Washing Machine Buying Guide: Know These Important Things to Choose the Right One


Buying a new washing machine can be confusing, given the vast number of options in the market. In this guide, let’s consider all the factors you should consider when selecting your next washing machine. Before that, we need to understand the types of laundry machines to see which is the perfect fit for your home.

Types of Washing Machines

There are two main types of washing machines: semi-automatic and fully automatic. In a semi-automatic model, you have separate drums for washing and drying, whereas a fully automatic machine does both jobs in a single drum.

Semi-Automatic and Fully Automatic Washing Machines

Semi-Automatic Washing Machines Fully Automatic Washing Machines
Consumes less water Comparatively, they consume more water
Requires human intervention to shift clothes to the drying tub
No human action is needed after loading clothes in the tub
Affordable models are available as low as Rs 10,000
These are generally more expensive, priced approximately 20% higher
They require a lot of space because of the dual-drum design These are compact machines and require less space
Takes less time to complete washing and drying
Consume more time to finish a complete cycle of washing and drying
semi automatic fully automatic washing machine
Semi-Automatic (Left) and Fully Automatic (Right) washing machines

From a design perspective, you get two types: top-load and front-load. Let’s understand the pros and cons of each type of washing machine.

Top Load vs Front Load Washing Machine

Top Load Washing Machines Front Load Washing Machines
Require more water due to larger drum size They need less water
Loading clothes can be harder in bulk quantities Easier to load clothes inside
The need for regular cleaning is less
These require frequent cleaning to prevent mould formation
These are generally wider in size
They are available in compact sizes, depending on the model
Slower spin speeds make it harder to remove difficult stains
Offer better cleaning due to faster spin speeds

Should you buy a washing machine or a dryer-washer combo?

Washing machines generally come with a built-in dryer or dryer-washer combo. You can also buy a standalone washing machine with a separate dryer. Let’s understand what fits best for whom.

A dryer-washer combo needs less space as it combines both features in the same machine. However, if you do multiple loads of laundry at once, these consume more time as you will have to wait for the machine to complete the entire wash and dry cycle.

top load front load washing machine
Top-load washing machine (Left) and Front-load washing machine (Right)

A separate dryer will take up extra space in your house, but it has several advantages. First, you can quickly unload clothes from the washer and put them inside the dryer for a faster wash cycle. Second, the overall drying effect from dedicated dryers is also better and more consistent than washer-dryer combos. However, using different machines for washing and drying involves more work, as you have to transfer clothes manually.

If you want a set-and-forget laundry solution, buying a washer-dryer is best. If you prefer faster wash cycles and need your clothes to be perfectly dry, getting separate machines for both tasks is a more sensible option.

Budget Breakdown for Washing Machines

You can buy a semi-automatic washing machine from reputed brands like LG, Whirlpool, Samsung, Voltas, etc., for as low as Rs 10,000. These budget-friendly washing machines usually have capacities of around 6kg. The price range for fully automatic washing machines starts at Rs 15,000.

Given their advanced features, such as smart connectivity, heated dryers, and longer warranties, top-end models can cost as much as Rs 60,000.

Another factor is that top-load washing machines are generally more affordable than their front-load counterparts. You often see the same features in a top-load and front-load machine, with the top-load model being priced slightly lower.

Budget Ideal Model Features to look for
Rs 10,000 – Rs 15,000 Semi-automatic, top load 5-year motor warranty
Rs 15,000 – Rs 20,000 Fully automatic, top load
Inverter motor, 5-star energy savings rating
Rs 25,000 – Rs 30,000 Fully automatic, front load
Heated dryers, 10-year motor warranty, different wash modes
Rs 30,000 – Rs 40,000 Fully automatic, front load
Steam wash, heated dryers, smart connectivity
Rs 50,000 and above Fully automatic, front load
Premium drum materials, higher energy savings, and everything mentioned above

What’s the right capacity for you?

Choosing the correct load capacity is equally important to get the best laundry results from your washing machine, with optimal power and water consumption. This table explains the suitable capacity for your next washing machine.

