, White (P8035SGMZ)

  • The washing machine comes with a roller jet pulsator, which makes it efficient in rotating clothes.

  • It has an RPM of 1200 which makes it great for drying and washing.

  • It has a capacity of 8kg making it good enough for a medium to large family.

  • It has been priced at Rs. 13999.

4. MarQ by Flipkart 6 kg 5 Star Rating Semi Automatic Top Load White, Maroon (MQSA60H5M)

  • It has an RPM of 1350, making it a very powerful appliance for washing and drying.

  • It has two wash programs, giving users a better experience.

  • It is very energy efficient.

  • The capacity of 6kg is good enough for a small family.

Automatic Washing Machine

The Automatic Washing Machines come in two categories - Top Loading Machines and Front Loading Machines. They require a continuous supply of water and need to have higher electricity usage than semi automatic machines.

They require minimal human intervention and usually heavier than other machines. They are the modern type of washing machines with the latest technology. Fully automatic washing machines usually cost more than the Semi automatic washing machine.

They usually have a single tub for washing and drying, so the movement of clothes from one tub to another is not required. It does not rank well in energy conservation because of the higher amount of water and electricity used.

Being fully automatic requiring barely any human intervention, the automatic washing machines allow users to sit back and relax during the complete wash and dry cycles.

A. Top Loading Machines

They take clothes from the tops, as its name suggests. The Top Loading machines are Inexpensive, in comparison to other machines. They require a continuous source of water supply throughout the washing cycle. They offer fewer wash programs and clothes can be added in the middle of a wash cycle.

Pros
  • It is an automatic machine, which means less work for users.
  • Can add clothes during the wash cycle.
  • Faster wash cycle.
Cons
  • Needs a constant supply of water.
  • Price is higher than semi automatic machines.

Here are some of the best Top Loading Machines in India.

1. LG 6.5 kg Inverter Fully-Automatic Top Loading Washing Machine (-T7569NDDLH.ASFPEIL, Middle Free Silver)

  • It comes with smart inverter technology.

  • It also supports multi water flow with powerful washing.

  • It also has a child lock and an auto restart option.

  • It has 8 different wash cycles.

  • It has been priced at Rs. 16,300.

2. Whirlpool 7.5 Kg Fully-Automatic Top Loading Washing Machine (WHITEMAGIC ELITE 7.5 10YMW, Grey)

  • It has a capacity of 7.5kg, making it suitable for a mid-sized family.

  • It has 12 wash programs.

  • It supports Fuzzy Logic - known as 6th Sense.

  • It also has an Express Wash feature.

  • It has been priced at Rs. 16,425.

3. IFB 6.5 kg Fully-Automatic Top Loading Washing Machine (TL-RDW 6.5kg Aqua, Ivory White, Aqua Energie water softener)

  • It has a capacity of 6.5kg, making it suitable for small-sized families.

  • It has an RPM of 720.

  • It also comes with an LED Panel, making it very easy to use.

  • It has been priced at Rs. 16,790.

4. Bosch 6.5 Kg Fully-Automatic Top Loading Washing Machine (WOE654Y0IN grey)

  • It is equipped with a one-touch start, making it very convenient.

  • It has an RPM of 680.

  • This product has a warranty of two years.

  • It has a separate liquid and detergent dispenser.

  • It has been priced at Rs. 15999.

B. Front Loading Machines

Washing Machines which take in clothes from the front part, having a vertical tube are called Front Loading Machines. They provide the best quality cleaning and wash amongst all other types.

They consume less water and electricity than top-loading machines and However, they are a bit bulky and heft, which makes it very difficult to move them around. Also, many front loading machines do not allow adding or removing clothes from the middle of a wash cycle

Pros
  • They provide a more thorough wash.
  • More water efficient than a top loading machine.
  • Has multiple cycle settings.
  • Ones with heating element provide higher temperature.
Cons
  • Costlier than other washing machines.
  • Cannot add or remove clothes during a wash cycle.

Let us have a look at a few of the best Front Loading Washing Machines in India.

1. Bosch 6 kg Fully-Automatic Front Loading Washing Machine (WAB16060IN, White, Inbuilt Heater)

  • It has an RPM of 800, making it a decent enough machine for washing.

  • It has special noise reducing features for user comfort.

  • It has a capacity of 6kg which makes it suitable for small families.

  • It is energy and water efficient.

  • It has been priced at Rs. 20,499.

2. LG 6 kg Inverter Fully-Automatic Front Loading Washing Machine (-FH0FANDNL02.ABWPEPL, White, Inbuilt Heater)

  • It comes with a touch panel and inverter control.

