How to choose a washing machine: the best washing machines in the UK

Whether its budget-friendly, energy efficient or allergy-aware, we've got the right washing machine for your household's needs

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What is the best washing machine to buy in the uk?

Washing machines are a workhorse appliance, constantly on the go cleaning everything from duvets and delicates to jeans and workwear. An essential for busy family life, you’ll want to find a high-quality, reliable model that suits your household’s washing needs and can be used for many years to come.

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Whether you’re after a WiFi-enabled smart machine, allergy-friendly features, crease-proof washing or speedy cycles, read on for our guide to machines that’ll make laundry day less of a chore.

Know what you’re after now? Read on for our pick of the best freezers currently on the market in the UK. And if you enjoy our round-up, check out our other Buyer’s Guides! We’ve got guides to the best freezers, best washing machines, best electric ovens, and many more household appliances!

Miele laundry
Expert tip! Don’t just choose a large capacity machine by default. Mid-capacity washing machines (7-8kg) can still allow you to clean up to 40 shirts in one go

How to choose a washing machine

Follow this advice from expert Shalika Hooda, the UK Beko brand manager, on things to look out for when choosing, fitting and using your dream machine. Here’s your buyers checklist:

  • Washing machine size

Measure the space to determine what size washing machine your kitchen or utility room will be able to accommodate. The standard height for a free-standing washing machine is 84cm, whereas integrated models are 82cm so they can fit into kitchen units. ‘Always account for the space the piping will take up behind the washing machine when choosing a model’ says Shalika. ‘The inlet and waste water pipes are a vital part of the washing machine’s functionality, so make sure there is plenty of room for them.’

Remember, washing machines now go up to 12kg in capacity, but consider your own needs before automatically defaulting to a large capacity machine. 5-6kg models are great for couples and allow you to wash 25-30 shirts in a single cycle. Mid-capacity washing machines (7-8kg) allow you to clean up to 40 shirts in one go, and this increases to 60 with a 12kg model.

  • Type of washing machine: integrated or free-standing

Decide on whether you prefer free-standing or built-in appliances. Integrated models can offer a smart look, and free-standing ones provide greater capacity and come in a range of colours to match interiors. Free-standing machines do not require fitting to kitchen units, so they can be placed anywhere, as long as there is access to power and drainage.

‘Double check that there is a power source within at least one metre of your new washing machine’ adds Shalika. ‘Make sure you always plug it into the mains too, rather than an extension cord.’

The best washing machines to buy in the UK

1. Easiest to use: Samsung WW80K5413UW, £419, AO

Samsung washing machine
Samsung WW80K5413UW

Capacity 8kg

Size (cm) 85H x 60W x 55D

Energy rating A+++

Spin speed 1,400rpm

Maximum noise level 53dB (wash), 74dB (spin)

Annual energy consumption 116kWh

Annual water consumption 8,100L

If you always seem to find a stray sock you meant to add to the wash, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without the Samsung WW80K5413UW machine’s AddWash door. It allows you to add clothes to the drum after the cycle has started, saving you having to put another load on to wash any items you’ve missed. It’s great for adding forgotten detergent mid-wash too. This machine is also tough on stains, with a Bubble Soak setting which bathes your laundry before the main wash starts, loosening any stubborn marks.

2. Best for allergies: WY940P44E, £369, Beko

Beko washing machine
Beko WY940P44E

Capacity 9kg

Size (cm) 84H x 60W x 64D

Energy rating A+++

Spin speed 1,400rpm

Maximum noise level 53dB (wash), 74dB (spin)

Annual energy consumption 152kWh

Annual water consumption 10,999L

For allergy or asthma sufferers, look for features that can help to reduce allergens in your washing. Beko’s Anti-Allergy programme, endorsed by Allergy UK, helps reduce the amount of allergens in your laundry, including cat, dog and pollen-derived ones, as well as bacteria and fungi. It also has two useful short programmes (one at 14 minutes for a 2kg load, and a 28-minute daily quick programme) and an interior drum light to make loading easier. Plus, it can be connected to your phone via Bluetooth so you can schedule a wash overnight.

