Top Load vs Front Load Washing Machine

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If you are looking to buy a washing machine for your home and researching the difference between a front loader and a top loader.

Then you have landed on the right page.

This post is all about top load vs front load washing machine.

In short, both are equally good in terms of cleaning and for laundry. The front loader consumes less water, cleans better, and is more costly.

Top Load Washing Machine

In the top load washer, the washing drum is aligned on a vertical axis such that you put the clothes from the top.

The washer drum spins on a vertical axis.

It cleans the clothes by agitation.

top load washer drum spinning

Front Load Washing Machine

In the front load washer, the washing drum is aligned on a horizontal axis such that you put the clothes from the front. 

The washer drum spins on a horizontal axis.

It cleans the clothes by tumbling.

front load washer drum spinning

Top Load vs Front Load

FactorsTop LoadFront Load
Water UsageHighVery Low
Mold IssueRareCommon
Spin SpeedModerateHigh

1. Which cleans Better

Both top load and front load washers remove dirt and stains from the clothes.

But it is a known fact that front load washing machines clean better due to tumble washing.

Many times the front loader can be a little harsh on clothes.

There is a debate whether front load washing is delicate or harsh on clothes. Many will say it is delicate.

But the laundry man who runs the laundry business has something else to say. 

For them, front load washing is more harsh on clothes.

2. Price

With better cleaning and more sophisticated components used inside the front load washer, it is priced higher than top loaders.

Top loaders can accommodate almost all types of fabric.

Both top and front loaders offer many wash settings for different fabrics but the front loader offers more wash settings along with different spin speeds.

The long-term cost of the front load washer is also high as it requires high maintenance.

Its servicing, part repairing and replacing cost are higher.

3. Clothes Lifespan

Both front and top loader washers are harsh on clothes and they do some damage to the fabric at the microscopic level.

Thus with time, your clothes will wear out with several washes.

But which washer type gives the cloth a longer lifespan?

To know this we have to know which washer is less harsh on clothes.

It is not easy to say which washer is more or less harsh on clothes. Everyone has a different answer for this.

Many will say the front loader is delicate on clothes while others will say the top loader is delicate.

While I have heard from laundry men that the front loader is more harsh.

Whichever one may be delicate on clothes, if you have some delicate clothes and want their shine and color to stay for a long time then perform hand washing instead of machine wash as hand wash is very delicate on clothes.

4. Water Usage

Front-load washer consumes less water from the top loader by approximately 30-40%.


The clothes in the front loader are not completely submerged in water like in a top loader but are partially submerged. 

Water is recycled across the drum.

Therefore the front loader needs less water.

The use of detergent is also less as water usage is low.

Front Load washing machines need a different type of detergent. The normal detergent cannot be used in the case of a front load washer.

If you live in a region with water scarcity then a front load washer is the best option for you.

5. Smell and Mold issue

Both front and top loader can give a bad smell and become home to molds and mildew formation if not taken care of.

It is generally seen that the front load washers are more susceptible to mold and mildew formation ultimately producing a bad smell.

Common spots of mold formation in front loader

  • Rubber Seal of door
  • Behind the washer drum

The rubber seal needs to be cleaned every time after a wash cycle.

You also need to clean the front loader from the inside every once in a while. Some washing machines have a wash setting dedicated for this purpose only.

Maintaining a front loader is difficult but for a top loader, it is easy.

6. Spin Speed

To wash clothes, the washer drum in both top and front loader spin at a speed measured in RPM which is rotations per minute.

The front-load washers can spin at a higher speed than top-load washers.

One advantage of this is that clothes come more dried out after the drying cycle.

The drying cycle is at the end of the wash cycle.

This means your clothes will dry faster in the dry cycle and will be less heavy after removing from the washing machine. 

Many front loaders come with various spin speed settings for choosing the right speed.

7. Ease of use

Both fully automatic top load washing machine and front load washing machine are equally easy to use.

These machine water inlet pipes need to be fixed to a tap initially which can bring continuous water supply.

After that, you just have to load the clothes inside, put the detergent in the detergent tray and switch ON the washing machine. 

The clothes will come clean and dry after going through the wash and dry cycle.

Only in the case of the front load washer you need to bend down to load the clothes in the washer drum as the opening door is at the front.

This can be troublesome for elderly people with knee issues.

You can easily solve this issue by using a stand to uplift the front loader to an appropriate height.

Also, clothes cannot be added in between a cycle when using a front loader but this is possible in the case of a top loader. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to If you purchase using any amazon links on this website then I get a small commission for it.