My mom had a Maytag washer when I was a kid. She had it for over fifteen years until we moved. But that old Maytag washer does not exist anymore. Maytag was acquired by the Whirlpool Corporation about 20 years ago.
Most of the best top load washers have large capacities, new features, and smart functionality. That's not always a good thing, as you will learn. You can still buy more basic machines.
In this article, you will learn all about the best washers to consider, along with their features and reliability ratings from over 40,000 service calls completed by our service department last year. You will also learn about the differences between top load and front load washers.
I am biased towards front load washers and have owned three different types over the last 20 years, but I realize you may want a front-load for various reasons. We will compare front and top load washers objectively at the end.
This way, you will be better informed about what brand, model, and type you should consider.
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The Best Top Load Washers for 2022
Most Reliable: LG Top Load Washer WT7305CW - $799
Dimensions: 27" W x 44 1/2" H x 28 3/8" D | Capacity: 4.8 Cubic Feet | Number of Cycles: 8 Cycles, 16 Options | Spin Speed: 950 RPM (Revolutions Per Minute) | Wi-Fi: Yes
LG has become the most reliable brand over the last few years. According to our service statistics, their top load washers have a service rate of 1.7%, far lower than any other brand. They have been the most reliable for availability as well.
The two are related because LG manufactures more of its appliances than most other brands. So, they are less reliant on outside suppliers, which is a huge benefit during the pandemic and subsequent supply issues.
LG has attached their future on inverter technology. It has fewer working parts, so it runs quieter and is more reliable. In 2019, the inverter was the target of a successful class-action suit but recently has been incredibly reliable.
LG is number one for reliability in every appliance using an inverter, including dishwashers, refrigerators, and laundry, at least for last year.
The size is large at 4.8 cubic feet. LG has smart functionality with their ThinQ app. Most of the machines on this list are Wi-Fi-enabled, except Speed Queen.
Smart technology allows you to turn the machine on or off and see the time remaining. You also receive push notifications when the cycle is complete.
You will like LG's smart top load laundry set because you will never have to trudge to your basement again to a machine still running.
LG also has tons of cycles. Our parents had three. You have eight cycles and 16 options in this washer. Turbo360 employs high-pressure sprays to turn any cycle into 30 minutes.
Best Dispensing: GE Profile Top Load Washer PTW605BSRWS - $809
Dimensions: 27 7/8" W x 46" H x 28" D | Capacity: 4.9 Cubic Feet | Number of Cycles: 12 Cycles, 7 Options | Spin Speed: 800 RPM | Wi-Fi: Yes
The GE Profile is new and exciting. GE has successfully deployed Microban antimicrobial surfaces in the dispenser, tub, and hoses to resist mold and mildew.
Top loads typically do not have the mold problem of a front-load washer (we compare the two below). However, it does offer some further protection during the pandemic era.
They have the best detergent dispenser for any kind of liquid, detergent, and pods. You can even customize your own.
SmartHQ, their Wi-Fi app, allows you to customize cycles and dispense detergent remotely. They also add downloadable cycles.
You have one specially designed wash cycle to sterilize with OXI detergent. They also have a Tangle cycle to minimize tangled loads.
Profile's top load washer is among the largest with an agitator at 4.9 cubic feet and is a 12-cycle, seven-option machine with downloadable cycles.
Best Washer for Those Who Throw Everything in Their Washer Regardless of Color and Fabric: Maytag Top Load Washer MVW6230 - $1,049
Dimensions: 27 1/4" W x 57 1/4" H x 27 7/8" D | Capacity: 4.7 Cubic Feet | Number of Cycles: 11 Cycles, 6 Options | Spin Speed: 750 RPM | Wi-Fi: Yes
Guilty as charged. I wash my clothes and seldom separate the whites and colors. Now that I am writing this, I probably should.
However, Maytag solves this problem with their Extra Power button, effectively allowing you to wash both better than just cold water.
The cycle starts in the cold and gradually warms the wash for a better clean.
Maytag is 4.7 cubic feet with 11 cycles and six options.
Quietest: Speed Queen Top Load Washer TC7003WN - $1,559
Dimensions: 25 5/8" W x 42 3/4" H x 28 D | Capacity: 3.2 Cubic Feet | Number of Cycles: 8 Cycles | Spin Speed: 820 RPM | Wi-Fi: No
The TC7003 is 43 decibels, so it's quieter than most dishwashers designed to be quiet in your kitchen. The agitator moves with the water, so it's not tied to the motor. It floats with the water flow.
