We can't argue with the performance of Maytag's new front-loading flagship. Efficient and effective, it's also laden with options that make wash day a whole lot easier–it'll dispense detergent automatically, and even adjust wash cycles depending on water hardness. But unless you can find a good sale, those features sure are expensive.

This Maxima has no engine to rev, but it has detergent to dispense

I'm not morally opposed to extraneous features, so I don't disapprove of the MHW8000AG's excesses. However, most of them are what I'd call "Dad features"—cool to show off, even if you don't necessarily use them.

And if you want all the dads in your neighborhood gathered around your laundry room on a Saturday afternoon, there's no better draw than this Maytag. The ability to adjust for water hardness is nice, especially because hard water doesn't clean as well as soft water. But it only works if you know your water supply's hardness level. The Optimal Dose feature is quite useful, however. Identical to Whirlpool's Precision Dispense, it allows you to store enough liquid detergent in the machine for twelve loads of laundry, and promises not to over-soap.

It even has a Fan Dry option, which has two uses: drying a small load of laundry overnight, and keeping mold from growing inside your washer's watertight gasket.

On the control panel, the capacitive buttons were less responsive than we would've liked. However, each button sang out if our touch registered. (In fact, you can play "Mary had a Little Lamb" if you can reach both the washer and the matching dryer, a selling point for sure.) If you want to learn more about the usability of Maytag's Maxima XL MHW8000AG, just read our MHW6000AG review , as it's a nearly identical machine that handles exactly the same. On both machines, the door is a bit tough to open.

If Maytag's completely revamped lineup of Maxima washers is Destiny's Child, the MHW8000AG is Beyoncé

The 8000 is the fanciest, priciest Maytag front loader, and also the best performer. On some cycles it does an exceptional job lifting stains, though it isn't perfect.

For instance, cycles take a good long while, some can use a lot of water, and most put your clothes through some stress. The PowerWash cycle was the best cleaner, but it took over two hours, used 16 gallons of water, and roughed up clothes like a wannabe gangster. All the other cycles did a good job, but no better than washers that cost a lot less.

Though it's not cheap to buy, we were impressed with how inexpensive this washer is to run. If your water and energy costs are around average, it shouldn't cost you more than $30 a year to get your clothes clean. And it also did a good job spinning excess water out of laundry loads, which will save time, energy, and money in the dryer.

The cost of success

The Maytag Maxima XL MHW8000AG is a good washer with lots of interesting features. It's worth buying if you can find it on sale, but it's worth noting that for its $1,549 MSRP, you could buy a basic washer and dryer.

Of course, those basic machines wouldn't come with the features this Maytag offers, and they are legion. A fan that dries small loads of laundry overnight, an automatic detergent dispenser, and wash cycles that control for water hardness all take some level of effort out of doing laundry. If it's ease of use, capacity, and performance that you want, Maytag's flagship is certainly impressive.
Science? We have it! Every machine that comes through our loading dock is subjected to merciless, standardized testing of performance and efficiency. If you want to read about the scintillating details, read on. We promise it'll be better than The Godfather Part III
To test cleaning performance we use standardized stain strips that are coated in carbon, sweat, pig's blood, cocoa, and red wine. Believe me, all these stains do come together on a single garment every once in a while, but only if you hang out with former Disney Channel stars. Anyways, each of these stain strips are placed in standard wash loads and run through core cycles. This machine did well all around, but only the PowerWash cycle went above and beyond.
Here at Reviewed.com, washing machine efficiency is two pronged: We take into account what goes into the washer and what comes out of the washer.

What goes in is water and electricity. We measure that by hooking the Maytag MHW8000AG to water and watt meters. Our measurements showed that the cost of running the MHW8000AG for a year is going to be about $29.50, which is quite low. We base this number on the national average cost for power and water.

Next, we take into account what comes out of the washer. The more moisture that your laundry retains, the more work your dryer will have to do. In this regard, this Maytag did very well. On average it managed to spin out 44% of all excess moisture.

Meet the testers

Jonathan Chan

Jonathan Chan

Lab Manager

@ReviewedHome

Jonathan Chan currently serves as the Senior Lab Technician at Reviewed. If you clean with it, it's likely that Jon oversees its testing. Since joining the Reviewed in 2012, Jon has helped launch the company's efforts in reviewing laptops, vacuums, and outdoor gear. He thinks he's a pretty big deal. In the pursuit of data, he's plunged his hands into freezing cold water, consented to be literally dragged through the mud, and watched paint dry. Jon demands you have a nice day.

See all of Jonathan Chan's reviews
Jonathan Chan

Jonathan Chan

Lab Manager

@ReviewedHome

Jonathan Chan currently serves as the Senior Lab Technician at Reviewed. If you clean with it, it's likely that Jon oversees its testing. Since joining the Reviewed in 2012, Jon has helped launch the company's efforts in reviewing laptops, vacuums, and outdoor gear. He thinks he's a pretty big deal. In the pursuit of data, he's plunged his hands into freezing cold water, consented to be literally dragged through the mud, and watched paint dry. Jon demands you have a nice day.

See all of Jonathan Chan's reviews

Checking our work.

We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.

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