  • The RPM on this washing machine is 1000.

  • It has a capacity of 6kg making it best for nuclear families.

  • It is equipped with 6 motion control features.

  • The price for this machine is Rs. 24,990.

3. IFB 7 kg Fully-Automatic Front Loading Washing Machine (Serena Aqua SXA LDT, Silver, Inbuilt Heater, Aqua Energie water softener)

  • It has multiple wash programs.

  • It is equipped with built-in device allowing better detergent dissolution.

  • It also has Ball Valve Technology which prevents water wastage.

  • Capacity is 7kg, which is best for mid-sized families.

  • It is priced at Rs. 30,000.

4. Koryo 8 kg Fully-Automatic Front Loading Washing Machine (KWM1480FL, White,inbuilt Heater)

  • This washing machine comes with 16 wash cycles, making it very convenient and easy to use.

  • The capacity is 8kg, making it suitable for mid-sized families.

  • It has an RPM of 1400, which makes it great for washing and drying quickly and thoroughly.

  • It is priced at Rs. 22,999.

Comparison between Semi Automatic, Top Loading and Front Loading Washing Machines

Let us have a look at the comparison between the three categories of a washing machine.

Features
Semi Automatic
Top Loading
Front Loading

Energy

Low

High Usage

High Usage

Built

Two Tubs

Single Tub

Single Tub

Water Usage

Low

High

Lower than Top Loading

Impact on clothes

Gentle

Slightly rougher

Thorough Wash

Space

Bulky

Do not require much space

Compact compared to others

Pricing

Least expensive

Expensive

Most expensive

Types of Washing Machines on the Basis of Capacity

Washing Machines can also be differentiated on the basis of their capacities. This categorization can help us in determining which washing machine is most suitable for a household depending upon their size.

The logic dictates that higher capacity machines will be more suitable for bigger households and vice versa for smaller households. But which machine is big enough and what capacity suits each family? This question has been answered for you below.

1. Basic Size - 5kg to 6kg

  • In this size range, we will see the features of washing machines with the capacities of 5kg to 6kg.

  • It is the most suitable for a small family of two members.

  • It can take approximately two shirts, two trousers, two towels, two pillowcases and one bedsheet at once.

2. Mid Size - 7kg to 8kg

  • In this size range, we will check out the features of washing machines with the capacities of 7kg to 8kg.

  • It is ideally suited for a family of three or four members.

  • It can take approximately three shirts, three trousers, two towels, two pillowcases and one bedsheet.

3. Large Size - 10kg or more

  • In this size range, we will have a look at the features of washing machines with the capacities of 10kg or more.

  • It is ideal for a family with a big family.

  • It can take approximately three shirts, three trousers, six towels, six pillowcases and two bedsheets.

  • It is very heavy and bulky.

  • Consumption of water is also higher.

Washing Programs

Once you have got the idea of the capacity of a washing machine, the next step would be to understand the cycles of a machine, to help us in understanding how a machine works in the first place and what all processes are followed.

Below are some of the basic functions a washing machine performs. Read them out carefully as this information will help you decide on which machine to purchase for your use.

1. Quick Wash

  • If you are looking to wash your clothes quickly in a short amount of time, then you can use the Quick Wash option.

  • It is present in almost all of the automatic washing machines.

  • The number of clothes that can be added in this mode is limited.

  • Both washing and drying can be done using this mode.

  • In about 20-30 minutes, clothes can be washed and dried completely.

  • Washing is thorough and time taken is very less.

2. Daily Wash

  • This mode is most suitable for items that you wash on a daily basis.

  • That includes your regular clothes and day to day wear.

  • It washes the items in a short period of time.

  • It is also helpful in reducing the amount of water used in the process.

3. Pre-Soak

  • One of the most common cycles is the Pre-Soak cycle, specifically used for very dirty and heavily soiled clothes.

  • There are two parts of this cycle - in the first one, the clothes are soaked and then agitated thoroughly.

  • In the next part, the clothes, after soaking and agitation, are then subject to the normal washing cycle.

4. Woollens or Delicate Clothes

  • If delicate clothes are washed in the regular wash cycles, they are bound to get damaged.

  • For the specific purpose of washing delicate or woollen clothes, most machines have this cycle.

  • To protect the clothes from wear and tear, the machine washes them in low temperatures.

  • The washing machine also minimizes drum rotation, in this cycle, to negate or reduce any sort of damage to the fabric that might be possible during washing.

5. Cotton

  • To wash cotton clothes, this cycle is used.

  • Differing from the regular wash cycles, this mode uses hot water to clean cotton clothes.

  • The clothes are washed thoroughly at higher temperatures, in this cycle.

