To choose a washing machine, you need to consider not only how well it washes, but also many other characteristics: washing efficiency class, spin speed, price, number of programs, etc..
This step-by-step guide will help you prepare for shopping / online shopping, understand the difference between the features of different models and make the best choice..
Step 1. Determine the type of washing machine
To begin with, it is worth solving the simplest question – what type of machine do you need: built-in, stationary or vertical top-loading?
- The built-in machine is designed to be fully integrated into any furniture, say, a kitchen set, which is still being designed. To do this, it has a recess for the skirting board, hinges on the front panel (for hanging the door) and a removable cover. At the same time, there are no decorative side walls. It turns out that such a CM can be hidden, making the interior as orderly as possible. The built-in machine is especially relevant when placed in the kitchen.
See also the material: All about placing a washing machine in the kitchen.
- The stationary model is suitable if the room is already furnished and you just need a new assistant. By the way, an ordinary washing machine can also be partially built in – under the countertop, under the sink (low model) or in a cabinet with a door. If necessary, the upper case cover can be removed (almost all models).
- A washer-dryer is an almost ideal washing machine, because it produces not only clean, but also almost dry and even ironed laundry that can be put on or folded into the closet right away. This result is achieved due to the additional heating element and the injection of warm air into the drum. The disadvantages of CM with drying are: high price (from 30 thousand rubles), larger unit size, higher power consumption.
- A top-loading vertical washing machine is suitable if the space allocated for it is not large.
Which type of washing machine is better – front-loading or top-loading?
Conventional models with a front hatch are good for the possibility of partial / complete integration, the ability to see what is happening inside the drum during washing (whether the machine has collected water, at what stage is the process, etc.), the ability to store things on the top of the CM, like on a shelf. In addition, the choice of models in this category is the widest and most varied for every request and wallet. Of the minuses, only a larger size can be called (in addition, you need a supply of space for the hatch), as well as the need to bend over to load things.
A vertical machine with a top hatch is good first of all for its compactness. Other bonuses are the ability to reload things after launch and do it while standing, and not on an incline. Disadvantages of a vertical CM: higher price, less choice of models, no possibility of embedding.
Step 2. Making measurements
Before going to the store, you need to decide where the washing machine will stand and how much space you can allocate for it..
- Conventional front-loading machines have a standard height (85 cm) and width (60 cm), but their depth may vary. The narrowest machines have a depth of 35-40 cm, medium – 45-50 cm, full-size – 50-60 cm.
- For those who want to save as much space as possible, we advise you to pay attention to the compact models, which are only 70 cm high, 50 cm wide and deep.Most often, such machines are installed under the sink as shown in the photo below.
- Vertical washing machines are 40-45 cm wide and 60 cm deep, but the height can vary from 85 to 90 cm.
- In addition to the size of the case, it is worth paying attention to the diameter of the hatch, which can vary from 20 to 50 cm. The larger the hatch, the more convenient it is to take out and load the laundry. True, wide swinging hatches require more space..
- When buying a washing machine for installation under a countertop, keep in mind that, if necessary, you can remove the top covers and thereby lower the CM height by a couple of centimeters.
Step 3. Decide what capacity of the washing machine we need
Washing machines have different capacities. Some models can hold only 3.5 kg, while others – all 14 kg. The following “norms” will help you avoid mistakes:
- For 1-2 people, a car with a capacity of 4-5 kg is suitable;
- For a family of 3 people, you should choose a 5-6 kg washing machine;
- For a family of more than 6 people, it is worth taking a large car with a capacity of 9 kg or more.
In an effort to save space in the bathroom / kitchen, or, conversely, buy a car with a stock of capacity, do not overdo it. A car that is too small can hardly accommodate even a set of baby bedding. A too large car, even with a minimum load of 1-1.5 kg, will waste a lot of water and electricity.
Step 4. Consider the classes of washing, energy efficiency and spinning
Each CM model always comes with a colored sticker indicating the washing classes, energy efficiency and spinning. Before choosing a washing machine, be sure to familiarize yourself with this “coded” information in letters and numbers..
- The washing class is one of the most important selection criteria. After all, it shows how effectively the machine washes. This indicator is marked with letters from A to G. At the same time, A is the highest class, and G is the lowest. However, on sale you can find cars with a class of at least B.
A high-quality washing machine should have at least Class A wash performance and energy efficiency. Want an even more efficient machine? Choose the model that has washing class A +, A ++ or A +++ (the highest possible value).
- The energy efficiency class of modern machines ranges from A + to G. We recommend choosing a washing machine with an energy efficiency class of at least A.
- In addition to the washing class, you should also pay attention to the drying and spinning class, which indicates the residual moisture of the laundry after drying / spinning. This figure also ranges from grade A to G.
We recommend choosing a washing machine that has a drying and spinning class of at least C. Information for comparison: class A machines spin laundry to a moisture level of 40-45%, and class C machines – up to 60%. In practice, of course, there is a difference in the drying time of the laundry, but it is not too significant..
Step 5. Pay attention to the spin speed
The higher the spin speed, the drier the washed item will be when it comes out. We recommend choosing a washing machine with a speed of at least 800 rpm. This is quite enough for washing for every day. However, for best results, we recommend choosing a CM with a spin speed of 1200-1400 rpm. For washing blankets, pillows and outerwear, these indicators are best suited..
It is good if the SM has a vibration absorption system so that the machine does not shake much and make noise during the spin phase.
Step 6. Assessing the set and number of programs
The simplest washing machine has at least 10 washing programs, the most sophisticated one has up to 20 programs. Of course, the more programs a machine has, the more expensive it costs..
The standard programs, which the average user cannot do without, include the following programs: cotton wash, delicate wash, wool wash, wash mixed laundry, intensive, pre-wash and quick wash.
Depending on your needs, you can choose a machine with additional programs:
- Washing baby clothes (the machine washes with plenty of hot water, keeping the laundry soft);
- Removing animal hair (if you have a shedding pet, this program will be irreplaceable);
- Super rinse (relevant for allergy sufferers);
- Washing of sportswear;
- Shoe washing (suitable for sneakers and sneakers);
- Prevent creasing and facilitate ironing;
- Down comforter washing;
- Washing organic dirt;
- Washing with the effect of hand washing (washes things that are prohibited from washing in the machine, due to the increased amount of water, low temperature and special drum movements).
Step 7. Evaluating additional features
Finally, think about additional features.
- Leakage protection – intelligent shutdown and water supply system when a leak is detected.
- Child lock – blocks unwanted shutdown or change of settings.
- Intelligent control function – the system remembers individual settings, determines the weight of the laundry, doses the amount of detergent and water, adjusts the temperature, spin speed, rinsing intensity and other washing parameters depending on the load. Models with this function are more expensive, but they save energy, water and detergents..
- Fuzzy Logic function (for a washing machine with a dryer) – unlike a conventional CM with a dryer, a machine with this function stops drying not by a timer, but by a sensor that detects the residual moisture of the laundry and stops the unit itself. Thus, it prevents both overdrying and underdrying things..
The following video clip on how to choose the right washing machine will help you to “gamble” even more before buying..
To decide which company to choose a washing machine, a video comparison of washing machines in the price category of 10-20 thousand rubles will help you.