2014 Best of Year Washer and Dryer Awards

Doing your laundry has never been more effective, or efficient.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

Thanks to new technology, today's washers and dryers are both more efficient and more effective than their predecessors. Whether you're buying a budget model or a high-end machine, your laundry will be better cared for than ever before.

We tested some of the most popular models on the market, and have chosen only the top performers for our Best of Year awards.

This year, we saw some significant technological advances, including heat pump dryers, ultra-high-capacity washers, and fast wash cycles. Some older machines are still great values, too.


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Best Washing Machine of the Year

LG WM8000HVA and Kenmore Elite 41072

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LG WM8000HVA

The Kenmore Elite 40172 is made by LG and based on the WM8000HVA. Not only are the two machines similar in design, but both performed almost identically in our lab tests. Both washers feature massive 5.1-cubic-foot capacity, quick 48-minute Normal cycles, and great stain removal. Even with all those benefits, both washers are efficient when it comes to water and electricity use.

Read our full review of the LG WM8000HVA (Est. price: $1,439).
Read our full review of the Kenmore Elite 41072 (Est. price: $1,349).

Runner-up: Kenmore Elite 41583

The Kenmore 41583 replaces the Kenmore 41472, our two-time Best of Year award winner. Not only is the 41583 new, it's also improved: A 30 minute Normal cycle is 8 minutes faster than its predecessor, and a sleek design will look great in your laundry room. It's also efficient, and did a great job removing stains. (Est. price: $1,049)

Read our full review of the Kenmore Elite 41583.


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Best Dryer of the Year

Electrolux EWMED70JIW

For the third year in a row, Electrolux's flagship dryer remains the best we've ever tested. That's mostly because of its versatility: Whether we dried delicate fabrics or bulky comforters, it was up for the task. We were also impressed by its large capacity and a bunch of extra features—including custom cycles for sanitizing clothes, drying jeans, and fluffing up pet beds. (Est. price: $1,304)

Read our full review of the Electrolux EWMED70JIW.

Runner-up: Electrolux EIED50LIW

If you like the EWMED70JIW but don't need all its specialty cycles, the EIED50LIW is a great choice. It has the same 8-cubic-foot drum and does just as good a job getting clothes dry, but sells for about $400 less than the flagship. That makes it a great deal and a great dryer. (Est. price: $899)

Read our full review of the Electrolux EIED50LIW.

Best Laundry Innovation

Swash, by Whirlpool and Procter & Gamble

If you've got big dry cleaning bills, you should check out the Swash. It's a clothing refresher that removes wrinkles and odors from even the most delicate fabrics, and it's designed to fit in a bedroom or even a closet. Unlike a steamer, it relies on special cleaning pods that contain wetting agent, water, and pH neutralizer. Once you put a garment in the Swash, it will be ready to wear just 10 minutes later. (Est. price: $499)

Read our full hands-on review of the Swash, by Whirlpool and Procter & Gamble.


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Whirlpool Duet WED99HEDW

Best Dryer Feature

Whirlpool Heat Pump Dryer and LG Heat Pump Dryer

For years, dryers have used the same design: Blow hot air over tumbling clothes, and vent that air outside. It's inefficient—your furnace or A/C unit has to replenish the air that's blown outside—and all those high temps are rough on your clothes.

Thankfully, Whirlpool and LG have both developed dryers that incorporate a heat pump, which recycles hot air while removing moisture from clothes. (Whirlpool's design is ventless, which makes the WED99HEDW the only full-size ventless dryer in the U.S.) Both machines are as effective as conventional dryer, and both machines promise energy savings of up to 50 percent over a traditional machine.

Read our full review of the Whirlpool Duet WED99HEDW.
Read our hands-on review of the LG DLHX4072W.


Best Washer Feature

Kenmore Accela-Wash and LG TurboWash

When engineers at LG created TurboWash back in 2012, it promised to cut a Normal cycle down to 38 minutes by spraying detergent during a rinse cycle. (On LG-manufactured Kenmore washers, TurboWash is called Accela-Wash.)

Now, an updated version of TurboWash cuts that cycle time down to 30 minutes without affecting performance. We tested Accela-Wash on the Kenmore 41583, and were very impressed. You can do a load of laundry in the same amount of time it takes you to watch a sitcom. (Est. price: $699–$1,599)

Read our full review of the Kenmore Elite 41583.


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Best Washer / Dryer Pair

Electrolux 70 Series

Electrolux's EWMED70JIW is a great dryer, but it also can be paired with an excellent washer. The EWFLS70JIW features quick wash cycles and great stain removal. It also does a good job spinning out excess water, so your dryer doesn't have to work as hard. If you're buying a matching high-end washer and dryer pair, the Electrolux EWMED70JIW and EWFLS70JIW are a great choice.

Read our full review of the Electrolux EWFLS70JIW front-load washer (Est. price: $1,349).
Read our full review of the Electrolux EWMED70JIW dryer (Est. price: $1,208–$1,343).