3. Fabric friendly: WED 325, £799, Miele

Miele washing machine
Miele WED 325

Capacity 8kg

Size (cm) 85H x 59.6W x 63.6D

Energy rating A+++

Spin speed 1,400rpm

Maximum noise level 50dB (wash), 74dB (spin)

Annual energy consumption 156kWh

Annual water consumption 10,120L

Harsh washing cycles can damage fabrics over time, so if you’ve got a variety of different textile types to clean regularly pick a machine with settings designed to care for your clothes. The Miele WED 325 has a range of programmes designed to suit an array of fabrics: MinimumIron to help reduce creasing, ideal for cotton work shirts; a wool setting for delicates; and an Outwear programme to retain textiles’ functionality in any weather. This nifty machine also includes intelligent Automatic Load recognition, ensuring that only a precise amount of water and electricity are used during the wash to save time and money.

4. Quietest washing cycle: AI DD V-Series F4V909WTS, £720, LG

LG washing machine
LG AI DD V-Series F4V909WTS

Capacity 9kg

Size (cm) 85H x 60W x 56D

Energy rating A+++

Spin speed 1,400rpm

Maximum noise level 48dB (wash), 71dB (spin)

Annual energy consumption 107kWh

Annual water consumption 9,000L

If your washing machine is in the kitchen – and especially if it’s part of an open-plan living area – having a noisy appliance can be disruptive. LG’s AI DD V-Series Front-Loader machine has been awarded a Quiet Mark; an international approval award associated with the UK Noise Abatement Society charitable foundation, which indicates very low noise levels through scientific testing and assessment. It’s got plenty of other features as well, including Wi-Fi, steam technology and a speedy TurboWash™ 360˚ function.

5. Best for families: MW9140P, £319, Montpellier

Montpellier washing machine
Montpellier MW9140P

Capacity 9kg

Size (cm) 85H x 59.5W x 56.5D

Energy rating A+++

Spin Speed 1,400rpm

Maximum noise level 53dB (wash), 74dB (spin)

Annual energy consumption 196kWh

Annual water consumption 11,880L

For a busy household, you’ll need a washing machine that can keep up! With its large 9kg capacity, the Montpellier MW9140P is ideal for families that frequently need to wash school uniforms, bed sheets, sports kits, work clothes and everything in between – and, priced at £319, it’s also a great-value machine. Its inverter motor uses magnets to spin the drum, making it more energy-efficient and quieter than other models with brush motors and so ideal for open-plan spaces.

6. Best built in model: WMi3000 integrated machine, £607, Caple

Caple washing machine
Caple WMi3000

Capacity 9kg

Size (cm) 85H x 59.5W x 56.5D

Energy rating A+++

Spin Speed 1,400rpm

Maximum noise level 53dB (wash), 74dB (spin)

Annual energy consumption 196kWh

Annual water consumption 11,880L

For a busy household, you’ll need a washing machine that can keep up! With its large 9kg capacity, the Montpellier MW9140P is ideal for families that frequently need to wash school uniforms, bed sheets, sports kits, work clothes and everything in between – and, priced at £319, it’s also a great-value machine. Its inverter motor uses magnets to spin the drum, making it more energy-efficient and quieter than other models with brush motors and so ideal for open-plan spaces.

7. Best smart machine: AXI, £639, Hoover

Hoover washing machine-
Hoover AXI

Capacity 13kg

Size (cm) 85H x 60W x 54D

Energy rating A+++

Spin speed 1,600rpm

Maximum noise level 52dB (wash),
80dB (spin)

Annual energy consumption 131kWh

Annual water consumption 10,600L

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From online shopping to finding new recipes, there’s a bit of tech to help us with pretty much every household chore – now including the washing! Hoover’s first AI machine will remember your favourite wash settings, has a voice-assist feature that allows you to choose and set programmes, and can give advice on stain removal and how to choose the right setting for your load. It can even tell you the best time of day to do your laundry based on the weather forecast! Its large 13kg-capacity drum makes it a practical choice for families too.