Best washing machines: a buyer’s guide

Surprisingly, the first mechanised clothes washing device was invented as early as six hundred years ago. After a slew of evolutionary improvements, a patent was awarded in 1901 for the first electric machine, followed by another in 1976 for the world’s first computer-operated appliance, complete with push-button controls. Washing machines are one of our most life-changing innovations, saving us an enormous amount of time and energy. Even the simplest models require minimum effort and partnered with the equally effective tumble dryer, we are happily left with nothing more to do except hang a few of our fussier garments on the line. Gaggenau washing machines are among the best in the world; we explore why in this article.

How washing machines work

Whichever appliance you choose, washing machines cannot work without the assistance of a fabric-friendly detergent that is designed to extract the dirt from your clothes.

Modern washing machines all contain an inner and outer drum and are electrically controlled by a set of programs that switch various elements on and off in sequence.

There are two variants:

Front-loading washing machines

The drums are mounted on a horizontal axis. The outer drum is secured to the frame by heavy-duty springs to help stabilise it during spin cycles. Clothes are loaded through a front door and tumble repeatedly through water in the base of the tub. After washing and rinsing, the inner drum uses centrifugal force to spin the load at up to 1200 revolutions per minute, squeezing out the water in preparation for drying.

Top-loading washing machines

The drums are mounted on a vertical axis. Clothes are loaded through a top lid and sloshed through the water by either:

  • An agitator, which is a shaft with paddles that protrudes from the centre of the drum and twists your clothing through the water during the wash cycle.
  • An impeller, which is a low-profile hub that creates turbulent currents as it rotates, moving the clothes through the water.

The water pump motor rotates in one direction to circulate the water. It then changes direction to remove the water during the spin cycle.

Best washing machines: a buyer’s guide

Gaggenau washing machines review

The Gaggenau 200 series front-loader washing machine and tumble dryer combo is an impeccable choice if you’re looking for a beautifully integrated laundry system. Both feature automatic programs that communicate with each other, enabling the dryer to anticipate the wash load and set itself to the correct cycle.

Aside from the elegantly lit drums, 180 ° door opening angle and spacious portholes for easy loading, these washing machines have an ample capacity of up to 10kg of laundry. The new intelligent dosage system (iDos) automatically controls the inflow of liquid detergents and softeners.

There are fourteen program options to choose from including anti-crease and anti-stain, enabling you to customise your wash to suit specific needs. The Dynamic Wash System ensures optimum performance and shorter wash times, which enhances their low water and energy consumption. Gaggenau washing machines are well known for their durability and long life span.

The wonderfully quiet Gaggenau 200 series heat pump tumble dryer is the perfect washing machine companion and dries up to 9kg of laundry per load. It features a Steam Refresh program that rejuvenates lightly worn or creased clothes. The self-cleaning condenser conveniently alerts you when (infrequent) cleaning is required. Both appliances are seamlessly stackable, allowing them to fit easily into your laundry space.

Gaggenau washing machines and tumble dryers are undoubtedly the best of the best, but if you’re looking for something a little more affordable, Miele has some wonderful options.

Best washing machines: a buyer’s guide

Gaggenau washing machine cost calculator 

If you’re ready to go out and get your Gaggenau washing machine, you’ll want to know what it costs and whether it is affordable for you.

Our useful Gaggenau cost calculator will tell you how much the washing machine costs, as well as the prices of other Gaggenau appliances. You can check it out here.

Washing machine buyer’s guide

The average washing machine should be of service to you for approximately 14 years, so choosing the best one for your budget and laundry space is of great importance. Once you’ve decided on whether you would prefer a top-loader or a front-loader, here are some points to keep in mind:

Capacity

The capacity of a washing machine is measured by the amount of weight it can hold in kilograms. This ranges from 5kg to 12kg. An average-sized family will need a machine with a capacity of around 8kg.

Freestanding or Integrated

Freestanding machines can be placed anywhere in your laundry space, whereas integrated machines are fitted into your cabinetry.

Combo or separate

Some washing machines have a built-in tumble dryer, which means that you don’t have to buy two separate units.

Spin speed limits

Although the spin speed on a washing machine can usually be selected, each machine has a limit. This can range from between 1200 rpm to 1800 rpm. Higher spin speeds mean faster drying times but can also damage delicate clothes.

Wash programs

Washing machines come with a vast variety of available programs ranging from the type and colour of material being washed to options like “steam clean” and “allergy” modes.

Noise level

Operating noise levels vary between 40-80 dB. Some appliances also feature inbuilt alarms so if volume is important to you, check this before deciding.

Stacking

Many washing machines and tumble dryers are stackable which is useful if space is limited. It is advisable to only stack appliances made by the same brand.

Conclusion

Washing machines and their tumble dryer counterparts are two of the most useful appliances of our time and, as long-term investments, should be chosen with care. Browse through our quality selection here.

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