Runner-up: Kenmore Elite 41583 / 81583

Kenmore's 41583 debuts the latest version of Accela-Wash, which can get clothes clean in just about 30 minutes. The 81583 dryer features steam cleaning and steam refresh, and the two machines can be stacked. If you're looking to get laundry done quickly, this is your pair.

Read our full review of the Kenmore Elite 41583 front-load washer (Est. price: $1,049–$1,199).
Read our full review of the Kenmore Elite 81583 dryer (Est. price: $1,049–$1,199).


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Best Value Washer / Dryer Pair

Kenmore 41182 / 81182

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Kenmore 41182

Front-load washers don't have to be expensive or fancy. The Kenmore 41583 is basic, but did well in our stain removal tests. Its matching dryer, the Kenmore 81583, has a sanitize cycle and demonstrated above average drying ability. Together, the two machines make for an affordable, stackable laundry powerhouse: The pair sells for under $1,200—as much as a single high-end washer.

Read our full review of the Kenmore 41182 front-load washer (Est. price $719).
Read our full review of the Kenmore 81182 dryer (Est. price $719).

Runner-up: Samsung WF42H5000AW / DV42H5000EW

Samsung's affordable, stackable laundry pair—the WF42H5000AW washer and DV42H5000EW dryer—outperformed pairs that cost hundreds more. They're efficient and effective, and even better together. At 27-inches wide, they'll fit in most laundry rooms, and they'll look good, too.

Read our full review of the Samsung WF42H5000AW front-load washer (Est. price. $719)
Read our full review of the Samsung DV42H5000EW dryer (Est. price: $719–$799).


Best High-End Washing Machine

LG WM8000HVA and Kenmore Elite 41072

Runner-up: Electrolux EWFLS70JIW

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Kenmore Elite 41072

The best-performing washing machines we tested get accolades because of how well they get clothes clean. They're all great at stain removal, gentle on fabrics, and efficient when it comes to water and electricity use. But many of the best washers we've tested also have lots of additional features—such as massive capacities, steam cycles, sanitizing options, and specialty wash programs.

Beyond the basics, both the LG WM8000HVA/Kenmore Elite 41072 excel with large capacities and quick cycles. The Electrolux EWFLS70JIW has a reversible door and some unique wash cycle options.

Read our full review of the LG WM8000HVA (Est. price: $1,439).
Read our full review of the Kenmore Elite 41072 (Est. price: $1,349).

Read our full review of the Electrolux EWFLS70JIW (Est. price: $1,349).


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Best Mid-Range Washing Machine

Kenmore Elite 41583

The Kenmore Elite 41583 doesn't just make stains disappear. It also promises a shorter laundry day. In our lab tests, we clocked a Normal cycle at just 30 minutes when washing an 8 lb. load of laundry—the fastest Normal wash cycle we've ever tested. It was no slouch on other cycles, either, with a powerful Heavy Duty that left white fabrics sparkling. It was also gentle on delicate fabrics. (Est. price: $1,049)

Read our full review of the Kenmore Elite 41583.

Runner-up: Electrolux EIFLW50LIW

Electrolux's EIFLW50LIW is a great washer, with quick cycles and a large capacity. It's been on the market for about four years, but it still continues to outperform many of its newer competitors. A bonus: It has a great matching dryer in the EIED50LIW. (Est. price: $899)

Read our full review of the Electrolux EIFLW50LIW.


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Kenmore 41182

Best Value Washing Machine

Kenmore 41182

Part of our Best Value Washer/Dryer Pair, the Kenmore 41182 stands on its own as a great washing machine. Its Normal cycle takes about an hour, and does a good job removing stains. We were especially impressed by how much water it spun out after a cycle. That means your dryer won't have to work as hard.

The 41182 also has a simple, easy-to-use control panel, an attractive silver-finish door, and Kenmore Connect—a feature that lets a service technician remotely diagnose what's wrong with your washer should it break down.

Overall, it's a great choice for a front-loader if you can't fathom spending upwards of $1,000 on one. (Est. price $719)

Read our full review of the Kenmore 41182.


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Electrolux EWMED70JIW

Best High-End Dryer

Electrolux EWMED70JIW

The Electrolux EWMED70JIW isn't just the best dryer we've tested. It also has a boatload of extra features that make it decidedly luxurious. Those include a 14 minute Quick cycle, a reversible door, and steam options for refreshing clothes and releasing wrinkles. (Est. price: $1,304)

Read our full review of the Electrolux EWMED70JIW.

Runner-up: LG DLEX8000W

The DLEX8000W has a gigantic capacity—9.0 cubic feet, to be exact. It also features steam cycles, including LG's Spot Clean for removing fresh stains, and a sanitary cycle for killing bacteria. Its matching washer—the LG WM8000HVA—is the best washer we've tested. (Est. price: $1,349–$1,499)

Read our full review of the LG DLEX8000W.