6. Synthetics

  • It is very similar to the Delicates wash mode. Here clothes made of polyester and other non-cotton materials can be washed.

  • Due to the gentle wash that is necessary for such clothes, you can make use of either this mode or the Delicate Wash mode, in case a machine does not have this feature.

Features and Specifications of a Washing Machine

Most machines have some common features and specifications that you can understand to determine the strength and basic abilities of a machine. With this, you can understand the level of cleaning and drying a machine has to offer.

You can also compare two machines using these features and select the brand or machine, which offers more at lesser prices. Here are some of the most common features in any washing machine.

1. Revolutions Per Minute

  • RPM or Revolutions Per Minute are used to determine the speed of rotation or spin of a drum.

  • You can alter the RPM according to the cloth or clothes being washed, like reducing speed for delicate clothes or increasing it for bedsheets or towels.

  • In a machine, a higher RPM or Revolutions Per Minute means the machine squeezes out water from clothes more efficiently thus providing a better wash.

2. Temperature Control Feature

  • By altering the temperature, you can modify the strength of the wash cycle.

  • Lower temperature can conserve energy.

  • You can also set a higher temperature, which allows for a better wash as the detergent works better.

  • You also set the temperature according to the fabric of the clothes, to minimize any damage.

3. Time Delay

  • This feature helps you set the wash time according to your requirement.

  • Using this feature you can add a delay in case you want to operate the machine at certain times of the day.

  • This also gives you the opportunity of loading the machine.

  • It also allows your clothes to soak for a while before the wash cycle begins.

4. Foam or Bubble Wash

  • Many brands provide a bubble or foam wash for clothes.

  • This allows a more thorough cleaning as bubbles go deep into the fabric.

  • Under different names, this feature is available in many machines.

5. Dryer

  • One of the most important features of a washing machine is the Dryer.

  • It lets clothes dry out completely after the wash cycle.

  • Higher RPM here means that the dryer will be able to dry the clothes better.

6. Fuzzy Logic

  • It is one of the most interesting features of the washing machine.

  • By using multiple sensors, you can control the amount of detergent to be used, water intake, duration of the cycle etc.

  • It is present in most brands, however, named differently.

Washing Machine Best Brands, Pricing and Availability

When you are out there to buy the machine of your choice, you will definitely need to have the best idea of the biggest brands and their models, their prices and their availability in the market. Worry not, for we have got you covered.

The major washing machine brands in India include Bosch, Whirlpool, LG, Samsung, Godrej, Seimens and IFB. Each brand is known for its own models for Semi Automatic, Top loading or Front loading machines.

For the most economical models, Semi automatic washing machines are the best bet. They get the job done, at prices which are very reasonable and budget-friendly. In India, you can find these machines at a price range of Rs. 6,000 to Rs. 13,000. Even though their price is low, they are very effective and have great features.

The top loading washing machines are priced between Rs. 15,000 to Rs. 25,000. Brands like LG, Godrej and Whirlpool are the best choices for Top loading machines. These are also very effective and are fully automatic washing machines.

The front loading washing machines are priced between Rs. 25,000 and Rs. 50,000. brands like Bosch, IFB, Haier and Siemens are the best choices to buy a Front loading machine. These are the best type of washing machines, equipped with the latest technology and great features.

Things to Consider Before Buying a Washing Machine

Now after getting the complete idea of what types of washing machines are available in the market along with their features and specifications, let us head back home and try to find out what are the requirements at home and how to determine which machine will best suit the needs.

For that, we need to look at all the conditions at home, one by one and try and decide which machine fits exactly according to plan. We will try and look at the space, where the machine needs to be kept, the size of the family or in better words, the number clothes that are washed per laundry session, and also at the performance wise categorization of the washing machine.

Here are some steps to follow, before purchasing a new washing machine.

Determine the location

The initial step is to figure out your room size. Where do you want to keep the machine? Is there a separate room? A specific corner in a room or is it the balcony? Once you figure that out, you’ll need to determine the size of the area it will take.

Size Up Your Laundry Space

Measure the space you are planning to place the washing machine. While measuring and allocating the space, ensure that you leave almost 6 inches space behind the machine and wall to leave space for attaching the water intake pipes.

Also, in case you are planning to have multiple machines or adding an extra dryer with a front loading machine, then make sure to leave an inch space between two machines.

If you are looking for quiet machines, then check the washing machine labels for the decibel or noise levels during purchase to ensure that you buy only the lowest noise machine.

Room or Corner

If it is a separate room or corner. If you have a narrow space for the machine, avoid buying big, bulky machines as you will have to face a lot of practical problems while using it. It might not be easy to load your clothes in it, or you might bang the washer door every once in a while.

