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GE vs. Whirlpool Front Load Washers

Steve Sheinkopf  |  April 07, 2022  |  4 Min. Read

Whirlpool  |  Front Load Washers  |  GE Appliances

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GE vs. Whirlpool is a popular comparison if you consider a front load washer.

Then again, with only five brands, GE, Whirlpool, and their subsidiary Maytag, LG, Samsung, and Electrolux, every comparison is popular.

In this article, you will learn the similarities and differences between these two brands, including cycles, features, and reliability based on real service calls.

In the end, you will be able to determine the right brand for you and your family. Let's look at both companies.

GE

Stacked-GE-Front-Load-LaundryGE Stacked Washers and Dryers (left four models) at Yale Appliance in Hanover

 

GE is not exactly GE anymore. They were bought a few years ago by Haier, a Chinese-based appliance manufacturer.

Haier has revitalized the brand because they are appliances only. GE was a small part of a large conglomerate for many years with proper research, development, and investment.

Interestingly, laundry was one of their first new products. Their washers are made in China. The dryers, along with most of their products, are made in the US.

GE's Best Front Load Washer GFW850SSNWW - $1,124

Ge-smart-front-load-washer-GFW850SSNWW

Features:
  • Dimensions: 28" W, 39.75" H, 32" D 
  • Capacity: 4.8 Cubic Feet
  • Number of Cycles: 12 Cycles, 9 Options 
  • Spin Speed: 1300 RPM
  • Reversible Door: Yes 
  • Automatic Dispenser: Yes 
  • Reliability: 8.0%

Whirlpool

Whirlpool-front-load-All-in-One-WasherWhirlpool Front Load Washer

 

Whirlpool is an American-based company whose focus has been laundry. They were the original supplier to Sears in the 1920s and the manufacturer of Kenmore washers until recently. They also acquired Maytag about 20 years ago, whose heritage was laundry.

Whirlpool manufactures a solid washer. However, they tend to fall behind in innovation, especially since their new competitors like LG, Samsung, and Haier innovate quickly.

Whirlpool's Best Front Load Washer WFW862CHC - $1,320

Whirlpool-Front-Load-Washer-WFW862CHC-(1)

Features:
  • Dimensions: 27" W, 38.625" H, 31.562" D 
  • Capacity: 4.3 Cubic Feet 
  • Number of Cycles: 37 Cycles, 5 Options
  • Spin Speed: 1200 RPM 
  • Reversible Door: No 
  • Automatic Dispenser: Yes 
  • Reliability: 9.5%
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GE vs. Whirlpool Front Load Washers

GE-vs-Whirlpool-front-load-washers

What They have in Common

You are looking at GE's best versus Whirlpool's second best, so you have many features.

1. Cycles

Whirlpool claims 37 cycles and ten options. At the same time, GE claims 12 cycles and ten options. My parents have this machine. I do not see how 37 is possible, and I have used this washer many times. Suffice it to say you have plenty on both.

You may like the push-button controls on the Whirlpool (I do). They are a bit easier than the dials on all the other brands.

2. Temperatures

They both have five for any fabric. Growing up, my mom had only three. Once again, both have plenty.

3. Auto Dispensers

Both have an automatic dispenser. Whirlpool is the biggest at 40 loads versus 32 loads for GE. Auto dispensers dispense the right amount of detergent at the right time. They also keep you from overfilling and causing a service call later.

You only need a capful of detergent.

Most people load the dispenser like a top load. It is almost hard not to pour more detergent than needed.

4. Steam

Steam loosens dirt in tough stains like grass, wine, and blood.

How They Differ

1. Mold Prevention

ge-smart-front-load-washer-850-seriesGE Front Load Washer with Antimicrobial Microban Coating Around Gasket (Blue)

 

Mold is a product of standing water. It can happen in the dispenser, back of the washer, but especially in the gasket.

GE has the most extensive mold prevention package. First, they covered the gasket and dispenser with Microban antimicrobial surfaces.

Then they added the "UltraFresh" fan to dry any residual moisture after your wash cycle. To activate it, you need to select a button on the top right of the control panel. If you do not press it, the machine will chime to let you know you need to push the vent button once you close the door.

Whirlpool has no mold prevention in their washers.

Read More: How to Prevent Mold in Your Front Load Washer

2. Smart Functionality

We have a webinar dedicated to smart functionality in appliances on YouTube. In our webinar, you will learn smart functionality is not a must-have feature. Laundry may be the exception.

You can turn the machine on or off from an app on your phone like all the other appliances. You will also see the time remaining and receive a push notification when the cycle is done.

These features are desirable in the laundry because now you will not have to check your washer every five minutes to see if it has done. You will know in real-time.

GE is a pioneer in smart functionality with their platform called SmartHQ. You can also check how much detergent is left in the dispenser. The washer also can set the proper drying cycle automatically in this model.

Learn More: Smart Appliance Buying Guide

3. RPM Spin

GE is 30% faster at 1300 RPM versus 1000 for Whirlpool. Higher spins reduce time in the dryer for less shrinkage and damage due to heat.

4. Overnight Cycle

You can wash and dry an outfit in the GE due to the higher spin. Whirlpool has a 12-hour cycle to keep the clothes fresh but not completely dry.

5. Reversible Door

GE has a reversible door for easier access to the dryer in stacking and other applications. You do not have to remove the clothes and evade the washer and dryer door. Instead, you can transfer easily.

6. Reliability

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.

Most Reliable Front Load Washers from December 2020 to October 2021

  Service Ratio
LG 3.3%
Samsung 4.9%
GE Appliances 8.0%
Whirlpool 9.5%
Maytag 15.0%
Grand Total 6.3%

Both are similar, but GE is better than Whirlpool at 8.0 vs. 9.5%. Typically, we sell GE's better front load washers versus Whirlpools' lower to middle models. More features do usually lead to more service calls.

Read More: Most Reliable Front Load Washers 

Front Load Washer Availability

Given the supply chain issues with similar machines, you should buy the available washer in your area. I will say that about all the top five brands in front load washers. Both brands have navigated well, but that will vary by area.

Read More: Best Front-Load Washers

Key Takeaways

Both are good brands. Whirlpool has more cycles, easier controls, and a bigger dispenser.

However, GE has decent cycles, the second-largest dispenser along with smart functionality you will find convenient. You also have mold prevention and a better RPM to dry your clothes.

Buy the available one, but the newer GE may be more updated than the older Whirlpool.

Additional Resources

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Steve Sheinkopf

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.

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