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Best Mid-Range Dryer

Electrolux EIED50LIW

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Electrolux EIED50LIW

The EIED50LIW is a great dryer. It takes everything we love about the EWMED70JIW—like its ability to remove moisture from all kinds of loads and fabrics—and puts it in a more affordable package. Sure, you won't get as many extras. For instance, it doesn't offer steam. But the EIED50LIW does a great job drying clothes, and that's what makes it stand out above the competition. (Est. price: $899)

Read our full review of the Electrolux EIED50LIW.

Runner-up: Whirlpool WED87HEDW

The Whirlpool WED87HEDW is America's first Energy Star certified dryer. But its efficiency doesn't blunt its effectiveness, and the WED87 is no slouch when it comes to removing moisture from clothes and leaving them fresh. An EcoBoost option lowers temperatures and saves even more electricity. (Est. price: $899)

Read our full review of the Whirlpool WED87HEDW.


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Hotpoint HTDP120EDWW

Best Value Dryer

Hotpoint HTDP120EDWW

Hotpoint is GE's value brand, and the HTDP120EDWW is one of the least expensive dryers on the market. It does a good job with mixed loads of laundry, and has a control panel that should be familiar to most users. It got our 8 lb. mixed load of test laundry 100 percent dry in around an hour. (Est. price: $499)

Read our full review of the Hotpoint HTDP120EDWW.

Runner-up: Maytag Centennial MEDC300BW

This Maytag is another extremely affordable option. Unlike other dryers in its price range, it has an anti-wrinkle feature that occasionally tumbles clothes so they stay ready to wear, even if you're not ready to take them out. (Est. price: $499)

Read our full review of the Maytag Centennial MEDC300BW.


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Best Top-Load Washing Machine

Samsung WA50F9A8DSP

Front-load washing machines took home most of our honors, but the Samsung WA50F9A8DSP is a truly great top-loader. It has a massive, 5.0 cu. ft. capacity for washing a week's worth of dirty laundry, and it also did a great job at stain removal in our lab tests. We're big fans of its straightforward design, and you can save about $100 if you buy it with a white finish as the WA50F9A6DSW. (Est. price: $1,079–$1,199)

Read our full review of the Samsung WA50F9A8DSP.


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Best Mid-Range Top-Load Washing Machine

Maytag Bravos MVWB700BW

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Maytag Bravos MVWB700BW

If you're looking for a high-efficiency, top-load washing machine, the Maytag Bravos line has some great choices.

We're particularly fans of the MVWB700BW. The 4.5-cubic-foot capacity washer might lack some of the luxury touches of higher-end machines, but its core performance is the same when it comes to stain removal, efficiency, and cycle customization. (Est. price: $674–$749)

Read our full review of the Maytag Bravos MVWB700BW.

Runner-up: Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum WTW8500BW

The Whirlpool Cabrio series is based on the same design as the Maytag Bravos. Like the Maytag MVWB700BW, the Whirlpool WTW8500BW hits the sweet spot between performance and value. It has a slightly larger drum than the Maytag, and a different control panel setup. (Est. price: $809)

Read our full review of the Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum WTW8500BW.


Best Value Top-Load Washing Machine

Hotpoint HSWP1000MWW

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Hotpoint HSWP1000MWW

Hotpoint is GE's value brand. It makes no-nonsense, affordable appliances. The HSWP1000MWW washer uses a basic top-load design that's decades old, with a pole-style agitator that essentially beats the stains out of clothes. It doesn't remove dirt as well as more modern machines, it's harsher on delicates, and it leaves clothes soaked with more excess water. But it's inexpensive to purchase and familiar for users. (Est. price: $400)

Read our full review of the Hotpoint HSWP1000MWW.

Runner-up: Admiral ATW4675YQ

Admiral is Whirlpool's value brand, and the ATW4675YQ is the company's current traditional pole-agitator top-load washer. If you've used a washing machine in the past fifty years, it will be familiar to you. And even though this Admiral uses more water than more modern machines, it's an inexpensive upfront purchase. (Est. price: $400)

Read our full review of the Admiral ATW4675YQ.


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Blomberg WM 87120 NBL00

Best Compact Washing Machine

Blomberg WM 87120 NBL00

If you don't have room for a full-size washing machine, the Blomberg WM 87120 is a great fit. It's only 24 inches wide, which makes it ideal for city apartments and vacation cottages. And while it's a European-style washer, its performance is tailored for American tastes.

When we tested this Blomberg, we measured stain removal on par with machines nearly twice as big and twice as expensive. It's also stackable when paired with a matching Blomberg vented dryer—one of only two vented compact dryers on the market. In fact, the washer plugs into the dryer, so users only need a single 220v outlet. (Est. price: $899)

Read our full review of the Blomberg WM 87120 NBL00.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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