A machine that doubles up as a washer and dryer might be useful here, but the dimensions are crucial.

Balcony

In case you have plans of keeping it into the balcony, the first step would be to ensure whether constant power supply and drainage are available. Since space might not be a constraint here, bulkier machines can be used.

However, it is easier for the water to seep through the floors, if the drainage isn’t proper. Also, the noise of the machine might disturb the people next door. So keep in mind to look for low-sound machines.

Size - Number of clothes

If you have a lot of clothes to wash, you might be looking for a specific dimension for your machines. With a larger family, the amount of dirty clothes keeps mounting regularly. In such a case, machines with capacities ranging from 7kg to 8kg, which are usually in the larger sized range, are the most suitable.

However, for smaller families, a machine in the range of 5kg to 6kg might be just what is needed. There are also machines available in the 10kg to 11kg range, but those are usually required for specific demands.

Purchasing a large machine for a small family will lead to unnecessary wastage of electricity and water, which will lead to expensive bills. At the same time, a small machine for a large family will lead to rising stacks of clothes, and you will cause wastage of time.

Hence, determining the right size of a machine according to your family size is most important.

A lower budget doesn’t necessarily mean more economical performance. By opting for white coloured models instead of trendy coloured ones, you can save a lot of money.

A basic model, if you are looking for only cleaning and not extra features, can save you almost ten grand. That is a lot more than the higher-end models.

Performance-wise

Performance matters! Washing machines can be divided into two categories, front loaders and top loaders. After many reviews of both types of machines, we found that front-loaders have a marginal lead over top loaders.

Front-loaders are much more compact and do not cause much congestion. Performance-wise, if you are looking for tougher stain removers, you can opt for machines with special stain remover cycles.

Some come with a “cool temperature” feature or a pre-soaking cycle, which also helps in removing stains. Front-loaders also tend to use less water than compared to top-loaders, which might give them an extra edge, for being lighter on your bills.

Top loaders, on the other hand, need to be filled with water for subsequent wash and rinse cycles. In terms of energy conservation, look for the energy star labels that each machine is labelled with. The more the stars, the better the machine is in energy conservation.

The labelled models tend to conserve almost 25% more electricity than the non-labelled ones.

If you are looking for machines which are gentle to the fabric of the cloth, you might prefer ones which do not have an agitator in them. These tend to cause clothes to tangle and even might cause them to tear a bit as well.

Usually, agitator loaded machines aren’t the most efficient. Some higher-end models have extra cycles for specific clothing, specially designed for each type, even hand washable. Many have adjustable spin speeds and sanitizer cycles to eliminate germs and other harmful bacteria.

In recent years, there have been a significant number of improvements in the machines to make them more eco-friendly, specially designed for those looking to leave a lesser carbon footprint.

Even by reducing the washing temperature from 40 to 30-degree C, can have a massive impact on the energy conservation of the machines.

Safety Precautions for Washing Machines

So, if you go ahead and purchase the washing machine of your choice for your home, there are a few things we would want you to be mindful of. So here are a few important safety measures and precautions that you should follow, while working with a washing machine.

  • While cleaning or maintenance, make sure that the machine is unplugged. Do this to protect yourself and others from an electric shock.

  • Before placing the clothes in the machine, ensure that the pockets are empty. Any unwanted item could cause damage to the appliance.

  • Always remember to drain the water after use.

  • Keep children and pets away from the appliance.

  • Always check whether the appliance has any loose wires or not.

  • Always make sure to repair the appliance at an authorized service centre.

So this was all about the washing machines and their features, specifications, prices and also what are the needs and requirements at home. All in all, determining the exact requirements of your laundry purposes can lead you to a machine better suited to your home. Purchasing a machine is a one-time investment and requires a clear decision making so that the entire process of the purchase does not go into waste.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Which is the best washing machine?

A. The best machine can only be determined by assessing the requirement at the location where the machine has to be kept and operated. According to the requirements, we can determine the best machine.

Q. Is it safe to buy a washing machine online?

A. Yes, Amazon and Flipkart and other sites give great quality washing machine which you can buy on their websites.

Q. What to see while buying a washing machine?

A. There are multiple options and features that you can check before buying a machine. Check the article above for more info.

Q. How to choose a good washing machine?

A. There are multiple factors, coupled with the requirements at the location which can help in determining a good washing machine for the destination. Check the article above for more.

Q. What are the different types of Washing Machines?

A. The different types of washing machines are Automatic and Semi-Automatic machines. The Automatic Machines can be further classified as Top Loading and Front Loading Machines.

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