Speed Queen is American-made like Maytag with a commercial heritage and offers the best seven-year full warranty.
Its capacity is smaller than the other machines at 3.2 cubic feet and doesn't have smart functionality.
Best Wash Cycles: Speed Queen Top Load Washer TC5003WN - $1,449
Dimensions: 25 5/8" W x 42 3/4" H x 28 D | Capacity: 3.2 Cubic Feet | Number of Cycles: 6 Cycles | Spin Speed: 710 RPM | Wi-Fi: No
The TC5003 is Speed Queen's older "Classic Clean." After a public uproar, it was discontinued and then later updated. It's like the "Old Coke" to date myself a bit.
The TC5003 is known for its aggressive agitation and deep fill to clean clothes. Is it quiet? Not on this machine.
Do you have grimy clothes? Then the TC5003 is a good machine to consider. The TC5003 has six cycles and, like the TC7003, is 3.2 Cubic feet.
How to Buy a Top Load Washer
Agitator vs. Impeller Top Load Washers
Top loaders have changed more than any other appliance. My mom's old Maytag was 2.5 cubic feet with an agitator.
Now you have washers over five cubic feet without agitators. The machines employ an impeller or part that cycles the clothes and washes.
Unfortunately, the agitator is what cleans the clothes, so the cleaning is questionable in these machines. Consequently, none of these models are on this list.
The larger GE, Maytag, and LG have smaller agitators, so they should work better in theory. The larger agitators in smaller tubs, on the other hand, have always worked.
What Is Better, a Top Load or Front Load Washer?
Many people had the front load and are now returning to the top load. Let's look at reliability stats to separate fact from fiction.
Top Load Washer Reliability for December 2020 to October 2021
The most reliable top load washers are based on a minimum of 150 sold per brand with a sample of over 900 units.
Front Load Washer Reliability from December 2020 to October 2021
The following service rates are based on a minimum of 300 front load washers sold per brand and a total sample of over 3000 from December 2020 to October 2021.
Looks the same, actually almost identical. However, top loads are cheaper to fix than a front-load, with the belt-driven GE being the easiest.
What You'll Like About Top Load Washers
Speed Queen Top Load Washer Set
- Less expensive to buy - Using GE as an example, the Ge FW650 front load is about $1049 while the PTW605 is $649
- Less expensive to fix - The front-load direct drive motor is a 5-hour job. It's less expensive to buy a new one.
- Mold Prevention - Top loads, don't collect standing water in the gasket like front loads, so you don't have mold issues. Of course, GEs front-loads have Microban and fans to automatically prevent mold and dry water.
What You'll Like About Front Load Washers
LG Front Load Washer and Dryer Set
- Less expensive to operate - The water in an average front load is 11-17 gallons versus 40 for the top load, not including the deep fill option of up to 70. A front-load will use much less electricity as well.
- Better capacity - A 4.5 cubic foot front load is 4.5 cubic feet. Makes sense. However, that 4.7 cubic Maytag does not consider the volume of the agitator.
- Genter on your clothes - Front loads do not have an agitator to agitate your clothes.
- Stackable - Almost every front load can be stacked in a closet (except Speed Queen).
- Better RPM spin speed - LG and GE spin at 1300 RPM versus 750-900 for the larger top loads for less water in your clothes and less time in your dryer.
Read More: Front Load vs. Top Load Washers
You have a lot of options in top loads, unlike years past. GE, LG, and Maytag will give you different cycles and larger sizes.
Perhaps you want to stay with a more traditional machine-like Speed Queen. Top loads like laundry, in general, have unique features with no one brand or model with every possible option.
Pick the brand and type that best fits your lifestyle.
Download our Yale Washer Buying Guide with all the features, terms, and brands of laundry. Over 1 million people have already found answers in a Yale guide.
Steve is the third-generation CEO of Yale and a lifelong Bostonian. He currently resides in Boston, one mile from where he was born. Despite being one of the worst goalies of all time, he is a huge hockey fan of college hockey and the Boston Bruins. The love of his life is his daughter Sophie.
Steve has also been featured in numerous publications such as the New York Times, Consumer Reports, The Boston Globe, Bloomberg Radio, the New York Post, The Wall Street Journal, and Entrepreneur, for his knowledge of how to buy appliances and appliance repair.
A Note About Pricing