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Front-Load V/S Top-Load Washing Machines – Which Type is Better?

05-31 2022

Long gone are the days when washing the family's dirty laundry seemed a task. Today, you can easily handle any load and keep your clothes fresh and clean with just a click of a button, thanks to our laundry friend – the washing machine.

Today, with several brands offering a wide range of models, there is a washing machine for every household. But this doesn't make choosing the right one for your family any easier. One of the critical and difficult decisions you would have to make is choosing between a top load and a front load washing machine.

If you are wondering, which is better? We’ll let you know the important factors you must consider before making the purchase decision.

What Should You Ask Yourself Before Buying a Washing Machine?

What's Your Budget?

The price of washing machines can significantly vary depending on models, features, capacities, or functionalities. Generally, top-load models have a lower price than the front-load ones. However, due to technological advancements, the pricing structure of Washing machines has expanded providing the consumers with more options to choose from that fit well within their set budget. This will help you narrow down your choices in terms of size and features, and you can decide quickly.

What Will Fit Better in Your House?

You must consider the space in your house and decide the type of washing machine that will suit your needs. For example, if you are thinking of buying a front-load machine and there is not enough space in front for the machine for you to open the door and load the laundry, it is better to buy a top-load machine instead.

Apart from the space constraints, it would help if you considered factors like the number of members in your family. For example, if you live in a joint family with six or more members, you may need a machine with a higher washing capacity, like -8kg.

Whereas, if you are a couple, a smaller machine with a laundry capacity of 6kg would be enough. Both front and top load machines have different washing capacities ranging from  6– 10 kgs. So, choose the one that suits your needs the best.

Another important yet often ignored factor is the age of the family member handling the washing machine every day. Will bending be an issue for them? Remember, a front-load machine would need you to bend to access the door and load the laundry. In contrast, top load machines are much easier to operate as you can load the laundry in a standing position, making it better suited for old-aged individuals.

Which Is Better - Front or Top-load Washing Machines?

Both front and top loaders have a different set of advantages and drawbacks. Comparing them across different parameters will help you make the right choice.

Better Cleaning

The top load washing machines have a pulsator attached to the drum at the bottom. In this mechanism, the motor spins the drum back and forth, and by extension, the laundry load inside. It also results in more efficient cleaning of the clothes without causing any damage to the fabric. However, one drawback of this type of washing machine is that it uses a high amount of water compared to a front-load machine that uses tumble wash technology.

Most front load washing machines use the tumble wash mechanism where the motor spins, causing the clothes to tumble inside the drum. During the tumble wash, the clothes soak the detergent and water, which results in efficient cleaning and using less water as compared to the top-load machine.  

Another significant benefit of the tumble wash mechanism in the front load machine is that it does not damage the clothes. However, one drawback of this type of machine is that the washing time is slow, and you may have to run the machine for a longer time.


The traditional washing machines with non-inverter motors have different moving parts such as belts, rubbing brushes, and gears. The higher number of components results in higher electricity usage. Also, the friction created by these moving parts produces a lot of noise, which can be a significant problem if you have installed the washing machine near the living room or the bedroom.

Today, modern washing machines come equipped with inverter motor technology. It allows the machine to run at its optimum speed based on the volume of the load, resulting in lesser electricity usage up to 20% than non-inverter models. Also, these machines create minimal noise as there are no moving parts within the machine.   

There are other machines that use the Direct Drive technology. In this technology the main motor is directly connected to the washing drum. Thus, due to the lesser moving parts, the machine creates lesser noise and vibration. Additionally, washing machines equipped with direct drive technology are energy efficient.

But, generally, the front load machines operate more silently during the washing cycle than the top load models. Highlight inverter motor/dd motor which results in noiseless performance

Water Usage

Both front load and top load fully automatic machines reduce the water consumption by up to 30%. Still, front-loaders can be a better option where the water supply is minimal or limited.

·Energy efficiency

A washing machine is an appliance that you may use at least three to four times a week. This means you must look for a model that is energy efficient so that you can reduce your monthly energy bills.

Today, the many modern front-load models have the DD (Direct Drive) technology where the motor is directly attached to the washing drum without using a pulley. The lesser machinal part results in lesser energy consumption.

Some research suggests that the front load washing machines use about 25% to 30% less energy compared to top load machines with impeller motors. You can know the energy efficiency of the machine by looking at the star rating. The higher the rating, the higher its efficiency.

Easy Maintenance

One of the most common complaints people have about front load washing machines is mould formation around the rubber gasket on the door, which leads to a foul smell. So, these machines require regular cleaning and maintenance. To minimize the mould build-up, it is better to keep the door open after every use to let the moisture escape.

The top-load machines do not have such issues as the gravity pulls the water down, preventing water from being trapped in the seals. Thus, the chances of problems such as moisture or mould build-up and a foul smell coming using another synonym easy to understand from the machine are minimal..

Irrespective of the type of washing machine you use, it is advisable to run a complete cycle with a cleaning solution of white vinegar once a month to get rid of the accumulated dirt, detergent residue, and grime in the drum. This will result in better washing quality, and your clothes will smell fresh after the wash.

Pros and Cons of Front Load vs Top Load Washing Machines

So, now that you understand the difference, before passing the final verdict, let's do a quick recap of the pros and cons of the top load and front load washing machines.

Front-load washing machine



Noiseless operation

Regular maintenance is required due to mould accumulation and odor issues.

Energy-efficient and helps save water

Expensive. May not be suitable for budget-conscious customers.

Excellent cleaning performance

It may not be suitable for the elderly or   users with back issues

Top Load Washing Machine



Requires minimal maintenance. The chances of issues such as mold build-up and foul smell are minimal.

It may create noise during the washing cycle.

Comparatively cheaper than front-load models, making it a suitable option for all.

Most models use a high amount of water and energy compared to front-load machines. It may not be suitable for families that need to use the washing machine frequently (3-5 times a week),   resulting in higher energy bills. Also, it may not suitable for regions where there are water supply issues.

Ideal for old-aged users as it does not require them to bend or squat for loading the laundry.

Some old models may not offer a cleaning performance as good as the new front-load models with advanced features.

The Final Verdict – Top Load vs Front Load Washing Machines

It is quite evident that both front load and top washing machines have pros and cons. There is no one-size-fits-all kind of washing machine, it all depends on your personal preference and the needs of the family.

Whether you choose a top-loader or a front-load washer, the goal should be to buy a machine that helps you clean your clothes most efficiently.

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4. How to Keep Your Washing Machine Clean - Laundry Basics