Capacity Family Size Number of clothes
6-6.5kg 1-2 members 2 shirts
2 pants
1 towel, sheet, etc
7-7.5kg 3-4 members 3 shirts
3 pants
2 towels, sheets, etc
8-9 kg 5-6 members 4 shirts
4 pants
3-4 towels, sheets, etc
10kg and above 7 or more members 5 shirts
5 pants
5 towels/sheets

Note that these numbers are only indicative. Users should check the suggested number of clothes by the original machine manufacturer, as the load capacity and structure also depend on the materials used in the drum and other parts of the washing machine.

Important Features to be Aware of

Apart from knowing the right capacity and model, one must also know some important jargon while buying a washing machine. These are nifty features which enhance your overall laundry experience.

washing machine

  • Auto-dispense: You don’t have to refill detergent repeatedly for each wash cycle. Once you refill, the machine will automatically dispense soap based on the load capacity.
  • Stackable machine: Some front-load machines offer stacking, which allows them to be placed one above the other using a locking mechanism. This feature is useful if you need two machines for extra capacity or to stack a separate dryer over your normal washing machine.
  • Spin speed: This refers to the maximum speed at which your machine’s drum rotates. A faster speed indicates that the machine can easily remove difficult stains. However, a faster machine is not necessarily better, as the final cleaning results depend on the wash modes offered by the machine.
  • Noise levels: Knowing the maximum noise levels the washing machine generates is important. Although modern machines run quieter, checking the noise label while buying a new machine helps to determine whether it can disturb your home. Noise levels between 50-75 dB are considered silent washing machines.

Understanding Wash Programs

Washing machines offer multiple wash programs that adjust the cleaning pattern and runtime of the motor. Entry-level washing machines generally offer numbered modes between one and five, where one indicates regular washing, while five makes the machine run faster and longer to remove tougher stains. Mid-range and premium washing machines offer dedicated technologies and allow you to adjust wash cycles depending on the fabric type.

washing machine farbic

  • Normal wash: This mode offers optimal cleaning and consumes regular water. It is best suited for daily clothes like shirts, pants, napkins, etc.
  • Quick Wash: This mode is often found on most washing machines. It can be used for gym clothes, undergarments, and other fabrics that are not soiled or stained too much. Water consumption is almost the same in this mode, but the machine runs slightly faster to complete the wash cycle quickly.
  • Heavy Duty/Sports Wash: This is usually the most powerful mode in the washing machine. The motor runs at a maximum speed, and the wash cycle takes longer durations, up to one hour or more. It is best suited for heavily stained clothes, bedsheets, curtains, sportswear, etc.
  • Steam Wash: It is only found on select washing machines. As the name suggests, this mode uses warm water and steam to clean the clothes at a slower spin speed. This is helpful to clean stinky clothes.
  • Samsung EcoBubble: This technology is found on Samsung washing machines. It mixes detergent with water and air before entering the wash drum, which creates soap bubbles. This helps to remove stains more efficiently.
  • LG Direct Drive: It means the drum of the washing machine is directly attached to the motor without any belt drive mechanism. This technology is also found on machines from other brands. Most LG washing machines have the Direct Drive prefix, which indicates the series.
  • Panasonic Kikuzai: This technology uses gentle wash modes for certain fabrics. It has a dedicated mesh over the pulsator to prevent direct contact with clothes, which helps clean delicate clothes.


1. Should I get an extended warranty for my washing machine?

The most important part of a washing machine is the motor, generally covered with a 5-10 year warranty. Normal parts are also covered under a one-year comprehensive warranty. Extended warranties are not worth paying extra money unless your retailer offers them for free.

2. How important is the energy-saving rating on a washing machine?

Energy-saving ratings on washing machines are less important than those on air conditioners and refrigerators. If you are getting a good deal on a machine with a lower star rating, it’s wise to choose it, as you won’t notice a huge difference in running costs. Features like capacity and wash modes are more important to consider in your budget than energy-saving ratings.

3. Which is the best company to buy a washing machine?

LG, Whirlpool, Samsung, IFB, Bosch, Voltas, and Haier are among the top companies for washing machines in India.

4. Which company offers the best after-sales service for washing machines?

According to our MySmartPrice Home Appliance Satisfaction Study of 2024, Samsung and LG offer the best after-sales support for washing machines.