Green Energy Helps
Written by Wilson Yeo on January 19, 2013 
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Last updated: 26/04/2024

Front loader or Top Loader? Some Points to Consider

Last updated on April 26th, 2024 at 01:06 pm

Getting a washing machine is one of the decision to be made especially if a new unit is required for your household. Two main types of washing machine are available in the market: top loader and front loader. 

Below are some general points that should be considered before purchasing a new washing machine.

Size of Your Household

If you have space constraint, it will be better for you to either choose a washing machine with a lower capacity or get one of those washer/dryer combos that will be more suitable and space efficient.

Capacity of the Washing Machine

The capacity of the washing machine  is generally certified by the authorities like Department of Energy (DOE), International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Capacity of the washer is an important point for consideration and is dependent on your household.

For large households, consider washing machines with a large or ultra large (3.7 to 4.0 cu. ft) capacity that will mean lesser washing frequencies and backpains on laundry days. This will equate to long term savings in water and power.

Maximising Capacity

Front loaders can fit more laundry into them, compared to a top loader, allowing the maximising of capacity. This is due to their functionality; top loader uses an agitator to generate its “twisting and pulling” action for washing clothes while a front loader carries out the washing via a “tumbling” action.

The presence of a agitator will take up space thus limiting the amount of laundry that can be fitted into a top loader wash bucket while this will not happen for a front loader.

Water Level Detection

The top loader or front loader should possess electronic sensors that allow the automatic detection of water level. This allows the determination on the appropriate amount of water to be used per wash cycle. This criterion is important and applicable more to top loaders.

Zero Standby Power FunctionZero Standby Power Function

Get a top loader or front loader with zero standby power usage function just in case you forget to switch it off at the main power point.

One such example is shown on a top loader washing machine model from Toshiba AW-8970S.


Image friom Wikipedia
Image friom Wikipedia

Energy Star Certification

A washing machine with this certification means that it fulfil the set of criteria under the Energy Star program based on power usage and saving water capability. This certification applies to both top loader and front loader. Here is the link to the US EPA website where you can search for all Energy Star certified washing machines.  

At this point in time, though studies have shown that front loaders generally use lesser water and electricity but recent top loaders have shown to be energy efficient and water saving as well. Therefore, feel free to consider a top loader as well but make sure it is Energy Star certified.

There is a section on Green Energy Helps that provide information ,on why and the advantages when you purchase an Energy Star certified washing machine.

Energy Efficiency logo for SingaporeFor other countries, do take note of the symbols utilised by your respective equivalent of the DOE or Energy Star logo. An example of such a logo from Singapore is displayed here.  

Cold Wash Option

Having this cold wash option allows you to save on your utilities, with no loss in washing performance, as using heated water in your wash cycles every time uses up a lot of energy.

Effective and Complete Cleaning Process

For consumers with allergies, choose washing machines with wash functions that remove household allergens like dust mites and pet dander like the Allergiene™ wash function offered by LG, and the Sanitise option offered by Electrolux.

Wash Cycles Available

There are a couple of wash cycles widely available on all washing machines types to cater for the types of clothing like delicates, white clothing on conventional washing machines. Some washing machines like the LG WM3470HVA has up to 12 different wash cycles for you to choose from. At this point in time you should also consider the ease in programming to set up a wash cycle.

Ease of Programming

This is a criterion that should be considered for your top loader or front loader as it will make setting up of your wash cycle an easy task. Currently there are functions like LG Dial-A-Cycle™ that allow users to programme their wash cycles with just a touch of the button. You will not want a washing machine that is very difficult to set up.

Budget Constraints

This a universal problem that is faced by consumers. A good solution will be to choose Energy Star certified washing machines that will allow you to use 35% and 20% lesser water and energy allowing you savings in utilities. For consumers who are going to buy a front loader, it might be better if high efficiency detergent is used due to the lesser amount of water used in a front loader and its working mechanism in cleaning up the laundry. 

A point will be that high efficiency detergent will be more expensive and is more suitable for front loaders though they can also be used for top loaders but with lesser cleaning efficiency. A front loader will also be more expensive with a higher inital pricing than a top loader but the energy conservation and utilities savings, and choosing a suitable model for your household will erase out these deficits in costs.   


  • Wilson Yeo

    I am the admin of Green Energy Helps and I possess a keen interest in how green energy and leading a green lifestyle can help to reduce our individual carbon footprints. I will be providing information about green energy and lifestyle tips with unbiased reviews on green products for your consideration. Note: This website uses affiliate links which may earn a commission for purchases made at no additional cost to you.

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